Asian finalists in the 2020 Microsoft Imagine Cup look back on a great learning experience
The Microsoft Imagine Cup is an annual competition in which students code, collaborate, and compete with new ideas to tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges.
Students from all over the world take part in the contest. Eleven teams made last year’s Asia Regional Finals and produced and pitched some outstanding potential solutions.
Among them were runners-up Team Tulibot from Indonesia and Team Zest from Singapore.
We recently asked the members from both teams about their experiences in the competition and their passion for developing solutions for good.
TEAM TULIBOT: Bridging the communications gap between people who are deaf and the rest of society
These three students from Indonesia developed a smart glove and smart glasses combination that converts hand gestures and speech to text.
Q: Why did you join the Imagine Cup?
Muhammad Alan Nur: The experience offers great mentorship and networking opportunities, which I thought would be very useful in helping me develop my skills in a field that I’m very passionate about.
Q: What have you learned from your Imagine Cup experience?
Namira Rizqi Annisa: As tech students, we were confident in our skills and developing the Tulibot solution. However, delivering an engaging and targeted business pitch was equally important in the competition. I think that learning how to effectively position our solution as a business idea was one of our biggest takeaways from the Imagine Cup.
Yudha Sadewa: On the tech front, we also learned how to define our problem statement more accurately. This brought greater focus to the development process, enabling us to create a solution that would be more user-friendly for meeting the needs of people who are deaf.
Muhammad Alan Nur: We will continue to work on Tulibot and hope that our sustained efforts will attract and impact many users. Personally, I’m passionate about creating advanced technology, and am now working on a project to develop nanotechnology that can help to improve the lives of farmers in Indonesia. I’m working on a nanobubble generator to be added to the water tanks in their ponds to help increase the oxygen levels so that their crops grow and thrive better.
TEAM ZEST: Helping patients keep up with physiotherapy for a full recovery
Physiotherapy requires consistency and determination. To recover fully, patients must follow through with simple but repetitive exercises for weeks or months.
Team Zest from Singapore set out to help patients stay on track and keep up with their rehabilitation programs. Their mobile app, Dr. Rehab, provides real-time physiotherapy supervision through computer vision, enabling patients to undergo virtual consultation sessions.
Q: What was your Imagine Cup Asia Regional Finals experience like?
Teh Hui Min: The virtual competition on Teams was very interesting; it was nice interacting with students from different countries. We were quite surprised when we were announced as the first team to make our pitch, but Elaine nailed it with her confident and interesting delivery. We were nervous, but also inspired by the innovations of the other teams. It was a good learning session for all of us.
Q: What is a change you’d like to see for patients undergoing physiotherapy?
Dewi Sendjaja: We would like physiotherapy to be more accessible. Getting proper help and treatment should not be another struggle that patients need to face on their road to recovery.
Q: What’s next for Team Zest?
Dewi Sendjaja: We’re really fortunate and grateful for the Azure credits and would like to use them in our efforts to further our project, such that it can cater to a wider customer base. As for Dr. Rehab, we will try to explore opportunities for potential collaboration with physiotherapy centers in Singapore.
Sign up now and turn your ideas into tech solutions at the 2021 Imagine Cup
Many of today’s students will be tomorrow’s entrepreneurs – and you can be among them.
The 2021 Imagine Cup will be an all-digital competition with four new competition categories in Earth, Education, Health, and Lifestyle. Find your community of peers and build a tech solution aligned with the social issue you’re most passionate about.
Registrations are open until end of January and online semi-finals will be held in February 2021. Top 40 teams will advance to the World Finals in March 2021 and have a shot at taking home a prize of USD75,000 and receiving a mentoring session by our CEO Satya Nadella.
Seize this opportunity to turn your imagination into solutions that can make a positive impact on society. If you’re driven to shape a more accessible and inclusive future for people of different abilities, backgrounds, and demographics, this is the time to get started.
Dream it. Build it. Live it. Sign up here now.