| Zee Yusri & Wani Roslan |
HIS Royal Highness Prince (Dr) Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Pro-Chancellor of ITB launched the AutiSay application yesterday at the ITB Pesta Konvo 2014.
AutiSay is a mobile application created as a tool to assist children with autism to communicate with their parents, therapists and care givers.
The application is designed for children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) who have social communication difficulties.
The student developers worked closely with the Society for the Management of Autism Related Issues in Training, Education and Resources (Smarter) Brunei to create the application.
The AutiSay team comprising Dk Siti Nor Bazilah Pg Zulkifli, Halina Jumaat, Abdullah Maidin and Mohd Zulfadhli Ahmad are students from the School of Business and the School of Computing & Informatics, who competed at the BICTA 2013 and was the winners in the tertiary category.
They also represented Brunei Darussalam at the APICTA 2013 competition and won merit awards in their category.
The AutiSay application and is now available for downloads at the Apple App Store.
In an interview with the Bulletin, Dk Siti Nor Bazilah said it took them around a year to complete the AutiSay project, despite the obstacles they faced throughout their progression in developing the interactive application.
“While developing the AutiSay app, we needed to be really careful and observant in our research especially when dealing with autism. We realised that we should create an app that does not depend on the child age, but more on their level of maturity. It was the base to create AutiSay that could be used by all with autism,” said Bazilah.
Bazilah added that one of the challenges for them to create AutiSay was using iOS system, which was the first attempt for them.
“Even though the process was quite difficult and time-consuming, it was all worthwhile as we believed we have put forth our best efforts and as a result, we were able to get these awards for the application that we created,” said Bazilah.
She also shared that AutiSay is an international application that can be downloaded and used not only in Brunei, but globally as well.
The AutiSay application is the evolution of the EducateMe application, which started as a Higher National Diploma (HND) final year project.
When the majority of the original student developers went to further their degree education at the same university, they took on the challenge to develop the EducateMe application, resulting in the AutiSay application.