BitMasters wins at Imagine Cup 2016 World Finals
Local team BitMasters were adjudged runners up in the innovation category at the Imagine Cup 2016 World Finals held last week in Seattle, Washington. The team’s project involved a low-cost, easy-to-use, intelligent digital signage platform called Amplus.
The 2016 World Finals capped an exciting three days for 35 global student teams who vied for more than $ 200,000 in cash and prizes, a 1:1 mentoring session with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and the coveted Imagine Cup. Projects included a video game about nuclear physics, a virtual reality app to help stroke patients and an idea to revolutionise digital advertising, among others.
Wellington Perera, DX Lead, Southeast Asia New Markets, Microsoft and the competition manager for Imagine Cup said, “Working closely with BitMasters and helping them develop since the semi-finals, I am very proud of their achievement in the Imagine Cup 2016 World Finals. Lakmal, Chanaka, Chathusha and Charith are committed young men with a passion to innovate. With the BitMasters being able to master technologies such as Internet of Things and Cloud, the driving forces of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and many others like them working on the same, I have no doubt that our nation has the potential to contribute in a substantial way to technology innovation globally. The BitMasters are the first Sri Lankan team to win a major category award at the world finals and I wish them the very best.”
The judges who assessed the teams this year included ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ lead actor John Boyega; Dr. Jennifer Tang, part of the duo behind the 2014 Imagine Cup Champion, Team Eyenaemia; and Kasey Champion, an accomplished software engineer and Computer Science Curriculum Developer at Microsoft.
Anthony Salcito, vice president, Worldwide Education, Microsoft said: “At Microsoft, we believe technology can play a profound role in teaching and learning, creating a direct and life-long impact on students. The Microsoft Imagine Cup is the embodiment of this belief. The competition has been an example of how people can do remarkable things when technology is within reach.”
Held annually since 2003, the Microsoft Imagine Cup is a global student technology competition, known affectionately by participants as the ‘Olympics of student technology competitions’. For many of the teams, their journey to the Imagine Cup World Finals started way back in August 2015, when students began forming their teams at schools all across the globe to compete on their local level to qualify for the World Finals. The teams compete in three categories: Games, Innovation and World Citizenship.