If you are prone to sleeping at the wheel, this app might help to save your life.
It all started with the countless car rides she shared with her dad. Whenever Jade Wee, 22, gets a lift to school, she often noticed him looking sleepy, which made her worry.
"My dad works long hours. Whenever I'm in the car with him, I always feel like he's dozing off," said Jade, an information engineering and media student from Nanyang Technological University (NTU).
Driven by her concern for her dad, Jade roped in her friends Mee Mee, Jia Hui and Yi Bei, all 22-year-old students from NTU, to design 'SafeSnooze', a prototype for a mobile app that addresses the issue of fatigue driving.
MEET THE TEAM BEHIND SAFESNOOZE: (LEFT TO RIGHT) MEE MEE LIM, JADE WEE, CHAN JIA HUI AND CHUA YI BEI.
The concept of SafeSnooze, which also promotes safe driving, is simple. When you start the app, it checks your eyelid movements and will continue to do so in the background.
History student Yi Bei shared that fatigue driving is also common among her peers, especially when they drive late at night.
She recalled the time when she had to try to keep her team members awake while going on a road trip with them. "There was nothing I can do except play music and talk to them," said Yi Bei.
This inspired the team to incorporate customisable settings that allow users to adjust the volume of the app's music and the kinds of jokes they prefer.
A SIMPLE ILLUSTRATION THAT EXPLAINS THE CONCEPT BEHIND SAFESNOOZE.
PHOTO CREDIT: SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS SINGAPORE
For instance, if the driver appears 'sleepy' during the journey, the app prompts him to stop or go. If he chooses to proceed, the app will play jokes or loud music to keep him awake.
Likewise, if the driver feels like he needs to stop for a break, he will be prompted to the nearest car park or rest stop for a quick pick-me-up.
Their smart concept recently won them first place in the 'University' category of the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow competition, which encourages students to use technology to address everyday social issues that we face.
The team, who dubbed themselves Team Sleeping Beauty, also won a four-day study trip to Samsung's headquarters in Korea and the opportunity to intern at Samsung's Singapore office.
FUN FACT: TEAM SLEEPING BEAUTY WAS NAMED AFTER YI BEI'S (LEFT) LOVE FOR DISNEY PRINCESSES.
Even though SafeSnooze is still at the prototype stage, the team hopes to continue researching on their project and take it as far as they can.
"This has been a very fulfilling journey, and winning this was a bonus for us all. We hope to continue with our research and finish up this project," said Jade.