Mayor Bowser and OCTO announce the DCx Challenge semifinalists - DC


Aug. 19, 2019 1:37 pm

Mayor Bowser and OCTO announce the DCx Challenge semifinalists

Three semifinalists have been selected for the challenge. They will now transform their submissions into prototypes for the chance to win or split up to $20,000 in award cash.
The race to 5G is on.

The race to 5G is on.

(Photo by Flickr user Kārlis Dambrāns, used under a Creative Commons license)

Mayor Muriel Bowser and the D.C. Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO) have announced the semifinalists for its joint venture, the DCx Challenge.

On the helm of 5G wireless networks and gigabit services growth in the area, this new challenge is calling on developers to adapt gigabit app solutions that address public safety and/or public health challenges. Bowser and OCTO are also partnering with the Verizon 5G Lab, located in Alley powered by Verizon, so finalists can gain access to a working 5G node to test their high-performance applications, as DC previously reported.

Three semifinalists from the D.C.-area were selected for the public innovation challenge and they will now transform their submissions into prototypes for the chance to win or split up to $20,000 in award cash, a press release states.

Here are the DCx Challenge semifinalists (with descriptions from the challenge’s website):

  • Haven of Washington, D.C., submitted the“Self-Action For Everyone” (S.A.F.E) card which would use 5G to empower all D.C. residents to access emergency care with a single button. S.A.F.E. is an IoT card that fits in a purse or wallet and allows the owner to trigger emergency care with a single button press.
  • ENGR Dynamics of Silver Spring, Md., submitted Public Safety Sensor Fusion (PS2F), which increases first responder safety and effectiveness via automated video analytics and sensor fusion. With 5G, PS2F has the potential to utilize precise indoor positioning to track personnel on-scene and gigabit networking to stream sensor data to mobile devices.
  • Daniel Bernstein and Brendan Freehart of Arlington, Va., submitted Safe Lane, a distributed monitoring system that leverages deep learning and existing traffic camera feeds to provide bike lane enforcement officers with real-time notifications of bike lane obstructions as well as historical analysis to arm District public safety agencies with the information they need to prioritize resourcing and staffing to reduce traffic fatalities and accidents on the road.

“These semi-finalists have submitted thoughtful solutions that address key city challenges,” Lindsey Parker, CTO at OCTO, said in a statement. “From addressing Vision Zero to increased safety for first responders to equal access to quality health care, these solutions show the potential of how next-generation tech can help us improve the quality of life for every resident in D.C.”


The semifinalists will live demo their solutions in front of an expert panel of judges at the WeDC Futures Forum on October 2, 2019 at the Eaton Hotel.

People: Muriel Bowser
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