The two-week workshop of the INNOSID project, which deals with the topic of social inclusion of people with disabilities with the help of new technologies, has ended. The workshop was held in Dubrovnik, from 13th to 24th September. Students from four European countries (Hungary, Croatia, Spain and Portugal) participated in all planned activities with the aim of getting to know each other as well as training in the field of new technologies and social inclusion.
The workshop began with an introductory presentation and a welcome message from the project coordinator Jurica Babić. Then, language and international culture experts from France, Catherine Sable and Alison Gourves, broke the ice in the physical acquaintance of students with their lecture and introduced them to the topic of intercultural differences and similarities. Also, the multicultural evening, where students presented their homeland with traditional food and drinks, further contributed to the introduction of the students.
The Portuguese duo Rui Manuel Pereira Lopes and Rosa Maria Leandro de Oliveira, from a public higher education institution in the service of society, briefly stated important facts about social inclusion, followed by team practical work in which students made a short video related to social inclusion.
Then, each student group had a pitch presentation about the solution they developed during the virtual part of the workshop (April 12-21). Namely, the virtual part of the workshop preceded the current physical part, where students had to list the requirements for the software solution and make a prototype solution for the assigned study case.
Professor Željka Car and assistant professor Jurica Babić from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb (FER) gave a lecture on the software product life cycle, how to collect requests from users, what are assistive technologies and how to develop a prototype.
After that, Matea Žilak, also from FER, presented augmented reality (AR) with practical tasks where students were introduced to various applications of AR. One of the applications of AR is in museums presented by Carmen Bachiller, from the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV) in Spain, a solution developed at their faculty. After getting acquainted with AR, Beatriz Rey Solaz from UPV gave a lecture on virtual reality (VR), after which the students developed their own application in VR.
The last presentation in the first week of the workshop was held by the Glavić Polyclinic. Ivana Popović presented a wide range of neurorehabilitation robots that they own. She explained how the robots work, what interesting accessories they have, and patiently answered all the questions from the audience.
The second week of the workshop began with a lecture on the basics of machine learning given by Professor Krunoslav Žubrinić from the University of Dubrovnik (UNIDU). The continuation of the lecture, with an emphasis on the practical application of machine learning, was presented by Professor Mario Miličević, also from UNIDU.
In the continuation of the workshop, professors Marianna Zichar and Ildiko Papp, from the University of Debrecen, presented interesting facts and applications of 3D printing. The students then created their own 3D models which were eventually printed on a 3D printer.
An interesting presentation was given by Ana Kešelj, teaching assistant at UNIDU, in the field of holographic technologies. After a short introductory part, the students created their own holograms and, with the help of a mobile device and a laptop, revived objects in the holographic world.
A series of lectures in the technical field was followed by a lecture by Dinka Vuković, President of the Croatian Association for Down Syndrome, who described the obstacles and challenges faced by people with Down syndrome and how they face them. With this lecture, students were introduced to one of the many target groups that can improve their lifestyle by applying technology with an emphasis on new technologies, which is the focus of this workshop.
After the lecture by the experts, the presentation podium was also awarded to students who presented prototypes of solutions that they worked diligently in teams throughout the workshop. Each student had the opportunity to experience working in a multicultural team. At the final presentations, the representatives of the teams presented the case study they dealt with, how they developed it and finally what kind of prototype they developed. After a series of very good presentations, the committee had to single out the group with the best presentation and developed prototype. Given that all student groups did their job resolutely, the nuances decided. Congratulations to all once again!
We are grateful first of all to all the lecturers who prepared interesting presentations and completed them with practical applications. We also thank all the students for participating because this workshop was made for them. We hope that enriched with knowledge about new technologies and the social inclusion of people with disabilities, they will pass on new knowledge to their colleagues and acquaintances they meet in everyday life.