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Alumni News

Matt Wiechec

Developing the Future of Design

March 18, 2015

For Matt Wiechec, finding solutions and using creativity to solve problems had always been appealing. It led to the creation of his iPhone app Marco Polo. A 2010 graduate of Sheridan’s Bachelor of Design (Honours) program, he says the app was a creative solution he came up with to help locate his own misplaced phone. 

According to Matt, the app has done better than he expected, becoming Canada’s 1 Paid App in Apple’s App Store this winter. The simplicity of the app is charming. It uses the built-in microphone to detect speech recognition patterns that help locate the phone. Latest versions of the app allow users to change the input keywords and response phrases.

“You launch the app, and it runs in the background. The microphone can hear what you’re saying, so if you shout Marco or whatever key phrase you have set, it’ll do some speech recognition and shout back to you, Polo, or whatever you’ve set it to respond as,” he explains.

Matt says it was all made possible by his Sheridan education. “I learned a lot about the industry and about the business side of things and being responsible for my own business,” says the 29-year-old.

As soon as Matt graduated, he was approached by companies that had seen his work at the year-end project display. “I picked up some contract work and did some freelancing. One of the biggest projects I did was with the Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia while working as Flash developer and designer Forge Media + Design.”

He helped design an interactive donor wall which patrons could interact with to find out about services offered at the hospital and use their credit cards to make on-the-spot donations.

Although it took Matt a couple of tries before he became a student in the program, he believes, “The program does a really good job at preparing a well-rounded professional.”

Learn more about Sheridan’s Bachelor of Design (Honours).

More about the Marco Polo app here.

By Mehreen Shahid, Journalism, 2015