Two Day Technical Fest Concludes in NIT Arunachal Pradesh


Yupia:The two day Annual technical festival of National Institute of Technology Arunachal Pradesh Addovedi concluded on the 2nd of November.Addovedi is the first dedicated technical festival organised by the students of any university in Arunachal Pradesh,this was the second edition of Addovedi .The theme of Addovedi’14 was “enhancing technology, improving society”. 

The festival was inaugurated on 1st of November by the Prof.P D Kashyap ,the honourable Dean of NIT Arunachal Pradesh.In his speech he appreciated the efforts put together by the students to conduct the event.

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On the left Prof.P D Kashyap and on the right Shri.Rajen Pudur(Faculty In charge Addovedi’14)

Numerous technical events were organised in the two days such as Technical treasure hunt, Debate, Quizzes ,Extempore speech, Computer Gaming events and Photography. Other than these events many core technical events were also organised such as Coding wizard(LAN based Coding Competition),Circuit Debugging ,Codathon(Embedded coding),Autocad Designing ,Aqueduct(Bridge designing) and Command Line war (a Linux based command line flag capturing game).

2 A student participating in Command Line War

The most talked about events were the Junkyard and the Robowar ,Junkyard event is inspired from the famous show on Discovery channel named “Junkyard war”.In this event participants are provided with junk and they had to make items out of them, the participants enthralled every one by making very creative and use full things out of Junk.Six teams from NIT AP participated in Robowar .This was the first Robowar event in NIT Arunachal Pradesh.

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(Participants in the arena with their Robots Just before the match)

The core organising committee of Addovedi’14 was headed by six students of 3rd year of NIT AP

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(From the left ,Nihin Raj,Vaibhav Pandey ,Ranjit Singh,Shivaditya Katiyar,Nimit Khandelwal and Varun M S)

 

— Varun
NIT Arunachal Pradesh

Interactive Multi-Touch Panel


Interactive Multi-Touch Panel

Interactive Multi Touch Panel is basically a touch panel that is used to provide a touch operated interface to either a computer or any computer operated device. On fitting this panel on a computer or laptop, one can convert an ordinary monitor into a touch sensitive monitor. It means one can control mouse cursor position on the screen using this touch panel. So, in essence, you can turn every one of your non-touch operated devices into touch-operated ones.

“This technology presents an idea that is dedicated to the field of education. In our day to day life, we see that the field of education involves more user interaction for better understanding. In the village areas and in many schools/colleges, the major need is to make the education process more interactive. But due to a severe lack of resources, it has not yet been possible for us to provide a solution which is affordable at the village/grass-root level. We sincerely believe that touch technologies have the scope to show a lot of innovation in the I probe on about how their idea is different from the other touch interfaces out there. This idea is not for the consumer consumption market as in it isn’t a glitzy, full of overt displays of non-essential features aimed for the rich and the gadget loving community but for the villages. You can think of it like a development board, consisting of only the essentials. The product may have a lesser resolution compared to the other existing technologies like resistive and capacitive touch, but the project, like I mentioned before is intended for the village education program as the whole touch screen assembly that we have worked on is very cheap and it is useful for the interactive computer interfaces for the student education like for drawing, painting and other simple operations of computer that do not require high resolution for tangible user interface.”

Working

There are different levels to the final touch-interface.

1. Sensor panel for Touch

The sensor panel comprises the major part of the sensing circuitry. These sensors are connected along a line to form the two opposite sides of a rectangle just like that of a Laptop or a computer screen. These sensors are built in the form of modules which contain 8 IR sensors and an IR LED. These LEDs are not actuated all at a time but one by one.

