US Air Force’s cyber design and innovation centre AF CyberWorx has launched an open design challenge that is aimed at creating a fitness application for troops.

The online competition is open to people from across the country and seeks to attract a diverse set of participants from industry, government, and academia.

As part of the competition, participants need to design and develop an application that provides services such as health monitoring, personalised fitness coaching, and medical alerts to airforce troops in order to help improve their overall health and readiness.

It all started when AF CyberWorx hosted a design sprint in April last year and posed a question, ‘How can the airforce leverage the Internet of Things and IT commercial technology to make airforce bases better places to work?’

“Submitted ideas will be filtered and only the top eight will be selected to advance to prototyping.”

Following three design sprints, the focus narrowed down to incorporating smart technology into fitness training, which developed into adopting a mobile fitness app.

In addition to promoting year-round fitness, the application is expected to offer a seamless transition between routine physical training and combat performance.

According to the company, having access to health monitoring and fitness coaching will allow troops to have improved health and readiness.

Submitted ideas will be filtered and only the top eight will be selected to advance to prototyping.

During the second phase, participants will work with airforce troops to get user feedback.

This will allow participants to develop a solution to solve the challenges faced by airmen, AF CyberWorx noted.

The top four participants will get an opportunity to present their ideas before a panel of judges, who will evaluate them based on aspects such as potential impact to the airforce and airmen, technical maturation and feasibility, usability of data, and overall presentation.

The winner will be selected on the basis of whether the idea meets specified needs and can be implemented on a large scale.