Eight years ago Microsoft hosted the first Imagine Cup, a year long contest that challenges students to use technology to come up with solutions to the world's toughest problems. This year's Imagine Cup challenged teams to come up with ways to help developing countries achieve the UN's Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The MDGs consist of eight goals aimed at reducing global poverty by 2015. Teams from over 100 countries submitted their concepts and the finalists earned a trip to Cairo for a shot at one of the $25,000 prizes.
The winner for software category was a Romanian team that designed a program to help people connect with government agencies that the team hope to implement back in their hometown. An Indian team won a special award for developing a computer game that educates children about malaria. One of the more imaginative offerings came from a South Korean team that developed a means to help farmers more successfully breed insects for food.