Friday, August 31st, 2018

Media Contact Jeffrey Coote Tel: (02) 8355 3130 [email protected]

From the world’s first modular self-fit hearing aid to a virtual reality treatment platform for spider phobia, unique inventions demonstrate thriving innovation in Australia

Melbourne, Australia – 30 August 2018 -- The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA), the nation’s peak industry body for the technology sector, has tonight announced the National iAwards and PitchFest winners for 2018. AIIA’s iAwards, now celebrating 25 years, is Australia’s leading awards program for technology innovation. PitchFest is an opportunity for iAwards finalists to showcase their innovations to an expert panel of industry judges.
Over a period of six months, entrants from ACT, New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia have competed for the State titles. Winners from each state and territory then came head to head for the national title in their respective categories.
The award categories included Business Service Markets, Community Service Markets, Consumer Markets, Industrial & Primary Industries, Infrastructure & Platforms, Students, Research & Development Project, Public Sector & Government, Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning, Big Data, Startup, Innovation of the Year and the Victoria State Government Inspiration of the Year.
At a gala event held this evening at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, The Hon. Philip Dalidakis MLC, Victorian Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade, presented Blamey Saunders Hears with the Victoria State Government Inspiration of the Year Award.
“The Victorian Government is proud to support AIIA’s iAwards which showcase the incredible innovation and expertise we have in our tech sector. The talent on show at AIIA’s iAwards will play a crucial role in Australia’s future, not only by making our lives better but by growing the digital economy and creating new jobs,” said Mr Dalidakis.
Rob Fitzpatrick, AIIA CEO, said the passion and dedication shown by the 2018 finalists will inspire other Australians to continue to develop ideas and further technological innovation in Australia.
“What we’ve seen tonight from our finalists is awe-inspiring. It’s real proof of the power of innovation to change our world. A modular, self-fitting hearing aid is nothing less than life-changing. Using VR to treat phobias is truly inspired thinking. We’ve got robots that write their own code and a world first automatic, real-time, artificial intelligence shark detection system. These are creative, clever, and all home-grown innovations.
“We’re especially proud tonight, as for 25 years AIIA’s iAwards has been bringing inventive minds together from all Australian states and territories. AIIA congratulates 2018 iAwards winners and finalists. The inspiration behind this year’s iAwards program has been truly staggering. We look forward to the next 25 years of celebrating innovation.”
AIIA Innovation of the Year Award

Complexica – Larry, the Digital Analyst®

Victoria State Government Inspiration of the Year Award 

Blamey Saunders Hears – Facett: A Modular Self-fit Hearing Aid System (winner)

Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning Innovation of the Year

The Ripper Group & UTS – SharkSpotter© (winner)
Boundlss – Boundlss (merit)
Complexica – Larry, the Digital Analyst® (merit)

Big Data Innovation of the Year

Staybil – Staybil (winner)
Agile Digital, Vault Systems, Gulanga & Department of Health – Secure Health Data Research & Analytics Platform (merit)
CHOICE – Transformer (merit)

Business Service Markets

Complexica – Larry, the Digital Analyst® (winner)
Codebots – Codebots Platform (merit)
SalesPreso – SalesPreso: A Sales Enablement Platform (merit)

Community Service Markets

Blamey Saunders Hears – Facett: A Modular Self-fit Hearing Aid System (winner)
CSIRO Australian e-Health Research Centre – AEye Screening System for Patients with Diabetes (merit)

Consumer Markets

Voxon Photonics – VX1 3D Volumetric Display (winner)
Australia Post – Digital iD (merit)

Industrial & Primary Industries

CSIRO's Data61 – Hovermap (winner)

Infrastructure & Platforms Innovation of the Year

Penten – AltoCrypt Stik (winner)
Blamey Saunders Hears – Facett: A Modular Self-fit Hearing Aid System (merit)
Augment Space – Self Serve 360° Virtual Tour Creation Platform (merit)

Junior Students

St Joseph's Catholic Primary School Como – HappyNess App: Helping Girls Return to Happiness (winner)
Sacred Heart College – Passion your Purpose (merit)

Public Sector & Government

Thales – Stingrae Enhanced Boarding Party Capability (winner)
Department of Agriculture and Water Resources – Biosecurity Reporting for Northern Australia (merit)

