Smithsonian Design Museum in New York shows you the style in accessibility

When it comes to people with disabilities, designers tend to come up with products that are very heavy or boring.

The Smithsonian Design Museum in New York is showing you another way to look at these products. A new exhibition called Access+Ability showcases more than 70 inventions that change the perception regarding ageing and disability.

Putting a shine on disability

The designs showcased include a reworked symbol for disability access, a racing wheelchair, undergarments that give people with joint ailments a muscular boost through built-in power packs, and stylish prosthetic leg covers. The designers have made the future look modern, sleek and smart through these designs.

Walking cane from India among the exhibits

It’s not just the digital innovations that stand out. There is also a colourful collection of walking canes designed by the late architect Michael Graves with rubber handles and a foot mechanism that helps the user retrieve a dropped cane without bending down. Then there are canes with rubber insets that so users can rest it against a wall. There is also a SmartCane from India with a superior sensor that alerts the blind about overhead obstacles ahead of them. It costs just $70 and can be folded to fit a handy case.

The museum is also currently reviewing things like the wayfinding and signage system and updating its website to be accessible to anyone with with visual impairments or ageing eyes.

The exhibit, which runs through until September 2018, is a must-see for all designers and decision makers in charge of creating products and policies.

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