Disability Japan Kobe Technology

Kobe based NPO Chairman: “I want to create new products from the standpoint of people with disabilities”

A Kobe City based NPO draws on input from physically disabled people to develop new assist technologies.

Written with extracts from The Kobe Shimbun

August 25th 2019

KOBE – The event “Ideas on Hackathon” (sponsored by the Kobe Shimbun) set a challenge to develop products by drawing upon the opinions of the physically disabled was held at the  Hyogo International House in Chuo-ku, Kobe on August 25th. About 30 people, including those with physical disabilities, company engineers participated. Based on the ideas developed by a Kobe City based NPO in mid August, a prototype was developed and issues for practical use were discussed.

The NPO ‘iCollaboration Kobe’, which promotes social participation of persons with disabilities using information and communication technology (ICT), was first held last year.

The participants were divided into 5 groups to develop prototypes. A variety of products, such as portable handrails for portable toilets, that were designed for wheelchair users going to a love hotel were developed.

An intercom by which a physically disabled person can remotely control the door lock, etc. with a smartphone, was developed. A man with cerebral palsy (45), from Kusatsu City, Shiga Prefecture said  “I was surprised that my proposal was shaped so quickly.” Hiroaki Itagaki (35), Chairman of the NPO ‘iCollaboration Kobe’, said, “I want to create and commercialize new products from the standpoint of people with disabilities.”

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