Blackwood’s digitally enhanced care system Clever Cogs continues to have a positive impact on people’s independence at Broom Court in Stirling. The focus of this week’s story is two residents, Ian and Trish, who have been enthusiastically taking part in the Clever Cogs trials. Their feedback is an invaluable contribution to really help shape and tailor the package to our customers’ needs and requirements.


‘Music and football are two of the main things I use it for. I like looking at the football scores on my screen’ says Ian whose disability affects his mobility and dexterity. He’s a lifelong fan of the sport and is really enjoying having easy access to the latest news and updates on his team. His love of music has also been fondly indulged ever since he’s had a Clever Cogs unit. Scottish folk music is one of his passions and in addition he has asked to have some of David Essex’s music on his device.

Ian also gets good use out of the care orientated features of Clever Cogs, ‘I use it to ask for things like something to drink or if I need a hand with something’. Ian is full of ideas on how he would like to use his personal device.

‘Can we try watching the tele on it?’ he asks keenly. Catch up services like BBC iPlayer, etc. are available through Clever Cogs but it is not yet possible to watch live TV on it.


Trisha is visually impaired and one of her greatest pleasures is sitting listening to music. She has a huge record collection she hopes to add to her Clever Cogs device so she can listen to all her favourite bands and artists. Referring to the content on the communal device in the lounge, Trish remarks ‘I like that “over 100 songs from the 50s” they’ve got on that. I would like the songs from the 60s and 70s too on my screen’.


One aspect she is still finding her feet with is Fiona; the computer generated avatar that calls out updates and information when your device wakes you up in the morning. These include the date, time and any appointments or medication to take on that day. Ian is similarly unsure of Fiona’s directness, but admits that her reminders are useful to him.


Whilst they agree on some of Clever Cogs’ strengths and areas that need more thought, both Ian and Trish are loving the new world opened up to them with their personalised Clever Cogs unit and, it’s inspired them to visualise all sorts of different advantages they could benefit from using the system.


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