Test 2 Grandma and her board

  • Which persons would you use as a contact person for this board?
  • What kind of personal items as a reference to these persons, would you use for these contacts?
  • How many knobs (contact persons) would you like to have?
  • Where would you place a system like this (hall, living room)?
  • How often do you pass the board?
  • How should the board look like?

We give three participants a simple memo board with two types of magnets and whiteboard marker for two weeks. During this time they have the opportunity to think about their contact persons, the personal items, the looks of the board and were they want to use it. We will give them the following tasks:

  • Place a knob for every person you want to contact with. Write the contact person’s name next it.
  • Find a personal item for every knob on the board and connect it to the specific knob.
  • Count the times you passes the board by putting a stripe on the board every time you see the board.
  • Look for an illustration in a magazine or news paper to use as a background for the board.
    • Think about why you would use this illustration.


  • Whiteboard
  • Magnets
  • Marker

Start test: July 14th 2009


Results July 29th 2009

Participant 1


Participant 2


Findings visit grandmas (July 29th)

The results of what the participants made after doing the tasks are presented above. Our findings and what we can conclude out of this test will be described here.


  • For this test we gave the participant two weeks to fulfill these tasks. This was a very good decision. Selecting their contacts is really a tough process, which cost time to think and select. Especially the selection of the items was mentioned as a hard thing to do. The participants were really in to do it correct, even when we said that there were no incorrect results.
  • One of the participant said that she did the tasks over both whole two weeks. When she thought of a contact person she started with looking for an item that corresponds with this person.
  • The positioning of the contacts was not well thought-out. When a Knob with an item was putted on the board, it stayed there. The participants had not thought of a relation between the selected contact persons.
  • There were two different magnets, a black one and one with a knob. One of the participants started with their three children and used for these contact the magnets with knob. This is new for us. Based on this finding we can think of different knobs for different kind of contacts.
  • We can term the results of this test as a collage of the participants´ important contacts. Important people like family members and important people who regular help the participant. The result is really a visual representation/overview of important people.
  • The meaning of the different items was well thought-out and a good representation of the related contact. The participants were able to name the different knobs based on the attached items during their explanation of the associations they have whit these people.
  • The association with the selected background is explanted in the figures above. Interesting is that these people are not familiar with computer desktop backgrounds. They were really good in finding a meaningful visualization of what is important for them, like family or religion.
  • Interesting in the selected ‘contacts’ is that participants do not always choose for persons but also for places and buildings like their apartment or basilica.
  • We also asked the participant to think about a place to hang the board. Because it is a board with items of important people there are two kinds of places to hang KeyPing. One is in a room were the user frequently passes the board, like the living room or kitchen (participant 1). The other option is a place in your home that is yours and where you safe/place important things and that is not directly accessible for other people like a study or spare room (participant 2)

Important moments, things elderly look out for

  • Moment’s elderly look out for: Vacation, visit Lourdes with grandchild, next Friday have a nice bike ride, a visit from your grandson this afternoon.
  • Not only forward visions but also things in the past are very important: When grandpa did…, last week the assistant said…, yesterday Paul was here…, last year in Lourdes. These events are important for elderly and can make the person feel better when they have the opportunity to talk about.
  • Not only events about them self’s have a big effect, but also things other people did or do keep them busy: 54 altar boys are camping now…., two sisters go back to their home country.

Technical equipment is hard to use for elderly. They do not dare to discover a product. Good instructions can help very well. When they know it is ok to press on a specific button and they know what will happen they are more willing to do that. For example a new remote control for digital television has a lot of buttons. One of the participants got a digital television box installed by a mechanic. He did not explained the different functions of all buttons. A week later a friend told her that the ‘I’-button is an information button to show info about at television program.  Since then she dares to use this button. Products have to be simple and should provoke usage and discovering the product without being scared of damaging the system.


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