Video: 2019 InVenture Prize Final at Georgia Tech
– All right, guys, it's game day. It's time to go out there and attack, give it all that we have, give it relentless effort, play with grit, be tough, be accountable with each other. But just like we do in everything in this program, we've gotta be creative, we've gotta be innovative in the ways we go about the things that we do in the game plan. All right, we gotta go out there and attack, attack, attack. Are you ready? – Oh, me? Oh, I am pumped. But, coach, you know this isn't a football game. This is the Georgia Tech InVenture Prize? – Oh, yeah.
That's okay. Go out there and attack anyway. [grunting] ♪♪ – Door is heavy. ♪♪ – Live from the campus of the Georgia Institute of Technology, it's the 2019 Georgia Tech InVenture Prize! Join us as the nation's finest student innovators compete to win $35,000 in prizes and patents! Please welcome your host, Emmy Award winner, Faith Salie! [cheers and applause] ♪♪ – Buzz! Thank you, thank you. Thank you! Thank you so much! [cheers and applause] All right, I'm gonna take my game face off, but I'm still intense about this night. Thank you, and welcome to the 2019 Georgia Tech InVenture Prize! [cheers and applause] You are all in for a treat because it's a prime year for InVenture. No… literally. This is the Georgia Tech InVenture Prize's 11th anniversary. 11, it's a prime number. [laughter] It's also…
Only at Georgia Tech would that get a laugh! I love you people! It's also a fantastic year for innovation. And I should know, since this is my 7th year hosting your InVenture Prize. That's right, 7– [cheers and applause] Oh, thank you! Thank you! [applause] You may be clapping for me, you may be clapping for the fact that 7 is also a prime number if you're counting, and I'm assuming, with this audience, you are counting. Tonight, we will meet this year's finalists who have invented, coded, and innovated their way onto the stage. That's no small feat, and it comes with a chance at three not-so-small prizes! But what are these prizes, and what do they mean for our finalists? For a more detailed explanation of these awesome accolades, I'll send things over to my good friend and favorite co-host, Ashley Mengwasser. Ashley? – Wow, you're my favorite, too, Faith. Did somebody say prizes? This year, the team who takes home first place will earn $20,000, sponsored by TDK USA Corporation, as well as entry into Georgia Tech's CREATE-X Startup Launch program. Our second-place team will take home $10,000. Both the first and second place prizes also include assistance with a patent filing– that's a big deal– sponsored by the Georgia Tech Research Corporation.
Those two prizes will be awarded by our expert panel of judges. However, there's a third prize up for grabs, the coveted People's Choice Award. Now, this is a very special award because it's chosen by you, the audience. Whether you're watching on GPB, on our live stream, or you're here behind me at the Ferst Center, you can vote for your favorite team and send them home with a check for 5 Gs, sponsored by the Georgia Center of Innovation for Manufacturing. Voting for People's Choice will open after all six teams have presented. You can cast your vote either by texting your team's keyword to (770) 637-3005, or by visiting GPB.ORG/VOTE. I'll give you each team's keyword after they present, and I'll remind you of all the keywords after our final team leaves the stage. At that point, we will open up the voting. You can only vote once per device, so make it count. And watch out for autocorrect, man. I'll tell you more about that once voting opens. But for now, back to you, Faith.
– Thank you, Ashley! That's right, you have the opportunity to help your favorite team win big. But you're not the only ones who will be carefully analyzing our finalists. We've invited a highly qualified panel of experts to ask the night's toughest questions and crown our first place and second place teams. So let's take a moment and meet those experts now. First up, a familiar face. He's a lifelong innovator who's made his career serving in key roles for public and private companies worth more than $6 billion in acquisitions. He earned his Master's degree in electrical engineering right here at Georgia Tech, and he now serves as president of MEMS Business Group for the TDK Corporation, as well as CEO of its InvenSense subsidiary.
Please welcome back, Behrooz Abdi. – Thank you. – Hi, Behrooz. [applause] Next is another familiar face, but a first time judge. She's a Georgia Tech alumna whose disposable anemia-screening tool, AnemoCheck, won second place in the 2013 InVenture Prize. Her company, Sanguina, is focused on the development and launch of AnemoCheck and other over-the-counter wellness tools to make life easier. Please welcome back, Erika Tyburski. Hi, Erika. [applause] And last but not least is a first time judge who's also a Georgia Tech alumnus and former swim team captain. He's the managing partner of Tech Square Ventures and Engage, which has invested in 39 early stage technologies– technology companies since 2014. Blake Patton.
Welcome, Blake. – Hello. [applause] – So, thank you all for being with us tonight. You look like you're ready to be well-hydrated, which means you're serious about this. Now, let's turn the spotlight to our first team, a group who has a handle on how to make bicycling safer. It's Team HANDLD. ♪♪ – Hi, I'm Erik. – I'm Colin. – I'm Emilio. – I'm Johnny. – I'm Chris. – I'm Michael. And we are… – Team HANDLD. – I'm a passionate cyclist, like many of us, and the problem is the same everywhere. Drivers don't respect cyclists and their right to be on the road. – According to the CDC, a thousand cyclists die and a half million more are injured by cars every single year. Less than 25% of drivers who hit a cyclist actually stop. As of right now, 42 states have safe passing laws, but the burden of proof often falls on the cyclists, making these laws virtually unenforceable.
– Luckily, HANDLD has your back. ♪♪ – HANDLD is the first of its kind of approach to a problem faced by thousands of cyclists every day. Our vision is not only to make cyclists safer, but to change the culture of shared roads. ♪♪ [cheers and applause] – You've got some fans here. All right, let's put the bicycle pedal to the metal and meet Team HANDLD. – Hi, we are Team HANDLD, and we're here to talk to you about bicycling safety. 80% of incidents where a car hits a bicycle end up being hit and runs. The total cost of these accidents in medical bills and legal settlements is $6.4 billion annually. Now, we've surveyed internally, and have found that cyclists get passed in a way that's so unsafe they would report it to the police at least once a week. While there are safe passing laws in place to protect cyclists, they're virtually unenforceable and have had little impact on cycling safety. – Introducing HANDLD, a new way for cyclists to identify, record, and report safe passing violations. If a car does pass you too closely, it will trigger our device's distance sensor, and once triggered, the back facing camera will capture a video of the car's approach while the front facing camera will take a series of pictures of the car's license plate.
This evidence is then packaged together with GPS and time-stamped data, and uploaded to our app. From this app, you can see and even report these violations. Currently, there is nothing like HANDLD on the market. The closest analogy to our solution that we've been able to find is school bus stop sign cameras. When children exit the bus, and the bus sign is extended, any cars that pass illegally are recorded on video. When a violation occurs, the school system that uses the cameras and the third party companies that supply them work together to review and submit evidence to the local law enforcement. Over the past 15 years, this industry has grown to generate over $100 million a year. – Let's talk about the market. Smart cycling accessories sell for between $200 and $400. With off the shelf components in a small manufacturing round of just 1,000 units, we can make HANDLD for $40. This price will be further reduced in larger manufacturing runs. Now, HANDLD was originally designed for hobbyists and commuter cyclists, but could be used for motorcyclists, joggers, bird riders, anyone that's on shared roads.
Winning InVenture would allow us to take HANDLD to the next level. We'd be able to get a-a professional engineer to design custom circuitry and reduce the size of our device. We'd be able to make a small manufacturing run of devices, put them in the hand of pre-selected beta testers in Decatur. The evidence that they gather will be sent to the local police department for review. – Our mission is to educate and empower cyclists and drivers alike to change the culture of shared roads. HANDLD allows cyclists to take safety into their own hands, and with your support, we can save lives, and make safer roads a reality. Thank you. – All right, as your name suggests, you handled that perfectly. Uh, judges, it's your turn. Um, let's see, Blake, let's start with you. – Sure, sure.
Uh, great presentation. Um, I used to do triathlons, so, uh, so I'm familiar with the– with the problem, and I know cyclists are passionate, uh, about this issue. Uh, my question, uh, for this to have impact, and for– therefore for cyclists to be willing to pay for it, uh, you know, law enforcement has to take action on what you submit to them. What– you know, what evidence do you have that they're actually gonna follow up on this once these videos are-are submitted? – Uh, absolutely. So we designed our device through, you know, talking to quite a few different police precincts and listening to what they had to say on, "I need this as evidence." Um, the specific things, we have to get a picture of a driver's face. We have to get a license plate. We have to get GPS and time-stamped data, and we have to prove that the cyclist wasn't at fault, which we can do through the backwards facing camera capturing information.
