The Challenge


How might we design an accessible election experience for everyone? read the brief


GoodGrips: What's Good for Arthritics can be Good for All.

A classic case study in human centered design, the OXO GoodGrips potato peeler solved a specific problem for a specific group: Namely, helping people with reduced grip strength to peel things easier. Turned out, it offered a benefit to everyone.
When OXO launched the GoodGrips peeler, it was initially intended to help solve a problem faced by many elderly and people with arthritis. Gripping the thin, unergonomic handles on traditional peelers was uncomfortable and difficult for them to use.

The redesign provided a thicker, more comfortable, easier to grip, handle to improve the experience of usage for those who had grip issues.

I don't really know all the details, but from what I've read, it ended up being a huge success and not just with elderly or those with arthritis. It was a genuine benefit and improvement for everyone.

Can we improve access for those in need, but in so doing, improve the experience for everyone? 
Mission #4 Learn from Analogies


Join the conversation and post a comment.

Jeroen Spoelstra

February 08, 2012, 20:52PM
Hi Josh, I really like the GoodGrips.peeler. Smart Design tells the story behind this peeler in this Objectified fragment

Josh Treuhaft

February 09, 2012, 08:50AM
Thanks for the link, Jeroen. I saw Objectified a while back, but don't totally remember this specific clip so well. I think the GoodGrips Case Study is definitely one that gets used fairly often though. Hopefully it will serve as a springboard for more relevant and current examples for the challenge at hand.

Josh Treuhaft

January 28, 2012, 09:09AM
That curb example is a great one, Whitney. Thanks for sharing. That's the type of thinking that we should be after, I think.

I can't say for sure, but I bet there are a ton of other examples that follow suit.

The tactile feedback on a computer keyboard (or cellphone keypad), for instance, lets the user know when their fingers are on the 'F' and 'J' keys (home row in QWERTY). I'm not sure if that was designed for the visually impaired, but it certainly could have been. And it's so useful for reorienting yourself to the keyboard when typing quickly, even if you're perfectly sighted.

Whitney Quesenbery

January 28, 2012, 07:04AM
Another example is the curb cuts that most cities have. They were originally for wheelchairs, but are good for strollers, wheeled luggage, bicycles, toddlers (legs too short), delivery hand-trucks. It's hard to imagine a city sidewalk without them now.

Ohood Al-nayel

January 28, 2012, 06:10AM
very true!
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