Transgenerational Design: Products for an Aging Population

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Transgenerational Design: Products for an Aging Population

James J. Pirkl

The world's population is rapidly growing older, and it is important to create new products that are easily used by people throughout their lifetimes—whatever their ability. Transgenerational design addresses this need by exploring product design that enhances the quality of life for users of all ages. This book offers a cross-disciplinary approach to product design that bridges gaps between designers and consumers, scientist and service professionals, young and old. James Pirkl debunks myths about aging, showing how many problems with products are, in fact, problems for all age groups.

Throughout, the author focuses on practical solutions to design challenges, helping designers to avoid discrimination against both age and ability. Transgenerational design sensitizes readers to the realities of aging by exploring changes in abilities that occur throughout one's lifetime. It explains how to make intelligent decisions during the design, production, marketing, promotion, and selection of consumer products used by an aging population with a wide range of abilities. Readers will gain the specialized knowledge they need to understand common functional limitations including sensory changes, balance and falling, dysmobility, memory and confusion, and how they inhibit independence; develop products that support and extend independence by accommodating human limitations in vision, hearing, touch, dexterity, and mobility; and create product "microenvironments" that enhance the overall quality of life for people of all ages and abilities.

More than 140 full-color illustrations offer exemplary designs ranging from kitchen utensils to walking shoes to personal hygiene systems. High-quality photographspresent a collection of transgenerational products used in living environments (including furniture and lighting), healthcare, cooking and eating, sports and recreation, leisure activities, transportation, personal care and hygiene, and home maintenance.

This book was awarded an Industrial Design Society of America (IDSA) Gold International Design Exellence Award (IDEA) in 1994, and remains a valuable reference today.


This book is available for purchase.