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Roger O. Smith

Title The Future of Assistive Technology: Economical, Smart, and Global
Authors Roger O. Smith
Abstract The future of assistive technology is bright! While there are many challenges, such as the need to fluently intermix cultural approaches and we must deal with the shortage of delivery systems and devices to meet the needs of our world population... the calling is clear. Fortunately, there are three key assets for which we can tap. 1) Economics are on our side. 2) The opportunity and promise of smart devices are with us. And 3) Global systems are tuning and are ready like never before. We have numerous examples of these assets in current R&D and systems rollouts in 2020. In the prosthetics space, the small business ProsFit is demonstrating a novel disruption in the supply chain delivery. This has the power to revolutionize prosthetics and make artificial limbs truly accessible to not just people in the high resourced nations, but everywhere. In the computer access and software app space, concepts of personalizing apps will hurdle the ineffectiveness of “one size fits all” which does not work for disability. Raising the Floor and smart apps on smart devices connected to smart cloud spaces are breaking new ground. To top it off, global and societal pressures are positioning assistive technology availability at the top tier of national and international attention. The WHO, the Chinese Belt and Road, conferences like iCREATe, along with global organization affiliations like GAATO, ISPO, and WFOT are enabling new vehicles and the highest political endorsements and recognition. While we have clear challenges, like how will we measure the outcomes, our globe is poised for remarkable progress over this next decade. The 2020s will be an outstanding era that we will look back on in ten years and marvel at how assistive technology leaped forward due to the convergence of technology, the will of the people andsocietal leadership. This presentation will detail the direction and the speed of our combined movement.