Stanford Center on Longevity Announces Design Challenge Winners


Last updated 8/11/2019 at 3:40pm | View PDF

The winners of the Stanford Center on Longevity's 2018-2019 Design Challenge included the team that created the card game "So You Think You Know Your Grandma"

The Stanford Center on Longevity named teams from the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford co-champions of the 2018-2019 Longevity Design Challenge competition. These teams beat out 97 entries from 24 countries during the course of the competition. Both teams will receive a $10,000 first prize for their accomplishment.

The Stanford Center on Longevity Design Challenge is a global competition to encourage students to design products and services to improve the lives of people of all ages.

The "So You Think You Know Your Grandma" team from the University of California Berkeley developed a card game specifically targeted at breaking down barriers between members of different generations. Their approach combines elements of both storytelling and game dynamics to engage players who may have differences in mindsets, views and perceived stereotypes.

The "Family Room" team from Stanford University created an easy-to-use app that helps families capture and share the histories of their older loved ones through high quality audio stories. Their approach allows people with varying levels of comfort with technology to access the app via telephone, web interface or smartphone.

The third place winner was "Pillow Fight" from YuanZe University in Taipei, an innovative video game platform using pillows as game controllers. The team that created it demonstrated how the simplified controllers allow very young and very old players to play together, creating shared laughter and experiences. Pillow Fight received $2,000 for third place.

This year's Design Challenge theme was focused on finding ways to promote intergenerational relationships and contributions from all generations. For the first time, teams were required to include people from multiple generations as contributing members. So You Think You Know Grandma and Family Room drew expertise from older generations, while Pillow Fight included children as product testers.

Winners also included the developers of "Family Room," an application to help capture family histories from older loved ones.

"This year's challenge was absolutely outstanding in terms of the quality and diversity of both the entries and the students' presentations," said Ken Smith, challenge director. "Having co-winners came as a surprise. After an hour-and-a-half of deliberations, our judges simply couldn't bring themselves to award one team the championship over the other. Facing a deadlock, our sponsors stepped forward to support the additional prize money."

Established in 2013, the challenge is focused on ways to motivate and empower people in their daily lives both inside their homes and in their community, particularly as they remain healthy and vigorous long past the traditional beginning of retirement.

"Reducing the Inequality Gap: Designing for Affordability" was announced as the theme for the next Design Challenge.


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