The OrbIT System Proves Games Can Be Therapy

An accessible gaming system for people with hand impairments.

For people with hand impairments, playing video games isn’t always possible. But the OrbIT accessible gaming system provides an alternative.

“It facilitates access for people who have an impairment,” says David Hobbs, Lecturer and Rehabilitation Engineer at Flinders University. “They can play video or computer games, but at the same time, they’re getting therapy – and that’s the power. They’re getting access to a health alternative through the technology we’ve developed,” he says.

The development process took two and a half years from the initial idea to the first trial. More than twelve different professional disciplines were represented in the team, from industrial design to physiotherapy.

OrbIT’s reception has been sweepingly positive – “especially from children,” says Hobbs. “They want to take OrbIT home.”

What are the games like?

“Most of the games are interactive, fun games. And the reason for that is we want people to engage and play with it,” says Hobbs.

“The ultimate plan is to increase our portfolio of games, and to increase our games catalogue, so we have more attraction and more appeal. Games for little children; games for teenagers; games for adults and more learning games that make the grey matter [of the brain] – the cerebral part – work really well.”

Does it have other applications?

Other benefits of the OrbIT system might soon be uncovered.

“We’re very keen to trial it with people who have Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s, because we believe it might provide a neuroprotective effect where they can game and use both their hands, and receive signals through their hands at the same time,” says Hobbs.

“So it may have the effect were it can be used as a preventative. But at the moment, we’re seeing it as a rehabilitative intervention for increased and improved hand function.”

If you’d like to know more about the OrbIT system, connect with us and we’ll put you in touch with David. He can also be found on Twitter at @DavidHobbs08.

Do you have a tech idea of your own? Here are the reasons why you should apply to our HWA LAB.

Five-day technology event #HybridWorldADL returns to Adelaide in July.

Tonsley In Adelaide Is A Playground For The Tech-Minded

Driverless vehicles, 3D holograms and more.

The garden at Tonsley

Last year’s venue for Hybrid World Adelaide, Tonsley, is a playground for the tech-minded. We caught up with some of the individuals and teams working on game-changing technology in the space, like Lateral Vision’s AR and VR; the Flinders Medical Device Research Institute’s OrbIT accessible gaming system; Voxon Photonic’s 3D holographic displays (no glasses required) and Aurrigo’s driverless pods. And that’s just the beginning.

Keep an eye on our website and social media in the coming days to find out more about each of these projects.

Do you have a tech idea of your own? Here are the reasons why you should apply to our #HWALAB.

#HybridWorldADL returns to Adelaide in July. More details about the event can be found here.