The Imagine Cup motto is: “Dream it. Build it. Live it.”
For the past twelve years the world’s premier student technology competition, Imagine Cup, a Microsoft YouthSpark program has cultivated a spirit of entrepreneurialism and innovation.To date, over 1.75 million students from more than 190 countries have participated.
This year, Microsoft introduced the Skype Award as part of Imagine Cup in all three categories of competition – Social Impact, Innovate & Collaborate, and Learning & Education. The Skype Award was designed to inspire new scenarios where individuals and communities can do things using Skype that will have a significant and lasting social impact. Our winning teams from Australia, South Africa, and Nepal demonstrated this can easily be done – designing a Skype based anemia screening app, developing games over Skype using a cloud based development mentality, and helping farmers solve agriculture challenges all over the world.
The first award in the Social Impact category goest to Team Eyenaemia. Eyenaemia is an app that turns any camera-enabled phone into an anemia screening tool. Their winning concept integrates Eyenaemia with Skype’s video calling function so that video stills can be used to estimate a consumer’s hemoglobin level.
Social Impact: Team Eyenaemia, Australia
Eyenaemia is also a World Finalist in the Imagine Cup program and will be flying to Seattle this July to compete. Team member Jarrel Seah told us, “This will be our team’s first trip together to the U.S. We’re looking forward to meeting other finalists, sharing ideas, and possibly meeting Bill Gates. Hopefully.”
We wish them luck!
The Innovate & Collaborate category award goes to Team Super Dragons. They designed a cloud-based methodology to develop gaming software, using Skype as a virtual test lab spanning 1,500km.
The Super Sea Dragons are the creators of Orbit. After a team member moved across the country for a job, they shifted their game development process towards a cloud-based mentality. Skype was used not only for communication and development, but also for user testing.
Team member Eleanor Harding shared, “The Internet is our home and playground – Skype is our enabler. It’s an honor and a privilege to be recognized for our ideas.”
The winner of the Learn & Educate category is Team Code Buzzers. They proposed building a network using Skype for farmers to share and learn best practices and help solve agricultural problems around the world. The implications for a program like this would be far-reaching, as developing nations and large scale economies could use video communications technology to share innovations and advancements to sustain healthy markets and small village crops.
Learn & Educate: Team Code Buzzers, Nepal
Team member Sunil Manandhar said, “The whole competition became a perfect platform for us to give our best shot in what we knew.”
Congratulations to all of the Skype Award winners. Their work demonstrates that it’s not just about staying connected to the people you know and love when you are away, it’s about using Skype to have an impact on what we do to create and collaborate with individuals and communities that has a lastly social impact.