Each year on Major Day, the 5th year EPITA students unveil their end-of-studies projects (PFEE) that they have been working on for several months as a team. The school is proud to share one of these projects with you: Safety View. Nathan Goyat, David Grondin, Nicolas Tang and Minh Hung Louis Tran (EPITA class of 2019) who are Systems development Multimedia (SDM) Majors, undertook the project in partnership with the Veolia firm, using augmented reality to help the company’s operators strengthen the security of processes.
How does it work?
Nathan Goyat: We had to provide protocol assistance for the Veolia operators using an application available on Android telephones. In fact, the company was aware that these security protocols were not always respected or regularly applied, which could lead to dangerous situations or even accidents. Safety View uses augmented reality to show operators which operations they must perform throughout the entire procedure to avoid problems. The advantage of augmented reality is that it doesn’t tell users which buttons to press on a particular machine, but directly shows where these buttons are located. The visual aspect has a much higher impact than a simple checklist that must be read and is rapidly forgotten.
What prompted you to take up the Veolia challenge?
We thought it would be very interesting to work on augmented reality. Although the project came from Veolia, we still had quite a lot of leeway, given that the only constraint was the use of this technology in the field of security. This allowed us to propose highly diverse projects and then work on the one chosen by the company.
How was it to work on a project in collaboration with a company?
It allowed us to discover other things. EPITA often entrusts us with projects to be done independently. However, with this project, we really interacted with an external player. Safety View was developed thanks to several meetings over a six-month period: we developed ideas, they gave us feedback and proposed new directions, etc. We progressed by working together. It was not a project where we did our own thing alone. The needs of the company guided the project development. Above all, the goal behind the application was real: it was necessary to keep in mind its possible use by operators, which is not always the case with student projects focused on purely technical learning.
What was the biggest challenge you faced during this project?
Probably fully understanding the issues. From the initial idea to the reality on the ground, there are inevitably differences. Hence, the fact that we went to the Veolia sites allowed us to better understand the operators’ needs and realize that some of our initial ideas were off-topic. We had to find a solution to real problems, and not simply come up with a theoretical solution.
How operational is the project today?
We have completed our part. As for the Veolia team – who are very happy with the project – the work will continue. That being said, in order to possibly modify protocols and enable managers to create new protocols, the company will need to call on a developer. This is precisely why we simplified the code as much as we could to facilitate the future developer’s work.
In your opinion, what are the benefits to choosing an MIT major at EPITA?
This major offers a certain versatility. We work on all technologies, which gives us a pretty good overview of many areas. We learn about mobile systems, the Web, different languages… And as we explore many areas, it allows us to work in a wide range of sectors.