(Berkeley Engineering’s Dylan Jackson, Chun Ming Chin, Yin-Chia Yeh and Ryan Rogowski pictured above)
Recent graduate Chun Ming Chin (MEng ’12 EECS) along with his business partner, Ryan Rogowski, and their team created a mobile application that makes translating Chinese characters as simple as taking a photo. Their application, Waigo, allows iPhone users to point the camera at real-world Chinese text and see it translated instantly into English.
After earning his electrical engineering degree from the University of Illinois in 2011, Chin enrolled in the inaugural class of Berkeley’s master of engineering program. He wanted to deepen his understanding of computer vision technology, but was also looking to hone his business skills in sales and marketing.
To help develop his application idea of having the English translation overlay the Chinese characters in the photo, Chin enlisted some fellow students in his graduate level computer vision class: Dylan Jackson and David Lee, then juniors in electrical engineering and computer sciences, and fellow graduate student Yin-Chia Yeh (MEng ’12 EECS). Working together, the students were tasked with addressing some of the challenges of augmented reality, drawing on material introduced in class. Chin further developed the technology in James Demmel’s parallel computing class, as well as Jitendra Malik’s computer vision course. Kevin Tseng, Viraj Kulkarni, Hong Wu, Cheng Lu and Rohan Nagesh (all MEng ’12 EECS) worked with Chin to investigate ways to increase the speed and accuracy of future product versions.
“It was beautifully elegant to see how we compounded our product development results by aligning ourselves with the coursework and resources that Berkeley offers,” Chin says.
For his part, Chin remains grateful for Berkeley’s continued support and the valuable mentors he met during his time here. “Berkeley is a great place to build relationships with people,” Chin says. “The opportunities at Berkeley have allowed us to get to where we are today.”