– Very good. – Okay. I have a follow up. – Yeah. – Yeah. Um, given that you have to capture all of that information, have you done any, I guess, alpha testing or preliminary testing, demonstrating that you can? – Sure. So we actually captured videos already with our working prototype, but in addition to that, part of the reason we want to win InVenture is so that we can acquire the capital to be able to, uh, build these devices and put 'em in the hands of our existing list of beta testers. So we've had a couple hundred people already sign up, and we are looking to get those devices in their hands and get their feedback. – Behrooz? – So, this seems to be, uh, a path into a data play, and, uh, crowdsourcing. But it seems to me you have to get a lot of different data from, uh, you know, for the police. The picture, the GPS, you know, which– GPS is easy. It's a device in there. So how do you really– uh, how do you feel you can put this whole ecosystem together to get to that data that's really meaningful and drives incentives and a reward system? – Um, I'm not sure I understand the question.
– Right, in terms of data that you're generating. You know, data doesn't come just from the bicycle, right? It comes from a lot of different places. How do you– So you have to do a lot of business development. You have to get that– those pieces of data to play together, correct? – Yes. – Okay, just wondering if you've thought through that, and how you're gonna go do that, and really, uh, generate the market and generate that data from the other places, from the other sensors that you have to get. – Yeah, so it all starts with our beta testers gathering this data. Um, right now we're working with a, uh, Raspberry Pi that is the workings of the system and able to communicate with all the peripherals of our device to capture these different data– or pieces of data. – Okay, all right. – All right. Um, do you have a projected price that each person would– actually, let me back up. Would a consumer buy this that was, um, visiting a bike store, and how much do you envision they would pay for it? – So..
. – I can take that question. – Yeah, go for it. – Sorry. Um, so, yeah, so we've actually talked to quite a few, uh, potential customers already, potential users, and we found that, you know, typically accessories for smart– or smart accessories for bicycles can range anywhere from $200 to $1,000. Um, we actually put this survey out there and found out that, you know, they are more than willing to pay this price, and you know, if it meant saving their life or recording evidence to do so, they'd be more than happy to pay that price. One other thing that I did want to bring up is that, uh, the data that we do capture is, uh, all kind of pre-packaged as evidence. So, you know, getting this input from the customers, getting this input from the, uh, the police precincts, lawyers, things like that will allow us to really take this to the next level.
– Yeah, and that's-that's the information I was looking for. You have to go and really talk to all those guys, and there's a lot of feet on the ground to actually scale that and get that data from them. – Absolutely. – We got about 30 seconds left. – Okay, uh, real quick, the camera. How– which direction you're going, does that matter? You know, how are you gathering that data? How does it see through the spokes or through the handle? – Um, so if you could see– – Or do you have cameras on both sides of the– – Oh, sorry. If you can see on the bike right there, if he is riding down the road, the camera will be facing out. This is assuming that a cyclist is riding as far to the right as possible. – On the right hand side, okay. – And that if a car is passing them while they're in the middle of the road, that's probably already going to be a problem, so it's facing that direction. – And that's your time.
That was a– that was a completion of beauty. Thank you, judges. Thank you, Team HANDLD. I feel safer already. Ashley? Whom do you have? – Faith, you never know where my first guest will roll up. Brian Santoro is Colin's dad, and he's here to give us the scoop from the streets. Hey, Brian, as an avid cyclist yourself, what has been your personal experience with cycling safety? – Well, I've been a cyclist for better part of 50 years. And, uh, during that period of time, I've had a number of incidents where I have been dangerously run off the road. Um, this is, uh, principally why I'm such a– I'm excited about the HANDLD product. I think it– it's the first, to my knowledge, uh, fully integrated, uh, system that captures the infraction in real time, and, uh, seamlessly uploads that to the authorities with the focus to try to change, uh, driver behavior, much like, as they've mentioned already, the, uh, the cameras on school busses.
– Awesome. Thank you, Brian. The only thing you're missing is a handlebar mustache! Or maybe that's the other type of biker. Either way, we have got to share the road out there, people. So to help Team HANDLD zoom into their People's Choice victory tonight, you're going to text keyword BIKE, B-I-K-E, to (770) 637-3005. I'll tell you when. Back to you, Faith. – All right, our second finalist team is working to improve the quality of life for patients who suffer from tremors. Take a look. ♪♪ – Hi, I'm Nisha. – I'm Colten. – And I'm Nicolette, and we are… – TremorTrainer. – In the United States alone, 7.25 million people suffer from a condition known as essential tremor. – In fact, essential tremor is the most common movement disorder in the entire world. It's a condition in which patients can suffer from involuntarily shaky hands or even legs.
There is no known cause and no known cure. ♪♪ – People who have essential tremor struggle with simple, everyday tasks such as eating… – Writing… – Or using a phone or computer. – Unfortunately, for those suffering from essential tremor, there's not many great options to treat their disease. There's medication, but that only works for about 40% of patients. – Another option is surgery, but it's costly, risky, and only restores functionality to one hand. ♪♪ – Our team has been able to prove that our solution works. – And if TremorTrainer can win the InVenture Prize, we can bring our solution to those who need it. – TremorTrainer. [cheers and applause] All right. I think I speak for everyone when I say, "tell me more." Take it away.
– Picture this. You're tired, it's late, you've had a long day, and all you want to do is curl up in your bed and go to sleep. But you have hand tremors. Your hands shake so violently that you are forced to stand outside your door for minutes just trying again and again to get your key into the lock of your own home. Hi, I'm Nicolette, and my team has heard countless stories just like this one. Chances are, you or someone you love has their own stories about how tremors have impacted them. They can be caused by anything from multiple sclerosis to essential tremor or Parkinson's. My story involves my grandfather, who we affectionately refer to as G Pa. He began to suffer from shaky hands about 15 years ago. For people like these, simple, everyday tasks that we take for granted, as simple as getting into your own front door, are trials that they have to face every single day.
Our team wanted to find a solution to help people like my G Pa. We researched everything, but a lot of treatments are risky and invasive. This led us to investigate current devices, which unfortunately can usually only assist with one task such as a specialized spoon, which can only help while eating and costs $300. Other devices need, like, physicians' assistance to be put on or even used. So what if there was a device that someone could use all day every day, and for any task? Our solution accomplishes these things. TremorTrainer is a glove with pockets on the back where weight can be inserted, specifically designed to counter the effects of hand tremors. I could tell you how it works, but I think it might be better if I showed you. If you remember the key example, you can see the difference that our glove is able to make. This is a great example of a small victory, but this is nothing compared to the impact we could have if we could get this into the hands of more people.
Essentially, how our glove works is it's based on a principle known as counterweight technology, or mass dampening. What's great about our design is that users can put it on by themselves. Additionally, they can customize how much weight is inside the glove to account for day-to-day changes in their tremor. The goal is to restore total user independence, unique from anything else that's on the market. Our team has worked with real users and gone through over 30 different designs to make sure that TremorTrainer is something they actually want to wear every day. When we give users this glove now, they genuinely don't wanna give it back to us. They love how easy it is to use with dense weights, large pockets, and easy to grab zippers. Unfortunately, we always have to take the glove back, and that's because for every glove we give out, Nisha here has to hand sew a new one for us to work with.
We are ready to make more gloves, test with more people, and see if this can be a product that can help others. We want to be able to make a difference in people's lives. And… now, with your help, TremorTrainer can be the difference that empowers users to live with confidence again. Thank you. – Well done, TremorTrainer. [cheers and applause] – So… you've kind of thrown down the gauntlet. Um, it's Nisha, right? – Nisha. – Nisha. – Yes. Are you prepared to leave school when this project takes off and-and hand sew millions of gloves? – Uh, hopefully not. – Okay. Uh, all right, judges, it's up to you to take it away. Erika, you want to start? – Sure, sure. So, this seems like a very interesting therapy. Um, if– educate me. Is there a regulatory oversight or, um, you know, clearance or submission you'd have to do in order to market this device for those specific disease states? – Absolutely.
That's a great question. So we were actually recently put in touch with an FDA consultant who's an expert in the regulation of medical devices, and he said that our device would be Class I exempt. This means that, um, we would just need to register it with the FDA and follow their good manufacturing practices. We wouldn't need to get a 510(k) or get a pre-market approval. It'd be a pretty simple process. – Great. – How does the-the weight– what's-what's innovative, or, I guess, proprietary about the weights, you know? Could I just duct tape pennies to the back of my glove and get the same– same result? – Great question. We get that a lot. So, essentially, our device is different from others in that you can use it for any everyday task, but it's different from other counterweight solutions because counterweight technology is an old idea.
