“Open Volunteer Exchange is a distributed platform to enable volunteering organisations to Exchange volunteers. It was created by J.P Lacerda, Damo Walsh, and Sam van Lieshout (First Years at The University of Manchester) and mentored by me. The aim of the project is to enable people to quickly organise events requiring a group of volunteers with diverse skills.”
I’m pleased to say that the team I mentor for the Microsoft Imagine Cup won the UK National Finals and are now in New York at the World Finals!
They entered the competition as they thought that this year’s theme (i.e. the solving of the United Nations Development Goals) presented an interesting project relevant to the challenges of the world today, and as they are all in the School of Computer Science it would also provide them with experience in real-world applications.
One of the benefits of the project’s unique design is its reliability, which is particularly important when volunteers need to be rapidly mobilised in times of emergency. They are using a peer to peer (P2P) based system: if the network is affected adversely, peers who are still online can still communicate with each other, allowing volunteers’ information to continue to be exchanged.