NUS-SoC Wins US$100,000 at International Search
team that includes two recent multimedia graduates
from NUS School of Computing has trumped their
rivals from China, Japan, France and the United
States to win the Grand Finals of The Star
For their effort,
Victor Goh Hai Kiat and Neo Shi Yong, along with
their team-mate Li Haojie, walked away with the
prize money of US$100,000. Shiyong and Victor
pursued their graduate studies in Computer Science
with SoC, with Shiyong obtaining his PhD in 2008,
and Victor his MSc in 2007.
third man on the team, is their fellow research
for the Lab of Media Search at NUS. The finals of
the competition were held on 23 Oct
Neo Shi Yong, Li Haojie, Victor Goh Hai
Kiat at the competition
in the digital world of “Second Life”, the team
had to overcome virtual obstacles to win clues
that would help them solve the ubiquitous problem
of multimedia search.
technologies and algorithms that they had created
for the competition, the teams performed voice and
video search tasks on a multilingual database in
English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil.
solutions are novel in that today’s traditional
existing search engines are text-based and, as
such, can locate only multimedia material that has
been tagged in text.
As tagging is
laborious, it is not routinely done, and the
tagging that does occur is generally not of high
quality and consistent.
Asked about their
winning feat, Victor had this to say: “We are
absolutely elated to win the Star Challenge! We
would like to thank Prof Chua Tat Seng and all who
have supported us….We are pleased with the end
results as well as honoured to be up against so
many worthy contestants. The next generation
multimedia retrieval technology is on its way
The winners (wearing lanyard) with their
mentor Prof Chua Tat Seng (holding crystal trophy)
and staff of Laboratory for Media
multimedia search technologies, such as those
demonstrated by the NUS-SoC team at the
competition, are expected to transform how the
public will interact with rich-media material.
The impact of such technologies are
potentially great, considering the exponential
growth of multimedia content and the proliferation
of user-generated platforms such as YouTube,
Facebook and Flickr.
Challenge@Fusionopolis was organised by the Agency
for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR).
A total of 56 teams from 17 countries had
entered this global competition when it began 10
months prior to the Grand Finals.
contestants included search engine enthusiasts as
well as several of the world’s top laboratories.
All of the contestants own the
Intellectual Property to their technologies.