Welcome!

Wearables Authors: William Schmarzo, Shelly Palmer, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, SmartBear Blog

News Feed Item

Vonage, U.Va. Announce Winners of Inaugural Student Competition at OpenGrounds

Vonage Presents Students with Nearly $30,000 in Prize Money

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., Dec. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The University of Virginia and Vonage, a leading provider of communications services connecting individuals through cloud-connected devices worldwide, today announced the winners of the Future of Social Messaging Concept Competition, the first-ever student competition at U.Va.'s OpenGrounds. Students competed for first-, second- and third-place prizes of $15,000, $7,000 and $3,000.

Marc Lefar, Vonage Chief Executive Officer and a 1985 graduate of U.Va.'s McIntire School of Commerce, revealed the winners during an awards ceremony at the OpenGrounds Corner Studio. 

"We challenged U.Va. students to develop ideas that could define the next evolution of social messaging, and they delivered," Lefar said. "The breadth and depth of the ideas were excellent. We saw some fantastic work that addressed real-world problems and provided practical solutions."

Brent Baumgartner from Clifton, Va., a computer science major in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, won the $15,000 first-place prize for Attendr. Attendr is a localized social messaging virtual event platform that facilitates information sharing between attendees at the same event, even if they do not have previously established social media relationships.

Damian Warshall from Washington, D.C., a graduate student pursuing his M.B.A. at the Darden School of Business, won the $7,000 second-place prize for Listen-In. Listen-In is a location-centric information and social media aggregation service that connects users and businesses to comprehensive venue-relevant information based on geographic proximity.

Representing the first winning concept in a two-way tie for the third-place prize of $3,000 were Niklas Philipsen, a systems engineering major in the School of Engineering and Applied Science from Richmond, Va., and Benjamin Terner, a computer science major in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, also from Richmond. They developed Planr, a social messaging platform for events, enabling users to seamlessly discover and organize dinners, concerts, movies and other activities with friends.

Murali Varadaraj from Stony Brook, N.Y., also earned third-place recognition and $3,000. Varadaraj is an undergraduate pre-med and pre-commerce student in the College of Arts & Sciences. He created SORT, a social media platform that conveniently and intelligently aggregates social media and extracts social views as they develop. 

"We are thrilled with the success of this first OpenGrounds challenge," said Bill Sherman, founding director of U.Va.'s OpenGrounds. "Both the quality of the submissions we received and the potential that these ideas represent for the University's engagement in the world will enhance the culture at U.Va. This extraordinary partnership with Vonage has opened doors for students and demonstrates the potential of these new collaborations between the University and innovative partners."

Thirty-eight student teams competed for the prize money. Their ideas were reviewed by more than 50 professionals, including technical experts, business development leaders and venture capitalists.

Eleven students spanning seven finalist teams were selected to present their concepts to a panel of judges in a closed session on November 29. The panel included Lefar; Chris Holden, Managing Partner of Court Square Ventures; Thomas C. Skalak, Vice President for Research at U.Va.; Baruch Sterman, a scientist and Vice President of Technology Research at Vonage; and Von Wright, former Vice President for AT&T Consumer & Mobility and CEO of 3 Points Strategic Solutions, LLC.

Additional finalists included Katherine Brock, Ari Greenberg, Jessica James, Nate Phalen, Herb Ryan and Chong Xu.

For information about the competition, visit the OpenGrounds website or read about the competition launch. 

About the University of Virginia
Founded in Charlottesville by Thomas Jefferson in 1819, the University of Virginia is a leading public university that serves as a national model for excellence through innovation and collaboration in its missions of teaching, research, public service and health care.

About Vonage
Vonage (NYSE: VG) is a leading provider of communications services connecting individuals through cloud-connected devices worldwide. Our technology serves approximately 2.4 million subscribers. We provide feature-rich, affordable communication solutions that offer flexibility, portability and ease-of-use for both landline and mobile phones. Our Vonage World plan offers unlimited calling to more than 60 countries with popular features like call waiting, call forwarding and visual voicemail – for one low monthly rate. Our Vonage Mobile app is a free downloadable app for iPhone® and Android™ that lets users talk and text worldwide for free with anyone else who uses the app.  Vonage's service is sold on the web and through regional and national retailers including Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Kmart and Sears, and is available to customers in the U.S. (www.vonage.com), Canada (www.vonage.ca) and the United Kingdom (www.vonage.co.uk).

Vonage Holdings Corp. is headquartered in Holmdel, New Jersey. Vonage® is a registered trademark of Vonage Marketing LLC, owned by Vonage America Inc.

