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Pnutek is a smartphone application that enables students to scan their academic notes and convert them into a mnemonic through music.

Photo of Rahul Gupta
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Check out our demo site! It's not fully functional, but is our first attempt at creating a front end web version! We are working on developing the back end to make a fully functional prototype!

FULL DISCLOSURE: The images above are temporary samples from Invision's sample app prototypes. However, our team will work towards publishing our own tailored mock-up screens.  As a team, we plan on having the initial following features with our mobile smartphone app:

- Sign up/Login Page

- Password Page

- Achievement Page for the songs students have successfully completed,

- Audio Recording Page with the words of student's scanned notes appearing above so students can record themselves singing their notes to the beat of a selected song,

- "Friends" contact list to enable user connectivity and add the social sharing element to this process

- Page where students can view all of the songs they have recorded  

Mission: To create a new learning method to help students learn the academic material in a fun and efficient way!

Target Market: Students of all ages.

User Integration: By combining three actions that are inherent to students, Writing down notes, taking photos, and listening to music it will become a ubiquitous activity.  

Pnutek's Initial Skeleton Engineering plan:

1. Use OCR software to convert a photo of student's notes

2. At this step, there are two paths we wish to pursue

    A.  Use an API such as IBM Watson to say the words and match them to the syllabus of a song. 

    B. Use an API similar to the karaoke app Smule to match the syllables in the notes to the syllables in a song and have on screen display of the words. A highlighter and dot will bounce from word to word at the rhythm and beat of the song.

Who is your idea designed for and how does it reimagine higher education to support the needs of tomorrow?

Pnutek targets all members of Academia from students to professors who wish to better memorize material and is specifically designed to assist people with learning disabilities. Pnutek shows that an age-old activity such as studying can be adapted to fit a constantly evolving culture through music. Students can convert their scanned notes into a karaoke style platform or have the app vocalize their notes through their favorite songs.

This idea emerged from:

  • A group brainstorm
  • A student brainstorm
  • An individual

What skills, input or guidance from the OpenIDEO community would be most helpful in building out or refining your idea?

OpenIDEO can help through input and guidance in these areas: - Idea refinement - Defining market/customer discovery - Coding capability - Creating a successful business model

What early, lightweight experiment might you try out in your own community to find out if the idea will meet your expectations?

We are close to finishing an MVP prototype that we will use as a test case on our campus. Specifically, market this product through different channels such as the Disabilities Board, School of Education and other University student groups to get the most inclusive feedback.

Tell us about your work experience:

As a group of four college students, here is a little breakdown of our team experiences: As a team, we have a member well versed in the following areas: product design, coding, and ideation; healthcare, neuroscience, and interpersonal communication; economics, customer relationships, and computer science; entrepreneurship, private equity, and banking.

How would you describe this idea while in an elevator with someone? 2-3 sentences.

What if you could alleviate the monotony of studying by combining it with music? Pnutek bridges the gap between just looking at notes on a page and actively learning through song. Our app turns student taken notes into a song that can be sung to form a musical mnemonic.

What is the specific problem your idea is trying to solve? 1 sentence.

Our idea is solving the consumer pain of having difficulty or boredom studying material for class.

How is your idea different or unique from what is currently on the market?

While there are Karaoke and study apps on the market, there is no app that merges the two ideas into one. Students have yet to have an app that facilitates studying in this way by combining it with the music that they enjoy.

How do you plan to measure the impact of your idea?

We can measure the impact of our idea by taking target groups of students and comparing their academic performances before using our product to their performance after using Pnutek. In addition, we can also potentially do some 1 on 1 interviews with students who used our application to get their feedback and to see how deeply they understand the material they studied.

How might your idea be transferable to a large number of people?

Our idea can be transferable by students sharing the app and concept with their friends. While people love sharing viral media with one another, people also enjoy helping friends, especially if it comes to helping a friend do well academically in a passive fashion.

What are your immediate next steps after the challenge?

Our next steps after the challenge are to launch the app and send it to select high schools in the Metro Detroit area.
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Attachments (2)

Pnutek User Journey.pdf

Just a day in the easy life, thanks to Pnutek's help!


Listen to our first demo! We used Ditty's API as a baseline. Look for reviews from satisfied students such as Lindsay in the comment section below! Thank you all for your support and help in critiquing our idea. On behalf of the Pnutek Team, a huge thank you! We hope to continuously build on this effort to create something to help students in the next phases of this challenge and after!


Join the conversation:

Photo of Kaitlyn

Hi Rahul,

I love the idea of combining memorization with music. Many students listen to music while they study to block outside noise and distractions, to get them into their own isolated bubble, or to get work done more enjoyably. There are a lot of studies that argue that music is distracting and will cause the brain to function less efficiently by forcing it to multitask through listening and thinking at the same time. Your innovation seamlessly combines these two tasks and has the potential to combine all the benefits while eradicating the concerns.

There are also studies that show that listening to certain genres of music and songs with a certain beat per minute will maximize retention and focus. I suggest looking into this and possibly limiting music to the optimal music selections.

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