Andrew Ahr ’18 CLAS and Austin Rios ’18 CLAS, Computer Science majors in Villanova University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, wanted to come up with a senior project that would benefit others. The result is IXAM, a mobile application that allows users to test their vision against the 20/20 benchmark right on their iPhone or Android and find out what kind of prescription they might need.
“So many people never go to an eye doctor and think their eyesight is normal,” Andrew says. “This app allows them to self-administer a traditional eye test to see if they might be starting to have a vision problem and need to see a professional.”
The idea for the app was also inspired by a friend of Andrew’s family who was a missionary in Africa. With IXAM, doctors working in rural areas can administer eye exams quickly to large numbers of people who otherwise may not have access to eye care.
Andrew and Austin have enjoyed their classes in mobile application programming and found mentors in Computing Sciences professors Frank Klassner, PhD and Edward Kim, PhD.
In Dr. Klassner’s courses, the students learned to develop an initial framework for the app, and he encouraged the them to further develop the project. As they moved further along with it, Dr. Kim connected Andrew and Austin with an ophthalmologist, who helped them understand the medical side and what features the app would need in order to be truly effective.