A recurring theme in our conversations today with the different speakers was the passion that people who battle with Alzheimer's have for photo albums. Our team member Tom Fisk described how much his mother loves to look through old family pictures. Judy explained how her husband Steve would place pictures of his son around the house in anticipation of a visit. It was clear to us that there is tremendous value in photographs, and we set out to organize a way to collect and group pictures of family and friends.

How it works

Each user of Familiar Faces has a collection of people, grouped by relationship, and the system is populated with photos and a few facts about each. When the user signs in (, they're greeted with a list of categories (Family, Friends, Caregivers, All, etc.) and can select which group of photos they'd like to browse ( They are then take to a page displaying an image of each person in the group along with their name, which they can click to access a page of that person. On this last page (, they can swipe or scroll through any uploaded pictures of the person.

One feature that we're excited about is the 'Today' group. The purpose of this group is for either a user or their caregiver to add all of the people that they anticipate the user interacting with over the next day to this bucket. In this way they can prepare the user for any upcoming outings (family reunion, trip to a sports game, etc.)

Challenges I ran into

A cursory glance at our application will make it very clear that we are a team of four engineers and zero designers.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

We came in today without a solution in mind, learned about a new challenge based upon our conversations, and designed a tool to help address it. We believe that this tool really can be effective and useful and improve someone's quality of life, which was our ultimate goal for the day.

What I learned

I can say that I learned a lot more about the day-to-day challenges of living with Alzheimer's, both for the person suffering from the disease and for their loved ones, than I did about any technical solution.

What's next for Familiar Faces

We want to spend more time working on the app's design to make it more user-friendly and less of a color explosion. We also need to build out a management mode to allow users to add people and pictures and manage which groups people belong in. Finally, we want to add the capability to embed videos to the person pages.

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