But our group has reinvented this idea by using the design that we use on our glove, because it allows users to put it on by themselves and change the amount of weight that's inside it without assistance. – Colten, did you want to add something? – Yeah, I was just gonna add, many of the devices out there currently aren't using the same style of weight that we're using. We're using highly dense weights where it would take almost twice as much cold rolled steel to equal the same amount of weight we're able to fit in that glove. – I saw you going for your microphone and I didn't want Nicolette to womansplain you, so I just wanted to– Whoo! All right, Behrooz. – Is that, uh– Is that protectable? Can you– can you protect that or defend that, or is that easy for someone to replicate? – So while the material itself isn't, uh, unique to us, our design is unique, so that's what we're able to protect. The fact that we're able to change the amount of weight in the glove. The fact that it's such a subtle design from how dense the weights are, and the fact that it's totally safe. – So how do you– how do you customize it? Uh, how do you know how much weight to put in? Is there a feedback system? Is there– are there sensors in there that, you know, measure just motion and feed it back? Or how do you do that? – So there's actually no electronic components at all.
What we do is when we have been doing testing, is we have the user hold an iPhone, and it has an accelerometer app on it. Any smartphone where you turn it sideways and the screen flips has an accelerometer. So what we do is the user holds the phone for 30 seconds without the glove, and then holds it with the glove, and right now, the users have been choosing whatever feels best for them, but eventually in the future we'd like to take this data that we have about, um, how much weight that they've been using and the amplitude degrees and hopefully make it into an algorithm, so when we sell it on a website, per se, they can go in, download this app, put their data into our website, and we'll tell them, "oh, you need maybe "four to six of these weights." – Very nice. Yeah, that doesn't give me any, uh, market expansion for my motion sensors, you know, I was hoping for, but..
. [laughing] Very clever. – We've got close to a minute left. – Well, I can, uh, ask another question if you don't mind. – Yeah. – Um, so does this data go somewhere, or does it– as a, you know, on the accelerometer on the phone, you know, do they have, like, an account that they can monitor over time, and how does that, uh, work? And it goes back to the same discussion around the feedback. – So it depends on what kind of sensor we hope to implement. Right now we use a paid app where it does track all of your data over time. – Oh, okay. – And they would even be able to compare the amplitude of their tremor before and after using the glove. – Oh, very nice. – Have you had any complaints about use when it's hot out? Or anything like that? Um, uh, my hands sweat, so… Just an honest concern. – So, so far we've had no, um, no feedback as to that.
– Okay. – Our next phase is we're actually gonna be testing to determine how our glove performs over a longer period of time. So far, we've only been able to work on a session-by-session basis with our users. Um, in the future, we'd like to do a formalized study where– – Okay, that's your time. Sorry. Good-bad cop here. Gotta take the gloves off. – Thank you. – All right, um, thank you, judges. Uh, now, we will let Ashley– oh, yes, you can applaud them. Go ahead. [cheers and applause] Now we'll hear from Ashley who's speaking to someone from their cheering squad. Ashley? – Georgia Tech students are familiar with the letters GPA, but tonight, they mean something different. G Pa. Introducing John Niemeyer, Nicolette's grandfather. John, I know you're already a huge supporter of this invention as her grandfather, but your interests in TremorTrainer goes deeper. Tell us why.
– Well, I was the needed old guinea pig, and I– because I have the same tremors, and it's been a huge success for my penmanship. Um… – Very nice. Glad to hear it. Cutest guinea pig and hand model I've ever seen, John. Good for you. To cast your people's choice vote for TremorTrainer, remember the keyword TREMOR, T-R-E-M-O-R. Back to you, Faith. – Ashley. We are two teams into tonight's program, and so far these students are making it look easy, but trust me, it's no walk in the park. To get to the InVenture Prize finals, these teams have persevered through multiple levels of interdisciplinary competition against untold numbers of qualified competitors. It's hard to explain exactly what the whole InVenture Prize process looks like, so instead, let's show you in a piece we call "The Road to the InVenture Prize." ♪♪ – The road to the 2019 Georgia Tech InVenture Prize began with nearly 50 teams signed up for the September deadline, eager to earn bragging rights as well as patent filings to help bring their inventions to market.
And at the Capstone Design Expo, teams got an early chance to impress the judges. – Hi, we're team Victory Lap, and we've developed a rapid tea cooling device for a food truck. – We've developed a 3D radial arm scanner to help early diagnosis of the disease known as lymphedema. – We are The Flips, and we created a patient rotating device. – Those who stood out from the pack earned a ticket to the competition's semi-final round. – To be able to get this golden ticket today is absolutely fantastic. – For the rest, the preliminary round was the first major hurdle. – Welcome, everyone, to the 11th annual Georgia Tech InVenture Prize. – Allowing 27 teams to separate themselves from the rest by qualifying for the semi-finals. On the way to the semis, these teams had a chance to work out any kinks in their presentations in preparation for the toughest round of questions yet.
– So you take advantage of the natural nighttime thermal inversion to push it back down on there. – You've got a lot of press, and you have a lot of partners. What's holding you back? – You've been talking in some circles this morning, and it's not convincing. – In the end, six teams stood up to the scrutiny, making up this year's field of finalists, and tonight, one team will stand alone, winning the 2019 Georgia Tech InVenture Prize. ♪♪ – You might already be familiar with some of the members of our next team. They gained Internet fame a couple of years ago when their souped up children's Jeep became a viral sensation. But that's not why they are here tonight. For that, watch this. ♪♪ – Hi, I'm Mohammed. – I'm Thomas. – I'm Cory. – And I'm Robert.
And we are… – Nix. – Nix is here to change the lives of the millions of Americans who suffer from nicotine addiction. – Anybody who's ever tried to quit smoking knows that it's extremely difficult. ♪♪ – The numbers speak for themselves. Of all the people that smoke, 70% want to quit smoking, 50% have tried to quit smoking, but only 6% succeed. – We developed Nix because we all have friends who have suffered from nicotine addictions. We wanted to help them out and make an easier way to quit smoking. ♪♪ – Being a team primarily of mechanical engineers… – And a few software engineers. – We've had a lot of experience building different products, and we have used that experience to build Nix. ♪♪ – Winning the InVenture Prize would give us the momentum we need to put our product into the hands of millions of people who need it. ♪♪ – All right, Team Nix, y'all have brought some serious facial here– hair here.
You are not here to play. So let's hear it. – Here's a fact that you all know. It's really, really hard to quit smoking. What makes it so hard is nicotine withdrawal. Just three hours after your last cigarette, nicotine withdrawal kicks in, which means if you're a cigarette smoker, you need an almost constant supply of nicotine just to get through your day. Now, current quit smoking products solve this in a clever way. Products like nicotine patches and nicotine gum give you that nicotine, but have you taper the dosage over time until you no longer need it. And these work great in clinical trials. In real life, though, not so much. Extensive studies done at King's College, London, Penn State, and other universities show a profound flaw with these products. People don't follow the instructions, because, with these products, you have to keep track of your nicotine dosage and force yourself to stick to a quit plan. People are just bad at this. So, we've developed a smart e-cigarette that automatically does the tapering for you.
You use our e-cigarette just like you-you would use cigarettes. You can smoke it whenever you want, how often you want. But, in the background, it gradually cuts down on the nicotine you're getting until, one day, you're just smoking vapor. That's right. We figured out how to change the amount of nicotine in each puff, without changing the amount of vapor. And we don't just blindly cut down on the nicotine. An algorithm studies your habits and give you– gives you nicotine in a way that minimizes withdrawal symptoms. For example, we would give you more nicotine early in the morning because you would develop nicotine withdrawal when you go to bed. So, that's your problem, and our solution. What's the market? Cigarette smokers are desperate for a solution that helps them quit smoking. In 2017, they spent $900 million on products like nicotine patches and nicotine gum, and they don't even use them right. And we can't ignore the $5 billion e-cigarette market. That's right, even though a lot of people use nicotine patches and gum, almost twice as many people use e-cigarettes to quit.
And they're not even designed to help you quit. We think we can capture mar– this market and make Nix the standard for nicotine cessation. We've built multiple functioning prototypes using the outstanding resources at Georgia Tech. But, with this guy, we've hit the limits of what we can make ourselves. Winning the InVenture prize would give us the seed funding to refine this prototype and produce an initial batch, and the legal resources to distribute these prototypes for initial testing. And with the feedback we get, we're confident we can launch a product that makes it easier than ever to nix your addiction. Thank you. – Well done, Nix. [cheers and applause] All right, you have– you have some big fans, or people who really wanna quit smoking in the front row. Um, look, as soon as you invent something for people who inhale chocolate, will please give me a call? Um, judges, it's time to light it up. Bruce, take it away.
