DCU Fujitsu Innovation Awards showcase life-changing innovations
10 June 2013 | 0
Fujitsu Ireland CEO Regina Moran and DCU president Prof Brian MacCraith were on hand to present the annual DCU Fujitsu Innovation Awards at The Helix on 7 June. Awards were given in three categories representing projects by students, academic and research staff, and administration and support staff.
The winner in the student category was Kaylee Cherry, a final year student in Digital Media Engineering. Her project, Scandroid, is a barcode-scanning Android app designed to assist visually-impaired and blind shoppers. The idea was proposed by the National Council for the Blind of Ireland to address the issue of visually-impaired people relying on touch or assistance to identify products in a retail setting. Scandroid extracts the barcode number from the product, finds the matching product online and the information is read out to the shopper using text-to-speech technology.
The Academic & Research category was won by the team of Stephen Hearty, Barry McDonnell and Richard O’Kennedy of DCU’s Biomedical Diagnostics Institute for their collaboration with industry partner Biosurfit to engineer an antibody C-reactive protein (CRP), a cardiac biomarker which will allow more rapid and reliable assessment of cardiac disease at point-of-care. The work will undergo evaluation at the Coombe Women’s Hospital, Dublin and is due for commercial launch later this year.
In the Administration & Support Staff category Sheila Bridgeman of DCU’s Finance Office took the top prize for her online My Payroll self-service software, which delivers pay and tax information securely to staff desktops, translating into cost efficiencies and positive environmental impact through the elimination of paper-based payslips.
Regina Moran, CEO of Fujitsu Ireland, said: "To keep pace with technology-led innovation we need access to the best minds so we can help our customers turn ideas into reality. These awards showcase the brilliance that these minds have to offer and are evidence that innovation features strongly in the DNA of DCU."
Other shortlisted innovations included Y-Path, an initiative to counteract youth obesity by developing innovative strategies to help young people become more active; Focus Gum, a chewing gum to enhance cognitive function and concentration; REMPAD, a Web-based system to offer reminiscence therapy for people with dementia; and a strategic energy plan to reduce DCU’s energy consumption by a minimum of 33% by 2020.