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SCU Engineering News

Taking on a tech taxonomy

Eva Rosalie
Eva Jensen ’11 and Rosalie Tolentino ’11 developed a taxonomy of mobile applications for the developing world.

When SCU’s Center for Science, Technology, and Society asked computer engineering professor Silvia Figueira for help developing a taxonomy of mobile applications available to the developing world, Figueira had just the right students for the task. “I knew Rosalie and Eva would be a good match for the project,” she said. “They are both energetic and are interested in engineering for social impact.” Rosalie Tolentino and Eva Jensen, both computer science and engineering seniors, worked throughout the summer investigating mobile applications that have a wide appeal for solving problems around the world.

“We knew our first step would be to create a template, so we took a quick survey of different technologies that are available in the mobile world, then we worked on figuring out the best way to arrange that information through a template,” said Eva. “We looked for apps that were open source,” added Rosalie, “so that others could look at the code and find a way to advance the technology or apply it in solving a similar problem.”

The result is a comprehensive guide to dozens of mobile applications aimed at solving problems centered around agriculture, health, technology, and other issues. “We’re encouraged by the response to our work,” they said. “Not only will this information be helpful to those who are looking for a solution to a particular problem, but it can also serve as a launching pad for generating new or improved apps. One of our goals was to help future students get involved with solving the world’s problems through mobile technology.” The pair, who had previously worked together on a 24-hour innovation challenge sponsored by the School of Engineering, plans to team up for their senior design project, as well. “We’re leaning toward creating a mobile application of our own,” they said. “It would be cool to have our code make a big difference in the world, rather than work on a prototype that may or may not ever make it into the market.”

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