The results of MIT’s Make The Breast Pump Not Suck Hackathon are in.
More than 150 breast pump users, engineers, designers, health care and lactation specialists, as well as educators, converged at the MIT Media Lab for two days of hacking, collaborating and deliberating about how to create a better breast pump.
The judges, made up of a panel of the Hackathon’s inspirational speakers, chose the team who worked on the “Mighty Mom’’ design for first prize of $3,000 from Vecna Technologies, Inc.
Because “every mom is a superhero,’’ the “Mighty Mom’’ is a discrete, wearable and smart utility belt for breast pumping.
“The breast pump sucks but we all love our babies more. So there seemed to be an obvious need to fix this,’’ said Erin Freeburger, one of members of the “Team Batman’’ behind the “Mighty Mom’’ design. “And, I think another thing was bringing people’s voices to the fore front and realizing that everyone has the same three to five key issues with [the breast pump].’’
“Helping Hands’’ won $2,000 for second prize from Medela. “Pump IO’’ won $1,000 from Naia Health for third prize. A $500 prize for “Outstanding User-Focused Design’’ from Moxxley went to “Second Nature.’’ “Compress Express’’ won the Pioneer Award and was also the winner of the most popular vote on challenge posts. There were ten total proposals.
For “Mighty Moms,’’ what’s next is still to be determined. “I guess the fantasy going forward would that we can incorporate a lot of other neat ideas and bring a lot of the other people in the Hackathon into the design discussion and build something that takes all of the best ideas,’’ said team member Don Blair.
The team’s hopes are high and everyone is ready to get to work developing the design. Pejman Mar Ventures will sponsor two members of the team who will go to Silicon Valley and pitch their idea to investors. “This is what we did in two days,’’ Freeburger said. “If we push it out there, people give their feedback, and people respond, this could really change something.’’
Watch the winning team pitch from “Team Batman’’ for the “Mighty Mom.’’