Team Smile has more reasons to smile

29 May 2008 | Story by Myolisi Gophe

cheque handover
Financial leg up: Deputy vice-chancellor Prof Martin Hall, Jammie Shuttle driver Thembelani Nyamakazi, Team Smile leader Devin de Vries and Gretel Hornischer, George Maluka and Toto Ntsobi of Sibanye celebrate the success of UCT's Team Smile, finalists in the international Microsoft Imagine Cup.

A group of honours students from the Department of Information Systems, named Team Smile, were smiling from ear to ear when Sibanye, the Jammie Shuttle holding company, presented them with a R40 000 sponsorship recently.

The team - also National Innovation competition finalists - has won the national finals of the Microsoft Imagine Cup, and is now heading for Paris in July for the international finals and to spend some time with the famed Bill Gates.

The Imagine Cup is one of the world's premier student technology competitions, and encourages young people to cook up technology innovations that can make a difference in the world. The five-member Team Smile, comprising Devin de Vries, Christopher King, Tupochere Mblizi, Mohammad Nabeel Nazeer and Nadeem Isaacs, devised project "WhereIsMyShuttle?", a system that provides an SMS-based information service for public transport. The project will be piloted on Jammie Shuttle and allows passengers to track the time of shuttle arrivals and departures via their cellphones.

According to team leader Devin de Vries, the money will help the team to prepare their stand - "to compete on a global platform" - for the Microsoft Imagine Cup finals.

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