AARP Tech Nest

AARP Tech Nest

Yazmine Carbajal, an industrial-design student, wants to help older people benefit from new technology.

She recalled the frustrated attempts to assist her 75-year-old grandmother in using an iPad. Shaky hands made it hard for her to use the device’s small buttons, and she kept forgetting the order of multiple functions.

“I thought, Huh, I don’t know how she uses this,” said Carbajal, 23, who attends the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

This past summer, she was in the right place to help. Carbajal interned at the Tech Nest, AARP’s technology design lab, where a colorful mural urges staffers to “disrupt aging.”

Older adults are already using voice-activated and touch-screen systems at home, making it easier to age in place, and self-driving vehicles may improve mobility. But anyone who’s ever squinted at a smartphone screen or poked at a tiny tablet keyboard knows that technology could work better.

That’s why AARP established the Tech Nest, which opened its doors in June 2016.

More on the AARP Tech Nest, visit