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Aussie innovators gain international recognition at prestigious APICTA Awards in Vietnam

Sydney, Australia – 12 November 2019 – The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA), the nation’s peak representative body for the ICT sector, is delighted to announce the progression of seven AIIA National iAwards 2019 winners and merit recipients to the 19th Annual Asia Pacific ICT Alliance Awards (APICTA Awards), taking place 18-23 November 2019 in Halong, Vietnam.

Now in its 26th year, AIIA’s iAwards is Australia's longest running and most broadly scoped innovation recognition program that showcases the incredible achievements of home-grown Australian innovators. The winners and merit recipients of the 2019 National iAwards have been presented with the opportunity to gain international exposure as they go on to compete with fellow ICT innovators and entrepreneurs across the Asia Pacific region at the APICTA awards, which has been dubbed the ‘Oscars of the ICT arena!’.
"We’d like to congratulate our 2019 National iAwards participants who will now showcase their technology innovations to an international audience at the highly-regarded 2019 APICTA Awards. Their unique inventions will garner the attention they deserve and demonstrate the building momentum and growth of Australian ICT innovation,” said AIIA CEO, Ron Gauci. 

“AIIA is excited that seven iAwards finalists are representing the best of Australian innovation, including Huon’s AI-based autonomous offshore aquaculture feeding system, CSIRO’s web-based application that delivers data, information and new knowledge to empower water planners to evaluate changes in their water resources, and a software program developed by Kira Molloy of Curtin University which allows researchers to examine entire volumes of Optical Coherence Tomography scans when locating and identifying cancerous tumours.” 

Nominations span across 11 categories including Consumer, Inclusions and Community Services, Industrial, Business Service, Public Sector and Government, Students (year 9 to tertiary education undergraduates), Start-up, Research and Development, Big Data Analytics, Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence.

To find out more about the APICTA Awards visit http://www.apicta.org/ and to view the winners and merit recipients representing Australia, as well as descriptions of the projects, please see the additional information below.

The 2019 APICTA Awards nominees are:

Collective Care – Seton Catholic College & Just Start It Team (Senior Students winner)
Collective Care is the brainchild of Shannon Griffin, a student from Seton Catholic College in Western Australia. Shannon built the concept off the back of her own experience of her grandfather being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. Her family struggled to find the time in their busy schedules to accommodate the additional needs of their very loved "Poppy". Collective Care is a much needed system in a world where many families are choosing to self-manage the care of loved ones. Collective Care's first iteration has been built and is currently in Beta Test Phase. It will roll out to market in 2020 with the help of the Just Start It Team. 

Sunny – Tigerspike (Community Service Markets merit recipient)
The native mobile application called Sunny is an app that uses the power of story to recognise and respond to violence and abuse, connecting women with and without intellectual disabilities to the support and services they need. Tigerspike was commissioned by 1800RESPECT (Medibank Health Solutions) to research, design and build Sunny.

Nextvax – Sacred Heart College (Junior Students merit recipient)
In 1796, Edward Jenner created a medical revolution by creating a way to prevent and possibly eradicate deadly diseases with one simple injection. 223 years later, NextVax was created to keep people up to date with vaccination information. It’s an innovative and simple to use app that assists you through the immunology process. After signing up, you can access the many features the app provides. Information on vaccines, an immunology calendar, personalised history of vaccines, a book appointment function and reminders will be available for app users, depending on their subscription. 

Basin Futures – CSIRO (Data Insights Innovation of the Year merit recipient)
Basin Futures makes basin water planning accessible anywhere in the world by significantly reducing barriers to entry. It allows users to assess changes in water resources under future scenarios (for example, climate change, changes in irrigation, hydro and industry) using global data and cloud-based simulation, delivered through a dynamic web application. Basin Futures incorporates models for rainfall-runoff, hydropower production, irrigated crops, industrial and domestic water use and environmental flows.

AI-based autonomous offshore aquaculture feeding system – Huon Aquaculture Group (Industrial & Primary Industries merit recipient)
The Huon AI-based autonomous offshore aquaculture feeding system uses a combination of industrial automation and artificial intelligence (AI) to autonomously control feed rates in offshore fish farms by identifying and tracking feed pellets within the water column using machine vision and machine learning. The system means that at any one time, just four people are remotely feeding (from Hobart) every one of its fish regardless of location (Huon River, Storm Bay or Macquarie Harbour), which also creates a safer working environment particularly when the weather is too rough to operate from a feed barge. It also helps minimise the impact on the environment by preventing overfeeding resulting in less seafloor waste.

vlo Medical –  The University of Sydney (Undergraduate Tertiary Students merit recipient)
Born out of the University of Sydney, vlo Medical is a Medical Technology startup aimed at reducing the hospitalisation and disability rate caused by later stage lymphoedema through constant monitoring. This new application will streamline the current diagnostic process and detect the lymphoedema symptoms before it occurs via machine learning. Vlo Medical was judged to have developed a scalable innovative solution for the diagnosis and early detection of a significant side effect of cancer that affects some 200,000 Australians and more than 200 million patients worldwide. The scanning and data driven solution will mean that patients will be able to be diagnosed and treated earlier and more effectively, and hopefully have a better quality of life. For the doctors and specialists, vlo Medical allows the medical fraternity the ability to treat more patients both in practice and virtually, at a significantly reduced cost. Vlo Medical relies on artificial intelligence and deep learning to predict the onset of lymphoedema. The concept can be replicated for other medical treatments such as skin cancer or diabetes.

A preliminary program to visualise and manipulate OCT and Histology scan  – Kira Molloy / Curtin University/Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research (Undergraduate Tertiary Students winner)
This project has replaced the highly laborious system of analysing OCT scans currently employed by researchers (which required extensive hard-coding and MATLAB knowledge) with a more user-friendly method of examining entire volumes of OCT scans, complete with elasticity overlay analysis tools allowing for locating and identifying of cancerous tumours. The software Ms Molloy created enables researchers and pathologists to efficiently view, rotate and overlay images from OCT scans, imagery that shows the tissue structure underneath the surface of the skin, and compare this to histology scans, imagery that shows the microscopic tissue structure, to identify tumours.

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About AIIA

The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) is Australia’s peak representative body and advocacy group for those in the digital ecosystem. Since 1978 AIIA has pursued activities to stimulate and grow the digital ecosystem, to create a favourable business environment for members and to contribute to Australia’s economic prosperity. We do this by delivering outstanding member value by providing a strong voice of influence; building a sense of community through events and education; enabling a network for collaboration and inspiration; and developing compelling content and relevant and interesting information.

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