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Dementia: Looking beyond memory


A few years ago the BBC wanted to film me because I was doing a clinical trial on Ginkgo biloba extract as a treatment for dementia. They turned up with a camera crew and demanded that I wear a white coat. I explained that as a psychiatrist this may not send the right message but they insisted as it would add credibility to the science I was discussing. Then, for additional visual effect, they asked I sit in front of a microscope. The last time I had done that was in the VI form! Still they insisted, so I asked my colleague and friend, a brain scientist, to borrow his microscope. It was HUGE! A massive piece of kit the size of a motorbike. Finally they asked that I look down the microscope at a slide of a person with dementia. My kind friend lent me a slide- one made by Alois Alzheimer himself with a slice of brain from his first patient, August Deter.

Why tell you that tale? When Alzheimer wrote about Auguste Deter Continue reading “Dementia: Looking beyond memory”

Ageless Design


The term ‘design for the elderly’ has always annoyed me, partly because if feels vaguely discriminatory and partly because the term the elderly is so imprecise. It also annoys me because the key to all good design is to have an in-depth understanding of your customers and what they want from what you are designing.

So, who are ‘the elderly’?

Continue reading “Ageless Design”