140 students from The University of Manchester (UoM) in the UK participated in a Spresense Hackathon that took place on Friday, June 9, at the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering of UoM. The students formed teams of between 6 and 8 members and had the challenge of working for a whole day on a sustainable Spresense use-case that would solve a real-world problem, while offering a solution related to one of the SDG goals of the UN.
The students, split into 31 teams, had to think about a concept, prepare a live-demo and a 3-minute pitch, that they presented in the evening to a jury formed by both academia and industry members working for Sony. The final projects were divided into three main categories: 1) Creativity & Vision, 2) Innovation, and 3) Practical Solutions, and a winning team was chosen for each category.
The three finalist projects were: 1) Wellbeing tracker for posture improvement, 2) Oil spill detection in the ocean waters, and 3) IRIS – see the world. The first team suggested using Spresense equipped with the camera module to detect the posture of a person and notify them if it stayed incorrect for a specified time. The second team pitched an environmental solution for polluted ocean waters, using a system of drones able to detect oil spills and re-direct cleanup crews to them. Lastly, the special-award winning team focused on creating a voice-assistant that would help visually impaired people to navigate in their surroundings.