Smart aging

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"Smart Aging" combines two aspects of the Internet of Things, Quantified Self devices to record your health and fitness data and smart home technologies, specifically to allow seniors to "age in place" and improve their health, while simultaneously reducing their living costs.

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Smart aging

  1. 1. “Smart Aging” through the Internet of Things ! ! W. David Stephenson Stephenson Strategies ! The Center at Medfield July 9, 2014 ! ! Before we get started, I wonder if I can get a show of hands to see how many of you use computers? How many of you have smart phones? Thanks. Hello! I’m excited to talk with you today about a new concept, “Smart Aging,” that I believe has the potential to improve seniors’ health, reduce the cost of their health care, allow them to “age in place” in their own homes, and help both individuals and society deal with the cost of aging. 1. It’s an idea that occurred to me recently when I was interviewed by the Boston Globe about the Internet of Things, which I’ll explain in detail later, and how it would affect seniors. During the interview I had an “aha moment!” I realized: 1. I love the Internet of Things and want it to be used to improve our lives 2. I have gray hair. Suddenly, at age 69, I had a life’s mission: to use the IoT, as it’s also referred to, to improve the aging process. Hence, “Smart Aging!”
  2. 2. Something’s Gotta Give It’s about time for Smart Aging, because, frankly, we, as individuals and a society, just can’t afford to live without it. Consider a few overwhelming pieces of data: • 10,000 baby boomers in the US now retire every day. Every day! • There also ain’t gonna be enough doctors to care for us, either. In fact, 1st year medical school enrollment has declined since 1980. Even worse, current doctors are going from being part of the solution to being part of the problem: 250,000 of them are older than 55, and they’ll also retire soon. • The problem is global: by 2020, 1 in 9 people worldwide will be over 60. Help!
  3. 3. Something’s Gotta Give • 10,000 baby boomers retire daily. It’s about time for Smart Aging, because, frankly, we, as individuals and a society, just can’t afford to live without it. Consider a few overwhelming pieces of data: • 10,000 baby boomers in the US now retire every day. Every day! • There also ain’t gonna be enough doctors to care for us, either. In fact, 1st year medical school enrollment has declined since 1980. Even worse, current doctors are going from being part of the solution to being part of the problem: 250,000 of them are older than 55, and they’ll also retire soon. • The problem is global: by 2020, 1 in 9 people worldwide will be over 60. Help!
  4. 4. Something’s Gotta Give • 10,000 baby boomers retire daily. • 1st year med school enrollment declined since 1980. 250,000 docs older than 55. It’s about time for Smart Aging, because, frankly, we, as individuals and a society, just can’t afford to live without it. Consider a few overwhelming pieces of data: • 10,000 baby boomers in the US now retire every day. Every day! • There also ain’t gonna be enough doctors to care for us, either. In fact, 1st year medical school enrollment has declined since 1980. Even worse, current doctors are going from being part of the solution to being part of the problem: 250,000 of them are older than 55, and they’ll also retire soon. • The problem is global: by 2020, 1 in 9 people worldwide will be over 60. Help!
  5. 5. Something’s Gotta Give • 10,000 baby boomers retire daily. • 1st year med school enrollment declined since 1980. 250,000 docs older than 55. • By 2020, 1 in 9 worldwide over 60. It’s about time for Smart Aging, because, frankly, we, as individuals and a society, just can’t afford to live without it. Consider a few overwhelming pieces of data: • 10,000 baby boomers in the US now retire every day. Every day! • There also ain’t gonna be enough doctors to care for us, either. In fact, 1st year medical school enrollment has declined since 1980. Even worse, current doctors are going from being part of the solution to being part of the problem: 250,000 of them are older than 55, and they’ll also retire soon. • The problem is global: by 2020, 1 in 9 people worldwide will be over 60. Help!
  6. 6. But, what if… You could easily record daily health data 
 & that might improve your health? But what if there was a radical shift in how we deal with aging? What if you could easily and without anyone noticing, record your real-time health indicators? What if, provided you gave your permission, your doctor could actually see that data? Instead of the un-natural setting of a few tests in her office, she could monitor what your daily life was like, including factors such as your diet and exercise, to get a better picture of your overall health. You could actually become an active partner in your health care!
  7. 7. But, what if… You could run your home 
 — just talking to it? But what if, instead of the current situation, where it becomes increasingly hard to run your home or apartment’s daily operations as you age, you could actually control critical functions such as lighting or heating, just by speaking a few basic commands? Instead of being institutionalized, which has been shown to not only radically increase your living costs but also contribute to a decline in your health and sense of wellbeing, you’d be able to stay at home, among your favorite possessions and your neighbors.
  8. 8. “Smart Aging” Senior-friendly home and health technology to cut your health and living costs, improve your health & quality of life — & keep you in your own home. Put these two innovations together, and you get what I call “Smart Aging.” That’s the concept of using senior-friendly home and health technology to cut your health and living costs, improve your health and quality of life, and keep you in your own home as long as possible. I believe it can bring unprecedented health and happiness to our senior years — while saving us money!
