Tuesday, March 28, 2006

India Centric Innovations - Part II

Lets talk about 3 more indigenous innovations that have gone a long way in bringing the IT benefits to the masses in India

Script Mail - Enabling Non-English Text Entry

This is one innovation that has its birth in HP( Hewlett Packard ) Labs, India. Shekar Borgaonkar and his team have come up with Script Mail, a invention that enables text entry for non-English languages by the use of a small pad connected to a monitor. an electronic pen allows one to scribble on the pad, allowing text entry in a unique fashion. It also comes with a built in modem that enables whatever is scribbled to be e-mailed too. Absolutely no keyboard is required. Corrections are possible once the initial text entry is completed.

Script Mail is a great boon for a country like India that comprises of 18 languages spoken by more than 1 million people and numerous other dialects.

SIMputer - Simple Inexpensive Multilingual Hand held

A SIMputer was the realization of low cost computer that could be reachable to people irrespective of the language they speak and which had an intuitive interface that could easily gather a large fan following. Launched in 2001, SIMputer than made headlines. However, it still has a long way to go realize its dream of turning into a ubiquitous hand held and realizing universal access.

There are certain businesses though that have incorporated the SIMputer.

Dempo Mining Corporation, Goa use these hand-helds to ensure that the iron ore reaches the right location. Miners on loading the Ore Truck punch in data to the truck driver's SIMputer and into a smart card attached to it. The truck on reaching their location, cross checks the data with another SIMputer to ensure that the ore has reached the right location.

Another place where the SIMputer has found takers is the Bangalore Traffic Police Department, Karnataka. SIMputers used by traffic cops have the entire city's traffic violation database fed into their memories. When a person is caught breaking a traffic rule, his name or vehicle's license plate number is fed into the SIMputer. The SIMputer immediately coughs up a whole page of past violations recorded against the vehicle or person and he is accordingly fined.

Useful Links
India's Simple computer for the Poor


WiFi Last Mile Connectivity

In a vast country like India, achieving last mile connectivity is one of the toughest jobs. G. V. Ramaraju, has used WiFi technology to come up with an interesting innovation to overcome this problem. Aiding him is Media Labs Asia. Together, they have installed on an experimental basis, WiFi enabled kiosks in the Indian state of UttarPradesh. Remotely dispersed people have been given a doorway to the world. VOIP phones have been installed and the string of WiFi kiosks act as relay centers that transmit the signals back to civilization.

Do let me know in case you come across any more of such Indian innovations and I would be glad to enlist them in my Blog

1 comment:

India Invents said...

Very interesting. Some more can be seen in the "Hall of Fame" of Indian Innovators Association.
www.indianinnovatorsforum.org

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