JKUAT students develop smart walking stick and road conditions monitoring app


The 9th annual JKUAT Tech Expo ended with a tie between two innovations: Walking Buddy and Safari Wiz shared number 1 spot of a pool of 20 contenders.

The Walking Buddy was developed by JKUAT student Sackey Freshia. It is a handy tool for the visually-impaired as it predicts users distance from an obstacle and alerts the user with the help of vibrations and audio cues. “The stick is integrated with Google Maps, enabling the user to navigate to a given location on their own, using an audio guide,” explained Freshia, “It also comes with a button that a user can press to immediately alert their emergency contact in case of anything, and sends their precise location to the contact.”

Safari Wiz was developed by three students; Gilbert Waliuba, Benson Thuku, Lang’at Nelson and Jaffred Simiyu. Safari Wiz is a waze-like app that crowdsources information from road users on incidents occurring on the roads, such as accidents, bad weather conditions, police roadblocks, among others. Users would be able to send and receive alerts in real time. It primarily employs GIS technology: GPS and maps. The app would be of great use to avoid traffic and confusion in case of any eventuality.

Path Finder, the innovation by Job Muchama, Elias Koome, Hassan Adan and Gideon Omangi, bagged the 1st runner up position at JKUAT Tech Expo 9.0. Pathfinder uses light dependent sensors, and attempts to redefine the way solar panels are mounted, in order to maximize their exposure to sunlight.