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ITE College Central team

The Singapore Computer Society (SCS), a leading infocomm body with a membership base of over 32,000 members and an NTUC U Associate, has launched its Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Special Interest Group (SIG). SCS members will be able to plug into the world of algorithms, language processing, autonomous vehicles and more.

SIG joins the ranks of five other existing groups in augmented and virtual reality, enterprise architecture, free and open source software, supply chain management and ‘technopreneurship’.

SCS also has nine industry chapters for like-minded members to connect with one another, including one for students.

“We do a lot to create excitement and exposure around technology for the youths. For those who just left school, we also have the IT Youth Council. They self-organise activities such as wine appreciation and paintball. Young professionals’ needs are different from mid-career. It’s always about networking and development. The council also holds talks such as the Youth Engagement Series, where senior business leaders open the floor to questions,” said SCS President Howie Lau.

Setting Youths Thinking

Beyond members, SCS also regularly engages youths at large. Take for example, the annual national infocomm youth competition Splash Awards’ finals and awards that it has concluded in October 2017.

“What makes Splash Awards unique is that it is organised by students for students on the creative use of technology. Every year, there is a different theme. This year, we picked drones because they are everywhere in media, production, delivery… We thought it would be a good way for students to think about how else drones could be applied,” said Howie.

ITE College Central, which emerged champion under the tertiary category, came up with an idea for drones to help farmers.

“Farming is fundamental to our survival so we wanted to look into that. Countries like China and Vietnam are doing massive plantations but drought remains one of their biggest challenges. Australia faces drought almost 70 per cent of the year. The current sprinkler or irrigation systems are expensive and cause downtime when they break down. Drones, which cover larger surface area and need less maintenance, are much more effective,” said 17-year-old team member Tham Lin Sheng.

As part of the Splash Awards, participants were also challenged to learn programming and navigate drones through a series of obstacles at the SCS 50 Drone Experience, the celebratory finale for SCS’ 50th anniversary last year.

aerospace students

(Photo credit: Avelyn Ng) The three aerospace avionics students, who form the ITE College Central team in the Splash Awards 2017, demonstrate their drone-flying skills.

To find out more about SCS’ events, click here.

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