Annika Viswesh, a seventh grader from Stratford’s Sunnyvale Raynor Middle School, was recently selected as a finalist in the computer science competition, ProjectCSGirls, for the app she built called Oculus Patch Assistant. We asked Annika to give us a few more details about the project and her interest in computer science.
Tell us about your project.
According to World Health Organization about 12 million children are visually impaired due to uncorrected refractive errors and Amblyopia(lazy eye). Amblyopia is commonly treated by eye-patching. Amblyopia treatment can take many months or years. The goal of my project is to make it efficient and effective for doctors and caregivers to treat and manage Amblyopia. I have built a smartphone application called Oculus Patch Assistant that allows caregivers to record ocular history, medical appointments, changes in visual acuity, patching details, and vision therapy. My application also allows the user to email this data to the doctors so that they can derive insights from it. I have also developed Oculus Patch Device, a wearable, to automatically monitor patching and to synchronize information with Oculus Patch Assistant.
What part of the project did you enjoy the most?
Programming was my favorite part of the project. I love programming because I can find elegant solutions to tough problems.
What was the most challenging part of the project?
Even though programming was my favorite part of the project, it was also the most difficult part of the project. My application had parse-time errors and many run-time errors. I fixed the syntax issues by using Xcode editor suggestions and by referring to the Swift documentation. The run-time errors were quite difficult to debug. Some run-time issues would cause my program to fail with cryptic errors while others would just hang my application without displaying any errors. I debugged these problems by adding print statements to find the exact cause of the problem.
Who sparked your interest in computer science?
When I was in third grade, my teacher Ms. Farrales, introduced our class to Tynker, a visual programming platform. From the first day onwards, I was captivated by programming as it enabled me to build new things.
Who is your favorite teacher at Stratford and why?
I love all my teachers at Stratford. My favorite teachers are my Science, Math, and Computer teachers as they encourage me to think outside the box and take risks.
Annika says she is truly excited about being chosen as a finalist and credits her wonderful Stratford teachers, Mr. Lampard and Ms. Janardhanan, for encouraging her to apply to the competition and providing feedback about the project. Read more about the competition here: http://www.projectcsgirls.com/.