To follow Vonage on Twitter, please visit www.twitter.com/vonage. To become a fan on Facebook, go to www.facebook.com/vonage. To subscribe on YouTube, visit www.youtube.com/vonage.

SOURCE Vonage

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that LeaseWeb USA, a cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. LeaseWeb is one of the world's largest hosting brands. The company helps customers define, develop and deploy IT infrastructure tailored to their exact business needs, by combining various kinds cloud solutions.
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Venafi, the Immune System for the Internet™ and the leading provider of Next Generation Trust Protection, will exhibit at @DevOpsSummit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Venafi is the Immune System for the Internet™ that protects the foundation of all cybersecurity – cryptographic keys and digital certificates – so they can’t be misused by bad guys in attacks...
ReadyTalk has expanded the capabilities of the FoxDen collaboration platform announced late last year to include FoxDen Connect, an in-room video collaboration experience that launches with a single touch. With FoxDen Connect, users can now not only engage in HD video conferencing between iOS and Android mobile devices or Chrome browsers, but also set up in-person meeting rooms for video interactions. A host’s mobile device automatically recognizes the presence of a meeting room via beacon tech...
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, explored the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences between wh...
It’s 2016: buildings are smart, connected and the IoT is fundamentally altering how control and operating systems work and speak to each other. Platforms across the enterprise are networked via inexpensive sensors to collect massive amounts of data for analytics, information management, and insights that can be used to continuously improve operations. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Brian Chemel, Co-Founder and CTO of Digital Lumens, will explore: The benefits sensor-networked systems bring to ...
On Dice.com, the number of job postings asking for skill in Amazon Web Services increased 76 percent between June 2015 and June 2016. Salesforce.com saw its own skill mentions increase 37 percent, while DevOps and Cloud rose 35 percent and 28 percent, respectively. Even as they expand their presence in the cloud, companies are also looking for tech professionals who can manage projects, crunch data, and figure out how to make systems run more autonomously. Mentions of ‘data science’ as a skill ...
Manufacturers are embracing the Industrial Internet the same way consumers are leveraging Fitbits – to improve overall health and wellness. Both can provide consistent measurement, visibility, and suggest performance improvements customized to help reach goals. Fitbit users can view real-time data and make adjustments to increase their activity. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mark Bernardo Professional Services Leader, Americas, at GE Digital, discussed how leveraging the Industrial Internet a...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings in the last year, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their back-end AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT – especially in the connected home and office. Amazon is extending its reach by building on its dominant Cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strategy, recently announced Replenishment Services, the Echo/Alexa voice recognition control platform, the 6-7 strategic...
In addition to all the benefits, IoT is also bringing new kind of customer experience challenges - cars that unlock themselves, thermostats turning houses into saunas and baby video monitors broadcasting over the internet. This list can only increase because while IoT services should be intuitive and simple to use, the delivery ecosystem is a myriad of potential problems as IoT explodes complexity. So finding a performance issue is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack.
There will be new vendors providing applications, middleware, and connected devices to support the thriving IoT ecosystem. This essentially means that electronic device manufacturers will also be in the software business. Many will be new to building embedded software or robust software. This creates an increased importance on software quality, particularly within the Industrial Internet of Things where business-critical applications are becoming dependent on products controlled by software. Qua...
Big Data, cloud, analytics, contextual information, wearable tech, sensors, mobility, and WebRTC: together, these advances have created a perfect storm of technologies that are disrupting and transforming classic communications models and ecosystems. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Erik Perotti, Senior Manager of New Ventures on Plantronics’ Innovation team, provided an overview of this technological shift, including associated business and consumer communications impacts, and opportunities it ...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
IoT is rapidly changing the way enterprises are using data to improve business decision-making. In order to derive business value, organizations must unlock insights from the data gathered and then act on these. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, and Peter Shashkin, Head of Development Department at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how one organization leveraged IoT, cloud technology and data analysis to improve customer experiences and effi...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device.
The IETF draft standard for M2M certificates is a security solution specifically designed for the demanding needs of IoT/M2M applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Brian Romansky, VP of Strategic Technology at TrustPoint Innovation, explained how M2M certificates can efficiently enable confidentiality, integrity, and authenticity on highly constrained devices.
“delaPlex Software provides software outsourcing services. We have a hybrid model where we have onshore developers and project managers that we can place anywhere in the U.S. or in Europe,” explained Manish Sachdeva, CEO at delaPlex Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The IoT is changing the way enterprises conduct business. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how businesses can gain an edge over competitors by empowering consumers to take control through IoT. He cited examples such as a Washington, D.C.-based sports club that leveraged IoT and the cloud to develop a comprehensive booking system. He also highlighted how IoT can revitalize and restore outdated business models, making them profitable ...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.