2018-04-19

Professor Helen Meng and her team received the HKICT Award 2018 Silver Award for Smart Inclusion

Two engineering projects from the Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management have received two Hong Kong ICT Awards 2018 including a Smart People Silver Award (Smart Inclusion) and a Student Innovation Award. 

SmartPeople-SmartInclusion.jpg

Smart People Award (Smart Inclusion)

The Electronic Communication Book (E-Commu-Book), an application jointly developed by Prof. Helen Meng and her team from the Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management and the Stanley Ho Big Data Decision Analytics Research Centre, has won the Silver award in the Hong Kong ICT Awards 2018: Smart People Award (Smart Inclusion).  The E-Commu-Book is a means of Alternative and Augmentative Communication for users with speech disorders and communicative impairment.  The traditional, paper-version of the communication book is expensive to print and distribute.  It also has limited extensibility for new vocabulary items.  This motivates Prof. Meng’s team to develop the E-Commu-Book based on mobile device and cloud-based technology. 

The team built a multilingual version by integrating CUHK’s home-grown Cantonese speech synthesis technology, and cloud-based automatic text-to-speech synthesis and automatic text-to-text translation technologies.  At the same time, anonymous user’s usage patterns will be encrypted and stored in the cloud to inform further design improvement with Big Data Analytics technology.  The E-Commu-Book is has gained recognition from the international research community through invited and keynote talk, publications and demonstrations at flagship international conferences in Germany, Macau and US.   The project is collaborated with the Hong Kong Hospital Authority and is funded by the Innovation and Technology Fund’s Public Sector Trial Scheme.

Student Innovation Award

Mr. Bowen Chin, an undergraduate student from the SEEM department received the Student Innovation Award with his project titled Interactive Mobile Application to Assess and Detect Cognitive Impairment in Elderly Individuals.  It was his final year project supervised by Prof. Helen Meng.

The projetc automates the pen-and-paper cognitive assessments used by psychiatrists to assess elderly people for dementia via a mobile application, which employs an interactive user interface, speech recognizer, and natural language processing technologies.  This is an innovative approach to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the cognitive assessment process, which can then help early detection and diagnosis of dementia amongst the elderly population in an ageing society and help demented patient get early intervention and treatment.