Conestoga news

March 19, 2003 10:03 AM

Conestoga IEEE Student Team Outpaces University Competition

Each year, a local competition sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) takes place at the University of Waterloo to showcase excellence and innovation in electronic design and research at the undergraduate level.

The event is called Student Papers Night and features presentation and judging of the three best student papers from the participating institutions. This year's participants were from Conestoga College, the University of Guelph and the University of Waterloo, so nine papers were judged in all.

For the third consecutive year, an entry from Conestoga College has taken first-place honours -- a cash prize of $750. Another Conestoga team took the $200 third prize. A team from the University of Guelph finished second.

Dan Galway, James Gilbrook and Mike Jakowlew of Conestoga's Computer Engineering Technology program developed the winning project, titled Digital Media Jukebox. The paper explored creation of a stand-alone digital media MP3 player able to download, store and output music. The design integrates a hard drive, LCD touch-screen display, Ethernet interface and MP3 decoding software to provide analog audio output.

The team of Sean Carpenter and Bojan Korousic from Conestoga's Electronics Engineering Technology - Telecommunications Systems program developed the third-place winning entry. Their project is called EZ-Cash. It is a wireless payment solution for use in purchasing products or services via a cell phone. The user employs a technology called Short Messaging Service (SMS) to send a message from the cell phone to a vending machine. Within a few seconds the item ordered is released by the vending machine and the user's account is charged accordingly, eliminating the need for cash or credit card.

Competing students were judged on their technical presentations and the complexities of their projects by a panel of IEEE members. Each student team went through a 15-minute presentation, followed by a question-and-answer session with the panel. Emphasis was on technical detail combined with the effectiveness of the presentation.

The Kitchener-Waterloo section of the IEEE sponsored the event and prizes. Section members come from Waterloo Region, and Wellington, Bruce and Grey counties. Internationally, the IEEE is a non-profit professional association of more than 370,000 members in 150 countries. It is active in the fields of computer engineering, biomedical technology, telecommunications, electric power, aerospace and consumer electronics.

CONTACT: Valdis Cers, 519-748-5220, ext. 3857,