When a person’s memory declines, how does it feel? Can life still be good? On a bright and beautiful Sunday morning, we were invited to talk with May at her home in Manoa Valley. May is a friendly, outgoing person. Her daughter, Kathy, tells us that in the past she would greet all the bank tellers and store clerks by name. Even though May’s memory has now declined, she continues to exude a positive, friendly persona that helps her live with warmth and grace. We had met May before and she had been at first a little nervous but that went away quickly. She likes to chat, is curious about us, and happily retells stories from her life. She tells us that she enjoys life and that she enjoys going on walks. (She did say that she misses driving!!) She also has friends and regular company from a caregiver. She loves […]
Suzanne Savet and Dr. Christy Nishita Dr. Christy Nishita, a Researcher and Gerontologist at the Center on Aging, University of Hawai’I, has thought about this a lot and recently gave a presentation at the Kuakini Medical Center called “Building a Dementia Capable System in Hawaii.” I had a chance to chat with Dr. Nishita about inter-generational age-friendly projects in Honolulu such as organized walks where neighbors look for things that are unsafe or potentially harmful in the community. For example, during a walk folks may find tree roots coming up from under sidewalks and ask them to be removed for safety reasons. Dr. Nishita explained the idea of “dementia-friendly” communities which facilitate the inclusion for persons with dementia and promote their overall quality of life. Learn about age friendly Honolulu at http://agefriendlyhonolulu.com/dementia-friends/ Dr. Nishita is excited about a program in Seattle called “Momentia”. It is a grassroots movement empowering persons with […]
The MemoriesConnect team interviewed a recent app “tester” Marie-Louise Ansak and she is not your ordinary senior. Originally from Switzerland and a life-long traveler, she’s led an accomplished life. She’ll celebrate her 90th birthday in August. At the age of 65, Marie-Louise retired after an amazing career as a social worker in San Francisco Chinatown (see box at bottom). She then decided to sail around the world on her boat, “Dessert First” and, happily, she did so for 23 years. She is now enjoying her second retirement in Hawaii. Since she’s an experienced user of Apple’s Mac, iPhone and iPad, we asked her to review the MemoriesConnect app for us and to test both roles, one of the “Administrator” the person who sets up the app for the “User”, the person with memory problems.Continue reading→
Dr. Warren, Founder If you love older people, they love you back a lot more. I learned that as a young doctor when I worked at a place called “On Lok” in San Francisco Chinatown. After many years of working as a geriatrician at Kaiser Permanente in Hawaii, I’m really excited about MemoriesConnect. There’s nothing more important than love for an older person with memory problems. That’s the whole purpose of MemoriesConnect and we’re finally close to our first product! Continue reading→
Over the past several weeks, we received a good number of responses regarding the app’s name and icon. Thank you all for your great contributions! But with so many excellent ideas, it was very difficult to choose. With several good options to choose from, the best name that we thought expresses the main goal of the app is: MemoriesConnect Deciding on the icon was another challenge. We wanted the icon to visually express memory, love and connection. As with the name before, there were many good candidates, making it difficult to pick one. After much deliberation and discussion, we chose the image below: Now, with the name and icon for the app settled, we are ready to continue testing the app. An updated and expanded version of the MemoriesConnect app will be available soon and we are looking for additional Beta-Testers. If you are interested in Beta-Testing, please follow this link: […]
Hawaii Caregivers Get a First Look at the New MemoriesConnect App! The team presented the MemoriesConnect App at AARP’s Annual Caregiving Conference Saturday, March 24, at the Manoa Grand Ballroom, Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i. “AARP sponsors this conference to provide caregivers with knowledge and to relieve some of the stress that comes with providing the vital service of caring for others.” We are encouraged with the feedback and interest from the attendees and enjoyed the comments, questions and interactions. We are looking looking for Beta-Testers in April and if you are interested in Beta-Testing, please follow this link: https://memoriesconnect.com/2018/01/31/how-you-can-help-now/ In our Beta-Testing process, we ask testers about ways to make this a comforting tool for a person with mild dementia. Our goal is to reach a level of simplicity in our App design while keeping the App challenging, engaging and fun.
We are still seeking input for the design of the MemorC App Icon. It is a difficult task to get it just right. The key themes that the icon should relate are: Connection Love Memory Here are four more design drafts that we are considering. Please let us know your thoughts. Which one best matches the app? And, look above — We’ve sprinkled in the below sample icons in the large image above to get a sense of the dimensions when seen on an iPad or iPhone. We look forward to hearing from you. Please be sure to also look at the design drafts in the previous post. Thank you.
Getting the icon for an app just right is not easy. We have been working with a number of designs for our MemorC app, but we have not yet found the design that would make all of us say: Yes, spot on, that’s it! Ideally, the icon for the app will visually express the purpose of the app: Helping people with mild memory problems stay connected with their loved ones. But how can we fit that into a small square that is displayed on a screen together with many other icons? Perhaps you can help? Take a look at the four icon drafts that we have so far:
“Jane” (not her real name) lives independently in Florida. She was visiting family in Hawaii and we were lucky to enlist her to be an early App Beta-Tester. While playing with the App, she started thinking about three friends who are cognitively not at the same level as they once were — and they are all aware of the (slight) cognitive decline, although they continue to live independently. Jane explained that her friends may feel “intimidated” if they played this version of the App because it could feel as if it’s a test. She said, “you feel rated somehow in the script.”
We have started 2018 with a first round of evaluation for our MemorC App and would like to get as much as possible done this half-year. At this point, we need some people with mild memory problems to use the App to test ease of use and degree of interest in the app. By mild memory problems, we are looking for people who can look at a magazine for at least 10 minutes.