Grad students' H-Radar app captures top prize
Pictured from left to right: Szu-Wei Wang, Dr. Peter Yu, Chien-An (Jay) Chen, Che-Hao Chen, Vincent C.W. Chen and Jia-Hao Fan.
A team of graduate students from Texas A&M University have developed H-Radar, an app that won first place in the 2013 "Go Viral to Improve Health: IOM-NAE (Institute of Medicine and National Academy of Engineering) Health Data Collegiate Challenge."
Che-Hao Chen, Chien-An (Jay) Chen, Szu-Wei Wang, Vincent C.W. Chen and Jia-Hao Fan took top honors and $10,000 in this year's competition with the android app H-Radar . H-Radar delivers and tracks diseases and symptoms by using a cell phone's global positioning system and real-time health bulletins.
Four members of the Texas A&M team are graduate students in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.
Che-Hao Chen is studying with Dr. Yoonsuck Choe  for his master's degree in computer science. His research interests include image processing, human-user interface and information retrieval skills.
Ph.D. student Jay Chen is a member of the Laboratory for Embedded & Networked Sensor Systems  under the direction of Dr. Radu Stoleru . He explores mobile computing, wireless networking, wireless security and distributed systems.
Jia-Hao Fan is a Ph.D. student and teaching assistant whose adviser is Dr. Jianer Chen .
Although computer engineering graduate student Szu-Wei Wang is interested in numerical problems using parallel programming, his major focus is on tridiagonal solvers on the graphics processing unit. He is advised by Dr. Vivek Sarin  and works at the Texas A&M Health Science Center.
Vincent Chen is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Health and Kinesiology whose adviser is Dr. Steven E. Riechman .
When asked how the students got together, team spokesman Vincent Chen said, "We are a group of friends who hang out a lot. It was Che-Hao who found this competition and asked everybody if we were interested in participating. Although I'm not a computer science major, I have been working as a web/graphic designer for several years and my major is health related. Therefore, we formed a team consisting of programmers and a designer. Dr. Peter Yu is a team adviser and he graduated in 2010 from Texas A&M with a Ph.D. in computer science."
In second place was a team of students from the University of California, Los Angeles; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Harvard University; and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. The second-place team devised a mobile app that allows the user to track flu vaccinations and outbreaks. Third place was awarded to a team whose app allows direct access to the American Association of Poison Control Centers.