Challenge for the #AccessibleOlli Project

Challenge: Autonomous for All of Us

Brief for Autonomous for All of Us

Citizens of the world all require transportation, but often and unfortunately our aging population and those of us with disabilities remain underserved. We require mobility and services to get to work, see our families, and access the world in a manner most of us take for granted. We’d like to change that by creating solutions to make true and complete mobility accessible to all of us. For this challenge, we want you to design the most inclusive experience for Olli riders of all ages and abilities, focusing on one or more of four specific categories of needs: mobility impairments, visual impairments, hearing impairments, and cognitive disabilities.The Problem is LargePicture with StatisticsAccording to the World Health Organization, over one billion people in the world have some sort of disability.  It’s 1.2 billion, that’s 15% of the world’s population.In the United States alone, over 57 million people, approximately 1 out of every 5 people have a disability. These disabilities come in many forms, including physical mobility, vision, hearing, or cognitive function. In some cases people experience multiple disabilities.Picture with StatisticsBeyond what most would consider to be disabilities, there is also a growing elderly population that will require similar mobility solutions to accommodate their needs. The United Nations estimates by 2050, 30% of the world’s population will be over age 60 and the “80 years plus” population will have tripled.Picture with StatisticsThe Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and many other organizations have made a big difference in the lives of those with disabilities. However as technology advances there are opportunities to innovate around new solutions and not just design to the minimum requirements. Picture with StatisticsWith the creation of Olli, a bold new type of self-driving community shuttle, Local Motors is committed to developing an inclusive experience that supports the needs of older adults and the disabled community. Via co-creation, we want to develop robust accessibility options that far exceed just meeting compliance regulations to deliver an unrivaled suite of amenities and supporting systems to these communities. How you can help fix itThat’s where you, the community, come in. Together we can be a source of inspiration and new ideas that drive this project forward to promote independence and enhance the lives of millions of people with disabilities. For much of the community, this is an exercise in empathy and understanding. You might consider what it means to be disabled, and how you would travel around your neighborhood or city? While a typical definition of having a disability would include a physical or mental condition that limits movements, senses, or activities, we’ve decided to focus on four main categories of; mobility, vision, hearing, and cognitive, while also recognizing that these categories may overlap in communities such as the deaf blind. Mobility Icon MobilityMany people with mobility impairments rely on assistive devices such as wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes and crutches. This track is focused on supporting riders with those devices, while also looking for meaningful solutions to accommodate other items, such as oxygen tanks, portable dialysis machines, service dogs and other items that need to be easily transported on and off Olli. This track will require a larger emphasis on the design and engineering of Olli, but beyond ramps, we encourage you to think about the rider experience within the vehicle, as well as information that can be provided on accessibility features such as location of curb-cutouts, elevators and ramps at pickup and destination points.Entries focusing on mobility impairments should account for riders that are/have:

  • Unable to use any limbs
  • Uses a mobility chair
    • Wheelchair user
    • Mobility scooter
  • Assisted movement
    • Aided with cane
    • Aided with walker
    • Aided with braces which restrict movement
Hearing Impairment IconVisionDesigning a riding experience for people with visual impairments presents unique challenges, and calls for deep empathy. Visually impaired riders often make natural adaptations to adjust to their environment, and use assistive tools like white canes or guide dogs. Technology offers new ways of complementing these existing methods, ranging from haptic feedback to subtle audio cues.  Entries focusing on visual impairments should consider riders that are/have:
  • Blind
    • Uses white cane
    • Uses guide dog
  • Partially blind
    • Some vision, significantly visually impaired
    • Color blindness
    • Extreme light sensitivity
Hearing Impairment IconHearing ImpairedMost current public transit systems rely on audio cues to communicate information, from notifications of stopping points, door opening or closing chimes, or emergency warnings. However, text based systems and other technologies, including sound amplification, bluetooth integration and haptic innovations can create an experience for not just people with hearing loss or who are deaf, but also non-disabled riders who do not hear or notice these alerts. Entries focusing on hearing impairments should account for riders that are/have:
  • Fully deaf
  • People with hearing loss
  • Debilitative tone deafness
Cognitive Impairment IconCognitive ImpairmentsThere are a vast array of cognitive impairments, each with their own unique challenges and needs. From developmental impairments to psychological disorders, designing the Olli experience for the cognitively disabled should encompass clear communication delivered in a variety of formats (audio, text, symbols) with multiple cues and reminders.Entries focusing on cognitive impairments  should account for riders that are/have:
  • Developmental impairments
  • Slow mental processes
  • Autism Spectrum disorders
  • Psychological disorders
  • Dementia and Alzheimer's Disease
Go check out the requirements for additional information.


