JKUAT TechExpo is an event that is carried out annually at the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology.
It is organized by JLUG (Jomo Kenyatta University Linux Users Group).Students pursuing various degree courses at the university are invited to present their projects in front of a panel of judges where a winner is selected and given a reward.
The inaugural Expo was carried out in 13 October 2010. The second JKUAT Techexpo was conducted in 13 October 2011.
The innovations are in five categories:
• Software Design,
• Embedded systems,
• Engineering And Architecture,
The winners in each category will receive a 10 inch Sam-sung Tab prize while the second placed will get a HTC mobile and the third placed will get a Terabyte external hard disk. We are also on Facebook and Twitter.
“The event is entirely a student affair. We plan and source for sponsors on our own,” says Calvin Kebati of Linux User Group and an IT student at JKUAT.
The Group also pre-selects projects to participate in the tech expo.
In spite of the limited resources, students displayed their projects at the expo venue with the hope of attracting commercial interest to develop their prototypes.
Paul Mwaniki is one of the few that took his home-security innovation project from a concept to a commercial venture, after he exhibited during the inaugural tech expo last year.
Mwaniki, who is a telecoms and information engineering graduate, says he struggled to produce the first prototype.
“I had to sell shares I had bought when I was in first year so that I could order the parts from Japan,” says Mwaniki.
He adds that there is more to a groundbreaking innovation than the idea. “There are other important factors like marketing, packaging, production that you have to think about.”
Among some of the innovations that are on display include; a mobile air ticketing and sms system, virtual e-learning software, a transparency electronic voting system, and a local Shazam application called ‘jua wimbo’ that identifies a song and artist using a cell phone.
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