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Hackathon's Winning Students Help the Blind Take Buses

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Hackathon contestant wears blindfold to simulate blindness

Contestants wore blindfolds to experience what it's like to be visually impaired.

Credit: Ti Gong / SHINE

Seven students won first prize in a charity competition with their project assisting the visually impaired to take buses.

Two high school students and five college students composed the winning team of Hackathon, a competition aimed at technological solutions to empower public welfare programs. The competition had 16 teams of participants with diversified majors such as computer science and social sciences.

The winning team's project assists the blind to receive bus information and surrounding physical information through sensors and receivers such as smart wearable devices and corresponding apps. Team members said they had seen short videos of blind people using their mobile phones to order takeout food and were inspired to do something to make information accessible to disadvantaged groups.

The competition was organized by Tech4Good, a charity organization comprising students from universities such as Tsinghua, University of Pennsylvania, Rice, NYU, the Shanghai Mana Data Technology Development Foundation, and NGO2.0.

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