Older People’s Appropriation Of Computers And The Internet

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How older people make sense of computers and the Internet

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Older People’s Appropriation Of Computers And The Internet

  1. 2. Technology and Ageing <ul><li>Current Approaches: </li></ul><ul><li>Deficit-driven design </li></ul><ul><li>Accessibility </li></ul><ul><li>Ignore: </li></ul><ul><li>Context </li></ul><ul><li>Heterogeneity of this user group </li></ul><ul><li>Importance of literacies for inclusion </li></ul><ul><li>Older people’s self awareness </li></ul><ul><li>Underlying motivations: adaptivity as an aspect of ageing </li></ul>
  2. 3. Appropriation <ul><li>“ Design does not determine how and for what purposes a system will be used in real settings, but rather is a component in a more complex, evolving process in which unforeseen contextual features, social factors, creativity, and opportunism, as well as new user interpretations, also play a part.” Salovaara (2008, p. 209) </li></ul>
  3. 4. So what is appropriation? <ul><li>Design-in-use </li></ul><ul><li>Wakkary and Maestri, 2007 </li></ul>
  4. 5. So what is appropriation? <ul><li>An Aspect of Domestication </li></ul><ul><li>Appropriation-objectification-incorporation-conversion </li></ul>
  5. 6. So what is appropriation? <ul><li>A phenomenological critique of design </li></ul><ul><li>There is more than one interpretation… </li></ul>
  6. 7. So what is appropriation? <ul><li>And a more mundane aspect of just making sense of technology </li></ul>
  7. 8. So what is appropriation? <ul><li>And making it meaningful to you </li></ul>
  8. 9. So what is appropriation? <ul><li>And making it meaningful to others </li></ul>
  9. 10. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>From our eyes age adds another dimension to appropriation </li></ul><ul><li>Physical interactions (bodily, sensory) </li></ul><ul><li>Psychological/symbolic understandings </li></ul><ul><li>Social context </li></ul><ul><li>All these things frame use and the meaning older people attach to the technology. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>So appropriation is about resolving the mismatch between intention and design through use over time. </li></ul>
  11. 12. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>Physical </li></ul><ul><li>Dexterity </li></ul><ul><li>Reduced strength and activity levels </li></ul><ul><li>Increasing sensory impairments – sight, hearing, smell, touch and taste </li></ul>
  12. 13. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>Psychological </li></ul><ul><li>Changes to memory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Working memory reduces </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Declarative memory reduces </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implicit memory remains fairly constant </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Reduced information processing speeds </li></ul><ul><li>Selectivity – the coordination of cognitive capacity </li></ul><ul><li>Well being paradox – people get more contented </li></ul><ul><li>Technology generations </li></ul>
  13. 14. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>Selectivity (or selective narrowing) </li></ul><ul><li>Optimisation (honing of existing skills/practice) </li></ul><ul><li>Compensation (finding alternative means of doing the same thing) </li></ul><ul><li>Baltes (1990) model of adaptivity in ageing </li></ul>
  14. 15. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>Psychological Understandings </li></ul><ul><li>Selectivity </li></ul><ul><li>Keeping a record of a lifetime of recipes by typing them into the computer. </li></ul><ul><li>Optimisation </li></ul><ul><li>Learning and practicing how to use Microsoft Word. </li></ul><ul><li>Compensation </li></ul><ul><li>Handwriting is getting difficult because of arthritis and is no longer easy to read. </li></ul>
  15. 16. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>Social Context </li></ul><ul><li>Increased possibility of social isolation/loneliness </li></ul><ul><li>Socioemotional selectivity (Carstensen)– future time perspective </li></ul><ul><li>Generativity (Erikson) </li></ul><ul><li>Gerotranscendence (Tornstam)– the continuity of generations </li></ul><ul><li>Intergenerational context to learning </li></ul>
  16. 17. Appropriation for older people <ul><li>Actual use changes interpretation. </li></ul><ul><li>Different phases: </li></ul>
  17. 18. The studies:
  18. 19. The Newhaven Study <ul><li>Interviews with 9 older people in the Newhaven area. </li></ul><ul><li>Rejection </li></ul><ul><li>“ I think if I’m now 87 it would probably take about 5 years to learn, I don’t think it would be an appropriate thing to do, why bother. So I will remain computer illiterate.” Ashley </li></ul>
