Next week is a big week for us: Visual Studio 2010 launch in Dubai on May 2nd and our Imagine Cup Gulf Regional Finals on May 3rd.

It’s been a fun year working with all the students and it’s great to see all of their work in the projects that were selected for the regional finals.  It’s been difficult to pick the top applications as there were so many good ones, and I’m very excited to see the finalists present in person next week.  I want to say thanks and congratulations to everyone who participated this year, it’s inspiring to see the passion and creativity from the students in our region.

The teams will be joining us for a welcome dinner on Saturday, will get some coaching on presentation skills on Sunday as well as some fun activities, and hopefully get some rest before the big day.

We’ll hold the regional finals competition on May 3rd at the Atlantis to determine who will advance to the world wide finals in Poland in July; but no matter who wins, all of the teams are winners in my mind. 

The top 10 Imagine Cup Gulf teams and their projects:

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Genius Touch Team – Bahrain

Cash trash is simply a multifunctional smart recycle bin that will be used by public to dispose any recyclable materials. The device will contain a system that will count points for users for every time they use the device, of which the points will be exchanged later for valuable vouchers in favour of the user.

Cash Trash objective is to create a solution that provides the rotes to achieve a stable, clean and pollution free environment, an environment that suits the existence of current and future generations.

M.A.A. Team – Kuwait

This team has created and tested a multi-touch tutoring system for the physically challenged (TWTD).  TWTD is educational software that uses markers and web-cam as a method of interacting with computers. The markers are defined according to the level of disability. The initial prototype was tested in Kuwaiti schools. It includes lessons for English, Math, Shapes and Science. 

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AutoBots Team – Kuwait

‘WebAid’ is a free ad-supported web application that collects and stores information about disaster areas at the time of the disaster. At the time of a disaster, the information is broadcasted to its subscribers through various media, including text messaging, social networking and radio stations.  The service can also be used to register disaster area requirements such as for food and medicine and can also provide the locations of shelters, hospitals and police stations, survival guidelines, local maps and navigation.

SQU Team – Oman

‘Find me taxi’ is a mobile application that allows people to book the best available taxi using real time information about available taxis. This application will encourage people to use taxis without exposed to weather difficulties.

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HAQ Team – Oman

“Show Me The Traffic” is a web application that provides graphical information that describes the level of the traffic on roads using Microsoft “Bing Maps”. The web server of the solution will receive data from traffic detectors. Each detector consists of laser, laser receiver and data sending device. 

BuziWomen Team – UAE

‘buziWomen’ is a website that will empower Emirati women in self-employment by opening the doors for them to run their own businesses and apply leadership skills as part of promoting gender equality.  It will teach them the main business skills that they should have to run a successful business via provide online training and learning resources for them as well as a discussion forum where they will be able to share knowledge and ideas as well as discuss business issues. 

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UAE Pixels

‘E-school 3.0’ is a web based solution that provides an easy to use interface for schools.  One of the benefits is its drag and drop method for scheduling classes. It also provides electronic storage and retrieval of school, students, faculty, courses, grades, and many other related records. Also includes scanning of documents and saving them on the file system. Retrieval of the documents is just few seconds away.  Parents can also view their children’s progress, attendance, schedule, and many other services provided through web interface.

Explorers Team – UAE

‘touch.Edu’ is a multi-touch Microsoft Surface, Windows 7 tablet and Windows phone 7 based interactive learning solution to the above stated problem. Children will find it more fun and interesting. This unique solution brings together the following powerful touch-screen platforms by Microsoft: Microsoft Surface, Windows 7 touch and Windows Phone 7.

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Brainiax Team – UAE

HealthPal is a mobile application that provides diverse medical information, such as First Aid guides, hospital locations per city and per location, Fitness guide and symptoms and analysis for common illnesses. This information can be sent by SMS queries to users using other basic phones. Understanding that health requirements vary by location the application has links to connect and download location specific information, since Pocket PCs and smart phones may not have the capacity to store information for all locations. The application comes in 2 versions: the Pocket PC and Smartphone.

EM Team – UAE

The software application Ear it will be addressing the global concern of hearing impairment by providing a low cost, easy-to-use mobile phone application to test a user’s degree of hearing (detection of hearing loss) at several frequency and pitch bands. This application will also prevent users from acquiring noise-induced hearing loss by generating pure white noise to cancel out the harmful noise (noise over 90 dB) in the user’s surrounding environment.

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I also want to thank our supporters of Imagine Cup Gulf: Du and ITA Oman.

Will keep you posted on who will be moving on to the world wide finals in Poland this July.