A Donegal student was part of a team who came third in a worldwide technology competition.
Jack Gallagher, from Ballintra, and his student team from NUI Maynooth won third prize in the World Citizen Championship Category in the 2014 World Finals of the Microsoft Imagine Cup in Seattle.
The award was made in recognition of the development of their mobility app called “Access Earth”.
The Microsoft Imagine Cup is the world’s premier student technology competition. The Imagine Cup provides an opportunity for students to break new ground, solve tough problems facing the world today, and maybe even turn your ideas into a business
Team Access Earth was among only 35 teams to be selected from a total of 170 semi-finalists from 72 different countries to compete in the finals.
The team was nominated for the ‘global citizenship’ category, a category that recognises those who have demonstrated an innovative application of technology for social good.
Access Earth allows people to make an informed decision on whether or not a building is wheelchair accessible by providing information on facilities including ramps and wheelchair accessible toilets alongside an overall building accessibility rating.
It does this by harnessing the local knowledge of volunteer networks across the world to catalogue individual building’s mobility points.
“Team Access Earth wants to make the world a more accessible place for everyone. Our app, Access Earth, is an app that provides information on a buildings accessibility for those with mobility impairments. We provide information about a place’s ramps, toilets, counters, and more, and we also provide a rating of that places accessibility. Using our app and volunteer network, we hope to bring this information to anyone who needs it, from elderly people to wheelchair users, and to their friends and family,” said the group.