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DOST scholar leads in developing technologies to make Borongan a smart city

Shane Francis Javier, a Department of Science and Technology (DOST) scholar and computer engineering student, led the development of applications to streamline the city government's various services in its bid to become the first smart city in Eastern Visayas.

Among Borongan's smart city projects, in partnership with Javier and his team of computer engineering students from Eastern Samar State University (ESSU), namely Tristan Ehron Tumbaga, Rommel Alidon, and Armand Ralph Anacta, is the Libre Sakay system.

DOST Usec. Sancho Mabborang and Borongan City Mayor Dayan C. Agda, seated at the center, were joined by key officials of DOST in Eastern Visayas to show the media the access cards that registered passengers will use to avail of the Libreng Sakay program of the city government. (Photo courtesy of Borongan City Information Office)

It provides recipients of the free transport service with easy access to the transport system through its QR-generated IDs and bus tracking features, among other things.

Javier explained that an app is installed on the passengers' mobile phones to track the buses' location and arrival time, generate QR codes, and more.

The system is installed on the buses and is responsible for tracking their location and determining the next bus stop. It then sends this information to a server application, which receives it from the buses and broadcasts it to the passenger apps for real-time tracking of buses.

Javier added that this libreng sakay initiative of the city government, enhanced by the smart technologies they develop, will significantly help commuters, especially students like him.

A student scans a QR code installed on his mobile phone before riding the free bus, enabling the driver to validate the authenticity of his ride. (Photo courtesy of Borongan City Information Office)

"Students are one of the primary beneficiaries of the Libre Sakay program. Aside from lessening their transportation expenses, the app can help them get real-time data to track the buses. Imagine the scenario before, where you were late for class because you kept on waiting for public transport, just because you didn't know when one would pass by your location. Now, with the Libre Sakay system, the students can get real-time information about the availability and arrival of buses," Javier said.

In addition to the libreng sakay system, he led the team that enhanced efficiency, transparency, and public engagement in the legislative process through a centralized legislative information system called the Legislative Tracking System.

This Legislative Tracking System aids in tracking legislative documents, streamlining the document management process, and providing online platforms where constituents can access public documents such as ordinances of the city LGU with just a click.

DOST Undersecretary Sancho A. Mabborang and the key officials of DOST in Eastern Visayas were present during the launch of the Libre Sakay app on March 4 to experience the bus ride himself.

Mabborang commended the students for the innovation and offered valuable insights to enhance the system further. He also encouraged the team to continually explore and make more innovative approaches, assuring DOST’s willingness to collaborate.

In a press conference, Mabborang commended the provincial and city government's leadership for the remarkable changes he instantly noticed more than a decade after his first visit to the province.

“I think that Eastern Samar's leadership and the city have done a lot of things to make it progressive and a developed city comparable to other modern cities in the Philippines,” Mabborang said.

All smiles after the launching of the libre sakay system as well as the blessing of the Science, Technology and Innovation Center in ESSU. (Photo courtesy Borongan City Information Office)

Borongan City Mayor Jose Ivan Dayan Agda shared that the new advancement in the city’s mode of transportation will not only give convenience to Boronganons but also a quick response to emergencies and ensure that they are safe and well-supported at all times.

“I believe that with the help of technology and data-driven solutions, we can address the challenges and problems quickly and create a more sustainable and efficient SMART city,” Agda said.

Other computer engineering students have also worked on different systems, such as the rescue app and registry of inhabitants and migrants, under the supervision of Prof. Charito Sabate, Director of the Smart Technologies, Research, Development, and Innovation Center of ESSU.

Some fourth-year students are also developing Systems for Medical Access and Resourceful Technologies (SMART), which will offer features such as online scheduling of medical check-ups in public health centers, laboratory requests, prescriptions, and medication dispensing. (VTG, PIA Eastern Samar)

Shane (left) with his team checked the readiness of the libre sakay system before its official launching. (Photo courtesy of Prof. Charito Sabate)
Two of the city government's bus units installed with the libre sakay system developed by Javier and his team. (Photo courtesy of Borongan City Information Office)

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Samuel Candido


Region 8

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