Google Science Fair 2012: 17-Year-Old Girl Builds Artificial ‘Brain’ to Detect Breast Cancer

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Andrew Federman / Google Brittany Wegner: 17 year old kid who won Google Science Fair 2012
Andrew Federman / Google
Brittany Wegner: 17 year old kid who won Google Science Fair 2012

A cloud-based neural network built by a 17-year-old kid named Brittany Wegner, from Florida is able to accurately assess tissue samples for signs of breast cancer with an accuracy of 99%.

The cloud-based neural network took 1st prize in this year’s Google Science Fair.

“The whole judging panel came away with a big ‘wow,’” said the technologist Vint Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist at Google, of Wenger’s project.

Wenger’s prize includes $50,000, a trip to the Galapagos Islands, one year of mentoring and internship opportunities.

She ran 7.6 million trials on it and found it is 99.1 percent sensitive to malignancy.

She also compared her custom-built network to three off-the-shelf products that she tweaked to work with her dataset. Her sensitivity to malignancy was 4.97 percent better than the commercial networks.