  9. 9. Made possible by the Internet of Things (IoT) Instead of just linking people by the Internet, also lets “things” communicate as well, share data, and work with you This revolution — and I do mean revolution — is made possible by the Internet of Things, the concept of not just linking people through the Internet, but also connecting things — from lights to coffee pots to trees in the Amazon — so that they can share data, monitor and regulate each other, and share that data with you.
  10. 10. Two Aspects Quantified Self movement — devices you can’t see — or even look nice — that record your activity. While there have been efforts for a while to specifically use technology to improve aging, I believe Smart Aging will instead result from tweaking efforts underway as part of the Internet of Things to improve life for everyone, of all ages. As Joe Coughlin, director of MIT’s AgeLab, says, “Counterintuitively, making home automation mainstream and cool means that it's likely to end up in the hands of older adults sooner than if home automation technologies were only designed specifically for older people.” Two aspects of the Internet of Things are combined to make “Smart Aging Possible.” First is what’s called the “Quantified Self”movement. That uses devices that you wear on your body that are increasingly unobtrusive, or even attract, and which record your daily health and fitness data, without you having to do anything such as fiddle with buttons or switches: just put them on.
  11. 11. Two Aspects “Smart home” devices automate 
 manual home processes. The second element of Smart Aging is “smart home” devices that automate, and, increasingly, coordinate, previously manual home processes. They can both make your life easier and help save on utility and other costs that are painful on a fixed income.
  12. 12. Already here! “Quantified Health” Devices Record & ReportYour Health Data 24/7 In fact, these devices are already here! For example, I wear the Jawbone UP bracelet around the clock: it tracks and records every step I take, and my sleep and diet as well, and then let’s me set targets to increase my activity. There is a growing variety of similar devices, such as the Nike FuelBand and the Fitbit. They’re getting easier to use — and cheaper.
  13. 13. Already here! How about a beautiful necklace? Oh, and what woman wouldn’t like a beautiful necklace? This one, which I suspect will be joined in the near future by a variety of jewelry that also listens to your body, has sensors on the back that detect early signs of a congestive heart failure episode, so that caregivers can intervene to minimize the attack, or perhaps avoid hospitalization. Neat, huh?
  14. 14. Already here! “Smart Home” devices can 
 automate your house — just by speaking And there is a growing number of smart home devices: you can buy them at Lowe’s, Home Depot, Staples or The Apple Store. They automate previously manual household functions such as heating and lighting. My favorite one for seniors is Ivee. It looks like a normal clock, but all you have to do is talk to it — not fiddle with switches or anything, and it automatically does things such as turning up the heat. You don’t have to master any new technology — just talk!
  15. 15. Even better…
 put them together Even better, what if you put quantified health applications and smart home applications together, so that they combine to address both your health and home needs! A great example of that happened just last week. The Nest thermostat, which has artificial intelligence, learns from your living patterns how to regulate your heating and cooling. The Jawbone UP bracelet includes an alarm function that will wake you at the ideal moment in your sleep cycle to minimize the hassle of waking. Now, the same alarm that wakes you will automatically adjust the Nest, so that you’ll get up in a warm house! Isn’t that incredible?
  16. 16. How WillYou Benefit? Encourage healthy new habits such as more sleep, more walking, better diet. So what will this neat new technology do to improve your life? It can encourage you to adopt healthy new habits such as getting more sleep, walking more, because it not only records your activity, but also tracks it over time, so you can quickly see whether you’re making progress toward the goals you set for yourself.
  17. 17. How WillYou Benefit? ! Share data Or, you can choose to share your personal fitness record with friends for mutual support and encouragement — my wife and I just created a two-member team to share our Jawbone data and egg each other on. You can even choose to share that data with your adult children to reassure them that you’re staying active.
  18. 18. How WillYou Benefit? ! Give data to your doctor! And, carrying this data sharing to its logical conclusion, Partners Healthcare — the parent of the Brigham & MGH — is now experimenting with allowing patients (provided they opt in, because privacy and security is so important) to share their Quantified Self device data with their doctors. That probably won’t be widespread for a while, but it is likely to result in better diagnoses, because the doctor won’t just have to rely on a few tests, given months apart, but instead can see what your life is day in and day out!
  19. 19. How WillYou Benefit? ! Automate household processes Your living space will benefit because you’ll now be able to manage a variety of formerly manual processes, such as adjusting the heat or turning lights on or off, automatically.
  20. 20. How WillYou Benefit? ! Do it from far away from home. For example, what if you’re going to spend the whole afternoon here at the Center one day next winter? You can turn the heat down and the lights off when you leave, but turn them on from your phone before you go home, so you’ll be greeted by a warm, well-lit house! As you may know, lighting can affect your mood, so you can even choose between various settings, to energize or relax or to make it easier to read or even to concentrate on a difficult task!
