Microsoft announced the winners of the 10th annual Imagine Cup, Microsoft’s student technology competition. Twenty-three percent of Imagine Cup projects this year were created to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities such as visual and hearing impairments and diseases that limit a human’s physical mobility.
Software and Game Design Winners at Imagine Cup 2012: Team quadSquad from the Ukraine took top honors in the Software Design Competition with its device, Enable Talk, which uses a pair of gloves equipped with 15 flex sensors and a microcontroller that continuously recognize sign language patterns, which are then transmitted via Bluetooth to a Windows Phone device that uses the Microsoft Speech API and Bing API to translate the signs into audio.
Teams competed in two Game Design competitions — Game Design: Xbox/Windows and Game Design: Phone. In Game Design: Xbox/Windows, TANG Thai, from Thailand, focused on protecting the environment and preventing deforestation. In Game Design: Phone, Drexel Dragons, from the United States, created a game designed to teach math and problem solving to elementary school students.
The following are the respective winners in the core Imagine Cup Competitions:
- Software Design: QuadSquad (Ukraine), Coccolo (Japan), Wi-GO (Portugal).
- Game Design – Xbox/Windows: TANG Thai (Thailand), The Doers (Brazil), Hotfix (Belgium)
- Game Design – Phone: Drexel Dragons (United States), Ecosia (France), Turtle Games (Hungary)
Respective Winners of Imagine Cup Challenges
- IT Challenge: Alexandru Ticlea (Romania), Sherif Talaat (Egypt), Joshua Sim (Singapore)
- Kinect Fun Labs Challenge: Team Interlab (Brazil), Team Whiteboard Pirates (United States), Team Flexifly (Poland)
- Windows Azure Challenge: Virtual Dreams Azure (Brazil), Complex (Romania), The Klein Team (Algeria)
- Windows Metro Style App Challenge: Virtual Dreams Metro (Brazil), NLife (Ukraine), TokTok (Korea)
- Windows Phone Challenge: Vivid (Egypt), The Stack (Poland), Aaltovation (Finland)
- The People’s Choice Award: This is the only Imagine Cup award that is determined by the public, and was won by the D Labs team from India, who created software to help dyslexic children use games to learn more effectively by using Kinect for Xbox 360.
- Health Awareness Award winners: Italian Ingenium Team (Italy)
- Environmental Sustainability Award winners: Greenway (Germany)
[Image: One of three all-female teams in the Imagine Cup’s Software Design category, Team Grawesome from Oman built a mobile application that uses GPS to track when blood banks have shortages. | Image Courtesy: Microsoft]