Rat Chat, AllergyBot among ExpoSItion winners

                                                                                    ~Team SOSafe, Best Overall Project winner

The School of Information’s annual ExpoSItion was held March 27, 2017. The design showcase featured projects from nearly 50 submissions that display skills related to a variety of information careers. These projects were either created for the UMSI event or are the result of efforts from another venture, such as Alternative Spring Break or an internship. 

Expo project participants could win in the categories of: Academic/Research, Civic Impact, Community Service and Technology/Design, as well as Best Overall Project and Best Capstone Project. Project winners were chosen based on panelists’ and attendees’ votes. 

HathiTrust won for Best BSI Capstone project. HathiTrust is an online repository for over 14.7 million digital works. Creators Sarah van der Walde, Josh Kogan and Viviana Hernandez explored its users’ search needs to see if they were being met efficiently. Then they provided analysis that will allow HathiTrust to redesign its search system.

The Best Overall Project award went to SOSafe designed by Rohita Tikoo, Colin Tyrell and Sanmeet Jasuja. This project is wearable technology that empowers users to overcome issues of personal safety by leveraging support from their close social networks. The device will appear sleek and fashionable and the safety components will be discreet yet reliable.

Paris Hsu, JingShu Zhao and Kehan Liao won in the Technology/Design category for their project AllergyBot. Their Chatbot provides restaurants’ allergy accommodation information via established instant messaging platforms. 

The Community/Service category award went to Gaurang Alat, Rebecca Chen and Olivia Patercsak for their project, Use of Haptic Feedback in Educational Games for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Their goal is to explore the use of haptic feedback as a means of stimulation for hypo-responsive children diagnosed with ASD. They’re proposing a wearable device that will be used by children in school environments to foster social skills. 

Rat Chat, designed by Gabe Pompilius, Justin Cohen, Deirdre Hirschtritt and Diane Pham, won the Civic Impact award. Their project involved working alongside Ferndale city officials to understand a pre-defined problem impacting the city utilizing user research methods to understand multiple perspectives   and deploying a technological solution to the problem within available time and money limitations.

The Academic/Research category winner was DOIIIT Studio, designed by Chuan-Che Huang, Kristine Auwers and Yujin Gu. DoIIIT is a research collective that aims to cultivate a strong design-research and making culture at U-M. DoIIIT harnesses the interdisciplinary resources of the university’s academic community to be at the forefront of the technological frontier, promoting impactful innovation addressing pressing socio-technical needs, challenges and aspirations.

Honorable mentions went to Innovate Blue Website Redesign by Madalyn Purcell, Alexander Georges, Hanna Shin and Ben Segal for the Academic/Research category; SOSafe for Civic Impact; Uplift by Hanna Jeon, Euijin Jung, Haramie Kim and Claire Koo for Community/Service; LEAP by Clare McLaughlin, Jaime Quinn, Lorri Rassmussen and Marissa Gomez for Technology/Design; DOIIIT Studio for Best Overall; and Cmp.ly by Michelle Kendall, Erick Guillen, Justin Gasta and Micah Beller for Best BSI Capstone.

Uplift Team

UPDATE (4/10/17): The 2017 Diversity, Equity and Inclusion award went to Hanna Jeon, Euijin Jung, Haramie Kim and Claire Koo for their project, Uplift. Uplift is an app for a ride-sharing service designed for use in underserved communities to improve one’s commuter experience in terms of time, distance or interactions with other people. 

The UMSI Diversity Committee’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion award was founded in support of UMSI's stated goal to "make our commitment to diversity part of the fabric of everything we do, visible in our community life, instruction, research and administration of programs and services." 

View all the showcased projects online.

Posted April 3, 2017