Can Indians innovate? Surely they can. In Silicon Valley, thousands of technology companies boast of Indian-born engineers who lead their product development teams. The number of Indian Americans with more than 23 patents is at least in the hundreds.
Another Indian team is competing for a second XPRIZE. The Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE envisions a portable, wireless device in the palm of your hand that monitors and diagnoses your health conditions. Team Davantri led by the Chennai-based CEO of the Indian subsidiary of American Megatrends, a company whose software is embedded into the motherboards of millions of personal computers. Sridharan Mani was inspired to innovate at an early age. "I was very fortunate to study in Hindu High School where the great Nobel Laureate Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar once studied. When I was in high school, he visited our school and explained in simple terms about black holes. We were truly inspired by his speech." The-20 member team led by Mani is developing a device to diagnose 15 diseases, including anaemia, diabetes, tuberculosis, hepatitis A, sleep apnea, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, ear infection and leukocytosis.
Mani and Narayan will doubtless inspire additional young Indians to give up the security of traditional careers and pursue the path of invention.
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