When four Asia Pacific University students decided to get together and participate in Microsoft’s Imagine Cup three years ago, it never crossed their minds that they would be developing mobile applications to impact underprivileged communities.


But now, after starting their own company, Dream X, they are doing just that by developing a mobile app for EPIC Homes, a social enterprise that builds homes for underprivileged communities.

“We like to do different kinds of projects that can help more people, and this latest project with EPIC Homes makes it easier for people to volunteer to help build houses,” said Dream X’s developer Chan Wai Lun, 23.

Chan said they are currently in the phase of refining the application. They are now working on making it more engaging by introducing a reward system for potential volunteers.

EPIC Homes CEO John-son Oei, 26, shared that when he first met Dream X at a Microsoft event last year, he was determined to work with them.

“Dream X are not just a bunch of guys that sit in front of the computer. They are genuinely interested in solving real-world problems,” said Oei.

Getting enough manpower has always been a challenge for EPIC, and Oei believes that with the help of technology – and Dream X’s expertise – they will be able to find a way around that.

Dream X and Oei met through their respective connections with Microsoft– Dream X were Microsot Imagine Cup winners in 2011 and 2012, and Oei is Malaysia’s only Microsoft YouthSpark Star.

Dream X have been creating software to adress social issues as far back as 2010, when they developed the Global Knowledge Reactor, an interactive textbook software to help primary school students in rural areas.

The following year, the quartet developed the winning Health3 mobile application that keeps track of cancer patients’ diets and sends data to their caregivers.

And in last year’s Imagine Cup, the four – then in their final year of studies – developed Wizboard, a software and mobile application that enables teachers to upload class materials online.

The idea behind Wizboard was to bridge the education gap in rural areas by making classes available to children who are unable to attend classes.

And now, Dream X and Oei hope to use their experience and expertise to help inspire others.

They were all at the recent Microsoft Innovate For Good event which brought university students from across Malaysia for a two-day entrepreneurial workshop. Dream X and Oei acted as mentors for the students, giving them advice on their various projects.

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