ASK Applications Wins 2011 Student of da Vinci Award

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ASK Applications, a company founded by six U-M computer science students, has won the Student of da Vinci Award at the 2011 International da Vinci Awards for ASK Messaging, an innovative iPad app that makes mobile computing accessible to people with disabilities.

The da Vinci Awards recognize the most innovative adaptive and assistive technologies that enable equal access and opportunity for all people, regardless of ability. These innovations play an important role in helping people overcome physical limitations. The awards are given by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

ASK Messaging began as a Major Design Experience in Dr. David Chesney’s Fall 2010 EECS 481 course, Software Engineering. A representative from the University’s C. S. Mott Children’s Hospital visited the class and spoke about the needs of patients at the hospital. The students developed their idea for the app, and worked with rehabilitation engineers at the hospital to refine it; the result was ASK Messaging. The app takes advantage of the iPad’s large screen — essentially turning it into one large button — to allow the user to make and narrow selections, based on revolving sets of choices, without having to press small buttons or controls.

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ASK Applications is:

Erica Christensen (BSE ’11)
Kimberly Hunter (BSE ’11)
Scott Jenks (BSE ’10)
Chelsea LeBlanc (BS ’11)
Chris McMeeking (BSE ’12)
Michelle Noronha (BSE ’11)

More about ASK Applications:

EECS Website, Feb. 11, 2011: CS Students Take Second Place with iPad App at Mobile World Congress

EECS Website, Mar. 8, 2011: ASK Applications Places First in Bay Area Entrepreneurial Experience Competition

Michigan Engineer, Jun. 8, 2011: ASK Messaging: An iPad app with a special touch