JUCS - Journal of Universal Computer Science 27(1): 65-86, doi: 10.3897/jucs.64591
Towards a Collaborative Model to Assist People with Disabilities and the Elderly People in Smart Assistive Cities
expand article infoChristian Moreira Matos, Vítor Kehl Matter, Márcio Garcia Martins, João Elison da Rosa Tavares, Alexandre Sturmer Wolf, Paulo César Buttenbender, Jorge Luis Victória Barbosa
‡ University of Vale do Rio dos Sinos (UNISINOS), São Leopoldo, Brazil
Open Access

People with disabilities and the elderly face difficulties to fulfill their accessibility needs in their daily life routines, mainly when they have an emergency demanding speedy and specific assistance. This article proposes the SafeFollowing, a collaborative model to help people with disabilities and the elderly in smart assistive cities. The main contribution of this work is the specification of a decentralized model of ubiquitous accessibility, which involves public agents and volunteers to attend the users’ requests. SafeFollowing also allows the use of police vehicles mapping, in order to provide a specific follow-up in adverse situations of daily life. The model was validated through experiments in real case scenarios by 14 public agents and 11 elderly and people with disabilities. The results showed that 100% of evaluators (users and agents) stated that the model was useful and 82% of users and 100% of agents considered that SafeFollowing was easy to use. The experiments also allowed the learning of 5 relevant lessons on technological and usability aspects of SafeFollowing that are recorded in this article.

social issues, virtual community, collaboration, smart assistive cities, ubiquitous computing