herald

Wednesday 18 October 2017

Disability APp takes team Ireland all the way to Microsoft's hq

TECHNOLOGY

The winners of Ireland's Imagine Cup world finalists are preparing to compete in the Microsoft Imagine Cup world final in Seattle.

Students Matthew McCann, KC Grant and Jack Gallagher of NUI Maynooth will fly to the US tomorrow to take part in the World Citizenship category for their AccessEarth app, which provides up-to-date, reliable data on the accessibility of buildings all over the world for those with impaired mobility.

Matthew, who has cerebral palsy, wanted to develop the app after he visited London during the Olympic Games in 2012.

The hotel he booked claimed on its website to be accessible, but it had steps outside and the doors inside were too narrow for his wheelchair.

"AccessEarth is a really fantastic app which provides basic information that makes a real difference to people's quality of life," said Clare Dillon, of Microsoft Ireland.

"The emphasis the app places on facilitating a network of volunteers to collaborate to help add to the content and to keep it up to date and relevant is fantastic as it empowers people around the world to work towards a common good."

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