The Role of Design Thinking in the Development of Assistive Technologies, Case Study of Morphic Auto-personalization

Open Access
Article
Conference Proceedings
Authors: Anna SzopaGregg Vanderheiden

Abstract: Design thinking is a process based on a set of tools that encourage innovation and is advocated to be used to solve abstract and complex problems (Brown, 2019). It is a human-centered approach to innovation, the concept is based on understanding customer’s needs (IDEO, 2022). This interactive, creative, experimental, collaborative, and explorative can play very important role in designing assistive technologies. In this article, we present case study research where design thinking methodology is used to develop accessible technology- Morphic auto personalization. Morphic is a tool that helps to discover features in computers that make them easier to use, allows anyone to make frequently used features and functions easily available and allows accessibility settings to follow users to other computers (Morphic, 2022). Through this case study, we identify how the use of design thinking methodology supports the development IT accessible technology. This work implemented a protocol of guidelines developed by a group of experts in disability research, information technologies, design, and management. The team conducted 5 phases of design thinking: 1. Empathize—research users’ needs, 2. Define—state users' needs and the problems, 3. Ideate—challenge assumptions and create ideas, 4. Prototype—start to create solutions, 5. Test—try solutions (Kelley, Kelley, 2013).Design thinking approach helped to develop a holistic understanding of the problems that users deal with when they use computers. Thanks to this project research participants were provided a grounded basis on assistive technologies built into the computers. The research revealed knowledge gap that the development of assistive technology should enhance the voice of participants and consider their ideas, desires and needs. Design thinking approach can develop a holistic understanding of the problems that users deal with when they use computers. Thanks to this project research participants were provided a grounded basis on assistive technologies built into the computers.

Keywords: design thinking, accessible technology, auto personalization

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe1001652

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