– So, in terms of differentiation versus other devices, you talked about the smarts. And there's a lot of– you're tappin' into a really big market. You know, Juul just got valued at $38 billion. You know, so– it's a very interesting market. How do you differentiate about– versus a lot of those companies out there? – Current e-cigarettes do not taper nicotine. The only product that actually lets you control the nicotine dosage is made by a French company called Enovap. But even in that product, you have to put in the e-liquids, you have to set the nicotine concentration. What we're doing is creating a closed ecosystem. All you do is use these pods. Once they're over, put in a new one. You don't mess with any settings at all. And this-this– because you're using proven technology, or proven methods with patches and gum, you're– and eliminating just the human error that's holding them back, we're confident that it will work. – Thank you. Can we see the device? – Absolutely. – And how do you– what's the business model? How do you make money? Is it– I guess you sell a device and then these refillable packs? – Yeah.
– And how do-how do the packs get customized? – Yeah, so it's the standard Gillette model. We wanna sell the device at a low margin and then make money from our pods. But we understand that if we're successful, we should have our churn rate go down over time, because people are quitting. – Mm-hmm. – And we got the solution from an individual– uh, from the insurance industry. He said, if we can use the device to measure the risk for cigarette smokers, then, as an insurance agent, he can offer lower insurance premiums than competitors. Now, this lets us generate revenue through the device, through the pods, through our data pipeline, but also shifts the customer acquisition costs to the insurance company. So we can capture a larger share of the profits from whatever devices we sell. – So, other devices don't taper.
Do you envision any pushback from people that are trying to quit that decide one day, "Okay, it's gone too low. "I-I don't want it tapered anymore." I imagine that may happen with some people. – So, we are studying– so, for the first few weeks, you're not actually tapering. You're just studying the user's habits, giving them a full blast of nicotine. And once we understand your habits, we can strategically cut out spontaneous smoking. And then gradually work on habitual smoking. And so, that way, we don't envision, uh, that you'll have withdrawal systems that, uh, that force you to quit. Now, if it's a psychological, feel-good thing, then it's very hard to control using, um, technology. – Sure.
Um, is the IP around that algorithm, or the device, or both? – And "IP" means intellectual property, right? – Intellectual property. – Just in case you don't go to Georgia Tech. – So, we have a– so we have a provisional patent that talks both about our algorithm and the pods. So, what's actually unique about our pods is that they don't leak into the user's mouth. That's one of the biggest issues that Juul had with their pods. When they scaled the production, they would actually leak, uh, e-liquid– bitter e-liquid into the user's mouth. – Okay. – Uh, the algorithm is run on the device itself, right? Not on the cloud or any kind of servers? – Yes. – Okay. – You're not gonna flavor these in any evil ways, are you? – Not evil ways. Good ones. – That's gonna cause another addiction, you know? – Because you have this algorithm that's making these decisions, what-what regulatory issues apply to this? Like, what's the go to market for this? And what do you have to overcome? – Yeah, so we– – And what do you have to prove to market it? – Yeah. So, we spoke to Brian King, who is one of the deputy directors of the Smoking and Tobacco programs at the CDC.
And what we learned was that, as long as we meet the requirements for e-cigarettes, so we have a label on our box, we're not selling flavors in-store, and we meet the concentration limit for nicotine, we can get this to market without FDA approval. Now, if we wanna go down and use this for insurance, then we'll have this FDA certified by Cedar as a medical device. It might fall as a class– – Can you market it that way, though? Can you tell people, "This will help you quit smoking?" – So, we can't make explicit claims that this is a cessation product. – Yep. – But we can use clever marketing to convey this idea that it tapers. And that's what people really need to know. – And that's your time. Well done. You can exhale now. [cheers and applause] Before we move on, let's hear from Ashley. Who is standing by for Team Nix, Ash? – Thanks, Faith! I'm here with Clara Sparkman, a friend of Team Nix.
Clara, no smoke and mirrors now, Sparky. Tell us, what shenanigans took place behind the scenes during the divine– design time for Nix? – Well, I have a little bit of a show and tell for you today, actually. So, this is one of Nix's very first prototypes. And as you can see, unlike a regular cigarette, it actually has two mouth pieces. And this is meant as a way to demonstrate how they can change the mixture between the two chambers in the e-cigarette. And it confused a few of their classmates, who actually thought that it was, um, a two player vape. So, they have changed their design. It now only has one mouthpiece. But they lovingly refer to this first prototype as "The Lady and the Tramp" vape. – So– hold it up.
Let's see. So, oh, I felt a spark just then. That's so romantic. It's the romantic way to vape! Thanks, Clara. Okay, well, don't get too excited, because the only thing that will be lighting up in here tonight, folks, will be your smartphones, when we open People's Choice voting. The keyword for Team Nix is N-I-X. Just wait for my cue. Back to you, Faith! – All right, we're halfway through our finalists, and I think it's safe to say this competition is not all fun and games… Unless you're our next team, that is. Let's press play and meet our fourth finalist, Team Unfoldit. – I'm Jackie. – I'm Cliff. – I'm Max. – I'm Michael. – I'm Ryan. And we are… – Unfoldit. – Everyday, millions of people with time on their hands are looking for someway to relax.
And a lot of them are turning to social media apps on their smartphones. – And these apps are either total time-wasters or can even be harmful. – We saw a need to create an app that would provide benefit to the users. – One of the most difficult challenges that we overcame while creating this app was transforming the physical process of folding paper into a representation that someone could play on their smartphone. – And once we solved that problem, we knew we were onto something. – Everyone needs a break in their daily lives. And Unfoldit provides that through a fun exercise for your brain. – We believe that Unfoldit has the potential to be a Top 10 app in the App Store and Google Play Store. – And winning the InVenture Prize would be the first step in achieving that goal.
– This looks to be both fun and enlightening. So, Team Unfoldit, take it away! – Thank you, Faith. Hi, I'm Cliff. – And I'm Jackie. – And we're showcasing our app, Unfoldit. Unfoldit is the game of paper folding and hole-punching, designed to challenge and enhance your spatial abilities, while being a whole bunch of fun. Unfoldit is designed for ioS and Android, and we are so excited to show it to you today. – Now, the best way for us to show how amazing and fun our application is is to play it. So, let's play a level together. Let's roll the video. So, let's-let's play, um, how about Cobalt Level 11. – You're taking it to 11, okay. – Yeah. Okay, so here you see the stages of a piece of paper being sequentially folded and hole punched. The challenge is to mentally unfold the piece of paper and determine where the hole punches would be on the unfolded sheet of paper in the center of the screen, so given the two horizontal folds and two hole punches, I can determine that the holes would be here, here, and reflected via the horizontal, here and here. So now watch this.
After successfully completing the level, you are rewarded with the animation of the piece of paper being unfolded, revealing the solution. So let's play another level. Now, this one's a bit more complex. There are two diagonal folds and a single hole punch. I can determine that the hole punches through all three layers of the paper at this point, and is reflected to this corner, and this corner. Now, let's unfold it. All right, correct again. So on the main interface of the application, there are a variety of level packs available for play, each themed as an element and grouped by color and difficulty. – Now, let me tell you what I'm really excited about. What's so awesome about Unfoldit is how the levels themselves are represented in code, a solution that took time to develop to this tier of precision and flexibility. When we write an app, we only describe the sequence of where the fold should be and where the holes are punched, which is simple, and even automatable. Unfoldit's algorithms actually compute everything you're seeing, from the paper previews, what they look like, to the unfolding animation, to the solution itself.
That's right, Unfoldit knows the solution to each and every level before we know it ourselves. This is the kind of flexibility that makes Unfoldit so special, and is going to allow us to literally take our app to the next level. We couldn't be more optimistic. Unfoldit is free to download today on the two best software distribution channels in the world, the App Store and Google Play Store. And with the help of the InVenture Prize, we hope to advertise our app further to bring the Unfoldit experience to everyone. We have over 250 levels created with hundreds more on the way, nearly a thousand downloads, and loads of incredibly positive user feedback shown in our 100 plus five star reviews. We envision Unfoldit as a leader in the next generation of apps designed to engage you and add a little fun to your life. We put a lot of love into this app, and we can't wait for you to play it and love it, too. – All right, Team Unfoldit.
Nice. [cheers and applause] You have… [cheers and applause] You have made it to the final level, so let's see what the bosses say. Blake, you wanna take this? – Sure. Looks-looks like fun. I can, uh, definitely see myself and my kids, uh, playing that, but, you know, even if it's a paid app, right? Most, you know, apps, on the– on the App Store have very short life cycles, right? So how do you– How do you make this, actually, a business? How do you make a sustainable, viable business instead of, you know, a one time download. – So we actually have a few more features we still want to implement, such as leaderboards and daily challenges with notifications that will bring users constantly back. We plan on going, making a revenue through ads and in-app purchases, and the most important thing for this is that we have a very strong, um, daily– uh, daily– um, amount of daily users, and that's the most important number we need, uh, so to bring that up.
