Auckland uni students take out Microsoft Imagine Cup again

Winners: University of Auckland's Team OneBuzz.

Team OneBuzz have won the Microsoft Imagine Cup 2011 for the second time and will compete in an online qualifying round for a chance to represent New Zealand at the world wide finals in New York.

The team won the Cup last year as Team OneBeep and were third place at the world finals in Poland.  This year, their solution involved using technology to inhibit the spread of malaria and ultimately, to wipe the disease out.

The Microsoft Imagine Cup is the world's largest technology competition that challenges students world wide to use technology to solve the world's problems.  In its ninth year, more than 325,000 students from 142 countries participate.

Three of the four finalists yesterday were teams from Auckland University and included solutions to kill mosquitoes using laser beams and road safety technology.

Held yesterday at the UoA Business School as part of the Cup Festival Day, the four teams presented their projects in 15 minute time slots to a panel of judges and an audience, having made it through preliminary rounds. 

OneBuzz member Vinny Lohan said it was a "buzz" to win the competition. 

"It took months of sweat and tears to get to this point and the whole process from generating the original idea, through to see the project become a reality has been absolutely incredible."

Director of the developer and platform group for Microsoft New Zealand, Scott Wylie, said this year's teams had raised the bar of the competition. 

"The standard this year was extremely high and picking a winner was certainly a challenge for us."

Should OneBuzz go through to the finals, they will travel to New York in July to compete with students from around the world.

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