Research & Development Project of the Year

Blamey Saunders Hears – Facett: A Modular Self-fit Hearing Aid System (winner)
Data to Decisions CRC – Narrative Visualisation Project (merit)
V2i Group – V2i Realtime (merit)

Senior Students

Kooringal High School – The Amazing Annoyatron (winner)
John Monash Science School – Movement Impeding Device: A Biomedical Apparatus (merit)
Rosny College & Launceston College – aWear: Aged Care Watch (merit)

Startup of the Year

CancerAid – CancerAid (winner)
HUMM Technologies – HUMM Technologies (merit)

Undergraduate Tertiary Students

The University of Adelaide – Automated Hip Fracture Detection (winner)
Edith Cowan University – Social Circles VR - Virtual reality learning tool for students with special needs (merit)
Victoria University – The Advanced Fire Sensor (merit)

AIIA’s 2018 PitchFest and Innovation Showcase, sponsored by CSIRO’s DATA61 and hosted by RMIT, continues to be an exciting feature event in AIIA’s iAwards program. Prior to the iAwards ceremony it provided a day-long opportunity for the community to hear from a range of this year's finalists, as they pitch their innovations to our esteemed panel and live audience. See notes below for details on expert panel members.
“The Victorian Department of Economic Development has been a long-time supporter of AIIA’s iAwards Program, recognising it as a fantastic showcase and celebration of Australian tech innovation, and a key part of our Digital Innovation Festival. It has been so inspiring this year to see such a broad range of innovations,” said Kathy Coultas, Director, Strategic Innovation Investment at the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources, State Government of Victoria.
2018 PitchFest is structured around the three student categories and the five core organisation categories.
Junior Students

Sacred Heart College – Passion your Purpose

Senior Students

Rosny College & Launceston College – aWear: Aged Care Watch

Undergraduate Tertiary Students

University of Wollongong – GenSpeak - A Language Program for Everyone

Public Sector & Government

CSIRO & Western Health – CALD Assist

Consumer Markets

Voxon Photonics – VX1 3D Volumetric Display

Community Service Markets

Blamey Saunders Hears – Facett: A Modular Self-fit Hearing Aid System

Industrial & Primary Industries

CSIRO's Data61 – Hovermap

Business Service Markets

Boundlss – Boundlss

The 2018 iAwards is proudly supported by Major National iAwards Partner the Victorian Government, National Program Sponsors Informed Solutions and AuDA, and Platinum Table Sponsors NGS Global, Launchvic, Edith Cowan University, Optus, Dialog, University of Technology Sydney, Oakton, CSIRO’s DATA61, The University of Melbourne, Cisco, Holding Redlich, Salesforce and Wipro.
About the AIIA’s iAwards
AIIA’s iAwards honours both companies at the cutting edge of technology innovation and leading professionals across the digital economy. Most importantly, AIIA’s iAwards recognises the achievements of home-grown Australian innovators.
Join the conversation
AIIA’s iAwards gets people talking about digital innovation. Take advantage of the buzz by joining the conversation with #iAwards and connecting with the iAwards on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.
About the AIIA
The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) is Australia’s peak representative body and advocacy group for those in the digital ecosystem. Since 1978, AIIA has pursued activities to stimulate and grow the digital ecosystem, to create a favourable business environment for members and to contribute to Australia’s economic prosperity. AIIA delivers outstanding member value by providing a strong voice of influence; building a sense of community through events and education; enabling a network for collaboration and inspiration; and developing compelling content and relevant, interesting information.
Media Contact
Jeffrey Coote
Tel: (02) 8355 3130
[email protected]
PitchFest Expert panel members

