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Undergraduate’s road safety App wins award

A Surrey BSc Computer Science student has won the Sean Morley Prize, given by road safety charity AIRSO, in recognition of his App which identifies the safest way to reach your destination.

(L-r) Kerry Dean (mother of the late Sean Morley), Daniel Morris and Craig Tracey MP.

Daniel Morris, who graduated with a First in computer science in 2017 and now works as a Software Engineer for Microsoft in Oslo (Norway), was announced winner of the Prize at Portcullis House in London on 23 October. He presented his work alongside five other finalists before being awarded the winner's trophy and a cash prize by MP Craig Tracey.

The Sean Morley Memorial Prize is given by AIRSO in memory of a 20 year old student with a bright future ahead of him, who lost his life when he was hit by a car. Open to undergraduates at all UK universities, the Prize rewards exceptional projects and dissertations with a road safety theme.

Daniel’s entry was an android App which finds the safest way to reach a given destination based on neural and Bayesian networks, and led on from a project he completed as part of his degree programme on ‘Bayesian Learning for Road Analysis’.

The only finalist to come from the field of computer science, Daniel competed against students and graduates with a mechanical engineering or design background from universities including UCL and Loughborough.

Daniel said: “Being able to represent the University at this event was fantastic. It was great to see all the amazing projects and wonderful to be considered the winner.

“I spoke to a number of road safety professionals at the event and they were optimistic and excited about the App’s potential. I’m hoping to capitalise on these connections to access more data which will enable me to move the application forward, helping to create better road accident predictions and bring the application to a wider audience.”

During his time at Surrey Daniel also won the Imperlal College Hackathon 2017 along with fellow Computer Science students for their ‘ContextualShuffle’ concept – a song recommender system for Spotify users powered by Microsoft. In addition, he published his final year project work at the flagship conference in neural networks, IJCNN.

Daniel’s former lecturer within the Department of Computer Science Dr Clive Cheong Took commented: “It was a real pleasure to teach and work with Daniel over the past three years and I am very pleased he has won the Sean Morley award. I hope his mobile App will inspire other students in Computer Science to consider ways of improving road safety through technology.

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