Food for Thought
Food for Thought is an app that connects businesses, non-profits, schools and individuals that have excess edible food to those who need it. App users have the option to either share, transport or request food, and can add images to their posts. “Brownie points” gamify the app and create a feel-good factor around sharing.
Approximately 40-percent of food in the U.S. is never eaten, making this country the world’s largest food waster. “You assume that because this is a first-world country, there’s enough food,” said Meghna Natraj, Georgia Tech master’s student in Computer Science. “Food’s being wasted; it’s not being channeled to the right sources.”
Another winning project in the same category uses technology to address gentrification of the area surrounding the Atlanta Beltline. “Concerns about creating a discriminatory environment, rather than universally-available resources are growing,” explained the team in their submission video.
The Beltline Display project envisions interactive experiences along the Beltline to promote connected and walkable communities. Utilizing big data, the team proposes creating technology-focused art pieces along the trail to educate users about their surroundings, neighbors and history of the area. The team’s goals are to promote social change, foster curiosity, and connect Atlanta communities.
It’s been nearly a month since fire engulfed part of I-85 causing it to collapse, and the Georgia Department of Transportation says it could take at least another seven weeks to repair the damage. In the meantime, commuters are exploring alternative means of transportation. The developers of MARTAnow say their app is the perfect use case for solving transit problems.
Even before the I-85 collapse, the team behind MARTAnow has been researching why some commuters are reluctant to use MARTA. They’re also trying to solve a larger issue in public transit called the first-mile/last-mile problem – getting people from their location to the bus stop, and from the bus stop to their final location.
“A bridge collapses and all of a sudden, hundreds of thousands of people can’t get to where they need to go,” said Amit Garg, Georgia Tech master’s student in Human-Computer Interaction. “Using our app, people can visualize other modes of transportation to get to their final destination, whether that’s ridesharing, through renting a bike, or using MARTA trains and buses.”
MARTAnow combines real-time MARTA schedules, walkability scores, and ridesharing into one easy-to-use transit app.
As many as 40% of people with autism never speak or have difficulty communicating verbally. Rapid Prompting Method, or RPM, was developed by a mother who wanted to teach her non-verbal autistic son to express himself. A group of Georgia Tech students has now found a way to enhance RPM using real-time data.
The process of RPM is simple: a teacher gives a short lesson on a topic, asks a question and then elicits a response using verbal, auditory, or visual prompts. The child will answer based on the teacher’s question by spelling out the letters written on a letterboard. The CIC project Responsive Letterboard for Autism Spectrum Disorder reinvents the board. When the child presses a letter, their selection is transferred to a web user interface in real time. This method allows teachers and clinicians to view the data, track a child’s progress and make improvements.
The team was inspired by their professor, Gregory Abowd, who has an autistic son. “That community of parents and technicians are really positive and helpful and they’re engaged in our research,” said Fereshteh Shahmiri, Georgia Tech Ph.D. student in Design Computing
One of the greatest threats to patient safety during an operation is surgical site infection. According to the CDC, in 2011 approximately 157,500 acute care hospital patients were diagnosed with infections.
“Healthcare professionals try their best to prevent this type of infection, but the increasing mortality of surgical site infections has forced professionals to consider every possible way in which the surgical environment can be controlled,” said Luka Antolic-Soban, Georgia Tech Computer Science student.
ORCA, or Operating Room Computer Asepsis System, is designed to help operating room professionals detect and prevent contamination during operations. The system has two components. One is a belt that goes underneath surgical scrubs to alert operating room staff when they violate protocol. The other uses a camera and infrared sensor to collect information about the operating room environment, such as the distance between personnel.
The ORCA team is collaborating with Emory University School of Medicine and Children’s Hospital of Atlanta to test the system. They've also been invited to participate in Georgia Tech's Startup Launch (formerly Startup Summer), a faculty-led, student-focused program to help student teams launch their startups.