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LifeBio: Capture life stories using iPads or PCs, build amazing intergenerational relationships

Everyone has a story to tell. We make it easy through multimedia/webcams to record what matters most. For older adults with memory loss, time is of the essence. Using technology, young and old come together to share life stories and wisdom.

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The LifeBio concept was developed over time with feedback from older adults.  LifeBio has organized, thought-provoking templates inside the web-based biography building system.  Not only can the life story be captured, but it can also be previewed and printed from any iPad or PC. LifeBio asks the right questions in the right way --- getting to the heart of who a person is.  With people who have mild cognitive impairment or the early stages of Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia, this is critical information to gather as it will help caregivers deeply know the people they care for. In fact, a pilot project has begin at the Mayo Clinic. It can also provide a connecting point for younger people who want to visit with older adults. They can create a short "About Me" in a matter of 30 minutes or a longer "Biography" using over 250 life story questions.  LifeBio flexes with the needs and the background of the person being recorded.  Also, multimedia such as photos, video, and audio can enhance the story even more.  It is kept private and secure -- unless the older adult decides to share it with family and friends.

 

How do you communicate with your grandparents today?  If you had the right questions to ask, do you think you would talk about their past experiences more?  How can we reach more families and young people....who can help older loved ones get started on their stories? 

How might your idea scale and spread to reach as many people as possible?

The LifeBio idea scales easily to thousands if not millions of people. Anyone can go online to http://www.lifebio.com and start building a life story for themselves or for a loved one. LifeBio provides license agreements to organizations such as senior living providers, hospitals, home care agencies, and much more. Individuals and family caregivers use it as well. People of all ages and backgrounds are invited to join us!

Do you think we should encourage people to email family and friends when they sign up at http://www.lifebio.com ? What are other effective ways that YOU learn about new websites? Reaching millions now that our site is built is one of our big challenges.

How might your idea attract and involve partners from health care, business, government, nonprofit or other sectors?

LifeBio has already partnered with universities seeking research on the health benefits of reminiscence. We have also partnered with a large health insurer to track health and wellness benefits of telling and sharing life stories. Great results so far! LifeBio can easily connect to government agencies -- especially those serving veterans. LifeBio is a care intervention that helps people feel better because they are reminded of their accomplishments in life and it gives people purpose and meaning.

Schools and universities have also been involved in LifeBio in many places so far -- but more would be better. We love that we're connect middle and high school students with older adults -- using technology. We're making it easy for them to talk with each other and find a great connection. LifeBio's goal is to help people experience deep communication -- and really a feeling of love and care as people listen to each other everywhere. With the shortage of health care workers predicted in the future, the more youth that can be exposed to older people, the more chances they will pursue careers in aging/health care.

How might you design an early experiment or prototype to further develop your idea?

LifeBio is available for people to check out right now. We're just not able to get the word out enough yet, but we want to! We want people of all ages, but especially older adults, to have the chance to pass along memories, wisdom, and values while they have the chance. People die every day and this information should NOT be lost or forgotten anymore.

We've been experimenting and here it is! You are welcome to sign up for free for a "lite" account that at least gives you a taste. http://www.lifebio.com http://www.lifebio.com/health

What new features would you like to see in LifeBio to make it easy to capture the life stories of your parents or grandparents? We're thinking a lot about the app version of LifeBio too. Your suggestions on that are greatly appreciated...it's getting there but more comments on how we can always make the biography process easier...would be great!

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Could you share ideas with me one what it would take (in your own lives) to bring YOU and your grandparents closer? What could LifeBio do to motivate you to start a LifeBio and help your grandparents get a biography done --- before it is too late? Why is capturing their life stories important or not important to YOU?

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