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Hearing Glasses – the spectacles that can hear

Glasses that can transform the spoken word into writing and emoticons – directly on the lenses themselves – that sounds like something from Silicon Valley. But instead it’s the winning project from the fourth generation of Technikqueens. The idea came from five young women with a passion for technology, who triumphed over a total of 2,185 participants.

Passionate, excited and proud. Some of the feelings of the girls who made it to the Top 50 in the “Austria is looking for the Technikqueens”. On the final weekend they had to develop intelligent networking opportunities in groups of five. The task: To find ideas that could make people’s everyday lives significantly simpler. “The fourth generation of Technikqueens impressed with a wealth of new ideas”, said Michaela Huber, responsible for the OMV education initiative and a member of the jury for the previous three generations.

Writing and emoticons for better hearing

The winning project was all about “Hearing Glasses”: The girls developed glasses that could decisively improve the lives of people with impaired hearing. A built-in microphone and camera enable the glasses to record language and facial expressions. A translation program then transforms them into writing and emojis. The user can read along from the inside of the glasses and follow a conversation without hearing it.

What really impressed me was the unique way in which the winning group and its “Hearing Glasses” creatively took existing technological concepts and combined them in a brand new way. That's exactly what technological innovation is all about!
Michaela Huber, OMV Senior Vice President Health, Safety, Security, Environment & Sustainability

For more impressions from the final “Austria’s looking for the Technikqueens” and our five lucky winners Marlene, Sonja, Marina, Lena and Sofie Sue, have a look at the video:

Technikqueens: Inspiring a passion for technology among girls

This is now the fourth time that OMV has encouraged girls aged between 14 and 16 to take an interest in technology with “Austria is looking for the Technikqueens” – and from this year there are also new industrial partners on board. They all want to inspire young women to make choices at school or in their vocations that go beyond the classic role models and subsequently start out on careers in technology and engineering. The heart of the initiative involves a multi-phase, online competition with technical tasks. The Top 50 were invited to the final weekend with workshops, a trip to a refinery and finally the closing presentations.

Fact box “Austria is looking for the Technikqueens”:

  • 2,185 registrations for the 4th generation (Total registrations for all four generations: 6,327)
  • Jury members: Marlis Resch/OMV; Monika Sturm/Siemens; Alexandra Albunia/Borealis; Vesna Glatz/Microsoft; Traude Kogoj/ÖBB; Anna Franzkowiak/RHI; Gerhard Rath/Uni Graz; Werner Gruber/Physicist, author, Director of the Planetarium, Kuffner and Urania Observatory
  • Prizes: Top 50 – an iPad mini; Top 25 – an additional educational voucher worth EUR 2,500; Top 5 – an exclusive observatory workshop in Urania
  • The Top 25 are entitled to participate in a mentoring program (start: Autumn 2016). Content: Individual support by mentors of the participating companies, shadowing days, excursions, workshops
  • Industry partners of OMV: Siemens Austria, Borealis, Microsoft, ÖBB, RHI. With support from the School Council of Vienna.
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