Today, Microsoft Philippines in collaboration with the Department of Science and Technology – Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICT Office) announced the 15 semifinalists of the 12th edition of the Imagine Cup global competition. Semifinalists were chosen for the three major competition categories — Innovation, Games, and World Citizenship.
Imagine Cup, which is currently at its 12th year, is the world’s premier student technology competition. The competition provides students across all disciplines the opportunity to use their creativity, passion and knowledge of technology to create applications, games and solutions that solve the toughest problems in the world today. Some even took inspiration from recent events and adversities encountered by Filipinos to come up with solutions that address them.
“There are a lot of technologies out there that have the potential to change the way Filipinos do things. We took these latest technologies and used them as leverage to address the challenges our fellow Filipinos are facing today,” said Mark Muya, Computer Engineering student and member of Imagine Cup team Team Dose from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. “We are very happy to be part of Microsoft’s Imagine Cup because it has given us the venue to reach our goal of creating a solution that will create an impact in the lives of our fellow Filipinos.”
Innovation brought entries such as BALM, a business continuity and incident management system that enables users to create a continuity plan that will help their business run smoothly. Utilizing cloud technology is CNEARC, short for Cloud Network Emergency Response Communication, a cloud based service that helps rescue workers conduct their operations. Addressing urban problems is RoadFloodPH, a flood monitoring application that will help motorists and pedestrians on the road. Adding a touch of personalization to storytelling is FUNIMALS, an app that generates stories based on pictures selected by children. Helping the elderly maintain their mental health is WhaleWang, a web and mobile application that consists of mini-games that deal with visual or spatial perception and cognitive functions.
World Citizenship entries addressed issues in healthcare, environment, and governance among others. HanapBuhay, an emergency response app, enables users to find the nearest hospital using their location and medical information. HealthCare will centralize medical records and emergency contact information in a website that medical facilities can access reducing the need for repetitive forms. A group came up with ReLink, an app that will help people sell their pre-loved belongings instead of throwing them away. GreenThumb, a mobile phone app that help users grow vegetables in their own homes, encourage citizens to help the environment in their own little way. Taking inspiration from the bayanihan spirit is Do-Nation, a mobile phone app that will enable Filipinos to easily volunteer in relief efforts and donate relief goods during times of calamity.
Entries for the Games category tackled fitness and wellness, city, and disaster management and current events. FitPals combined fitness & play and utilized the power of Xbox Kinect to enable children to remain active as they have fun while Pixel Calamity and Minmin Escapes Disaster teach users how to respond to a disaster through an engaging mobile game. Subject of Change, a 3D simulator similar to the popular Sim City, enables players to build and manage a city. A cute and adorable game called Furbs lets players solve world issues through various minigames while counting on the help of the fluffy creatures the game was named after.
The semifinalists for each category will be competing in the National Finals on April 24, 2014 at Casa Blanca, Intramuros for a chance to win Php 50,000 and to represent the Philippines in the next round.
“We are proud of the semifinalists and are very impressed with the ideas and technology they have come up with. The 15 semifinalists truly demonstrate that Imagine Cup can truly help the Philippines in producing a new class of developers that has the right vision for the country,” said DOST – ICT Office Executive Director Usec. Louis Casambre.
“At Microsoft, we are committed to ensuring that Filipino students are given the opportunity to hone their skills that prepare them for the future,” said Karrie Ilagan, General Manager of Microsoft Philippines. “Imagine Cup is just one of the many ways we are helping shape a generation of creators who are capable of creating impactful technological solutions. We are proud of the semifinalists and we look forward to hopefully using their solutions soon.”
More than 1.65 million students from more than 190 countries have participated in Imagine Cup over the past 10 years. To date, over 1,000 young Filipinos have been given the opportunity to transform their ideas into wonderful apps through this prestigious competition. Imagine Cup was made possible with the help of SMARTDevNet and the Intramuros Administration. To learn more about imagine cup visit www.imaginecup.com