First Student Competition Creative Gaze

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COGAIN Student Competition: Creative Gaze

New! See the news on the Results of the COGAIN student competition

Some of the applications submitted to the competition can be downloaded from the COGAIN website, see Leisure Applications


The COGAIN Student Competition has been initiated by the Network of Excellence on Communication by Gaze Interaction (COGAIN). COGAIN is supported by the European Commission's IST 6th framework program. COGAIN integrates cutting-edge expertise on interface technologies for the benefit of users with disabilities. The network aims to gather Europe's leading expertise in eye tracking integration with computers in a research project on assistive technologies for citizens with motor impairments. For more information, see

The objective of the competition is to boost the development of new, innovative applications that take benefit of eye input. COGAIN especially invites leisure applications, such as gaze-controlled games, that would make the life of the users more enjoyable and more equal.


  • Any student (undergraduate or graduate) may enter the competition.
  • Participants do not need to have any prior contact with COGAIN.
  • Participants may be individual students or a group of students.
  • Multiple submissions from the same student(s) are allowed.
  • The application must take advantage of gaze input on some level. It can either be totally gaze-controlled or combine gaze with other input modalities.
  • The participants are allowed to freely choose their implementation tools and eye tracking devices. However, please read carefully the note on "implementation tools and eye trackers" below. COGAIN cannot provide eye trackers for the participants; they should use the trackers they already have, or alternatively, implement the application with special tools that allow development via emulation (see "implementation tools and eye trackers" for more information).
  • COGAIN cannot provide support for the implementation or the usage of the eye tracking devices or implementation tools.
  • The application can be almost anything, for example, a leisure type of application such as a game, crossword puzzle, logic problem, sudoku, ... use your imagination!
  • Only complete submissions will be reviewed. Please see "Submissions" for more information.
  • The recommended language of the submission is English. Other languages used in the interface of the application are allowed but the report must be in English.
  • COGAIN is eager to spread high quality applications to eye control users around the globe and select applicants can get assistance in the distribution of their programs after the competition.

Letter of intention

A letter of intention should be sent by email 2 months before the competition deadline to, with

  • Contact information
  • A working title of the application
  • Information about the eye tracker device to be used


The submission should include:

  • Title of the application
  • An installation packet, with all required parts
  • Installation / setup instructions
  • A brief documentation explaining the idea of the application, brief notes on its implementation and an explanation how it works, and results of an initial user/usability test (recommended length is 5 pages)
  • Contact information: name(s), (team name), organisation, email address, mail address, phone/fax
  • Supplementary materials such as videos or still images are allowed but not required.

Please send the complete submission by email to:

or by conventional mail to:

COGAIN Network Coordination Office
Päivi Majaranta / Pinni B1036
Department of Computer Sciences
FIN-33014 University of Tampere


  • Letter of intention: 15 April 2007
  • Deadline for the submissions: 15 June 2007
  • Notification on results: 1 September 2007

Review criteria

The submissions will be reviewed by a jury formed by academic and industrial partners of the COGAIN network. Judging will be based on the following criteria:

  • Originality and innovation
  • Suitability for especially gaze-based control / how well the application takes advantage of gaze
  • How well user requirements of a disabled person were taken into account
  • Quality of the submission, including the software and the documentation


The winner gets a travel grant to a gaze-related conference of the winner's choice. The grant is based on actual costs of a maximum of 2000 euros. The travel, accommodation and registration costs are paid by the network in a way to be agreed with the winner. If there are several outstanding entries, more than one prize can be awarded.

All acceptable submissions that are reviewed will receive a signed certificate of the participation of the competition.

Implementation tools and eye trackers

We recommend using eye tracking devices available for people with disabilities. Possible eye tracking devices include for example

Any other eye trackers may also be used (including trackers not targeted at people with disabilities) but it is important that the student(s) gets in contact with the competition organiser beforehand by sending a letter of intention (see above), in order to ensure a fair evaluation of the application; the members of the jury must be able to test the application, hopefully with a real eye tracking device. A mouse emulation mode might be beneficial, as it would allow the jury members to easily test the application anytime by emulating gaze with mouse.

The participants are invited to consider using the following tools to implement the application:

  • COGAIN ETU Driver
    Includes a mouse emulation mode. For more information and download, see (ETU Driver homepage)
    Allows full integration of the application into ERICA or receiveing real time eye-tracking data in a standalone application. Alternatively, students may write a standalone application that just responds to the mouse (mouse emulator). Please contact Logan McKinley ( to get the SDK.
  • Eye Science SDK
    Using the SDK, you can access gaze information directly and control various parameters in the Quick Glance gaze tracker. Sample programs are included. The SDK comes on the Quick Glance CD but requires a password to activate; to obtain the password, please contact Melinda Trego ( The Quick Glance system includes a mouse emulator ("eye mouse"), thus mouse controlled applications work right away.
  • Tobii SDKs
    The SDKs include both real time gaze data, mouse emulator and direct control (which makes any buttons eye controlled). Please contact or to get the SDKs.
  • SAW - Special Access to Windows
    Uses mouse emulation. Requires very little programming skills. For more information and download, see SAW 5

Please note that COGAIN cannot provide support for the implementation tools or eye tracking devices.


Please send any queries to

A 2-page announcement for easy printing: PDF