Virtual reality. Driverless cars. Artificial intelligence. Fall detection. Predictive analytics. At this year’s Aging2.0 OPTIMIZE conference in San Francisco, I learned, or was reintroduced to, the latest technology trends, products and services for the 50+ market.
Both startups and large companies (i.e. Google, Proctor & Gamble, Samsung) in the boomer and aging space, with many focused on healthcare, talked about their current and future initiatives.
The networking was intense—and delightful.
Some snippets from the conference:
- There are huge opportunities for entrepreneurs in an exploding 50+ demographic. This is the field to understand.
- Driverless cars will have many uses. While en route, you might do cool things like exercise!
- Geriatrician Bill Thomas’s new project to create a new form of housing that promotes togetherness and independence. The self-described “nursing home abolitionist” and mega thought leader is calling it Minka.
In his words: “It’s a system of interchangeable house parts that can be combined and re-combined to give people just the house they want and need. We have leveraged the latest advances in digital design tools, robotics, and construction materials to minimize cost (for example by dramatically minimizing waste and rapidly accelerating completion time) and maximize customization.
Better. Faster. Cheaper. . . Minka can be. . .rapidly printed, packed into a cargo container, shipped and assembled anywhere– in the world.”
At the conference Thomas said that he has spent 25 years asking, “How do I design a better nursing home? That is the wrong question. It is how do we create a world where older people experience all the purpose that belongs to them? We are all terrified by a $3 billion dependency industry. We need to invent an independence industry.”
5. A campaign called “Old People Are Cool” to combat ageism. The group was giving out stickers saying just that. Mine is cool!