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Quiz software that augments human memory wins NovaUCD’s 2021 Student Enterprise Competition

Posted 24 June, 2021

An early-stage student venture developing software to aid human memory has won the 2021 NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition, and €5,000 in prize money.

EOFIS helps people recall important materials and statistics by using AI to create memory-jogging questions from data fed to the platform by users looking to retain important snippets of information.

The daily quizzes appear on a user’s phone, and use a proven spaced repetition technique to optimally time when users will see the questions.

The platform allows users to take the text of an illuminating nugget of information or even a whole book chapter and have it transform into a series of quiz questions.

To help find, connect and organise the key pieces of information, each quiz question is automatically connected to all other quiz questions in a user’s library, in an interactive, configurable concept map.

The members of the EOFIS team are Marysol Angeloni, who is completing an MSc in Management at the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business, and Tiarnach Ó Riada, who has just completed a BEng degree in the UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

The team is supported by Dr Paul Cuffe, UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, who supervised Tiarnach’s final year engineering project during which the EOFIS software platform was initially developed

“We believe that two large markets, online news and casual learning software, can be joined together by EOFIS which combines a high-technology approach with the proven benefits of spaced repetition and interactive, self-directed learnin,” said Tiarnach Ó Riada.

“Since Marysol brought her entrepreneurial and creative skills to the team, we’ve managed to develop my thesis proof-of-concept into a compelling market offering we call EOFIS.”

Marysol Angeloni added: “We have ambitious plans for the future, including a B2B proposition for companies whose workers need to stay abreast of fast-evolving fields such as finance and law.

“We now intend to apply for a place on a New Frontiers programme to further develop our business proposition and marketing strategy, while also applying for tech-related awards. Thereafter we will be exploring an application for Enterprise Ireland Competitive Start Funding to accelerate the growth of EOFIS which we believe has global market potential.”

EOFIS members, Marysol Angeloni and Tiarnach Ó Riada with Dr Paul Cuffe, UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, who is supporting team Credit: Nick Bradshaw, Fotonic

EOFIS was declared overall winner of the 2021 NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition following final pitches to an external judging panel.

Two other participating ventures, RespTech and FlowMo, were announced as second and third place winners and receive €3,000 and €2,000 cash prizes respectively.

Tom Flanagan, UCD Director of Enterprise and Commercialisation, NovaUCD said: “During the last 4 weeks this fantastic group of entrepreneurial students came together virtually to develop and refine their start-up ideas. I look forward to seeing several of these early-stage student ventures move forward and successfully launch on the market. I would especially like to congratulate the EOFIS team, the overall winner of this year’s NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition.

The eight other early-stage ventures taking part in this year’s competition each receive a €1,000 cash prize for completing the programme.

The NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition is an intensive 4-week mentoring programme for student entrepreneurs.

The programme now in its 7th year, is run by NovaUCD, the Centre for New Ventures and Entrepreneurs at UCD, as a framework to support undergraduate and postgraduate students who want to work together to develop and grow start-up companies.

The aim of the competition, which this year was run virtually, is to assist the participating students in refining their start-up ideas through a series of structured workshops, including taught content from industry experts, interactive workshops, regular pitching sessions and mentoring.

A total of 11 early-stage student ventures and 23 participants took part in this year’s competition, and over 50 early-stage ventures and over 120 students have now completed the NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition over the last 7 years.

The sponsors of the 2021 NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition are, AIB, Arthur Cox, Deloitte, Ericsson, Goodbody Stockbrokers and Xilinx.

By: David Kearns, Digital Journalist / Media Officer, UCD University Relations (with materials from Micéal Whelan, UCD Research and Innovation)