UL Student of B.Sc Music, Media and Performance Technology, Conor Higgins is this year's winner of the Accenture Academic Innovation in Computing Award.
The Accenture Academic Innovation in Computing Award seeks to recognise, reward and encourage excellence in the area of innovation. Open to all IT/Computer Science final year or postgraduate students in Ireland, the award provides students the opportunity to submit their final year/masters college projects for the chance to demonstrate their project to the Accenture Leadership Panel and be in with a chance to win a cash prize of €2000.
Conor's project focused on the design and implementation of a new interface for computer control and physical expression. The interface in question allowed for the electromyogram (the electrical signal produced by the human musculature system) to control a purpose built computer application. The device was built by Conor as part submission of his final year project and features a compact design, which was fully wireless. The intention of this project is to allow all users to interact with computer applications, including those whom suffer from disabilities or physically debilitating illnesses. As well as the above, the device could be deployed in a multitude of areas including physical rehabilitation and therapy, sports and exercise sciences, mobile computing and computer gaming. The other shortlisted finalists for the 2010 competition included students from University College Cork, Trinity College Dublin and Queens University Belfast.