Daniel Cuartas
2013, Colombia
He has designed a pupil tracker which helps persons with reduced mobility to control their surroundings
Computer Science

Those affected by spinal injuries following an accident or a degenerative disease lose the autonomy to perform everyday activities such as changing the position of their bed, turning on the light or changing television channel; this significantly reduces their quality of life.

The creativity that he has been able to develop over many years due to his passion for magic and music, as well as the concern he has shown to help individuals with mobility problems, such as his own grandmother, paved the way for this young columbian to conceive the idea of enabling people to interact with their surroundings in a different way. Daniel has developed the ECU/EADL pupil tracker which is a device that helps persons with reduced mobility to regain any control they may have lost over basic functions, while improving the autonomy and social interaction of the user.

This device is fitted with a camera and software that detect the position of the pupil and, through the movement of their eyes, it enables users to undertake actions which they would not otherwise have been able to perform. Whereas other systems of this kind require a larger-scale installation and changes to the infrastructure located in the user's living area, which can cost upwards of $90,000, the device created by Daniel requires a very basic installation at a much lower cost. Based on software and open-source hardware tools, this device is very cheap –no more than $2,000– and does not entail any significant changes in the electrical system of the room or the devices to be controlled. 

On account of its flexibility, this system could also be used to carry out basic tasks, such as handling machinery, which may promote the labor market integration of users.