  21. 21. How WillYou Benefit? ! Coordinate actions And, as with the example I gave you earlier about the Jawbone alarm activating the Nest thermostat, increasingly, as the number of these devices increases and they link together, you’ll be able to activate a variety of coordinated functions simultaneously: you won’t just wake up and have the heat go up — the lights will go on gradually, and the coffee maker will start. Won’t that be both pleasant — and more economical?
  22. 22. It Won’t Be Easy Security & Privacy Critical! This revolution won’t happen automatically — and without some pain, cost and debate. Most important is making sure that you control your medical and home information. It is absolutely essential that manufacturers build-in advanced privacy and security protections, and constantly update it. NOTHING will undermine public confidence in the Internet of Things in general than a few well-publicized security breeches. It’s good that the Federal Trade Commission has already made a big thing out of fining one of the companies that disregarded privacy and security.
  23. 23. It Won’t Be Easy Health and fitness devices 
 must be accurate You can bet that, as the health and fitness devices become more accurate, doctors come to rely on their data, and as the manufacturers begin to make claims for them, the Food and Drug Administration will become involved, requiring extensive testing in order for the devices to be certified — and they’ll penalize manufacturers who don’t meet these tests.
  24. 24. It Won’t Be Easy You Must Opt In & Dignity Comes First There’s also a big matter of YOUR personal choices when it comes to Smart Aging. YOU must be the boss: the default choice with any device or service must be that you aren’t included or you don’t share data unless YOU specifically agree to it, and the terms must be laid out clearly, and simply. When it comes, for example, to wearable devices, their design and appearance can’t stigmatize you: they must be either inconspicuous or so accepted by the public that you’d want to wear them and even show them off.
  25. 25. It Won’t Be Easy Simple,Affordable, Easy to Control Finally, any Smart Aging devices and services will have to be simple, affordable, and easy to control. That’s still not the case with many of them, but the trend is definitely toward usability. For example, one of my favorite devices is Ivee: it looks like an attractive clock — which it in fact is — but it also links a growing number of Internet of Things devices and is activated simply by talking to it, from as far as 25’ away. How neat is that?
  26. 26. Worth It In The End! While “Smart Aging” is still in its early stages, the devices and services are evolving quickly, and what’s called “network effects” are already at work: the more of them, and the more they are linked, the more valuable each becomes. It is likely to be a full-fledged reality within the next five years. When that happens, you will enjoy multiple benefits. It will: • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely. This is an exciting time, and I hope you are excited about the potential benefits. Thank you.
  27. 27. Worth It In The End! • Improve your health & fitness While “Smart Aging” is still in its early stages, the devices and services are evolving quickly, and what’s called “network effects” are already at work: the more of them, and the more they are linked, the more valuable each becomes. It is likely to be a full-fledged reality within the next five years. When that happens, you will enjoy multiple benefits. It will: • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely. This is an exciting time, and I hope you are excited about the potential benefits. Thank you.
  28. 28. Worth It In The End! • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills While “Smart Aging” is still in its early stages, the devices and services are evolving quickly, and what’s called “network effects” are already at work: the more of them, and the more they are linked, the more valuable each becomes. It is likely to be a full-fledged reality within the next five years. When that happens, you will enjoy multiple benefits. It will: • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely. This is an exciting time, and I hope you are excited about the potential benefits. Thank you.
  29. 29. Worth It In The End! • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem While “Smart Aging” is still in its early stages, the devices and services are evolving quickly, and what’s called “network effects” are already at work: the more of them, and the more they are linked, the more valuable each becomes. It is likely to be a full-fledged reality within the next five years. When that happens, you will enjoy multiple benefits. It will: • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely. This is an exciting time, and I hope you are excited about the potential benefits. Thank you.
  30. 30. Worth It In The End! • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs While “Smart Aging” is still in its early stages, the devices and services are evolving quickly, and what’s called “network effects” are already at work: the more of them, and the more they are linked, the more valuable each becomes. It is likely to be a full-fledged reality within the next five years. When that happens, you will enjoy multiple benefits. It will: • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely. This is an exciting time, and I hope you are excited about the potential benefits. Thank you.
  31. 31. Worth It In The End! • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely While “Smart Aging” is still in its early stages, the devices and services are evolving quickly, and what’s called “network effects” are already at work: the more of them, and the more they are linked, the more valuable each becomes. It is likely to be a full-fledged reality within the next five years. When that happens, you will enjoy multiple benefits. It will: • Improve your health & fitness • Cut your medical bills • Build your self-esteem • Cut your living costs • Let you stay at home, safely. This is an exciting time, and I hope you are excited about the potential benefits. Thank you.
  32. 32. “Smart Aging” For more information: W. David Stephenson
 Stephenson Strategies
 508 740-8918
 D.Stephenson@stephensonstrategies.com
 Twitter: @data4all

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