Tell it to Someone Who Cares!!

Checkout an innovative online project, “Ruby’s Bequest: Visit Deepwell!,” at The Institute for the Future (IFTF), United Cerebral Palsy and AARP have created an online “collaborative story for social good” about caregiving’s future, and Deepwell is the fictional town in the narrative.

I find the use of online social networking tools and platforms intriguing to create a discussion around designing an”ecosystem of caregiving”.   What are your thoughts?  Continue the conversation…


Here is the latest announcement from Ruby.

“Dear Folks,

Well, it’s finally happened–we now know the contents of Ruby Wood’s bequest.

But knowing sure doesn’t make things easier. We’re still “the town that doesn’t care right”, but that label comes with a challenge and an opportunity to fix things, today, using moneys from the bequest to fund interesting ideas about caring.

If you’ve already sent us a story by email or phone, we’ve done our best to respond right back, and some of your stories have even more tokens of our appreciation.

If you haven’t had time yet, here is the best way to orient yourself no matter when you start:

Now, if you’re getting started for the first time on our site:

1.  Go to & click on “Become a Friend of Deepwell

2.  Go back to to read some “Good Thinking” by clicking on the images in the lower left hand corner

3.  Here’s some of the conversation you might want to use for inspiration:
Rhythms of Contact & Caring:
Need More, No–BETTER Data

4.  Click on “Tell us What You Know to tell your own story via text form, email, or phone.  This can be a simple paragraph, a photo with a caption, or a link to a video or news article you read that you think Deepwell should consider.)

Here’s how to find stories you’ve already sent us (if you’re already signed up as a Friend of Deepwell):
1.  Go to
2.  Click on See All Stories (
3.  On the right, under Popular Searches, click on Your Stories.

Lastly, we’re sure you know people who could probably add a lot to this conversation.  We all could sure use their help, so please pass this information on and, as you well know by now, Tell it to Someone Who Cares!!”

Health-Aware Home Starter Package, an Artifact from the Future

In a June 9, 2006 Business 2.0 article Christopher Null writes, “Trendspotting is serious business. So much so that the Institute for the Future, a Palo Alto-based think tank, produces an annual 96-page 10-year forecast – an exhaustive compendium of societal and technological trends, widely regarded as the bellwether of long-range planning.

Just one problem: “Clients weren’t reading the reports,” admits Jason Tester, the IFTF’s research and design manager.

So, in summer 2003, Tester tried a different tack that became known as “artifacts from the future”: mocked-up products claiming to be from,” (the future).

A summary of why Institute for the Future creates artifacts. Full article here:  Artifacts from the future

First, their tangible, specific nature forces us to think hard about what we really believe.

Second, thinking about artifacts makes you think hard about the interrelationships of technological, social, economic, and cultural factors.

Third, the shift to artifacts reflects our own sense that design is going to be a critical strategic skill in the future.

Fourth, many of our clients actually make things. They already communicate with each other in a language of prototypes.

Finally, artifacts from the future are part of a larger trend in the Institute of drawing closer lines between our research/brainstorming methods, and the media we use to communicate our ideas.