Around an idea in 50 hours

From teaching one to perfect driving to a vest that keeps track of the user’s ECG, In50hrs Chennai saw fascinating prototypes

March 15, 2016 03:36 pm | Updated 03:36 pm IST - Chennai

The shoe sensor by The Invincibles. Photo: M. Moorthy

The shoe sensor by The Invincibles. Photo: M. Moorthy

Is it a shoe? Is it a sensor? Is it a prototype? That about sums up what Sunday evening felt like at the In50hrs Chennai event, as 15 teams demonstrated prototypes that could one day change the way we walk, drive, detect cardiac abnormalities or even monitor anaemia and irrigate our farm.

The event, which was organised by The Startup Centre, had participants from across the State, and from cities such as Kochi and Delhi, working on ideas and building product prototypes over a period of 50 hours.

Participants were provided hardware kits by MediaTek, the event partner, and there were mentors who interacted with the participants, doling out helpful tips.

This time, it was prototypes aimed at improving healthcare that saw an upsurge. “Home automation innovations are usually popular. This time around though, healthcare was in the spotlight, with some very interesting innovations,” said Vijay Anand, the organiser.

One of the best prototypes was Adiuvo, an anaemia tracker, which helps healthcare professionals work towards resolving one of the biggest healthcare issues in the country. Helmed by Geethanjali, it bagged top honours, while the wearable ECG vest called Medcorder (a vest with an inbuilt ECG monitor) by Vignesh and Manoj, final-year engineering students from the city, won the second prize.

In third place was UpeqSarathi by Tiny Magiq. This prototype aimed to help people become better drivers and break fewer traffic rules, by embedding sensors in a car that will flash warning signs to errant drivers until they change the way they drive.

The Invincibles, a team of students from Delhi and Meerut, won a special mention for their prototype which combines behavioural and music therapy to help people with behavioural problems. The prototype embeds sensors in the wearer’s shoes and sunglasses to help them correct the way they walk and carry themselves, by helping them train their minds to send the right signals to their limbs.

“There are several software companies out there,” said Vijay Anand. “But In50hrs is meant for people looking to build products. So, one of the main ideas was to look for someone with the vision and clarity to take their prototypes beyond just a competition and develop it into a viable product.”

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