  19. 20. The Newhaven Study <ul><li>Adoption </li></ul><ul><li>“ I thought well we are a bit isolated here because we haven’t got any family to help us around and no children or anything like that so we need to be very self sufficient and I’m David’s sole carer and he can’t really manage to go out or do anything……..if I’m ill I need to be able to order my shopping and go on the internet and get it delivered” </li></ul><ul><li>Shirley </li></ul>
  20. 21. The Newhaven Study <ul><li>Adoption </li></ul><ul><li>“ Well to me the computer is a business thing” Kate </li></ul>
  21. 22. The Newhaven Study <ul><li>Adoption </li></ul><ul><li>Computers as work machines </li></ul><ul><li>Intergenerational connection </li></ul><ul><li>Supporting independence </li></ul><ul><li>Obstacles to further appropriation: </li></ul><ul><li>Too much emphasis on information </li></ul><ul><li>Perceived negative social effects of computers </li></ul><ul><li>Increasing dependence on technology and others </li></ul>
  22. 23. The Newhaven Study <ul><li>Appropriation to self </li></ul><ul><li>“ I first got a scanner and then started scanning my film photographs out of the computer and I thought I saw these sites that has pictures that sell them and I thought I’m sure mine is good as good as theirs is” Shirley </li></ul><ul><li>Reframing of purpose through learning: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creativity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New social opportunities </li></ul></ul>
  23. 24. The Newhaven Study <ul><li>Deep Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>“ I have sold a number of products on Zazzle, shoes, mouse pads, stickers,an apron, mugs and cards, and hope as I build up my stores that business will increase, I am getting a lot more visitors to my main store these days. I have made about £50 on Zazzle to date, have been there about a year. “ Shirley </li></ul><ul><li>New online social roles </li></ul><ul><li>Reciprocal learning with younger generations </li></ul>
  24. 25. Age Concern Drop-In Centre
  25. 26. Age Concern Drop-In Centre Adoption
  26. 27. Age Concern Drop-In Centre Rejection “ It’s like being in another country like Germany or somewhere and not knowing what’s going on. It’s another language!” Gwen
  27. 28. Age Concern Drop-In Centre Adoption “ I want to get going on something but I don’t know what’s available” Ken “ they [computers] are office technology not engineering tools” Dave
  28. 29. Age Concern Drop-In Centre Appropriation to self Reminiscence and Life Review Maureen decided to learn about word processing by typing out all the hand written recipes that she had collected throughout her life. Through this process she revisited past times as well as learnt new skills. (word processing)
  29. 30. Age Concern Drop-In Centre Appropriation to self Intergenerational Connection Dorothy was writing a children’s story for her neighbour’s children explaining that she was a “frustrated grandmother”, not having any grandchildren of her own. At the Centre she wanted to transcribe her handwritten notes into a word processing program and send these by email as an attachment to her neighbours. This activity helped her to feel part of her local community, to engage with the younger generation and to embark on a creative endeavour. (word processing and web-based email)
  30. 31. Age Concern Drop-In Centre <ul><li>Appropriation to self </li></ul><ul><li>Reframing of purpose through embodied learning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New social opportunities-email, Skype? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intergenerational connection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Supporting independence – eBay, online shopping </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Access information and learn – Google, wikipedia </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reminiscence and life review – word processing, web searching </li></ul></ul>
  31. 32. Age Concern Drop-In Centre <ul><li>Obstacles to Further Appropriation </li></ul><ul><li>Symbolic communication </li></ul><ul><li>Visual acuity – turning bifocals upside down </li></ul><ul><li>Reaction Times - practice </li></ul><ul><li>Memory - notebooks </li></ul>
  32. 33. Age Concern Drop-In Centre <ul><li>Obstacles to Further Appropriation </li></ul><ul><li>Learning A New Form of Literacy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New Words </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Different Implications to Human Use of Words </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Different Implications to Computer Use of Words </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Connected World of the Internet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Virtual World of Computers and the Internet </li></ul></ul>
