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We live in a heavily coded world – where the ability to talk to computers, and understand how they “think,” is more important than ever. At the same time, however, programming is rarely taught in schools.

What can virtual environments teach us about real-world issues? At last month’s ImagineRIT festival, Team Galacticod’s game Ripple took visitors into an interactive ocean to learn about threats facing coral reefs.

What if you spoke a different language than your friends and family? For many deaf people who communicate through sign language, this is an everyday reality. The people at MotionSavvy are breaking down these barriers by combining Leap Motion technology with language translation software. Being deaf themselves, they all have a personal stake in building a more expressive future.

MotionSavvy CSO Wade Kellard and his team all have three things in common. They’re students at the Rochester Institute of Technology. They’re deaf. And they’re determined to give a voice to the world’s 70 million other deaf people – one that’s natural, accessible, and affordable.