5th edition of the CHIC: Discover the four connected device projects
The 5th edition of the China Hardware Innovation Camp (CHIC) got started in October of 2018 with four new innovative projects, including two in the medical field. The various teams – made up of students from HEC Lausanne (University of Lausanne), EPFL and ECAL – are currently working on perfecting the outlines of their respective projects with the aim of producing the prototype of their connected devices next summer in China.
What is CHIC?
The China Hardware Innovation Camp (CHIC) is a programme supported by various institutions including the Canton of Vaud, the College of Humanities at EPFL and HEC Lausanne (UNIL). Launched by Marc Laperrouza, lecturer at HEC Lausanne and Scientific Collaborator at EPFL, the program aims to go from a blank sheet of paper to a functional prototype in 30 working days. The teams, made up of members with complementary skills (engineers, designers, economists or computer scientists), work together on developing the prototypes. The program includes a trip to China (Shenzhen and Hong Kong), which allows them to produce their connected objects in small quantities.
Last year, the connected devices included a connected plush toy for children (Toygether), a solution to help employees stay focused while working in an open-plan office (Flowlin) and a device that clips onto a child’s clothing so that supervisors can keep track of children in public spaces (Fluid). Two of the three teams are now pursuing their projects via the START competition and other start-up assistance programs, a promising development!
Projects to improve everyday life
This year, four students from the Masters in Information Systems (Anne-Lise Dequenne, Alicia Roschnik, Nan Chen and Camille Glatz) are participating in CHIC as part of the following teams:
- The Zhu Zhu team (Anne-Lise Dequenne) aims to provide a concrete solution to the problem of noise in coworking spaces. The team has therefore designed a network of interconnected captors distributed throughout the workspace to measure the noise dynamic. Each captor will be integrated into an object that provides real-time visual feedback on the noise level. They will make it possible to evaluate the situation of the coworking space, perhaps offering insight into how the space could be rearranged to optimise it.
- The Vukoki team (Alicia Roschnik) wishes to offer craftsmen a way to showcase their products and to receive feedback on them. The project consists of a connected display case that enables the craftsmen to tell their stories through the products that are on exhibition there.
- The TΨ team (Camille Glatz) is looking into the theme of stress, and in particular as it applies to health care personnel. Their idea is to develop a connected device that fosters communication between patients and nurses while enabling the professionals to optimise their tasks and save time. This device offers the advantage of bringing the human side of healthcare up to its potential.
- The Wudan team (Nan Chen) aims to optimise medical patients’ rehabilitation education and prevent further decline. The team has observed that when suffering from an injury to a lower limb, certain patients have difficulty in using their crutches correctly to partially compensate for the use of the injured limb. The team therefore aims to develop connected crutches that inform the user when he or she is in excess of the authorised load and an application that enables the medical team to follow up on the patient more directly.
“For this 5th edition, we will put special emphasis on the dimension of data,” explains Marc Laperrouza. “The teams are encouraged to look more deeply into the way that connected devices are handled, monetized, protected and visualised.” Moreover, we have reinforced certain aspects relating to inter-professional skills by introducing a team contract that follows the participant throughout the program and works as a basis for reflexivity.”
We wish all the teams of CHIC success in their endeavours!
par Myriam Bango-Lepage (Faculté des HEC)