So downloads are less important, but getting that daily users, which we're gonna do through the leaderboards, and daily challenges. – Okay. – Do, uh, do you plan to work with any of the educational institutes to, you know, high schools or elementary schools to-to get this app– I-I actually invested in a small company, uh, in the– where they [indistinct] education, and the scaling part of it took some time just to get that– build up that ecosystem. – We definitely considered that. I think our focus right now has been making the app as great as we can. Um, our original inspiration came from, uh, the American dental association's admissions test. Um, but it's also been used to test, uh, students who are wanting to join the honors programs. This similar paper folding and hole-punching test is used to assess their spacial abilities. – Okay, thank you. – Have you seen– there's an app, Paper Punch Party, that I downloaded earlier today when we were looking at what you're doing. Have you seen that app? It looks similar? – We did not.
– My kids play it. [laughing] – Well, I guess that the question, then, the cut– [indistinct] becomes, you know, how protectable is that. Right, I know you described an algorithm that sounds like it makes your-yours maybe more extensable, but, you know, how do– how do you not have it copied? – So, what I think makes Unfoldit so special is what we've talked about. We've put all of our effort into making the user experience as perfect as possible, and this is what keeps people coming and keeps people engaged. And we know this to be true, and we think that's what makes products such as– companies like Apple so special, right? Is the attention to detail, and we've seen this in our user reviews. Like I said, we have 100 plus five star ratings, and all of them are telling us how perfect the details are, how engaging it is, how they don't want to stop playing. And we know that this is how we're gonna differentiate ourselves against the other apps like that one, yeah. – Yeah, you can focus on enjoying challenging yourself rather than really being aware that you're playing a game. You're just having fun, like, pushing yourselves to the next level.
– Yeah, I wonder if there's any application to people who have spacial issues, and this could be almost therapeutic. Maybe that could serve as a barrier if you could explore that. – I mean, there have definitely been research studies, studies conducted by Northwestern, published in the Psychological Bulletin, but we're not making any claims because we haven't– we haven't pursued that ourselves with our own app, but we know that spacial skills are malleable, and apps like this, which were just designed to test those spacial skills, um, are actually able to enhance them. That has been shown. We haven't shown it with our app. We haven't gone into that, so I don't want to make that claim. But definitely– the potential is still there. – We've got one minute. – So, in terms of the, um– by the way, that's a pretty good app. I'm always looking for a nice app to play around with and im– when I'm sitting in an important meeting pretending to be looking– texting with my phone, so– – And judging. – And judging. So.
.. [laughing] Thank you. So-so in terms of, uh, you know monetizing it, uh, long term, are you gonna go and do a B2B, sell it to, like, a businesses or enterprises, or is it always gonna be in the consumer realm. – So we're gonna try to stay, um, consumer repped for now until we get an opportunity. Um, if we do win InVenture Prize, we're planning on putting all or the majority of that money into advertising and marketing so that we can go back to getting that large, um, daily user number up. – All right. Well asked, well answered. Y'all can punch out now. Thank you, Team Unfoldit. Now… [cheers and applause] Now let's send things over to Ashley while I run offstage and download my new app. – Faith, every work of art has a creative muse. Unfoldit's just happens to be the iconic Queen B. Not Beyonce. Beatrice Domingo, the team's design adviser.
As you can see, work it. Beatrice, how did your eye for style contribute to the overall presentation of this app? – Yeah, well the team wanted to group the packs by color, so I encouraged them to use unusual color names to make it more fun. So when you play the game, it's not just called blue, but it's called cerulean, and there's a brilliant shade of red called coquelicot and my favorite is the gold color, which is Mikado. – Is that like your necktie? – Exactly. – Yas, qeeen! Okay. Serving looks– When were you born? – 1996. – Serving looks since 1996, Beatrice Domingo, okay. If you want to vote for Team Unfoldit to win the People's Choice award tonight, wait until the polls open, and keep the keyword UNFOLDIT close by. That's U-N-F-O-L-D-I-T. One word. And please, type responsibly. Faith? – Thank you, Ashley, and that's a good note for everyone, to watch the spelling of those keywords.
Your teams will be counting on those votes later in the show. And for good reason, because it has taken a lot of hard work to get here. Every year, the InVenture Prize competition gets fiercer, and the inventions get a bit more creative. Let's take a look at some of those innovations you won't see on tonight's stage, but you might be seeing soon with a couple of tweaks. Who knows. Maybe next year. ♪♪ – I've invented a personal flying machine. – We created a robot that carries– One second, I gotta read your– – We are Team Quiet Down, and we invented an integrate– What was the question again? Yeah… – Please don't think I know the right answer here, because I'm just making stuff up. – We're Team Send It, and we created an adjustable mountain bike airspring. – Did you talk to people that actually would use this and get some validation that they see this as a plus? – I'm curious about your false positive rate. – It all hinges on is this the next Flappy Bird? ♪♪ – Securo is a device that automatically stitches the bladder back to the urethra after the removal of the prostate. ♪♪ – Our invention is a smart pdf reader that can– utilizes machine learning and artificial intelligence to create both a smart word search that will be able to answer questions on the base of a document, as well as summarize large .
pdfs. [yelling] We're Team NeoNourish and we've developed a device to help transition premature infants from tube feeding to oral feeding. – So the paranoid parent would buy those. – We're The Flips, and we've got your back. ♪♪ – Our next finalist team operates with surgical precision. Let's meet our penultimate team of the evening, Ethos Medical. [cheers and applause] – Hi, my name is Lucas. – I'm Cassidy. – And I'm Dev, and we are… – Ethos Medical. – Across the United States every single year, 10 million procedures are performed that involve inserting a needle into the spine. – The one you're probably most familiar with is called an epidural, and it's given to women who are going through childbirth. ♪♪ – Current standard of practice to identify where to put the needle is to just feel for landmarks on the patient's back, and this can be very difficult in some patients.
– And some solutions have been proposed, but they tend to either be clunky or expensive. – We at Ethos Medical have the perfect answer. ♪♪ – After conducting hundreds of interviews with the physicians who perform lumbar punctures and other spinal access procedures, we were able to identify exactly what the problems were, and design a solution that would perfectly address them. – We're ready to take the next steps to bringing our product to the market. – All right, spinal taps? Rock on. All right, take it away. – This is a spinal needle. It's a four inch needle that's inserted into the center of the spine during a procedure called a lumbar puncture, which is used to diagnose and treat conditions like meningitis and cancer.
To perform a lumbar puncture, practitioners have to guide this needle into an opening as small as a millimeter between vertebrae. Now the scary part, if that wasn't it, is that these procedures are performed without any image guidance initially, which means they can't see where this needle is going. This makes the procedure extremely difficult which is why 20% of lumbar punctures can't be successfully completed. In these cases, patients are sent to the radiology department for yet another lumbar puncture, this time under X-ray guidance. This process extends patients' hospital stays and costs hospitals over $3,000 in non-reimbursable expenses per case. We have developed a needle guidance solution that interfaces with ultrasound machines and allows practitioners to do these procedures without relying on radiology. To set it up, snap the bracket onto the probe, and insert the needle into the guide.
Turn on the guidance overlay, which will then display intuitive renderings of the spine to help align the probe on the patient's back. The needle trajectory will be overlaid on this image and will turn green to indicate when the needle has a clear path. You can now lock the guide in place and insert the needle with confidence. The concept of real time guidance isn't new, but the machines that do this today aren't used for two reasons. They require practitioners to already know how to read and interpret ultrasound images and they are not easy to access when and where they're needed. Our system is interpretable by anyone, and is built for these pocket-sized devices. We've recently begun discussion with Phillips, the largest manufacturer of these devices to begin– start talking about potential collaboration. Given that 800,000 lumbar punctures are performed in the US every year, and assuming a $120 disposable device price, we see $100 million serviceable available market.
But the problems associated with blind needle navigation exist in many other procedures which contribute to a $1.8 billion total addressable market in the United States alone. We began this journey seven months ago through Georgia Tech's Create-X startup launch program and we've been working full time ever since. Since then, we've, uh, talked to countless physicians, many of whom have reached out on their own asking how they can be involved with ethos. One of them, Dr. Rich [indistinct], a prominent radiologist and health policy expert, is now serving on our clinical advisory board. We need the InVenture Prize to fund bench and animal testing to get through the FDA and onto the market so we can solve a true pain in the back. [laughing] – Well presented, Ethos Medical. You gave it your best shot. All right. Sorry.
