AgeLab Promotes Successful Aging

With the creation of its AgeLab, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has developed a way to help baby boomers defy some of the negative aspects of aging. The AgeLab, created more than a decade ago, invents new ideas and creatively translates technologies into practical solutions that improve health and overall quality of life. Researchers at the Age Lab are discovering ways to make grocery shopping, physical activity and driving less challenging for the elderly population.

Some of the methods and tools developed to aid in successful aging include:

AGNES (Age Gain Now Empathy System) -- a suit developed to facilitate understanding of the challenges associated with aging. AGNES simulates the motor, visual, flexibility, dexterity and strength of a person in his mid seventies.

AwareCar -- assesses a driver's abilities by monitoring physiological cues (such as a driver's heart rate and respiration rate), visual attention and driving performance.

Miss Daisy -- evaluates in-vehicle technology, cognitive distraction, disease and medication effects and simulator validity.

Miss Rosie -- a Volkswagen Beetle loaded with equipment that evaluates a driver's physical capacity for vehicle operation.

The Age Lab comprises a multi-disciplinary team of researchers, business partners, universities, and members of the aging community who design, develop and deploy innovations that makes navigating through life easier for the aging. For more information, visit agelab.mit.edu/.

About the Author

Lunzeta Brackens is a contributing editor for Mobility Management.

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