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University of Balamand > News > Archive > Simple-Novel-Affordable?


The Department of Computer Science organized a video conference on March 4 titled “Safe Connected Driving” where Ronald Isaac, CEO of RISE Devices, and a Balamand graduate, described his entrepreneurial journey based on a vision to develop simple, novel and affordable technological gadgets.

In the video conference attended by faculty and students, Mr. Isaac presented his latest invention, DRIVE, a device that allows the safe use of a mobile phone while driving. One of the main sources of distraction while driving is the sensory overload of multitasking and engaging the brain in a two way input/feedback system for communications. DRIVE takes speech recognition out of the equation, and replaces its user input with simple hand flicking gestures that only work when the driver’s hands are on the wheel.

DRIVE is a very small piece of hardware that sits on the steering wheel column, facing the driver. It connects over Bluetooth and Bluetooth LE to the user’s smartphone and assists with reading out notifications and sending of voice messages. The main intellectual property in DRiVE is its dual IR system that silently monitors hand movement and placement on the steering wheel.

Mr. Isaac announced the allocation of $10,000 to Balamand students to develop a mobile app to run on his invented hardware. He invited the students to take the challenge and be part of the project.

In collaboration with the Department of Computer Science, Mr. Isaac will split out the project into various sub pieces. Each sub piece will be managed via agile methods to track the project. Interested students will work on one or more of the pieces under the supervision of both the Department and Mr. Isaac. ​​

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