4th International Workshop

27 September, AAL Forum 2016, St. Gallen, Switzerland

The central aim of this workshop is to bring together researchers, industry representatives, and end-users of ICT-based solutions in the realm of mobility assistance for Ambient Assisted Living. This year’s workshop will focus on bringing mobility solutions from the idea to the market. This includes the role of user-centered design (prototyping, living labs, etc.) but also incubators, accelerators, investors, procurers, etc. to commercialize solutions and enter the market.

ICT-based solutions for increasing the mobility of elderly people in activities of daily living are dedicated to help answering two simple questions: “Where am I?” and “What is the route to my destination?”. Whether the assistance is given by a helpful app running on a portable device, or by a robotic device that additionally provides physical support, solutions must address one or more of the following topics:

  • Route planning and accessibility: Given the actual and the desired pose of the user, how do we plan a feasible route that considers barriers, path conditions, and physical effort, i.e. a path that is completely accessible? How do we plan the route such that it accounts for certain points of interest, e.g. suggest a detour to the bakery?
  • Navigation and interaction design: How to present maps and route information to elderly users? Current off-the-shelf solutions don’t consider their special requirements, such as diminished vision and hearing, but also the cognitive load of map-based user interfaces is rather high.  We are also interested in alternative solutions to turn-by-turn instructions, which work nicely in street networks, but fail for pedestrians in open scene space. Additional modalities, such as vibrotactile handlebars, are also promising to improve the user interface.
  • Transportation modes and transitions: How do we allow for different modes of transportation, e.g. as a pedestrian on foot, with a walker, on a wheelchair, by public transportation, etc.? How is a seamless transition between these achieved?
  • Security and orientation: How can we assist users when they get lost, the technical assistance fails, there is an emergency or they need further orientation (e.g. in case of slight dementia)?
  • Seamless indoor and outdoor positioning: Sensorial equipment like Satellite Navigation and inertial sensors are widely available in mobile devices today and facilitate outdoor localization up to a certain degree of precision. Indoor localization solutions require more sophisticated sensorial equipment such as RFID beacons or Computer Vision/LIDAR. How do we achieve a smooth transition between indoor and outdoor spaces?
  • Environmental representations and maps: We want to discuss available map representa­tions suitable for hybrid modelling of indoor and outdoor route networks along with relevant impediments, landmarks, and points of interests. We will further go into issues of standardization and integration of indoor map representations into OSM or comparable databases, and sensor-based approaches to obtain building maps.

AAL projects in this area usually follow a user-centred design approach, which involves field trials with end users in urban settings outside a lab environment. Hence, we want to share experiences with specific mobility-related problems that may arise. These issues comprise technical and organizational factors, e.g. GPS failures in urban canyons,  weather conditions, safety and security, lack of maps for pedestrians, accessibility issues, taking care of seniors during the field trials, etc.

Participation requires a registration for the day via the AAL Forum Website.

Program Chair

  • Christoph Stahl, schwartz&stahl GbR

Program Committee

  • Victor Sanchez, Program Manager, Electrical Engineering, Technical University of Eindhoven, Netherlands.
  • Andreas Rumsch, iHomeLab, Hochschule Luzern