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RENDEVER What is it? VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCES


How will it transform the aging experience? Rendever, a startup out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), uses virtual reality to alleviate isolation and keep life stimulating for seniors. The team at Rendever is building virtual and augmented reality


experiences for seniors living in assisted living communities. Partic- ipants can either control the experience themselves or participate in a group experience led by programming teams. Rendever has built a kind of virtual reality version of Netflix


in which participants can choose from a variety of experiences, such as spectator and active sports activities, educational activities, and travel. The company has partnered with NASA for example, and participants can “travel” to space and learn about spacecraft. Another option includes virtually traveling to and touring through Paris as a group and learn about the city’s history. Rendever supplies the lesson plans for each experience Dennis Lally, the company’s co-founder and CEO, says the de-


vices also can be used for reminiscence therapy, which is a form of therapy encouraging individuals to discuss life experiences and events either with a therapist or a group. Participants traditional-


42 SENIOR LIVING EXECUTIVE / NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2016


ly share media such as photos, sounds, and music as part of the experience. For example, Rendever has partnered with Google so users of its headsets and software can use Google Earth to visit locations they’re familiar with, but may not be able to visit due to a physical limitation. Some studies have shown that reminiscence therapy can improve the moods of participants, including those ex- periencing dementia. Rendever is currently working with the MIT AgeLab and Bench-


mark Senior Living to study the impact of virtual reality on the wellness and wellbeing of seniors. Family members also can use 3-D cameras like the Samsung


Gear 360 Real 360 degree High Resolution Virtual Reality Camera to photograph events like weddings and share the footage with their loved ones, who can then immerse themselves in the experience with the Oculus/Samsung Gear VR smartphone headsets using Rendever’s software. Rendever was founded a year ago and is based in Cambridge,


Massachusetts. The company has tested and prototyped its sys- tem with the help of 1,000 assisted living residents. The team also participated in Brookdale Senior Living’s week-long Entre- preneur-in-Residence program, where they live with seniors in an assisted living community. Learn more: Visit Rendever.com or visit their booth at Argentum’s Senior Living Executive Conference & Expo, May 1-3 in Nashville, Tennessee.


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