You can clap for them. Don't clap for that joke. [cheers and applause] All right. Erika, why don't you scrub in and ask a question. – Yes, great work. You alluded to it. Can you tell me a little bit about your regulatory and reimbursement strategy. – Yeah, so I can talk about what is needed from the FDA pathway. We're a Class II, uh, nonexempt device, so we would need to go through a 510k. Um, we have an idea of what our predicate devices are and our guidance documents and standards for our verification and validation testing. Uh, Cassidy can speak a bit more about the reimbursement. – From the reimbursement side, the usage of our guidance system is covered by the CPT code, uh, 76942, which is ultrasound guidance of needle placement for any procedure. It reimburses $33 for the professional component and $28 for the technical component. – Okay. – So for those of us that don't speak reimbursement, is that a good deal? – Yes. – You get reimbursed.
– You get reimbursed. – The idea that you don't have to create your own, um, CPT code is a good thing. – And a CPT code is… – Used for reimbursement. [laughing] – Reimbursement is good. – Reimbursement is good. Behrooz, you wanna take the next one. – Yeah, is the device itself– is that based on a standard ultrasonic device like Butterfly, [indistinct], or something like that? Or is it something that you built, uh, ground up? – Uh, right, so our intent was to develop this for handheld systems due to their accessibility, so right now the two options would have been Butterfly, as you mentioned, and this one, the Phillips Lumify, uh, this one is much more open platformed. It's connected to an android tablet, so we're easily able to create our app as an overlay to do the image processing and recognition. – And Butterfly means? – Uh, not the animal, but the, uh– It's a company that actually does ultrasonic systems, low cost ultrasonic systems. – Okay, Blake? Do you wanna say something that I can understand? – You know, I'm still trying to get over the four– four inch needle, so if I ever need this now, I'm gonna be sufficiently terrified.
Probably won't show up, but this, um– The software part, which sounds like what you're saying is a different shade from other temps that helps, you know, guide the– you know guide the doctor. What, um– you know, how is that trained, I guess. So you're– you know, how are you gonna get– That's the trials, but how do you get enough data, right, to train that software, and then how does that get shared across the other– across however the other doctors are using this device? – Right, so unfortunately there aren't very many large, publicly available data sets for a spine, especially with the quality we're looking for. – Right. – So we have to generate our own data sets. So part of our next step is to generate these data sets on our own, beginning with, uh, bench models, using spine phantoms, gelatin phantoms, and once we produce enough of these data sets, we can graduate to, uh, human cadaver models, and then live animal testing. – Okay, so what stops a big app company from doing this? – Yeah, so right now, there are no systems out there on the market that provide real time needle guidance in a way that's interpretable and, uh, doesn't, uh, require you to buy expensive equipment or specialized equipment, so one of the main differentiators that we see in ourselves right now is our ability to provide the software that helps physicians interpret that anatomy, and right now, uh, one of the nice things is that the solution we created kind of lies outside of the core competencies of a lot of our competitors or potential competitors, so ultrasound manufacturers, for example, are only interested in producing the probes and have little to no interest in producing the accessories or the attachments for them.
And the companies that are producing these accessories and the attachments are only creating passive devices and only have a history of creating passive devices, so there's no electronics or software built into them, so right now, we're the only ones we see that are posing to actually do something like this, and have, uh– and don't have a history of not… – You've got about 30 seconds. – So have you tested out the accuracy of the image, and the beam, and, uh, within the millimeter and what you need to be, and did you guys actually test that? – So when we were initially assessing ultrasound as a modality of operation, we ran a lot of simulations using an industry standard ultrasound simulation software, and we saw that the spatial resolution we're looking for is achievable with the device we're using.
– Thank you. – Anybody else? Ten seconds? I mean, I have a question. Now that you've solved the best way for, uh, mothers to have an epidural, will you place invent a way for fathers to lactate? [laughing] Maybe next year, as they say. All right, thank you, judges. That was quick and painless. [cheers and applause] Now let's send things over to Ashley, who's with someone close to Ethos Medical. Ash? – Talk about having a spine. My next interviewee lives and operates by his ideals. It's Dr. Rich Duszak, a mentor at Ethos Medical from Emory University school of medicine. What's up, doc? You have any needles on you tonight? – No, not carrying any right now. – That's good news. I definitely don't need or want an epidural on live TV, although it would make for some entertaining television, but please tell us how is Ethos Medical's device just what the doctor ordered? – Yeah, these guys are, um, they're motivated, they're energetic, and, um, they're crazy smart, and the best thing about this team, though, is they always put patients first. So as somebody who actually puts needles in people's spines for a living, um, yeah, I know, it's a pretty unforgiving part of the anatomy, and so you have to get it right every single time.
What the team has done, which is really terrific is they've engaged doctors and nurses at every step along the way, figuring out what they want, but more importantly what their patients want. And I think that's the winning combination for really making a difference and taking care of a lot of people all across this country. – That's right, 'cause Ethos is the Greek word for the moral element, right? – That's it. – Hit the nail on the head. Didn't even take Greek. If you're on pins and needles to vote for Ethos Medical to win the People's Choice award, text keyword ETHOS to 770-637-3005. Once all six teams have presented. That's all I've got. How about you, Faith? – It's a bird, it's a plane. No? It's our next finalist, team Finger Flyer. ♪♪ – My name's Jacob Parker.
– And I'm Austin Condict. – And we're… – Finger Flyer. – The toy quadcopter market, also known as drones, is bigger than ever. ♪♪ People are fascinated with drones because it's an emerging technology. – And they're basically flying robots. – And it can also be a lot of fun. But they're challenging to operate and control. ♪♪ For young beginners, there's a steep learning curve. They're hard to control, tedious to operate, and break easily. ♪♪ I'm a mechanical engineer. – And I'm a computer scientist. And together, we figured we could combine our disciplines to create an easier way for beginners to get started with these toy drones. ♪♪ – Finger Flyer should win the InVenture Prize because this is never-before-seen technology. – And plenty of people can't wait to get their hands on it. – Finger Flyer's gonna change the way that we use and control quad-copter drones.
– All right, you've got our attention. Team Finger Flyer, the floor– and the sky– is yours. – Thank you. When we were younger, we were fascinated by quad-copter drone flight. But unfortunately, for a young beginner, there's two main options. The first is to purchase a high end, expensive drone with tedious fine-tuned controls, often used for something like photography. The second, more common option, and what I ended up doing, was purchasing a small RC toy drone. However, these are finicky, hard to control, and they break easily. We thought there must be a better way to interact with drones and introduce the next generation of youth with this quad-copter technology. One day, while riding around in a car with my hand out the window, feeling the visceral forces of air against my hand, it struck me– what if we could combine the experience of surfing the wind with your fingertips with quad-copter drones, which would circumvent the controller and create a whole new way to interact with quad-copters? Introducing Finger Flyer, a whole new way to interact with drones that circumvents the controller by literally putting the power of flight at your fingertips.
Now, I could stand up here and tell you about our prototype and its capabilities, but we'd like to show you instead. Finger Flyer is a hoverboard for the hands that circumvents the controller entirely. And we're confident that this is the next big thing that every kid will– can't wait for every Christmas. Finger Flyer is a small, semi-autonomous drone with a downward-facing sensor that maintains the height during flight. The finger port allows a user to physically manipulate the drone to perform tricks, pass to users, or spins. The finger port also allows the drone's onboard sensors to log the user's motion to initiate preprogrammed flight pa-paths or tricks. Finger Flyer's the perfect meshing of both the drone market and the fingerboarding market.
Now, by 2024, the drone market's estimated to reach $9 billion in annual revenue, $3 billion of which specifically belongs to toy and hobbyist drones. Now, the fingerboarding market, on the other– on the other hand, if you're not familiar, uh, in its peak year, despite being niche, did $120 million in sales. And if you're not familiar with fingerboarding, they're popular amongst today's youth. They're like small, uh, uh, skateboards or surfboards controlled by the user's fingers. We originally launched on social media, and in the first few days, have already reached thousands of people. We recently did a poll with 50,000 fingerboarders, and 70% of poll participants said this was the next generation, and they wanted one. Many of which even reached out asking where they could get one, and, "is this real?" Winning InVenture Prize would provide us with the capital to fulfill these preorders by granting us the, uh, the capital needed to set up the initial manufacturing infrastructure and give flight to our idea.
Thank you. – Well done. Thank you. And, uh– [cheers and applause] Thank you for teaching grandma here that fingerboarding is a thing, apparently. Did you all know this? – I did not. – No, but, uh, I have a lot of experience failing to fly drones, so… – All right. We're in your wheelhouse. – I usually get 'em to fly– for some reason, I can never get 'em to come back, so. – Well, why don't you take it away, Behrooz. Let 'em fly. – So, what-what's the range with, uh, with this, and, uh, outside of, uh, hobby, are there uses for this, if the range can be extended? – Yeah. And you're referring to the range of the sensor specifically? – Right, right. – Yeah, so this is optimized to be, uh, about in, uh, someone's play height, right, to-to enjoy. So this is optimized from 20 to 80 centimeters. – Okay. – Um, but that's just the sensor that we're using.
