MIT develops a suit that makes you feel like you're 75 years old
By Emily Price
January 2, 2012
What does it really feel like to be 75 years old? A group of researchers in MIT's Agelab have created a suit to help people understand what it might be like to navigate the world as a senior citizen.
Called AGNES (Age Gain Now Empathy System), the suit replicates what it might be like to be in a 75-year-old body, replicating dexterity, flexibility, motor, and visual elements into a suit that can be worn by people of all ages.
Braces on the suit mimic joint stiffness and make it hard to walk, leg straps limit how fast you can travel, and a helmet causes your head to be forced forward, mimicking the curved spine of an older adult. Yellow goggles and earplugs are the final touch on the outfit, making it difficult to read and hear some things.
The idea behind the technology is to help those creating public transportation and retail spaces for older adults understand what challenges those people may have. Researchers sent students out to grocery stores wearing the suit to find low-sodium, low-sugar, and low-fat products that are typically purchased by older adults, and the students found it difficult to do so.
Curious about what the suit looks like in action? You can check out AGNES in the video below.