While more seniors than ever are using cell phones and computers, new technology often proves daunting to people as they age, said Neil Charness, who teaches psychology at Florida State University.
Older adults literally perceive new technology differently than younger adults do when it comes to fine motor control, acuity, memory, color perception and susceptibility to glare on cell phone and computer screens, Charness said in a release Friday.
Knowing that, more cell phones should be created with simplified menus, large fonts and buttons and external noise reduction, while Web sites should have high contrast backgrounds, navigation aids, instructional support, larger fonts and minimal scrolling, he said.
Computer games developed for older adults may help reverse declines in perceptual abilities, but so far there is little evidence they improve older adults' quality of life or their ability to live independently, Charness said.
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