Microsoft Reveals the Three Finalists of Imagine Cup Jordan 2009

Published May 19th, 2009 - 01:16 GMT

Microsoft Reveals the Three Finalists of Imagine Cup Jordan 2009
The winning team to attend Imagine Cup worldwide finals in Egypt

Microsoft revealed the three finalists of Imagine Cup Jordan 2009, which was held at the Royal Scientific Society on May the 14th, and announced that of the finalists, one winning team will represent the Kingdom at the Imagine Cup 2009 worldwide finals in Cairo in July.
The winning team known as Computer Science Group (CSG), created the 'Automatic Speech Translator to Sign Language', which was designed by Mahmoud Darawsheh, a high school student and Rasha Darawsheh, a 4th year Pharmacy student at Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST), and supervised by Emad Darawsheh. The project uses Windows APIs to translate speech into sign language, making it easier for the deaf to communicate. This project also allows the deaf and blind to communicate with each other by translating what is typed on a special keyboard into spoken words.
Mahmoud Darawsheh explained the idea behind his project by saying, “What distinguishes our project is that it caters not only to the hearing impaired but also the visually impaired as it includes audio, visual and speech features that transform written language into sign language or into spoken words and vice versa. For example, a deaf person can type a message that is automatically transformed into a voice message for the blind recipient, who can then reply to that message through a microphone that transforms the voice message into written words or sign language."
Mahmoud Darawsheh went on to say, “Microsoft supported our project by providing us with the necessary software to upgrade and update our laptop, giving us the capabilities to successfully implement our project. Microsoft also provided us with free software that we used to further develop our project. In addition to all of this tangible support, Microsoft gave us the moral support we needed and continuously encouraged us to be as creative and innovative as we can be."
Mr. Zeid Shubailat, Country Manager of Microsoft Jordan said, “The competing projects represent the talent that our youth embody and demonstrate the great potential and capabilities that can be achieved through the necessary support and encouragement. All three finalists are equally talented and their projects are extremely impressive." He added, "We look forward to supporting the winning team and are committed to providing them with everything they need to help prepare for the finals in Cairo."
The second place winner is the 'Isolated Arabic Word Recognition System' (IAWRS), which was designed by Issam Hamad Badwan from Al Zarqa Private University and supervised by Dr. Khaled Walid Mahmoud.

The third place winner, the ECRAM team, created the 'Mobile Remote Application for Children and the Elderly', which was designed by Mohammad Eshbet, Abudalla Gazi, Wassim Shehde and Laith Dwaher from Princess Sumaya University for Technology, and supervised by Assistant Professor Ashraf M. A. Ahmad.

All Imagine Cup competitors that included eight teams, received access to free software programs from an extended list of 83 Microsoft software titles, software design technologies that they used while creating their projects, and exclusive learning resources through the Microsoft IT Academy Program. The competitors will enroll in Microsoft's business skill training courses, which are available at the Microsoft Innovation Center (MIC).
Imagine Cup 2009, the world's premiere student technology competition, is held this year under the theme 'Solve the world’s toughest problems.' The Imagine Cup Jordan Award was launched by Microsoft in November 2008 challenging all Jordanian students to use their technology skills and imagination to address the world’s toughest problems.

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