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2014 ‘Getting Wireless’ Student Challenge Results

During the 2014 spring semester, 83 industrial design students at Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech participated in the Wireless RERC’s fifth annual “Getting Wireless” design challenge. In 2010, the Wireless RERC began offering industrial design students an opportunity to participate in a brief project to explore application of Principles of Universal Design to mobile wireless technologies.  Faculty of the industrial design programs of Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) have embraced the challenge and incorporated this project in their spring curricula ever since. This year, 29 sophomores at Virginia Tech participated under the direction of Assistant Professor Akshay Sharma.  At Georgia Tech, 19 juniors under instructor Wendell Wilson, and 35 sophomores under Assistant Professor Young Mi Choi and instructor John Lau participated in the project.

In each class, teams of 3-4 students were assigned one of four customer personas based on findings of the Wireless RERC’s user research projects.  Each persona presented a real-life scenario which might be addressed through wearable wireless technology, including a mother of a child with autism, an individual with Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS), an elderly man with low vision and limited mobility and an individual with progressive hearing loss.  In the interest of universal design, each team was expected to consider the impact of their design strategies on the other personas and on wireless customers without disabilities. The 2014 class impressed the Wireless RERC staff and industry professionals with thorough and insightful research regarding their personas, as well as awareness of emerging wearable technologies to meet their needs.  Each team enthusiastically explored a broad range of creative concepts.  Their polished final presentations conveyed confidence in applying universal design principles to real-life challenges.  All of us who use wireless technologies, with and without disabilities, will benefit when these students pursue career opportunities in the wireless industry.

Virginia Tech Team Solutions

Virginia Tech "Andy" Team Solution - Inline

Virginia Tech "Andy" Team Solution - Zone

Virginia Tech "Carolyn" Team Solution - ConnecTive

Virginia Tech "Carolyn" Team Solution - Vitro

Virginia Tech "Morrie" Team Solution - Nuvu

Virginia Tech "Warren" Team Solution - Audience

Virginia Tech "Warren" Team Solution - UDI


Georgia Tech Team Solutions

Georgia Tech "Andy" Team Solution - Motus and WriteTrack

Georgia Tech "Andy" Team Solution - ReMIND

Georgia Tech "Andy" Team Solution - Smart Watch for Autism

Georgia Tech "Andy" Team Solution - TAG and PROMPT

Georgia Tech "Carolyn" Team Solution - Trackware

Georgia Tech "Carolyn" Team Solution - Visualeyes

Georgia Tech "Carolyn" Team Solution - Wave

Georgia Tech "Morrie" Team Solution - GameFit

Georgia Tech "Morrie" Team Solution - PicVenture

Georgia Tech "Warren" Team Solution - Attune

Additional Information


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The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies is sponsored by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under grant number 90RE5007-01-00. The opinions contained in this website are those of the Wireless RERC and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or NIDILRR.