After an intense competition among finalists chosen from a pool of more than 300,000 students from more than 100 countries and regions, Microsoft Corp. announced the winners of Imagine Cup 2009. Celebrating first place, Romania's Team SYTECH won the worldwide Software Design invitational, South Korea's Team Wafree won the Embedded Development invitational and Brazil's Team LEVV It won the Game Development challenge.

Imagine Cup, the world's premier student technology competition, empowers students to unlock their creative genius and build solutions that tackle real-world issues facing society today.

The creativity and imagination that students poured into their projects this year was incredible, said Joe Wilson, senior director of Academic Initiatives,Developer Platform Evangelism Division at Microsoft. Many of these projects have the potential to have a serious impact on how we address society's most pressing issues. We hope that all of the students who participated this year will continue their pursuit of creating technology in the service of making the world a better place.

The software design, embedded development and game development finalist teams created applications, devices and games using Microsoft technology based on this year's theme: Imagine a world where technology helps solve the toughest problems facing us today.

A total of 444 students from 149 teams representing 70 countries and regions competed in the Imagine Cup 2009 Worldwide Finals in nine categories: Software Design, Embedded Development, Game Development, IT Challenge, Robotics and Algorithm, MashUp, Photography, Short Film and Design. In addition to the main categories of competition, there are several Achievement Awards this year: the Interoperability Award, Unlimited Potential Design for Development Award,Unlimited Potential MultiPoint Education Award, Accessibility Award, Accessible Design Award, Parallel Computing Award, Tablet Accessibility Award, Live Services Award, Windows Mobile Award, and the H.E. Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak Special Award, sponsored by the first lady of Egypt through the Cyber Peace Initiative (CPI).

The winners were announced in a gala awards ceremony this evening at the base of Egypt's historic pyramids as part of the Imagine Cup World Festival, a celebration drawing Imagine Cup competitors, mentors and other key attendees from around the world. The following are the top three finalists by invitational in finishing order:

Software Design - First place: Romania - SYTECH - Second place: Russia - Vital Lab - Third place: Brazil - Virtual Dreams

Embedded Development - First place:  South Korea - Wafree - Second place: China - iSee - Third place: Ukraine

Intellectronics - Game Development - First place: Brazil - LEVV It - Second

place: United States - Epsylon Games - Third place: United Kingdom - Sanquine

Labs - Robotics and Algorithm - First place: Czech Republic - Lukas Perutka -

Second place: Canada - Byron Knoll - Third place: China - Lin Fuming - IT

Challenge - First place: Romania - Cosmin Ilie - Second place: China - Wu Chang

- Third place: Bolivia - Miklos Cari Sivila - MashUp - First place: United

States - CURIOS - Second place: Poland - Monastery of Innovations - Third place:

Singapore - PlanetKY - Photography - First place: Croatia -Voodoo Delirium -

Second place: Singapore - Woolgathering - Third place: Japan - Terada - Short

Film - First place: United Kingdom - Fulham Four - Second place: India -

ChennaiCoolers - Third place: Ukraine - Just4Fun - Design - First place: Brazil

- Willburn - Second place: United States - eXchangeFun - Third place: France -


In addition to the category awards, 10 Achievement Awards were presented. -

Interoperability Award. The Interoperability Award is designed to recognize the

software application that best leverages out-of-the-box Microsoft technologies

and blends them with other technologies to connect people, data or diverse

systems in a new way. This award was won by: - First Place: Brazil - Proativa

Team - Second Place: Poland - Fteams - Third Place: Jordan - ECRAM - Unlimited

Potential Design for Development Award. This award challenges students to create

a software solution that can be accessed from a basic mobile phone and designed

to meet the needs of end users who earn less than $8 (U.S.) a day. This award

was won by: - First Place: Malaysia - COSMIC - Second Place: China - Unique

Studio - Third Place: Malaysia - Capricorn - Unlimited Potential MultiPoint

Education Award. This award encourages students to unlock new ways for the PC to

help address universal education goals. This award was won by: - First Place:

India - Trailblazers - Accessibility Award. Students are challenged to design a

technology solution that leverages people's diverse physical and cognitive

abilities. This award was won by: - First Place: Saudi Arabia - ATST -

Accessible Design Award: Students who participated in the Design competition

were awarded additional recognition for a technology solution that best

addressed accessibility needs. This award was won by: - First Place: United

States - eXchangeFun - Parallel Computing Award. Parallel applications can open

a door to the future, and this award challenges students to use parallel

technology to solve the world's toughest problems. This award was won by: -

First Place: India - Biollel - Tablet Accessibility Award. The objective of the

Tablet Accessibility Award is to create a new education application that uses

Tablet technology while expanding the possibilities for how a user interacts

with the computer. This award was won by: - First Place: United States -

Auratech - Second Place: Brazil - IC-UNICAMP - Live Services Award: This award

challenges students to create a technology solution built on Microsoft's Azure

Services Platform to solve the world's toughest problems. This award was won by:

- First Place: France - Help'Aged - Second Place: Serbia - BrainWave - Windows

Mobile Award: This award challenges students to use Windows Mobile technology to

solve the world's toughest problems. This award was won by: - First Place:

Croatia - Team Explorer - Second Place: Indonesia - Big Bang - Third Place:

Brazil - Virtual Dreams - H.E. Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak Special Award. Sponsored by

the first lady of Egypt, this award was given to the project that best

intersects the following: the Imagine Cup 2009 theme, Imagine a world where

technology helps solve the toughest problems facing us today; the Millennium

Development Goals; and the objectives of the Suzanne Mubarak Women's

International Peace Movement and the Cyber Peace Initiative. This award was won

by: - First Place: Poland - kAMUflage - Second Place: Egypt - Big Buddy - Third

Place: France - WikiChildProtect

Next year's Imagine Cup 2010 Worldwide Finals will take place in Poland, a

country with a track record of producing highly skilled IT students as well as

successful Imagine Cup entrants. Registrations for Imagine Cup 2010 open

tomorrow, July 8, 2009. More information about Imagine Cup can be found at

Imagine Cup Sponsors

The Imagine Cup is being supported by a range of partner organizations including

Paramount Digital Entertainment, Mesh Services Live Framework, Microsoft

Accessibility Business Unit, Microsoft Education Product Group, Microsoft

Interoperability, Microsoft Learning, Microsoft Parallel Computing Platform,

Microsoft Research External Research, Microsoft Robotics, Microsoft Unlimited

Potential Group, Windows Embedded Business, Windows Mobile and Microsoft XNA

Game Platform Group.