Uh, we have multiple ones– optical sensors, uh, infrared sensors– that can allow it to extend. Um, to answer your second part of the question, uh, we recently, uh, heard back from the International Search Authority. Uh, so we have four patent applications– the provisional, non-provisional US utility, and two international PCTs, which are placeholders, uh, in over 100– over 150 countries. Um, and we heard back from them just recently, the International Search Authority, uh, which did a global patent search, that all 17 of our claims had utility, were non-obvious, with industrial application. Um, we feel that this is something that even though it's, you know, fun and can be very entertaining– and that's what we're focusing on with this startup– um, that it does have wider use. And since we have that intellectual property nailed down, um, we'd be open to expanding in the future. – So-so what would some of those commercial applications be, beyond being kind of a toy or a novelty for kids? – Sure. Just in the sense that, um– 'cause we're really focused with the entertainment aspect of this and introducing that younger audience 'cause it's more intuitive, um, but just this new control method is something that's– uh, I guess it's the most intuitive thing no one's ever thought of, where it could give any kind of commercial drone a new way to interact with it.
Um, but again, I do wanna reiterate, this is primarily– our focus is to engage, um, a younger generation. We've had a lot of success on social media with that. So we really wanna target that. – So-so can you show us? – Yeah, we can give you a quick demonstration if you'd like. So, yeah, if we could lower the lights. One thing, um, that I– unfortunately, the, uh, the sensor on this is optimized for outdoor/indoor use, and so an unnatural environment with this kind of lighting and this kind of floor, uh, can often be difficult. Um, so it's-it's suboptimal, but I'd still love to-to show you what we have so far. – This is indeed unnatural. – Yeah. – I seem to be the one asking questions nobody wants to answer. – Is that a remote that you have in your hand? It's not your phone? – Yeah, so what this is– we just built an app, um, just as a safety measure in case it gets away.
Um, the bluetooth in the room– so it's just co-connecting with our bluetooth. And again, this is just a safety feature with just a power button, um, but I think the bluetooth in the room could be interfering with the, uh, with the connection. So I'll just give it a quick try. – I mean, maybe it's shy. – Yeah. – Yeah, it's live TV. It could be a little camera shy. – While you're– while you're working on that, I have a question about, um, your cost of goods. Uh, what are they, and how do you scale this technology? – Yeah, so we've been in talks, uh, with a major manufacturer, uh, network– it's Alibaba. Uh, and basically they have all these different, uh– they're Chinese-based manufacturers, and, uh, what we would use the CREATE-X money for, um, if we were to win, would basically be to create or to set up this initial manufacturing infrastructure so we could fill all these pre-orders. Um, so to answer your question, once we have that initial manufacturing, it'd be easier to scale up.
Um, and I believe you asked something about the cost as well? – Yeah. – Yeah, uh, so $20,000 would be the initial order, which would get us, uh, 1,000 units, and then we could upsell those, um, from what we think could be $60-100 based on the surveys we've done and what– who we've talked to. – We got one minute for another question or a demonstration. – But given that it's a toy that you're flying around with propellers, are there any safety issues or hurdles you have to get to sell to children? – Great question. Um, so all the FFA, uh, regulations are really just for, um, drones that would leave kind of a certain proximity. So we don't fall under any of those, uh, regulations. Um, but this– uh, we purposely designed the motors low torque– low torque, um, so they will never, you know, cut your hand or hurt at all. And we also have propeller guards as well, um, that are optional.
– Got it. – Oh! – Oh, yeah. – There we go. – So as you can see, it goes to that set height. You can perform spins with it, as such, pass it between your legs– – Oh! [laughter and applause] – Well done. – Thank you. [applause] Thank you. – All right, it appears that that will be the final question of the evening, other than who our winner will be, of course. Thank you, Team Finger Flyer. – Thank you. [cheers and applause] And now, now that all of our teams have presented, our judges have the unenviable task of determining which of our teams have earned our first and second place prizes. So with no time to waste, you are dismissed. Thank you very much. All right, while our judges are back there playing rock paper scissors, let's bring things back down to Earth with Ashley for a different perspective on Team Finger Flyer. Ashley? – Faith, our final guest tonight is Jacob's dad, David Parker, a man who will make you wanna put your hands in the air by the end of this interview.
Hey, David, take us back to that formative moment in Jacob's youth where Finger Flyer was first inspired. – I think it's when Jacob and his brother were in their early teens. I used to drive them around in the car– they'd have their arms out the car window, uh, using small surfboards to ride the air with their fingers. Every once in a while, these things would flip off and end up in the middle of the road, and I'd have to pull off, go out in the middle of the road, retrieve them. This happened a couple times, and I said, "we can't keep doing this. This is too unsafe. "Someone could get hurt, and it's probably gonna be me. "Uh, you gotta figure out another way to do this." And from there, uh, the idea just took off.
– It took off– good pun, David! Give this guy a round of applause for that– it took off. Nice. [applause] Could I maybe just one more time see those hand moves again? Oh, yeah. Go, David, go, David. Okay, if you want to see Finger Flyer swoop into a People's Choice win, you're gonna text keyword FLYER– F-L-Y-E-R– to (770) 637-3005. And now that all of our finalists have presented, it's time to officially open up voting for People's Choice Award! So, to vote, text your team's keyword to (770) 637-3005. Remember, you can only vote once per device. And watch out for autocorrect. That's always important. Here are those keywords for you one more time. To vote for HANDLD to win the People's Choice Award, text BIKE to (770) 637-3005. To vote for TremorTrainer, text the keyword TREMOR.
If you think Team Nix takes the cake tonight, that keyword is NIX. If your choice is Team Unflodit, text UNFOLDIT– one word– to (770) 637-3005. To cast your vote for Ethos Medical, the keyword is ETHOS. That's E-T-H-O-S for the non-spellers among us. And again, if you're pulling for Team Finger Flyer, text FLYER– F-L-Y-E-R– to (770) 637-3005. Once you vote, you'll receive our confirmation text message– so official. If you're not near your phone, don't worry. We've got other options for ya. You can also vote online by visiting GPP– GPB.ORG/VOTE. Our People's Choice voting will only be open for a very short window, so get those keywords in. We'll have the results to you shortly. And while you cast your votes, I'd like to tell you about a Georgia Tech program that is giving K-12 students across this great state a jump on innovative thinking. And to do that, I'll hand it off to my good friend and co-co-host, the very musical Ashley Mengwasser. Ash? [harp strumming] Oh! Hey, Ash.
Didn't see you there. We're here at the Savannah Arts Academy on our Southeast Georgia tour of schools participating in the K-12 InVenture Prize. Let's go. Oh, uh, little help, please. Students participating in the K-12 InVenture Prize are solving real world problems. You can see why Thomas Edison said, "the greatest "invention in the world is the mind of a child." This is where young inventors have their very own light bulb moment. Can you tell me what the K-12 InVenture Prize has taught you? – I can create anything with my imagination. – I think students who participate in the K-12 InVenture Prize learn teamwork, and creativity, and it really helps you work with other people. – InVenture Prize has taught me to think about other people and reach out to feel what they're feeling. – High-five, girl! – It gives us self-confidence and speaking skills.
– Like for right now. You can wave at the camera. – It covers so many areas of our standards that we have to teach, and it just makes it fun. – You would think I was a rock star when I told 'em they were gettin' to do this. – You are a rock star! ♪♪ And Georgia Tech's K-12 InVenture Prize is having a lasting impact on students. – The K-12 InVenture Prize program has changed our culture at Garrison because our students are more critical thinkers, and they're also having fun learning. – Students understand that they are creating real world solutions to problems that exist in our society. – So, this is really, I think, gonna help fuel, you know, kids wanting to be at school, and that's gonna help them learn more. – This is how the real world's gonna be when these kids grow up. About half the jobs they'll go into right now have not been invented.