Best Overall Entry
Selection of best overall entry will be decided by a jury of experts. Entry can come from any track.
Community Pick
Community Pick is awarded to the submission with the most overall votes from the community.
First Place Jury | Mobility
The jury will select the top submission in Mobility.
Second Place Jury | Mobility
The jury will select the second place submission in Mobility.
First Place Jury | Vision
The jury will select the top submission in Vision.
Second Place Jury | Vision
The jury will select the second place submission in Vision.
First Place Jury | Hearing
The jury will select the top submission in Hearing.
Second Place Jury | Hearing
The jury will select the second place submission in Hearing.
First Place Jury | Cognitive
The jury will select the top submission in Cognitive.
Second Place Jury Cognitive
The jury will select the second place submission in Cognitive.
Innovation Award
The Jury will select five Innovation awards with the most innovative and impactful ideas across any of the tracks
Innovation Award
The Jury will select five Innovation awards with the most innovative and impactful ideas across any of the tracks
Innovation Award
The Jury will select five Innovation awards with the most innovative and impactful ideas across any of the tracks
Innovation Award
The Jury will select five Innovation awards with the most innovative and impactful ideas across any of the tracks
Innovation Award
The Jury will select five Innovation awards with the most innovative and impactful ideas across any of the tracks

Requirements for Autonomous for All of Us

Ignition Kit File Downloads


List of “must haves” in order to be eligible for voting

  • Clearly identify the problem(s) you are solving, and make sure that message is clear to your audience.
  • Clear vision of idea around Accessible Olli (examples where applicable)
  • Compelling and well defined use case
  • Clear indication of the categories your solution services - why and how 
  • Visualization of idea through storyboards or detailed wireframes
  • Visualization of any design adjustments made to Olli (if applicable)
  • Must use Olli, but can include how Olli interacts with environment and user (i.e Technology)
  • Identify portions of your proposal to be hardware or software, and describe the integration between the two.
  • List any proposed tech partners 
  • Clear and Concise examples of how benefits and features will better accessibility on Olli - why and how

List of “must haves” visually so that we are able to clearly see aspects of the entry

  • Display the solution used on Olli with minimal changes to exterior styling (where necessary), while the interior has more freedom to accommodate accessibility.
  • Interior view (if applicable to your proposal)
  • Exterior view (if applicable to your proposal)
  • Packaging view (if applicable to your proposal)
  • Storyboards (if applicable to your proposal)
  • Attached PDF (if applicable to your proposal)


  • Be focused on your solution - it’s ok if your solution doesn’t service all the categories.
  • Sell your idea - do you think the category you are servicing will understand your concept?
  • A well defined idea doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be visually superior, but make sure your concept presentation is clear. Better to have more pages than to cram too much information on one page.
  • If you have the ability to provide code, feel free to do so!
  • Integration of off-the -shelf solutions is great if you are doing it in a new way, but innovative fresh thinking is more appealing.
  • Showing utilization of Olli and Watson in conjunction with other tech encouraged.

This is Co-Creation, don’t be afraid to engage in our discussions, or reach out to other community members to get answers to your questions. The better you network with others, the better the chance you will get fair evaluation for your entry.

You can also prototype your idea!

