Innovations Abound at first National ICT Expo
There were more than 20 unique displays at the National ICT Expo on Friday, November 18, 2016 at the Montserrat Cultural Centre.
Exhibits were presented by students, teachers and private companies who showcased how the island is incorporating technology in their daily lives.
Outstanding contributions from the students in the robotics programme were central. The students from all of the primary and secondary schools were on hand to explain what the demos of their robots would do.
Secondary school students created a solution for identifying each person who entered the campus and which would also have time stamps to log how late pupils arrived. Another application was presented on a solution for the students who constantly forget bus tickets or have them unusable if they get torn or lost. Both incorporated use of facial recognition and the need for better security.
Primary school students designed models of the robots they will be creating in the spring. St Augustine School grade sixers explained how their robot would help to track turtles who come to the island to nest and to ensure they remain safe. Brades students created TJ which was a camera that connected to a satellite to pinpoint areas where there was trash. A truck would then be sent out to collect it.
The Lookout students built Pictobot which is to take over paint jobs and keep humans away from toxic fumes. They also designed the Robotic Gardener which handles all the gardening issues.
Hon Minister of Communications Paul Lewis said he was impressed with the ideas and that it was a good indication of where the country can go. He said the decision to launch the ICT grant scheme had paid off and now more people can see what is possible. A second round of the grant programme is to be done in the next financial year with some tweaks.
Some of the grant recipients who participated in the expo were Dunamis Products and Services, which designed online courses for students. Director Jais-Ann Patterson said they saw 100% CSEC passes in Geography, Principles of Business and Accounts and 83% in Social Studies. Alexandria Thomas who took the geography course with Dunamis said she enjoyed the way the class taught her using different elements including animations, videos, online quizzes.
Also in display was the new online driver’s license test which is currently in use. Developed by William O’Brien the test comprises 40 multiple choice questions. Accompanying this, is the application which can be loaded on a tablet or other device and allows immediate results for the road test.
Other exhibits were from software developers Rovika, Pops Printing, Tabu Duberry’s embroidery and printing, Number 15 a video production company and the Montserrat National Trust’s archiving project.