Greek Team Distinguished in Microsoft Imagine Cup 2018

FILE - FILE - This July 3, 2014 file photo shows Microsoft Corp. signage outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash. (AP Photo Ted S. Warren, File)

The Greek team iCry2Talk earned a very important distinction in the framework of the Microsoft Imagine Cup 2018 student contest with an innovative application that deciphers a baby’s crying, for the first time providing answers to key questions that torment parents.

The team, along with 20 other teams from around the world, will travel to Seattle in July, where they will compete in the world finals. Wishing to showcase innovation more than any other year, Microsoft will offer cash prizes worth up to 100,000 dollars this year and a unique mentoring session with Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, to the winners.

The Microsoft Imagine Cup encourages thousands of students from all over the world to collaborate and use their knowledge to create their own innovations, while this was not the first year that a Greek team was selected for the finals.

The iCry2Talk team of the Signal Processing and Biomedical Engineering Laboratory of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTH) created an innovative application that uses Deep Machine Learning techniques to translate a baby’s crying into “speech”.

Through the application, Greek students Andreas Loutzidis, Anastasia Dhrachas and Jason Chatzikostas, under the supervision of their lecturer Leontios Hatzileontiadis, deciphered the crying of a baby, transformed it into a written word or image, in order to supply parents with valuable information about why the child is crying.

The iCry2Talk application is based on the assumption that ab effective combination and analysis of different sources of information, through advanced signal processing techniques and deep learning algorithms, can ultimately bridge the gap in communication between parents and their baby and seeks to support every new or inexperienced parent, providing them with a tool to identify the cause of the crying and to quickly provide the best care for their baby.