Adam Reid (Executive Director of Industry, Innovation, Science and Small Business Department for Industry and Skills, Government of South Australia); Adrian Turner (CEO CSIRO’s Data61); Bambi Price (Director Tron Systems); Bettina Konti (Chief Digital Officer ACT Government); Cameron Boardman (CEO .au Domain Administration (auDA)); Craig Baty (Craig Baty & Associates); Elizabeth Vega (Global CEO Informed Solutions); George Li (Co-founder and CEO BajaBoard); John Ieraci (Chief Customer Officer of Segment Sales Telstra); Kathryn Duncan (Technologies Curriculum Leader Villanova College); Kathy Coultas (Director, Strategic Innovation Investment Victoria Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources); Kristina Kipper (National Sector Leader, Technology, Media and Telecommunications KPMG Australia); Lochlann Dwyer (Lead Digital Technologies Teacher, Murray Bridge High School); Marleese Attilakos (Senior Client Executive, Public Sector Cisco); Martin Hoffmam (Secretary NSW Department of Finance, Services and Innovation); Matt Allen (Venture Capital Business Development, Amazon Web Services); Professor Michael Brünig (Head of the School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, University of Queensland); Murray Hurps (Director of Entrepreneurship University of Technology Sydney); Paul Cooper (Associate Professor Health Informatics); Peggy Renders (Regional Vice-President of PreSales and Customer Solutions SAP Asia Pacific Japan), Rebecca Campbell-Burns (Managing Director Victoria Escient); Sam Hannah-Rankin (Director of Public Sector Innovation Department of Premier and Cabinet in Victoria); Sara Caplan (Partner PwC); Dr Selvi Kannan (Academic Advisor, Victoria University); and Wayne Fitzsimmons (Chairman of the Pearcey Foundation).
Descriptions of winner and merit recipient projects 
Advanced Fire Sensor, The
Students at Victoria University bring a new edge solution to fire prevention and safety at a new innovative level through the use of advanced sensors. The advanced sensors’ use of AI technology protect people and their homes, allowing the 21st century individual to have peace of mind. This is an Australian innovation which is making a difference and has the potential to create positive change for the community and in people’s lives.
AEye Screening System for Patients with Diabetes
CSIRO Australian e-Health Research Centre is the first in the world to develop an AI system (AEye) and deploy it into real-world clinical setting to demonstrate the use of AI for diagnosing eye diseases. It combines the techniques of telemedicine and deep learning based diagnosis with “referral/ no referral” decision at primary care clinical environment.
Age Care Watch
The aged care sector is constantly growing. As more people move into aged care homes, devices need to be designed to assist these residents in their daily lives. This project is designed to help elderly who forget to take medication and are at risk of falling. At the moment, there are no devices specifically designed to assist nurses, and instead, aged care homes have to purchase $500 smartwatches. The inventors plan to bring this price down drastically, and cover all the needs of aged care homes. This project consists of two parts; a physical watch which the elderly will wear, and an online service to monitor and get alerts from every watch. The system will be able to alert nurses when a resident needs help, show medication reminders, detect if a resident has left home unattended, and detect falls.
AltoCrypt Stik
Penten's AltoCrypt Stik provides Defence and Government with secure wireless access to highly classified networks allowing the workforce to be more mobile and create modern work spaces. Only 25% of Defence workers use laptops or tablets compared to 77% of business workers. AltoCrypt Stik removes the security barrier preventing Defence and Government workers using laptops and tablets.
Amazing Annoyatron, The
The Amazing Annoyatron is a fun and affordable educational kit designed to introduce kids and teens to electronics and coding. It was created by a 14 year old high school student from Wagga Wagga NSW, who designed the kit and its 20 projects, along with their website (, to sell the product and to house the kit's instructions. The innovation is unique in terms of its ability to introduce electronics and coding to a range of users that may not ordinarily be interested in exploring these technologies. Kids can learn about coding with 20+ cool creations that they can build and re-build to prank family and friends. The invention makes learning about technology super exciting and is fun for the whole family. The Amazing Annoyatron can give kids a head start with electronics and coding, preparing them for a tech-savvy future.
Automated Hip Fracture Detection
William Gale developed an automated machine learning system (based on deep learning) to detect hip fractures from frontal pelvis x-rays, an important and common radiological task. The system was modelled with 53,000 clinical x-rays (representing a decade of scans from the Royal Adelaide Hospital) and can be applied to clinical data, automatically excluding inappropriate and technically unsatisfactory studies. The system demonstrated diagnostic performance that matches or even exceeds the performance of human radiologists – making it the first large-scale method to reach such performance on a clinical radiological task. A new method of interpreting the predictions of deep learning-based classifiers, which has been well received by doctors, has also been developed. Translated to clinical practice, such a system has the potential to increase the efficiency of diagnosis, reduce the need for expensive additional testing, expand access to “expert-level” medical image interpretation, and improve overall patient outcomes.
