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Student Innovators from Raffles Institution win Young Thinkers Challenge

Student Innovators from Raffles Institution win Young Thinkers Challenge

Singapore has embarked upon the journey towards becoming the first Smart Nation in the world as it is introducing many new initiatives that also include a new platform that constitutes the essential infrastructure and the latest technical architecture that can help the ecosystem of a smart nation.

The smart nation platform provides access to a rich collection of innovative ideas and products and rich-data. This all leads towards the development of solutions which can improve society as a whole.

The elderly population in particular is reaping the benefits of the Smart Nation vision. Some of those solutions are being developed from the younger generation of Singapore.

Young Thinkers Challenge

SAP recently partnered with Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) to further engage youth with Singapore’s Smart Nation vision. Together, they put on the National Infocomm Competition Face-Off: Data Analytics – Young Thinkers Challenge in 2015.

This challenge aimed to spark the interest of youths in IT. Their main goal was to teach youth how to leverage data analytics in order to produce insights and ideas that contribute to the Smart Nation vision.

As part of this program, 500 youths in Singapore were trained on big data analytics skills. They were given the tools to derive insights from their data. From this, they were prompted to create solutions to address a particular topic which aligned with the Smart Nation vision.

For the competition stage, over 200 Singapore students competed against each other. These students showed off their innovative ideas driven by data analytics insights.

Raffles Institution winning team and project

The winning team was comprised of two students, Lim Zinn-E and Victor Loh Wai Kit of Raffles Institution.Raffles Institution’s entry was an infographics based data analysis using the firm’s visualization platform. Through the Young Thinkers Challenge, the students were able to analyze the data of the growing aged population in Singapore.

The students found that there was a need to create a solution that would address the exponential increase in Singapore citizens entering their ‘silver years’. By the year 2030, the proportion of elderly will be 14.64 % of the Singapore population. At the same time, the old-age support ratio will be declining to 2:1 in 2030, from 5:1 in 2014.  

To prepare for this decrease in old-age support, the students developed an application that focuses on specific needs of the elderly population. This app includes solutions for speech recognition, on-demand services, emergency services and medication management.

The Speech Recognition tool allows the individual to translate their native dialect to English. This is so that the elderly person may receive the proper care they need. The On-Demand Services tool assists the individual in their everyday tasks and chores that they might be unable to conduct on their own.Emergency Services can be provided with just a tap on a screen with this app. Lastly, their Medication Management tool helps the individual organise their medication schedule and sends reminders for when to take their medication.

This aims of this app demonstrates remarkable similarity to the SHINEseniors project by SMU-TCS iCity Lab. Last month, Dr.Tan shared more about the SHINEseniors project, exclusively with OpenGov. This project is using IoT sensors and devices to help health care providers monitor the activity of their patients. Similar to the aims of the Raffles Institution team, Dr. Tan and his team work to enable Singapore’s ageing population.

In comparison, the project by the Raffles Institution team, caters directly to the elderly audience rather than the care providers.  The students tap into the need for app service delivery as the elderly generation is becoming more adept to mobile technology.

“It is essential to make use of technology in order to streamline services, and reduce the need for manpower,” stated Victor Loh Wai Kit while accepting the Young Thinkers Challenge award, “We feel that technology can help lower the ever-increasing government health care expenditure.”

The students found a critical need to be addressed through this Young Thinkers Challenge. In applying big data analytics, the students were able to create new solutions to supporting the ageing population of Singapore.

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