USM takes top prize in contest

USM winonline

SHAH ALAM: Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) beat eight other finalists to win the top prize in the DiGi Social Venture competition, which is part of DiGi Telecommunications’ green initiative.

The winning entry is an integrated Web-based solution called My One Village. It provides services such as e-Agriculture, Agri-Tourism and e-Trade that can enhance the value of community broadband centres (CBCs) in the communities they serve. DiGi has 14 CBCs nationwide.

In e-Agriculture, farmers can make use of the links provided to search the Web for agriculture-related information, while e-Trade encourages entrepreneurship in creating viable business ideas for CBCs and the communities.

“In Agri-Tourism, local products, foods, places of interests and festival activities are published on the Web, also giving the villagers the opportunity to promote their traditional handicrafts online to make extra money,” said Lai Chin Hoi, 23, who is studying Mechatronics at the USM. She led the university’s team in the contest.

“The villagers will receive SMSes when customers place an order (online) for their products. As not everyone in the community may know how to operate a computer, we believe that SMS is the better platform.”

Lai and the other three team members — Lim Chee Wei, 23, Tan Woon Nee, 24, Lau See Ting, 24 — came up with the My One Village solution because they realised that each community has unique attractions, ranging from food to handicraft.

For their effort, the team won RM10,000 in cash.

The first runner-up and second runner-up were teams from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, while third runner-up was a Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia group. The teams won RM5,000 cash each.

USCI University’s team got RM2,000 cash, which came with the honourable-mention award. The other finalists were teams from Universiti Teknologi Mara and Universiti Malaya.

The competition, in its second year, is part of DiGi’s Deep Green Challenge for Change programme that features the best of Malaysian green technologies and ideas. The programme is open to universites and colleges nationwide.


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