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    When four youngsters took the stage at the India Innovation Summit on Thursday, the packed hall greeted them with thunderous applause. From a 17-year-old girl who sowed the seeds of her venture in 2015 to a 21-year-old village lad who has gone the extra mile to help distressed farmers, the innovators shared their journeys and success stories at the two-day meet organized by Confederation of Indian Industries (CII).

    This app tracks baby’s mental, physical growth

    “When I was in class six, school authorities told my parents to get me enroled in a special school. I was 11 when they realized that I was suffering from dyspraxia, a motor disorder caused by damage to the brain. By the time I stepped into class 10, I became an ace coder,” said Harsh Songra, founder of My Child, an app. Featured twice in the Forbes India 30 Under 30 list, he’s been a TedEx speaker too.

    Founded in 2015, the app helps parents track the child’s mental and physical development and unusual symptoms from birth to two years. “Today, we connect to over 200 mothers across 140 countries in a month to help them understand their children’s development stages and identify signs of a disorder, if any. The app uses artificial intelligence algorithms. I have also started a content page — We Included — which narrates the tales and travails of the disabled across the globe and sensitizes people,” said Harsha.

    Harsh Songra, 21, co-founder, My Child


    A platform which hones communication skills

    While chasing the IIT dream, Siddharth Pandiya realized that he was doing no value-addition by becoming another computer engineer. “I left the rat race and started something which I realized is so vital today, a debating platform. My parents always wanted me to develop communication skills,” said Siddharth, who is preparing to join University of California, Los Angeles.

    The teenager who just completed PUC from Greenwood High School is the founder of Debate for Change, a forum supported by Google. An avid debater since the age of eight, Siddharth’s aim is to make schoolchildren discuss varied topics with students across the world, hence enhancing their communication skills. “It’s a voice-based platform. One has to meet certain parameters, like the number of debates, to secure a world ranking,” he said, adding, “I’d rather be an aggregator of skills and find the right people to do the right job than a master of all trades. That’s my success mantra.”

    Siddharth Pandiya, 18, founder, Debate for Change


    This initiative hopes to change mindsets, save resources

    Two years ago, when an environmentalist spoke about the impact of wasting resources and degradation of the planet during environment day, classmates Garvita Gulhati and Pooja S chanced upon the idea of a social startup — Why Waste? “The speech got us thinking and we realized we needed to do something,” said Garvita, who was 15 years old then.

    “If we drink water from a bottle at a summit and leave it half empty, 14 million litres of water will be wasted in two days? Our initiative intends to change mindsets. I believe we are all tenants on Earth; if we can leave a house spick and span being tenants, why can’t we do that for the planet? We have to stop wasting resources, which are limited,” she said. As part of the initiative, Garvita organizes campaigns to conserve natural resources.

    Garvita Gulhati, 17, co-founder, Why Waste?


    A tech tool to aid farmers

    Hailing from a humble farmer family in a remote Mangaluru village, Ajay Gopi started an agriculture startup in 2015. “I have experienced the agony farmers in our country go through. When about 1,500 farmers committed suicide in Karnataka because of crop failure and debt, I decided to make a difference,” said the collegegoer.

    The startup, Teraniru, gives users access to the aquaponics technology, wherein plants grow in soil which sucks the same water in which fish breed. His prototype is functioning since December at the Kaggalipura rural market. “My aim is to do away with middlemen in the agriculture sector. We have to focus on people who contribute to the food chain, otherwise we will not survive,” said Ajay, who is now head of Project DEFY in Mangaluru and a fellow at Ashoka India.

    Ajay Gopi, 21, co-founder, Teraniru

    source: / The Times of India / News> City News> Bangalore News / TNN / July 14th, 2017

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    The firm “was founded with the goal of applying modern artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques to solve old problems.”

    Google has acquired Bengaluru-based artificial intelligence startup Halli Labs for an undisclosed sum. The firm said it was founded with the goal of applying modern artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques to solve old problems.

    “Well, what better place than Google to help us achieve this goal,” said the company in a blog post on Medium. It said the company would be joining Google’s Next Billion Users team to help get technology and information into more people’s hands around the world. “We couldn’t be more excited,” said the company.

    Halli Labs was co-founded early this year by Pankaj Gupta, former chief technology officer of online homestay aggregator Stayzilla, which recently closed down its services. An alumnus of Stanford University, Mr.Gupta has also worked as a senior data scientist at Twitter.

