Assistive technology for cognition (ATC) is the term used to describe technology that extends or augments mental functions.
Guide is an automated prompting technology that supports users during their daily routines. It's currently available throughout the Brain Injury Rehabilitation Trust (BIRT) to support rehabilitation of a number of activities, including making tea, cold snacks, self-managing medication, and many others.
Guide provides verbal prompts and voice recognition allows the user to interact with the technology in a natural conversational manner. Guide was initially developed by Brian O’Neill and Alex Gillespie to help amputees with executive dysfunction don their artificial limbs safely and independently. The project was then furthered by using the system to support activities of daily living that can be challenging to individuals with acquired brain injury (ABI).
In a single case study, Guide was used to help an individual with severe cognitive impairment which affected his ability to get going and carry out their morning routine independently. It was found that using Guide successfully encouraged the person to get ready and significantly reduced the person’s need for supervision both in the hospital and at home. These positive findings suggest that interactive verbal prompting is not only helpful to ensure that complex routines are correctly followed, but also helps with motivation.