Irish student start-up wins €5k for platform that augments human memory

  • Photo: EOFIS team members, Marysol Angeloni & Tiarnach Ó Riada

    A Dublin-based student venture, which is developing a software platform to augment human memory, has been declared overall winner of the 2021 NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition and has received a €5,000 cash prize.

    EOFIS uses artificial intelligence (AI) to transform masses of information into question format, which will then appear as a daily quiz on a user's phone. 

    The daily quizzes use the proven spaced repetition technique to optimally time when users will see the questions, so that knowledge workers can stay updated and remember nuggets of information better.

    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 School, and Tiarnach Ó Riada, who has just completed his BEng degree at the UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

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    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.

    Tiarnach said, “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 learning. 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.”

    “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," Marysol added.

    "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.”

    The NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition is an intensive four-week mentoring programme for student entrepreneurs. The programme is now in its seventh year and is run by NovaUCD, the Centre for New Ventures and Entrepreneurs, as a framework to support undergraduate and postgraduate students who want to work together to develop and grow start-up companies.

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    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 students ventures and 23 participants took part in year’s competition. Over 50 early-stage ventures and over 120 students have now completed the NovaUCD Student Enterprise Competition over the last seven years.

    EOFIS was declared overall winner of the 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.

    RespTech is designing Bronchophone a novel attachment compatible with all mainstream fiberoptic bronchoscopes and all smartphone devices. This makes for a versatile, inexpensive product to enable bronchoscopies in low-middle-income-countries as well as providing a low cost, portable alternative to hospitals and training centres around the globe.

    FlowMo is developing a web-based flow driven generative design tool to streamline the design process of fluidic devices.

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