Biosecurity Reporting for Northern Australia
The solution delivered seven components of a single biosecurity solution within eight months, 1. Community engagement public reporting webpage, 2. Community engagement management web application, 3. Biosecurity reporting iPhone native application, for Indigenous rangers, 4. Biosecurity reporting management application, 5. Biosecurity reporting Android native application, 6. Permits web application and management application, 7. Inspections web application and workflow system.
Boundlss has built an AI-powered digital health coach and engagement platform that helps people transform their lives with small behaviour changes every day. Chat to your coach about nutrition, health and mental wellbeing. Whether you want a delicious smoothie recipe or a kettle bell exercise, your coach is there 24/7.                                                   
CancerAid is a doctor-designed app that is changing the way we provide cancer care, by empowering patients from diagnosis, through treatment, and into survivorship. The app lets patients understand the diagnosis, organises their journey and helps them feel connected through a support team. CancerAid is bringing a patient-centric experience into a provider-centric world, and is free to download for Android and Apple users worldwide.
Codebots Platform
Codebots is a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS). Put simply, Codebots is code that writes code. By utilising artificial intelligence, domain specific languages, model driven engineering and the scientific business model, Codebots can write, on average, 92% of a software application's code. It’s most popular bot, Lampbot, can write 300,000 lines of code in a minute.
Digital iD
Australians constantly need to prove their identity for everyday transactions, and multiple physical documents and account log-ins makes this time-consuming and frustrating. Digital iD™ is a smartphone-enabled platform that simplifies the process across all sectors, assurance levels and channels. Consumers verify their information once, then use their smartphone to prove who they are, wherever Digital iD™ is accepted.
Facett: A Modular Self-fit Hearing Aid System
Facett is the world’s first modular self-fit hearing aid. It is part of a digital solution that reduces barriers to hearing aid uptake and enables users to program their settings independently—regardless of proximity to an audiologist. Facett uses magnetic modules to simplify daily maintenance tasks and facilitate inexpensive upgrades, and empowers people who have dexterity and visual impairments with independence.                                            
HappyNess App: Helping Girls Return to Happiness
With increasing levels of anxiety in schools alongside busy home schedules, research shows that Aussie kids are the most stressed kids on earth. Team HappyNess wanted to help find a solution to this growing problem and have created an app for the Android platform called HappyNess. It's designed for girls aged 7 to 12 and helps girls return to happiness when life gets stressful. There are five ways the app seeks to do this: 1. Music - Listen to the team's favourite songs; 2. Meditation - Relax and follow a guided meditation; 3. Laughter - You won't be able to hold it in after seeing the cutest kitten, puppy or baby videos; 4. Exercise - Proven to turn a mood around by following an easy workout; and 5. Positive affirmations - Scroll through this hand-picked list of motivational statements. HappyNess is using technology to solve this challenge in fun way.
Hovermap is a drone autonomy and 3D lidar mapping payload, which allows a drone to detect and avoid collisions, navigate in GPS-denied environments, build accurate 3D maps, and perform autonomous beyond line-of-sight missions. This enables a drone to fly autonomously in an underground mine to map inaccessible areas, improving safety and providing valuable data that is otherwise impossible to collect.
HUMM Technologies
A wearable and software platform that measures and boosts cognitive performance in mentally intensive tasks, starting with esports athletes and enthusiasts. HUMM Technologies’ device harnesses cutting edge neuroscience to monitor and stimulate the brain’s performance, boosting concentration, minimising fatigue, improving reaction times and increasing mental bandwidth.
Larry, the Digital Analyst®
Larry, the Digital Analyst® is an enterprise software application developed by Complexica, which helps B2B sales staff become more effective. Larry is based on external datasets and machine learning algorithms, and brings optimisation to the sales process by automatically telling each salesperson what customers/prospects to visit, what conversations to have, what products to offer, and at what price.
Movement Impeding Device: A Biomedical Apparatus
The innovation titled as the Movement Impeding Device (MID) is a biomedical research apparatus invented and designed by students to improve methodological processes involving Zebrafish embryos in research labs. In contact with scientists at a lab using Zebrafish, a common issue when imaging or handling Zebrafish was their tendency to 'wiggle' and move in petri dishes, creating issues for the researcher. What the inventors strove to do was alleviate this issue with a cost-effective solution that would be long-lasting and effective in its use. The device they created aims to aid researchers in their handling of Zebrafish embryos and larvae when being monitored under strict conditions; such as visual imaging. The innovation achieves this through an intuitive design which creates soft indents in the agarose gel (which the petri dish is filled with) for the embryos to sit in. This is the primary function which the device aims to achieve consistently.
