The imagination of students does not have to be confined to the brain, but can be brought to the real world. The Imagine Cup, a world-wide competition of students aged 16+ shows what they can achieve in the field of technology when they put their heads together.
In the 2010 edition, the team from New Zealand – 4 young engineering students from University of Auckland – placed third with their idea OneBeep. These four – Vinny Jeet, Steve Ward, Kayo Lakadia, and Chanyeol Yoo – came up with the idea to use radio waves to transmit any file – no matter whether text, image, video or software – to remote locations where there was no internet access. The aim is to update the laptops deployed through OLPC with educational material.
Wow. We saw just a short video at the Digital Technologies Symposium, but that alone was a great demonstration of what can be possible in the near future. Now that the proof-of-concept has been successfully achieved, they are looking into working together with the Solomon Islands (it’s close to home) to deploy OneBeep for OLPCs there before they go out into the world.
The guys told me that at least part of their software will be made open source, but they haven’t really looked into it yet. Let’s hope they do and others can contribute to this fantastic idea and take it further together with them.
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