    Caesar Sengupta, Google’s vice-president for product management tweeted about the acquisition on Wednesday on his Twitter handle.

    source: / The Hindu / Home>  Business> Industry / by Special Correspondent / Bengaluru – July 12th, 2017

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    Panditrao Dharennavar conducting classes for Sikh children of Gurunanak Nagar in Indi taluk of Vijayapura district. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

    Panditrao Dharennavar conducting classes for Sikh children of Gurunanak Nagar in Indi taluk of Vijayapura district. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

    Dharennavar, a Kannadiga, has been teaching Punjabi to the community in Vijayapura

    Back in 2012, Panditrao Dharennavar was in the news for translating Kannada literature into Punjabi. Now, the professor is bringing Punjabi back to the Sikhs in his hometown Indi at Vijayapura district.

    Mr. Dharennavar, who teaches sociology at the government degree college in Chandigarh, has turned into an ambassador of the two languages. He teaches Punjabi to Sikh children of Gurunanak Nagar in the taluk, while also translating Kannada works into Punjabi.

    Based in Chandigarh for the last decade, Mr. Dharennavar has mastered enough Punjabi to be able to write it. He has translated Vachanas of Veerashaiva saints and social reformers Basaveshwara and Akka Mahadevi into Punjabi.

    “When I came here on vacation, I came to know about the colony of Sikhs who have been dwelling here for over 70 years. After being disconnected from Punjab for decades, these people have forgotten Punjabi and speak Hindi and Kannada. They also speak Sikhali, their own language which is similar to Punjabi but has no script,” Mr. Dharennavar said.

    That is when he decided to teach Punjabi to the community, mainly the children.

    He is happy with the interest shown by the children. “Perhaps it their instinct that makes them learn the language so quickly,” he said.

    Ujwal Singh, one of the residents, said that he is grateful to Mr. Dharennavar for having so much concern for the community to teach the language. “We wanted someone to teach us Punjabi so that we could read our religious books. The language also connects us to our roots,” he said.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> States> Karnataka / by Firoz Rozindar / Vijayapura – July 12th, 2017

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    July 11th, 2017adminEducation, Science & Technology
    Students taking part in the Young Innovator Hunt will be asked to devise innovative missile solutions to keep at bay the British forces surrounding Srirangapatna.

    Students taking part in the Young Innovator Hunt will be asked to devise innovative missile solutions to keep at bay the British forces surrounding Srirangapatna.

    Students of Class V to X in Mysuru and Bengaluru are being given an opportunity to come up with missile technology solutions as part an education startup’s Young Innovator Hunt.

    Those who register for the hunt, are expected to imagine themselves fighting against the British forces from the island town of Srirangapatna on behalf of the 18th Century warrior king Tipu Sultan, who pioneered missile technology.

    The participating students will be asked to devise an innovative missile solution to keep at bay the British forces surrounding Srirangapatna, an island town surrounded by two branches of the Cauvery.

    Anglo-Mysore War

    “We will narrate the story of the second Anglo-Mysore War in which Tipu Sultan scored a historic victory against the British with the help of missile technology, said Dhruva V. Rao, founder, Science Ashram, a science education centre, which believes in teaching concepts of science through experiments. Also, a painting of the battle scenario will be provided to the students.

    “The primary reason for Tipu’s victory in the battle was the scientific approach towards problem-solving and high order thinking skills. Students are also expected to think out of the box and provide missile solutions to prevent the British forces from crossing the Cauvery and entering Srirangapatnam,” Mr. Rao added.

    Necessary material

    Science Ashram will provide a set of tools and necessary materials for students to come up with missile solutions. “The solution can range from a catapult to a ballista to a trebuchet. The missile solution should be around 20 ft,” Mr. Rao added.

    Pointing out that the missile technology was born out of such high order reasoning skills displayed by Tipu Sultan, Mr. Rao said NASA had displayed a painting of this battle scene at its centre in USA. “This was recognised by the late President Dr. Abdul Kalam at Wallops Flight Facility, the base for NASA’s Sounding Rocket Programme,” Mr. Rao said.

    Students, who register for the programme, will be allotted a day on which they have to visit the Science Ashram either in Bengaluru or Mysuru to develop their missile solution. “We can accommodate about 30 students per day at each centre”, he said.

    Last year

    Mr Rao is hopeful of young minds coming up with innovative solutions during the exercise. During its first Young Innovator Hunt last year, hundreds of students participated in a contest to come up with a solution to propel a car without fossil fuel. “Participants came up with interesting solutions that included the use of solar energy and electric energy to propel the cars,” he said.

    Interested schools may contact Science Ashram at 9980878105 or While each participant, as a token of appreciation, is given a fidget spinner from the Science Ashram, the winners are given an opportunity to visit ISRO and HAL along with the Science Ashram team, Mr. Rao added.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> States> Karnataka / by Laiqh A. Khan / July 11th, 2017

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