The Imagine Cup 2011 Worldwide Finals will take place in New York City, USA from July 8-13, 2011. Before US finalists can make it to New York, these students must first succeed at the U.S. Finals, taking place from April 8 to April 11 on the Microsoft campus in Redmond. Until April 9th, that’s an entire week from today, you can vote every day for your favorite Imagine Cup U.S. finalist team on Facebook as part of the US People’s Choice Awards. Why not let your friends, family and social network join the voting action too and support the incredible talent out there at Imagine Cup?
Students participating in the Imagine Cup address some of the worlds’ toughest challenges and have created projects leveraging Windows Phone 7, Windows Azure, and the Microsoft stack to cure cancer, raise environmental awareness, and bring aid to those in need. The 2011 theme is “Imagine a world where technology helps solve the toughest problems“. You will see numerous competition entries, which reflect one of the following United Nations Millennium Development Goals:
This year, teams focused on ecological sustainability, medical monitoring and health care, environmental awareness, poverty, educational tools and even transit assistance and note taking tools for the visually impaired. My favorite project is named Procūr by the LifeCode team. Procūr is the intelligent humanitarian supply chain of the future. With advanced resource analytics, system-aided decisions and increased responsiveness, this system solution adapts to the changing landscape of resource inventory in disasters.
We all have witnessed in the last decade, how the frequency of natural disasters has increased. Even if aid/resources are offered, it is very difficult to locate where exactly who needs what once disaster struck. Procūr’s management/decision engine runs on Windows Azure and also has an accompanying Windows Phone 7 application and a Web Interface. It also has social network and Bing Maps integration. You can check out the team video and vote for them on Facebook or by SMS, just text “LIFECODE” to 23000.
I am rooting for team LifeCode, yet you may check out all US finalists and vote for a different team. All finalist projects are a reflection of a genius idea; all teams deserve our support! Don’t forget; voting ends next week!
In addition to voting, you may also inspire students to participate in Imagine Cup in the upcoming years by pointing them to some informative resources:
Imagine Cup Learning Center: http://www.imaginecup.com/student-resources/learning-center
Imagine Cup Blog: http://www.imaginecup.com/community/blog
on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Imaginecup
on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/microsoftimaginecup
Software can change the world. We just need some creative minds to believe and act on it.