If you'd like to prototype an idea, that’d be great! Would even love to see video of your prototype in action. Please provide code as public github project and include URL in your submission. We can then fork your code on #AccessibleOlli github

Any code submissions are fine. Feel free to tell us what hardware, sensors, actuators, et al. that your code requires. Note that #AccessibleOlli is being built upon Olli so ideal is code that fits well with the current Olli work. Some of the software already used in Olli includes:

Download additional reference links
Download additional
 background documents
Relevant Tech to Consider

Olli is a new form of public transportation. It’s an autonomous shuttle. It has no driver, and controlled essentially by a small black box – which poses a unique challenge. If there is no bus driver, then who welcomes you aboard?Who do you talk to?  Who tells you what to do?  Who answers your questions and addresses your concerns?  Who tells you where you’re going and when you’re arriving.  

For Local Motors the answer has been to give Olli a “cognitive rider experience” using IBM Watson technology. IBM Watson plays an important role on Olli and is IBM’s cognitive computing system capable of communicating with riders  in natural language.

There are many potential roles for Watson on Olli, and many potential applications or solutions to invent. Watson can not only can help people onboard Olli, but may play a role in activating a wheelchair ramp, providing information and updates during the ride, or controlling other physical aspects of Olli for example. We could also see new smartphone apps that connect the disabled riders with Watson in new meaningful ways. Some may be only simple adjustments to Olli, or propose major changes with ground-up thinking.

Some of the technologies to consider in your #AccessibleOlli solution:

  • Capacitive touch interfaces (not limited to touch screens)
  • Haptic
  • OLED displays embedded into glass and plastic surfaces
  • IBM Watson AI
  • Personalization
  • Natural Language processing
  • Sign language to text and text to sign translation
  • Bluetooth and Telecoil integration
  • Access and integration to municipal or campus accessibility features - curb cut outs, ramps, elevators
  • Visual  and Facial recognition
  • Enhanced audio with zoning and sound cancelling
  • Speech to text and text to speech
  • IoT
  • Cloud applications
  • Smartphone connectivity (Direct via RFID, NFC, VPN, Bluetooth,WiFi network, not through IoT)
  • Wearables (ability to communicate through sensors worn by the riders)
  • Eye Gaze (for the verbally impaired who also lack motor function to type or touch a screen)
  • Big Data (and how to utilize it for benefit of the user)
  • Robotics (not limited to wheelchair ramp)
  • Storage for devices used for accessibility, and more


Jury, Prizes, and Innovation Awards

Since we are taking on a complex challenge with #AccessibleOlli, the prize structure will reflect this new type of challenge. There will be four (4) tracks to focus on, enabling you to win one of the tracks, or a larger prize amount if your winning proposal has a larger scope and incorporates more than one track. These four (4) tracks are the same as previously stated; (1) mobility; (2) vision; (3) hearing; (4) cognitive. Prize money will be offered for both first and second place winners, for each track. The selection process is decided by a jury of experts, which we will introduce later in the brief.

As mentioned, there is a possibility of overlap, to give entries that are versatile and well thought out the ability to be properly rewarded. So be inclusive in your thinking and develop solutions that cover the various types of disabilities the best way possible. But to be clear, it is better to have a focused and well executed solution rather than trying to solve all of the issues in one entry. And please be mindful of the issues you are trying to tackle and form the most compelling solution you can.

There will also be prizes for best overall entry, community favorite, and 5 innovation awards. This brings the total to 15 prizes available. The selection of best overall entry will be decided by the jury as well. The community favorite is determined simply by the voting results, and the innovation awards will be determined by the SMEs (Subject Matter Experts), Community Managers, the jury, but mostly by your comments on the entry. We want to encourage that you reach out to your peers for critique, and also reach out to critique your peers so that peer evaluation will help us to determine who deserves additional recognition within your ranks. Each innovation prize will be noted next to the winning announcement with a quote from the comments helping to explain why it was chosen. So in addition to assembling a strong entry, be honest, fair, and constructive with your comments and establish a community network, it could help you win an innovation award!

Winners will be announced on or around September 20, 2017!

