In the past the Latin America region was mostly associated to very friendly people, tropical dance music, colorful cities and of course, to a number of issues and challenges around economic and social matters. Rarely this region was seen as a land of innovation and technology. The reality is that Latin America keeps moving along with the 21st Century and change is quickly happening. Today commercial airplanes are designed and manufactured in Brazil, highly skilled software engineers are creating complex solutions in Argentina and Mexican engineers participate in microprocessor design validation. It is clear that technical talent is coming out from universities all over the region. These days technology and innovation are hot in Latin America.The 2010 edition of the Intel® Challenge (Desafio Intel), our regional business plan competition, clearly proved this point as we got an amazing response from around 400 teams formed by young Latin American entrepreneurs wanting to expose innovative projects that use technology to address a wide variety of needs, some very specific to the regional conditions and some others with potential for achieving global impact. At the end of the competition five teams were elected by the judges as the ones with the most potential and readiness to compete globally and create an impact. The teams that will be representing Latin America at the Intel + UC Berkeley Tech Entrepreneurship Challenge this year are: – Gled from Chile, a provider of augmented reality (AR) customized applications. IVEO Desktop and IVEO Web, the software products developed by the team, are capable of adding virtual elements to the real world in innovative ways. – OsComp Systems, a Dominica Republic based team of engineers who have developed a technology that reduces operating and capital costs of compression. – Unima, a Mexican team which develops biotechnology products for the control of food borne diseases and pathogen bacteria that affect both human and animal health and also the productivity on the food manufacturing industry. – Fumajet from Brazil, a company that developed Motofog, a utility equipment that facilitates the activities of vector control in urban areas (e.g. malaria and dengue) and in agricultural areas. – Onapsis, an Argentine startup specialized in the development of Information Security solutions for ERP systems and Business-Critical Applications (BCAs). Latin America is still the land of friendly people, tropical dance music and colorful cities, but it is also a region full of young talent ready to contribute to improve the standard of living of millions of citizens through the creation of technology and the development of businesses that could bring economic growth.
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