Technology

Imagine Cup

Congratulations to the winners of the eighth annual Imagine Cup Worldwide Finals that were recently announced in Warsaw, Poland!

With society’s growing reliance on information technology, software has become a crucial ingredient in relief activities such as disaster response and problem solving, according to Scientific American.  For instance, software programs help maneuver robotic subs, which have proved very useful in the attempts to control BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.  To help make further technological advances that can help in emergency situations, the Imagine Cup Worldwide competition was created eight years ago.

Diverse Young AdultsImagine Cup Worldwide is the leader among student technology competitions, reports Microsoft News Center.  This year Microsoft Corp sponsored the competition involving more than 325,000 high school and university students from over 100 countries, showcasing their best.   Throughout the week of competition and celebration, the students got together to illustrate their real-world solutions while competing across five categories (software design, embedded software development, game design, digital media and IT challenge) and six awards for a total of $240,000 (USD) in cash prizes.

Relief technologyImagine Cup projects are associated with the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals which include eliminating poverty, improving healthcare, advancing education and providing clean drinking water by 2015.  Consequently, this year’s projects place the spotlight on solving challenges relating to education, the environment and healthcare, enabling students to illustrate compassion and determination in creating projects that could have positive impacts.  There was a keen focus on key global issues including the creation of several projects that used social networking to deal with carbon emissions, emergency services access, and visual/hearing impairment.  With such a positive focus and theme, the students have been able to use the competition as a means of developing incredible technological innovations that have the potential to help others and truly impact our world for the better.

Recently, Microsoft announced that the 2011 Finals will be held in New York City, marking the first time the competition will occur in the United States.  To check out how your nation did in the competition, please see the list of winners at Microsoft News Center and please note that students’ registration for the 2011 competition has already begun at www.imaginecup.com.

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