Open House 2018: When Technology meets Knowledge

The 14th edition of Open House at IIT Delhi on April 21 had multi-hued reflections of creativity, innovation and academic excellence.

The sprawling campus wore a festive look as parents, teachers, students and professionals descended, braving scorching heat, to get a taste of the latest innovations from the labs of one of the premier institutes of the country.

A live display of pioneering research projects, technical workshops by industry experts and a guided showcase of the on-campus labs were some of the highlights.

There were some taking selfies, children lining up for group photos and teachers striving to keep a tab on their students.

"This is an excellent initiative of IITD. Infact, there should be two Open Houses annually," says Usha Kaur a teacher of SDPS Pitampura School. Agrees Kusum Sarha :"It is an apt platform for motivating a child."

Tushar Gupta of Surevin International School feels that this spread of technology for the young students helped instil a perspective on engineering in the young minds.

Saurabh Singh, an industrialist had come to see the latest technology and how this could be used for his polymer business.

The day long programme took the visitors on a multi-dimensional ride dotted with exhibits, projects and stimulating interactions. The lobby of LHC resonated with displays of robotics and smart technologies.

For most this was a platform to dig out the science behind the innovations and a learning experience. " I however feel that there should be more displays," says Dimple who had accompanied her son.

Avalokan an exhibition on IIT Delhi innovations for the visually impaired, showcased all the assistive technology for the Visually Impaired by ASSISTECH. On the display platter were refreshable braille display, smart cane device for safe and independent mobility, textbooks for visually impaired and Braille tutoring application. " I wanted to get a flavour of the institute. The displays have creatively amalgamated a host of scientific tools," Piyush Lahot, a class 11th student.

Earlier while inaugurating the Open House institute director Prof V Ramgopal Rao stressed on the need to connect with the societal problems and knit a multidisciplinary culture." Creativity in Higher Education is as important as literacy at the grassroot level. In the next five years there will be a major transformation in the entire IIT system. There will be a greater connect with the society.

"Cracking the JEE exam is not an end. Once you enter the IIT, there should be a burning urge to ask questions. While in the school level, when you are preparing for exams, you should know how to answer the questions well. But once you are in IIT, you should learn to question. Research is all about asking the right question," Prof Rao advised to the packed audience of students seated at Dogra Hall.

Prof Mausam's talk on –A brief introduction to AI, past, present and future--- touched on the history, past and future of AI. Stating that AI will create more jobs than it eliminates, he said that teams of AI and human intelligence will be common.

Delivering his talk on 5G, Prof Brajesh Lal referred to how the 5G technology will change human lives. Besides other points, the talk elucidated on the journey from POTS to 5G and the initiatives at IIT Delhi including the IIT Delhi—Ericsson 5G Center of Excellence.

Other highlights of the day long programme were lectures that included topics like-- 'Should I do Engineering after class XII, Machine Translation: Translation from one language to another through computers and Fun-gineering: Having fun while doing engineering.

The Boeing-IIT Delhi National Aero Modelling Competition at the Hockey Ground was another crowd puller.

Some of the key projects on exhibition this year were the durable intelligent artificial leg which uses smart sensing technology in the shoes to adapt to the movement of the individual along with a few other rehabilitation devices, flow battery for renewable energy storage, a process to prevent crop residue burning and refreshable Braille display.