4 May 2018 – First-year Information Systems student Chong Jin Wei, together with Singapore Polytechnic student Erick Kristantio, won first prize at the ASEAN100 Hackathon on 3 October 2017.
Twelve teams of students from tertiary institutions across Southeast Asia participated in the hackathon. Participants were challenged to design and implement a tech solution to solve pertinent issues that ASEAN countries face, which ranged from problems with narcotics, human trafficking, to healthcare accessibility. The final three teams presented their solution at the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Public Sector Summit, where industry experts on Cloud, Blockchain and Emerging Technologies voted for the winner.
Champions Jin Wei and Erick developed an automated machine that can deliver simple medical solutions, such as vaccines, to rural areas. Their machine, Dr Robo, aims to bring basic, affordable medical care to communities that lack the logistics, manpower and infrastructure for proper healthcare. “It is close to impossible to provide a brick-and-mortar clinic staffed by a doctor for every remote community, so this sparked the idea of creating an automated machine, not unlike the many ATMs around us, to bring medical accessibility to rural communities,” explained Jin Wei.
One of Dr Robo’s key features that impressed the judges was the seamless combination of cloud technology with Internet of Things (IoT) devices and sensors. This technology allows doctors to access the service seamlessly on the cloud and be able to dispense medication physically on the device. Patients can also video call a doctor through Dr Robo and collect medication after their consultations at the nearest Dr Robo kiosk. The device is also equipped with environmental sensors to give doctors real time environmental data, such as humidity and temperature, to help with their diagnoses.
Building Dr Robo was a challenge for Jin Wei and his teammate, as the former lacked experience in connecting hardware to the cloud technology, while the latter had no training in cloud technology. The pair shared knowledge with each other, and tested their idea to great effect. Fortunately, they succeeded in building a dispensing mechanism, android applications for doctors and patients, and a cloud application programming interface (API) to power their machine.
“My partner and I are very thankful for the win. However, it was the opportunity to present at the AWS Public Sector Summit that was a key moment for us, when we had the attention of industry experts to listen to our solution and vote for us,” said Jin Wei.
The ASEAN100 Hackathon is organised by Singapore Polytechnic, in collaboration with Amazon Web Services, Bosch and Cisco.