The Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas is one of the regions leading medical facilities dedicated entirely to providing its young patients and their families with exceptional medical care in a comfortable and stimulating environment. As the facility grows, controlled access to patients in the Acute Care units of the hospital was identified as an area in need of innovation. After learning about the June RHoK event, staff reached out to the local community for assistance. They submitted a three challenging problem definitions: Improving Security, Improving Communication, and Improving Navigation.
The Improving Security problem definition stated in part, "We would like to explore the development of a system that could recognize our patients and families and allow them to move freely in and out of the locked units but require that visitors and guests request access to all units." Hearing this call to action, an incredible team from WanderID participated in a whirlwind 30 hours of hacking which resulted in a functioning facial recognition application custom designed for the needs of the hospital.
Last week, WanderID released the following news about their participation in the winning hack:
"WANDER ID TEAM WINS RANDOM HACKS OF KINDNESS AUSTIN
Biometric Face Matching System Earns First Prize for Dell Children’s Medical Center Solution
Austin TX June 29, 2012 – A team lead by the developers of WanderID won first place in the Random Hacks of Kindness event held in Austin June 2 – 3, 2012, solving an access challenge for Dell Children’s Medical Center with a novel biometric face matching system. For 30 straight hours, area developers and engineers worked to solve problems via the national Random Hacks of Kindness initiative, a global community of innovators building practical open technology to make the world a better place. Nine teams of developers and engineers competed to create free open source solutions for companies and nonprofits that lack sufficient resources to pay for sophisticated internal technology challenges.
WanderID developed a solution using biometric face matching to allow access to select patient areas at the hospital. At the end of the programming marathon, the teams presented their final products to a panel of judges, which awarded first place to WanderID.
Currently in use in Travis County, WanderID is an identification service for people such as seniors, young children, and children with special needs such as Down syndrome or autism who cannot reliably identify themselves. Caregivers enroll a loved one on the WanderID website by simply uploading passport style photographs of the subject. First responders can use WanderID via a smartphone application by taking the subject’s photo with their phone and uploading to the WanderID website. If there is a match of the uploaded person’s photo, officers receive a confirmation on their phone, and the caregiver is notified for connection and easy, cost effective return of the lost person.
For information, visit WanderID on Facebook, or enroll online at www.wanderid.com.
About WanderID – Developed by Austin-based Tactical Information Systems, WanderID is an easy to use, biometric face matching product for seniors, young / special needs children, and others who may have difficulty identifying themselves should they be lost or disoriented. Police and first responders use WanderID as a community safety tool to help cost effectively identify persons in the field through a simple smartphone application. WanderID is expanding in communities throughout Central Texas. For more information, visit www.wanderid.com or call 855-4WAY-HOME ( )."
Please stay tuned to this blog for more up close looks at the best hacks of June 2012!