We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Disruptive research ....virtual windscreens

What are fundamental innovations or disruptive technologies as its often said ....?

For e.g. while driving on a Californian highway in a car I was surrounded by a flood of the passing cars. At night there head lights were annoying and blinding. A thought came in my mind....

What is the best innovation that has happened in the light industry? All the changes that we see are incremental changes where more powerful light bulbs are used, self adjusting lights are used, focus is adjusted automatically on curves etc. But the main restrain about all this is, its still incremental change in the way people see. 

Lights are used so that people could see out of darkness. So the fundamental problem is not lights or better designed lights. The fundamental problem is people's inability to see in the limited range offered by lights. So the solution is to provide people more better abilities to see the surroundings. 
Could a car light no matter how better designed it is, would be able to do that? I think no. 

A disruptive technology here could be projecting the surrounding of the car in a virtual reality kind of environment on the windshield of the car itself. So as the car moves it senses its surroundings using sophisticated sensors and displays it on the screen. A cool idea. 

Another major problem is the obstruction of viewing while taking turns, or during overtaking due to the A,B,C pillars of the car. What if these pillars did not exist? How would car driving experience look like? What if we make these pillars from transparent material? Again a cool idea. 

So all these thoughts came rushing to my mind during my first long car ride (200 miles) along the Californian coast travel. 

I happened to meet a friend at night for dinner where I discussed my ideas with him and he is like. Dude, did you see the latest Jaguar Tech screening that came some days back. They describe there new technology called "virtual windscreen" and transparent pillars which describes just these same concepts. I managed to find a YouTube video below. 

Being able to identify a problem and seek answers to solve the solution is the crux of any scientist and that is what a long journey of PhD trains you for. I am happy to see that I can identify real life problems and possible solutions. Its a great feeling to have matured to this stage. 

More problems as I keep exploring and possibly more solutions to make things better in a disruptive innovative way ....

Friday, December 19, 2014

Why does a User want bug free Operating system installations .....

Installing new Linux based operating systems was a huge pain not so far ago. I remember chasing Suse distribution dependencies and the nightmare it involved.

Ubuntu scored a major hit with users with its sleek out of the box installation, and ease of the package management using auto-dependencies resolution.

However, still there are problems. I happened to install Ubuntu-14.04 on my laptop two months ago, and had a huge problem with getting basic things to work, for e.g. sound was missing so I had to search endless web-links to find the correct hacks.

Identifying correct nvidia-graphics driver was a pain, so the same story repeated. I spent a huge amount of time to get the system to a working state.

Luckily this was a 32 bit installation and when after  installing Android SDK its emulator failed to launch due to its dependency on 64 bit architecture, I was forced to remove my 14.04 installation and upgrade to a latest 14.10 installation with 64 bit support.

What a pleasant package this major release is. It does almost everything out of the box. No pain hacks to get things working. Below is a link which describes some main tasks that could enhance the user experience once the installation is done. Some major relief is in the area of.


1. Track-pad is auto detected, so the annoying problem of keyboard errors due to touching of track-pad has gone. This is a God send gift...literally.

2. Audio works out of the box.

3. Nvidia-drivers are detected in the package manager.

4. System tools work out of the box.

And many other annoying little bugs that were present all across 14.04 are gone.

Thank you very much for making my life simpler Ubuntu. I so much appreciate it.

Sunday, December 7, 2014