  33. 34. Geriatric1927 – Appropriation to Self
  34. 35. Geriatric1927 – Appropriation to Self Appropriation to self “ yes I had got some computer skills at that time and I remember I had been to some courses on graphic design and I was and still am very interested in graphic design as a so called artist and I was doing family slide shows and thought they were getting rather boring…….. and I wanted to add some video content and knew nothing about video at all and I honestly can’t remember how I searched out video. It was quite likely that I googled video and with the thousands of pages somehow came up with youtube and when of course when I found youtube I thought what a wonderful website it was and I went on from there ”
  35. 36. Geriatric1927 – Appropriation to Self <ul><li>Appropriation to self </li></ul><ul><li>Reframing of purpose </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New social opportunities- YouTube </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intergenerational connection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Co-creativity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reminiscence and life review – video blogging </li></ul></ul>
  36. 37. Geriatric1927 – Appropriation to Self <ul><li>Obstacles to Further Appropriation </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of social acceptance </li></ul>
  37. 38. Geriatric1927 – Deep Engagement
  38. 39. Geriatric1927 – Deep Engagement <ul><li>Deep Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Devotion of time </li></ul><ul><li>Devotion of space </li></ul><ul><li>New social roles and responsibilities </li></ul>
  39. 40. Geriatric1927 – Appropriation to Self <ul><li>Obstacles to Further Appropriation </li></ul><ul><li>Learning A New Form of Literacy for Video Blogging </li></ul><ul><li>Navigation across modes and media </li></ul><ul><li>Eye contact - mediating past and present conversational partners </li></ul><ul><li>Turn taking </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing embodied gestures </li></ul><ul><li>Negotiating simultaneous audiences </li></ul>
  40. 41. Wii in Sheltered Housing
  41. 42. Wii in Sheltered Housing <ul><li>Adoption </li></ul><ul><li>Openness to playing games </li></ul><ul><li>Awareness of younger relatives </li></ul><ul><li>Appropriation to self </li></ul><ul><li>Competing with oneself </li></ul><ul><li>Practice </li></ul><ul><li>Deep Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Ownership of physical and social space </li></ul>
  42. 43. Transition Reinforcers Perception of time as open-ended Good fit with ageing concerns Inhibitors Perception of time as limited Transition Reinforcers Ability to express oneself through the technology Social acceptance Inhibitors Lack of social acceptance Difficulty adapting to new literacy Transition Reinforcers Ability to reframe use beyond work. Creativity, playfulness or plasticity of interpretation. Inhibitors Difficulty adapting to new literacy Appropriation Deep engagment Concerned with the transcendence of personally/self-centred concerns. Mastery of technical literacy to achieve intended aims. Active participation and possibly social involvement New roles and responsibilities Appropriation to the self Concerned with the development of a personally meaningful sense of purpose Implies a commitment to learning the necessary technical literacies for use Adoption Concerned with Symbolic meanings Framing of technology as work machines Dependence versus independence Computer anxiety Intergenerational Context Awareness of new technologies Ageist stereotypes Intergenerational Context Learning about new technologies. Reciprocal learning. Generativity Intergenerational Context Intergenerational communication Continuity of generations. The Appropriation Process Rejection
  43. 44. Successful Appropriation by Older People <ul><li>A developmental opportunity: </li></ul><ul><li>The learning of a new embodied literacy </li></ul><ul><li>A reciprocal but reversed intergenerational learning context </li></ul><ul><li>A challenge to traditional social selectivity/ disengagement ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Dependent upon creativity and playfulness </li></ul>
  44. 45. Conclusions <ul><li>Implications for design </li></ul><ul><li>How to introduce older people to new technologies. </li></ul><ul><li>Appropriable technologies? </li></ul>

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