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(Course Logo: Adult walking with cane and holding a child's hand)Designing for the Life Span Segment 3

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Slide 31[D]

Slide 31 Content

In recent years, the automobile companies have been more conscientious in their design of interior and exterior surfaces relating to the transmission of unwanted illumination or glare. However, the specular glare off the hood, chromium stripped edges and other highly reflected surfaces of the vehicle increase the difficulty of the task of driving. Married couples in the older cohorts of aging Americans were families where men drove and women didn't. this has resulted in a significant number of women over 70 learning to drive!!!

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Significant beneficial changes have been made to automobiles as a result of safety legislation of the middle and late 1960s. The interiors of all vehicles have less reflective material, especially on the bezels of instruments or as decoration on dashboards. The relationship of the hood of the car to the dashboard has been changed in many vehicles with a hood that slopes away and is not visible and not producing specular glare.

Women outliving men has meant that many women among the old-old have not driven until the vehicle is passed on to them at the death of a spouse. A significant number of women learned to drive in old age. This phenomenon is fading as younger women in the "baby boomer" ranks arrive at old age with driving experience.

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