Curious who won the World Imagine Cup 2012 Software Design?

QuadSquadWho won the worldwide student competition to solve the world’s problems using technology?

When 76 countries send their best teams to compete at the World Wide Finals in Software Design you know the judges have their work cut out for them. This year’s winners were team Quadsquad from Ukraine with their project Enable Talk.

The problem:

More than 40 million people in the world are hearing or speech impaired. To communicate they use sign language. Unfortunately, very few people in the world understand sign language which leaves them feeling isolated. The team was inspired when they were in the supermarket, watching a cashier trying to understand a speech impaired person and thought how useful it would be to have a device to overcome this communication barrier.

The project:

Using a smartphone and a pair of sensory gloves project “Enable Talk” to solve the language barrier between sign language users and the rest of the world! The gloves capture hand movements and transmit the movement pattern (the sign) to the mobile device via Bluetooth. The application matches the incoming pattern with stored signs and plays the sound for that sign using the Microsoft Speech API and Bing API.

What signs do the gloves recognize? Well the first part of the process is to capture the hand movements. You wear the sensory cloves each of which is equipped with flex sensors that capture finger movements. A compass, gyroscope and accelerometer determine the position of the gloves in  space. So you create a library of sign that can be recognized. So even colloquial signs can be added and recognized.

Technologies used:

Windows 8, Windows Phone, Windows 7, Bing

If you would like to see the team’s entire presentation from the World Wide Finals you can view it here. If you just want a sneak peak at what they’ve done you can watch the video below.


Congratulations Team Quadsquad!

The technology to do amazing things is here! What could you do? Imagine it! Build it! Live it!

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