Other NJ News

Press Releases

Young Inventors from Morristown's Peck School Win Exploravision Regional Competition

Experience Sophie and Scarlette's enthusiasm for innovation in this video interview

MORRISTOWN, NJ - One measure of a students’ success, these days, is whether they are preparing themselves for jobs of the future – jobs that don’t exist yet or even have names.

So how about “Interactive Picture Frame Programmer?” That’s what two students at The Peck School are preparing to be as they revealed their design for an innovative product that uses artificial intelligence, digital footprints, and cloud-based data storage to bring pictures to life in a high tech frame.

Their invention, dubbed the “Personal Interactive Picture Frame,” secured them first place in the regional Exploravision competition co-sponsored by The National Science Teachers Association and Toshiba. This is the largest science competition in the world, and the duo from Peck is now one of five teams competing to be national champion. Even more impressive is the fact that these two young innovators are both in The Peck School’s third grade.

Sign Up for E-News

Sophie Cheng from Bridgewater and Scarlette Liftin from Lebanon have been painstakingly researching and engineering their product since the fall of 2015. They are among 14 students from Peck who accepted the Exploravision challenge at the beginning of this school year. Under the mentorship of Lower School Technology Coordinator Jennifer Garvey, the budding engineers deployed Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM) to bring their idea to life. They worked as a team outside of normal school hours to bring their initial concept from the drawing board to full-scale model.

“We love the Harry Potter series,” Scarlette explains. “The Personal Interactive Picture Frame (IPF) was inspired by the ‘Fat Lady’ and other talking portraits that hang in the hallway of Gryffindor Tower.” 

Her teammate Sophie goes on to explain the technology behind the concept, “The Personal IPF will work with a programmable Artificial Intelligence computer chip. The ‘AI’ chip will be programmed to track and model a person’s facial expressions, body movements, gestures, mouth movements, vocal sounds, voice rhythms, favorite phrases, etc.”

“People will find a photo and upload it to the Personal IPF website,” adds Scarlette. “The website has all the information about this person based on the AI computer chip and from past digital habits recorded from social media sites and Personal IPF programmable sources.”

“The computer chip will work by recording and adapting to the users facial expressions and overall habits, behavior, and movement. The image will change and interact appropriately by detecting the user’s emotion and body language,” concludes Sophie.

Throughout the course of the regional competition, the students were required to research current technologies, create a timeline showing the history of photography, picture frames, computers and chips. They drafted a paper describing the inner-workings of their product and explaining technological breakthroughs that would need to take place to enable their design.

For the national competition the students have submitted a full website advertising their design, including a two minute video about the product. The website had to demonstrate their vision for the IPF to the national judges. In addition, the team used the 3D modeling program called Tinkercad to sculpt a stand for the IPF, which they printed on one of Peck’s new 3D printers. They also crafted a prototype frame out of foam board, jewels, and stickers.

As regional winners,  Liftin and Cheng each received framed award certificates and Toshiba tablets. The Peck School received a widescreen Toshiba laptop. They will find out in late April if they have placed in the national competition where first place winners receive a $10,000 US Savings Bond and an all-expenses paid trip to the Finals expo in Washington, DC.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Millburn/Short Hills

Video: Scoutmaster Ken Fineran Street Dedication Ceremony

May 21, 2018

MILLBURN, NJ - Millburn Township and Boy Scout Troop 17 of St. Rose of Lima honored the life and accomplishments of late Scoutmaster Kenneth W. Fineran on Sunday, May 20. Troop 17 Scouts, in conjunction with Millburn Township and St. Rose of Lima Church.

Vehicle Stolen from Residence; Millburn Police Department Investigating

May 10, 2018

On May 2, 2018 Millburn Police Officer Barbosa responded to Neiman Marcus on a theft report. Neiman Marcus personnel report a black male wearing a black jumpsuit with the word “Kappa” on the front, and a black male wearing a blue shirt with the word “Champion” on the front each took a backpack valued at $1195.00 each and left the store without making payment. The incident ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 15

On this week’s AtlantiCast, learn some important tips for controlling and avoiding diabetes from an Atlantic Health System expert, see how Atlantic Health is advancing cutting-edge research, hear what’s being done to keep health care environmentally friendly and much more!


Upcoming Millburn Township Committee Primary Election

May 12, 2018

Dear Fellow Millburn and Short Hills Residents,

Having given the selection of a candidate for the upcoming Millburn Township Committee primary election some serious thought, I have come to the conclusion that Corey Biller has the credentials to move the Township forward in a positive manner.

I know that Corey will bring a new and positive sensibility to the Committee, one that is ...

Upcoming Events


Fri, May 25, 12:30 PM

Millburn High School, Millburn

Fleet Week at Millburn High School


Wed, May 30, 6:15 PM

Millburn High School (Back grass fields), Millburn

Millburn Color Run

Arts & Entertainment Education Giving Back Other


Thu, May 31, 9:00 AM

Galloping Hills Golf Course, Kennilworth

Millburn Fire Department Golf Classic


Sun, June 3, 10:00 AM

Genius Gems, Millburn

Genius Gems Grand Opening

Book House to Welcome Children's Author Billy Baldwin

May 24, 2018

MILLBURN, NJ -Local Author, Millburn resident and bookstore owner Nadege Nicoll, welcomes children’s book author, Billy Baldwin, of Sag Harbor, to share his wonderful picture book “Wipeout The Wave” at her new book store, The Book House at 281 Essex Street in Millburn, NJ. 

Local children ages 4 to 9, are invited with their parents to come to the store on Saturday, June ...

Genius Gems Grand Opening in Millburn

Genius Gems LLC, a Unique STEM-based Learn & Play Space, Announces Grand Opening in Millburn, New Jersey on June 3rd  


What Can Your Child Build with over 24,000 Magnetic Tiles?


MILLBURN, NJ – Genius Gems, a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)-based learn and play space, is thrilled to announce the opening of ...

First Millburn Spring Festival Coming to Taylor Park

The Indian American Association of Millburn and Short Hills and The South Mountain Civic Association are organizing the 1st Millburn Spring Festival in Taylor park and Bauer Center on Sunday, June 10th, 2018 from 1-4 PM. The entire community is invited to a fun filled afternoon with many Millburn downtown restaurants setting up food stalls, Henna tattoo artist, Face painting and live Indian Music ...

SURVIVING A STROKE: Quick Medical Response Gives Mom Her Life Back

Carotid artery dissection. It’s one of the most common causes of stroke in younger adults.

And while you might not associate the word “stroke” with younger patients, the condition – if not treated immediately – could lead to paralysis and even death.

Lindsey Singh can attest to the importance of immediacy. The 31-year-old mother of two from Flanders experienced ...