Narrative Visualisation Project
The Narrative Visualisation Project seeks to revolutionise how law enforcement investigators and prosecutors view and communicate cases in a digital form. The result is an interactive tool that uses multimedia and a storytelling format to visualise the information, facts and narratives supporting an investigative case.
Passion your Purpose
Passion Your Purpose is an app aimed at teens that enables users to find their true purpose in life by helping them to discover their passions. The platform allows young people to take a passion quiz and then based on outcomes be invited by group leaders of the related club to join. Leaders earn points for creating inclusivity.
SalesPreso: A Sales Enablement Platform
SalesPreso is a technology platform transforming enterprise sales by automating its most time-consuming activity: creating customised presentations. SalesPreso is not Prezi or PowerPoint. It is an enterprise-grade platform that replaces traditional presentations with interactive 'presos', by integrating customer-relevant data from existing business systems. SalesPreso’s artificial intelligence engine, PresoAI, recommends the best individual slides to suit each customer and scenario.
Secure Health Data Research & Analytics Platform
This platform solves the long-term challenge of how to support scientific research on sensitive health data for public good, without breaching the privacy of Australian citizens. Gulanga worked with the Department of Health, Agile Digital and Vault Systems using Blockchain technology to conceive and implement a privacy-centric data science platform. Now researchers can securely collaborate on public health research.
Self Serve 360° Virtual Tour Creation Platform
Self Serve 360 Virtual Tour Creation Platform is a revolutionary cloud-based platform that allows anybody to create a 360-degree immersive virtual tour in a matter of minutes. The platform gives creators the ability to simulate motion in space using static 360-degree panoramic images. It also helps add floor plans for real estate, menus for restaurants and many more interactive content pieces to an easily shareable web property.
SharkSpotter© is the world's first automatic, real-time artificially intelligent Shark Detection System for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (drones). SharkSpotter© enables drones to patrol beaches and detect sharks, other safety hazards (i.e. rips) and people in distress, through real-time image processing. It is currently deployed at more than a dozen beaches and has assisted over 50 people in the past year.
Social Circles VR - Virtual reality learning tool for students with special needs
Social Circles VR is a virtual reality learning tool that teaches students with special needs protective behaviours. In particular, Social Circles VR focuses on allowing the students to practice choosing appropriate levels of intimacy with people they may encounter that come from different social circles.
Commuting is terrible. For humans, the planet and also, for businesses. By optimising staff distribution and ensuring employees work closest to home, Staybil addresses the root causes of commuter congestion. Staybil’s software uses transport network data, Google maps API and smart HR data to create huge network optimisations for services companies, reducing up to 17% of employee turnover and associated costs.
Stingrae Enhanced Boarding Party Capability
Stingrae improves the operational effectiveness of naval boarding operations at sea and increases crew safety. Transforming boarding operations from a slow and largely pen and paper based solution to a secure near real time digital capability – a customised software solution integrates mobile, wearable and wireless technologies.
Transformer is your personal agent for finding a better electricity deal. By scanning your bill and comparing it against every publicly available deal, Transformer automatically finds the best offer and switches you. It then continually monitors your bills, so you always stay on the best deal available. An Australian first, it does not take commissions from energy companies.
VX1 3D Volumetric Display
Voxon has invented the VX1 3D Volmetric Display, which can render 3D data in physical space, providing a way to view 3D objects from infinite viewing angles. 3D volumetric technology brings digital content and 3D data to life, helps empower people to visualise, communicate, learn and have fun in a collaborative manner with no barrier to experience. No special glasses are required.
V2i Realtime
V2i Realtime enables a more effective virtual collaboration in digital 3D spaces through an easy-to-use visual representation of complex information, including immersive VR environments that activate spatial memory and a sense of scale and presence. V2i Realtime features innovative design simulation and business-oriented analysis tools to transform the way development professionals and consultant teams achieve outcomes and add value. #


Larry the Digital Assistant wins Innovation of the Year


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