Challenge Terms and Conditions

Entry list for Autonomous for All of Us

Challenge Discussion for Autonomous for All of Us

Results for Autonomous for All of Us

Results calculated 2 years, 1 month ago

Entry Creator Total Votes Raw Result Filtered Result Differential
ABC OLLI GPD 5 1.7 1.72641509433962 0.02641509433961997
Autonomous CQuintero 6 2.94333333333333 2.82953846153846 -0.11379487179487002
Blind Nav rohitb1vs10 5 1.666 1.666 0.0
Bone conduction hearing shamloo 8 2.41625 2.51881516587678 0.1025651658767801
Book An Olli rohitb1vs10 4 2.4575 2.30853658536585 -0.14896341463414986
Built in digital scent machine shamloo 5 1.966 1.966 0.0
cost effective mobility solutions for disabled using NFC tags. Aurdion97 5 2.334 1.64347826086957 -0.6905217391304301
DESIGN FOR ALL - LA PROGETTAZIONE PER TUTTI GPD 6 2.0 1.93473684210526 -0.06526315789474002
entry-nrN2wq shubhamshinganapure 5 2.166 2.166 0.0
Ezy Ingress GTR 7 2.66571428571429 2.54441558441558 -0.12129870129871012
Feel the touch. mandita 10 3.167 2.97084870848708 -0.19615129151292
Future Olli lagarciag1 4 2.5425 2.71538461538462 0.17288461538461997
Haptic Feedback for Locating Olli robohepcat 9 1.92555555555556 1.66866323907455 -0.25689231648100996
iBeacon for autonomous raffi 4 2.085 2.085 0.0
Inclusiveness in the society rishanksingh 5 1.966 1.89547169811321 -0.07052830188678993
Mobile seats shamloo 8 2.64625 2.32274881516588 -0.32350118483412027
Olli AiR calvinkimkim 7 2.73714285714286 2.68324675324675 -0.053896103896110326
OlliCOM robohepcat 7 2.52285714285714 2.47948051948052 -0.04337662337661996
Olli Companion - Cognitive Impairments Entry dani_ch_22 6 2.55833333333333 2.55833333333333 0.0
Olli Connect AgeWave 11 3.10636363636364 2.41526442307692 -0.6910992132867202
Olli Digit lulu 8 2.875 2.86516853932584 -0.009831460674159853
Olli for all hartantopb 8 2.83375 2.78076923076923 -0.05298076923077
Olli For All ilel 6 3.30666666666667 2.98145695364238 -0.32520971302429036
OlliGuide for Visually Impaired abhivaya 9 2.88888888888889 2.91584158415842 0.026952695269530036
olliPad - Portable device for aged and people with impairments Challenger 10 3.884 3.29538181818182 -0.5886181818181799
Olli Plus Aid eddie_mauro 3 3.11 3.16229508196721 0.05229508196721033
Olli Plus Band eddie_mauro 5 2.566 2.566 0.0
Olli Signaling Device for Mild Cognitive Impairment robohepcat 4 2.25 2.01098901098901 -0.23901098901098994
Ollix Sense experience Ajay 6 3.11166666666667 3.11166666666667 0.0
​Profile sujith81159 95 4.85094736842105 3.40963414634146 -1.44131322207959
SMART STOP FOR ALL rajakushwaha0823 46 4.32239130434783 2.37554702495202 -1.94684427939581
S-SYS CristinaFlr 12 3.65166666666667 3.42979400749064 -0.22187265917603005
Standing to Seating Power seats GTR 4 2.3325 2.43846153846154 0.10596153846154
Starting with the basics. Adapting Olli Cristian_F 9 3.57444444444444 4.05692650334076 0.4824820588963199
The Universal Chair Lude 11 2.84818181818182 2.80225933202358 -0.045922486158239906
Transit for all Mnshah21 11 3.07636363636364 2.6310447761194 -0.44531886024424017
Transit for mobility / vision impaired Mnshah21 9 3.13 2.9061744966443 -0.22382550335569995
T Swift debashish090992 26 4.37230769230769 3.18330241187384 -1.1890052804338493
Watson Knowledge Graph gstanwar16 23 4.10869565217391 2.776 -1.3326956521739106
Whitepaper: Improving Accessibility on the Olli Zorro 5 3.334 2.45375838926174 -0.8802416107382602