So if you have those problem-solving skills, engineering, design, process skills, you'll go far in life. ♪♪ – I believe any kid at any age can become an inventor. – All it takes is really three things: heart, passion, and an open mind. – Think outside of the box. Don't do small things. Go big. – Nothing is impossible. – Well that's a wrap for me, Ashley. The students are just heading home to dream up the next great invention. So, I'll toss it back to you and Faith at the Ferst Center. Oh, and by the way, that magenta is a great look on you! How did she know that? Wow, thanks, Ashley! We must have the same taste in clothes. It's kind of uncanny. And by the way, all the resources educators could ever need to execute the Georgia Tech K-12 InVenture Prize program at their school can be found on the website below. That's k12inventure.
gatech.edu. It's truly inspiring how much of an impact the Georgia Tech InVenture Prize has had in such a short amount of time. And speaking of time, our People's Choice voting period is nearly at its end. If you have yet to vote for your favorite team for our People's Choice Award, text now or forever hold your peace. How's that for Finger Flying? Okay, back to you, Faith. – Thank you, Ashley. And you do look great in magenta. Oh, by the way, some of those K-12 participants Ashley just mentioned are here with us tonight. So please give them a nice round of applause. [applause] You may be seeing some of those curious, imaginative students up on this stage someday. The Georgia Tech InVenture Prize has been going strong for more than 10 years. But before this competition, student innovation at Georgia Tech was limited. It's because of programs like the Georgia Tech InVenture Prize and CREATE-X that there has been a sea change on campus, making student innovation a mainstay of the educational experience.
♪♪ – Student innovation at Georgia Tech is growing like never before, and the impact it's having on undergraduate success is changing the conversation on campus. – It's an incredibly exciting time to be at Georgia Tech, and our students have never been more in the driver's seat. You know, they've always had great ideas, but now they have the programs and support to really make it happen, create their own jobs, or create a company. – Resources like the brand new Interdisciplinary Design Commons, as well as the newly renovated Invention Studio, are providing students with tools to create their own futures. But the resources that Georgia Tech provides don't end there. Programs such as CREATE-X, as well as The Georgia Tech InVenture Prize, give students opportunities to hone their entrepreneurial skills and even start their own companies, like fourth-year student Sarah Hamer. Through CREATE-X, Sarah turned her idea for a business casual clothing brand into DASDUO, a thriving business.
– I was so excited to be accepted into the CREATE-X program at Georgia Tech. The mentors at CREATE-X helped me shape my idea into a company and determine who my market was. – Another success story is that of Georgia Tech alumni Zack Braun and Tyler Sisk, who turned their InVenture Prize entry, FireHUD, into a thriving company. – The Georgia Tech InVenture Prize helped us think like entrepreneurs, and it gave us the resources that we needed to get our company off the ground. – Since then, we've found office space, started hiring staff, and are on track to hit $1 million in sales this year. [whistle blows] – Just like the Whistle and the Ramblin' Wreck, innovation is quickly becoming a Georgia Tech tradition, creating a generation of Georgia Tech entrepreneurs. But the influence of Georgia Tech's innovation culture is being felt before students even get to campus. Claire Crose, a first-year Georgia Tech student, participated in the K-12 InVenture Prize when she was in high school, taking second place in that competition and winning the TAG Manufacturing Award, before going on to finish second in the National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurial Expo. – Georgia Tech's K-12 InVenture Prize really stimulated my interest in engineering, and it also showed me that Georgia Tech has an innovative culture unlike anything I've seen at other schools.
Whether I start my own company or not, the entrepreneurial skills that I've gained at Georgia Tech will help me for the rest of my life. ♪♪ – Our judges are still comparing their notes, so you have a few more minutes to get those People Ch– People's Choice votes in. There's a lot on the line tonight, and nobody knows that more than our finalists. Let's see how they're handling the pressure backstage, where Ashley– or one of her doppelgangers– is standing by. Ashleys? – Just me this time, Faith, the original Ashley. I'd call myself "The OA," but that show already exists. As for the pressure backstage, I brought these tissues, but the vibes are entirely upbeat. So, forget about that. Okay– oh, Buzz is here.
Does anybody know if he's single? We'll talk about that later. So, teams, tell me: what went well for you tonight? Highs and lows, go! – Um, we're really happy that we got it running. Uh, we didn't anticipate all the noise throwing off the safety trigger, but we're still happy we could showcase some of it, even if it was suboptimal, uh, conditions. – You did great. – You know, I think our pitch went really well. I think we had some technical issues with the video, but if you wanna learn more, go to handldcycling.com and feel free to check us out. – Shameless plug. Okay, Nix? – Uh, low was definitely two of our teammates not being able to be here tonight, but I think we killed it, and thank you for everyone who came out to support us. – Killed it, he says.
UnfoldIt. – We had so much fun tonight on the entire stage. Cliff and Jacquie did an incredible job. The funniest part was seeing all of our friends have huge posters of our faces in the audience. – TremorTrainer, looking nice and steady over here. – We were definitely nervous going out there, but I felt like we were definitely able to convey how much our device can change somebody's life. – Yes, you did. Cassidy. – Yeah, the judges' questions kept us on our toes, but I think we did a good job handling them. Unfortunately, when Faith asked, uh, if reimbursement was a good thing, I wasn't sure if I was supposed to answer, so I ended up just saying yes. [laughter] – Good job. Did I get everybody in? I did, I got everybody in? Okay, great. Well, we'll have to-to wait and see how it all actually pans out. And Faith is very close to those decision-makers right now. Faith? – Yes, thank you, Ashley. All right, it looks like our judges are back.
You are not sweaty. You look sanguine. Uh, tell us, what was the most difficult part of your decision? – Well, I've been doin' this for, I don't know– third or fourth time– and it just gets more difficult because, uh, the, uh, teams keep getting smarter, and the solutions keep getting more complex, and at the same time, more groundbreaking and more influence– and more, uh, you know, just impactful. – And was it very different to be on the other side of things this time, Erika? – Oh, yes. You know, we-we spent some time thinking about what questions, you know, we think we wanna ask, and during the presentations, they start answering them, so on the spot right here, you're literally seeing questions formulate as we're thinking of them. Uh, so they're very well prepared and, you know, I'm glad we were able to have, uh, good discussion with them.
But it definitely put us on the spot, too. – All right, you may have noticed by now that our People's Choice voting is officially closed, which means it's finally the moment of truth. Let's have all of our finalists please rejoin us on stage. And judges, I would like you to come up– [cheers and applause] We also– we also have– [cheers and applause] There's a lot of love in this house. [cheers and applause] We also have a very special guest who will help present tonight's trophies. From Shoal Creek Elementary School in Rockdale County, please help me welcome kindergartner and K-12 participant, Ms. Evelynne Baskett! [cheers and applause] – So– thank you, Evelynne. Let's start by presenting our People's Choice Award, worth $5,000. Evelynne, may I have the envelope please? Thank you very much.
Ah, the sound of Velcro. It's so exciting. All right. And the winner of the 2019 Georgia Tech InVenture Prize People's Choice Award is… Team Nix. [cheers and applause] – Congratulations. All right, now it's time to announce our second place winner, who will receive assistance in securing a patent, along with $10,000 to help grow their idea. Evelynne, may I have the envelope for second place, please? Thank you so much. And… second place Georgia Tech InVenture Prize goes to TremorTrainer. [cheers and applause] Congratulations! And now, for the main event, it's time to announce our first place team, who will take home tonight's grand prize: assistance in securing a patent, a spot in Georgia Tech's CREATE-X Startup Launch Program, and a check for $20,000. May I have the envelope, please? Thank you, Evelynne! And the winner of the 2019 Georgia Tech InVenture Prize is.
.. Ethos Medical. [cheers and applause] Come on down, guys. [applause] All right, so tell me quickly, who would you like to thank? – We have to thank [indistinct] for making it out here tonight, and also, uh, Professor James Rains. – Yeah. Yeah, uh, Professor James Rains and Professor James [indistinct]. Both of us– both of them were CREATE-X advisors, so really helpful for us. – BME department here at Tech, and then the CREATE-X program. – And probably thank the judges, right? Yeah. Thank you. Congratulations. – Congratulations. – Thank you. – Can I– can I hand that to you? Thank you. All right, that's it! Another day, another $35,000 in startup money and patents well earned on the InVenture Prize Stage. If you can't wait for more innovation competition, worry not– you shan't wait long. That is right, the Georgia InVenture Prize will be premiering on April 4th, and less than two weeks later, the ACC InVenture Prize will broadcast live from North Carolina State University. That's happening on April 17th.
So, mark those dates in your calendar. Congratulations to all of tonight's finalists, especially our People's Choice winner, Team Nix, our second place winner, Team TremorTrainer, and our first place winner, Ethos Medical! [cheers and applause] A big thank you to my co-hosts, the Ashley Mengwassers, and to our judges, and everyone who watched and supported our program. And remember, necessity may be the mother of invention, but Georgia Tech is your daddy! [laughter] Good night! [applause] Congratulations! ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ – Georgia Tech was founded over a century ago with the idea that change is ever-constant. A groundbreaking here leads to a state-of-the-art facility where the next medical breakthroughs are being created. An idea here leads to the site of a technology anchor for an entire region, which sparks the next generation of big ideas. We believe that what's created here should impact everywhere..