2. Sensor data acquisition

The touch detection system works on the principle that a finger placed in the touch panel obstructs the path of the IR Rays emitted from the periphery of the panel. Due to this, the receivers change their outputs after the reception of the reflected IR Rays. The IR Sensors are basically actuated by a 38 kHz modulated signal to stand out of the noise. At a time, only a single IR LED is activated using the combination of D flip-flop and tristate buffer which provides accurate clock and synchronised switching of LEDs. When the touch event takes place on the panel obstructing the path of the IR LED, some sensors do not receive the IR Rays emitted from the LED due to the obstruction. Once the data is retrieved, comes our next concern. We now have 96 sensors and 12 IR LEDs. But for the data retrieval from sensors, we don’t have sufficient I/O pins in the Stellaris ARM Cortex M3 microcontroller. Hence we are using the Shift Registers (SN74165) to increase the I/O pins. The data is then collected by the 8-Bit Parallel-Input Serial-Out Shift Register. The serial data coming from each shift register in each sensor module is padded serially in the bit stream which finally reaches the micro-controller and is received using the Synchronous Serial interface.

3. USB Based Serial Communication with micro-controller

Now the data is ready for further processing. The data bytes received from each module are now sent to the computer. This is accomplished using a USB Based transfer. We are using Bulk Transfer scheme because the data, which is in the form of an image, has to been sent over USB, which is a long burst data for which the bulk transfer is basically meant for.

4. Implementing C Language for the Image creation using the Sensor Matrix data

The data retrieved in the previous step is now utilized for the Image creation which will give a pictorial representation of where, in the 2D plane of the touch panel, the touch was detected which is done using C programming. This image is actually made by creating scan-lines i.e. lines between the receiver and the transmitter, made when the communication between them is successful. These scan-lines are made in the image for each possible Rx-Tx pair in the sensor matrix.

5. Creating AVI(Audio video interleave) Video file from the frames (Images of scan-lines) obtained

Now, the next step attempts to make an avi video using the frames from the previous step. In case of a Touch sense on the touch panel, for each LED there is generated one image and the required frame is the one obtained by the sensor data corresponding to all LEDs actuated. However, the final image is that which is obtained after overlapping all the frames obtained corresponding to each lit LED which, in turn, contains a touch point.

6. Creating Video interface with Community Core Vision (CCV)

Up to this stage, we have a video which now is capable of showing where actually the touch was detected (i.e. Blob) w.r.t the Sensor Matrix frame. This information at this stage is now very useful as these videos are ready to be interfaced and fed to the Image Processing  software: CCV– Community Core Vision – this software takes the video input stream made by the frames of blob detection images from touch panel and outputs the tracking data which is useful for mouse movements. So we now have the video being interfaced with the software and now we require a software driver which can synchronize the blob position figured out by CCV with the mouse movements which leads us to the last step.

7. TUIO Mouse Driver Implementation

TUIO is an open framework and platform to support the tangible user interface. The TUIO allows the transmission of meaningful information extracted from the tangible interfaces including touch events and object specifications. “This protocol enciphers the control data from a tracker application (e.g. based on computer vision) and sends it to any client algorithm that deciphers this information. This combination of TUIO trackers, protocol and client implementations allow the rapid development of tangible multi-touch interfaces. Finally we are now at a stage to successfully run our Touch user interface having mouse moves well synchronized with the Finger movements and gesture.”

Challenges faced

I cannot help but quiz them on the level of challenges associated with such a complex idea being brought to fruition. It was actually really hard to design the hardware because that aspect, along with the complicated signal and supply management were the most critical issues that were to be handled in order to control the sensitivity of the touch sensitive panel. Also the problem of the propagation delay was encountered as the signal input from the sensors has to pass through hardware and software algorithm. But somehow we managed to shrink the code so as to enhance the speed of the operation and the whole interface and that helped a lot in the completion.

What lies ahead

With such work ethic and abundantly evident innovativeness, the talk moves on to what kind of features they would like added on to their design. We are still on our way to increase its resolution and its compactness. Further we are also planning to add more multi-touch features to this panel like scrolling, zooming etc. We have also been brainstorming on ways to make the design more compact so that it fits easily on the screen of a computer. To decrease the thickness of the touch panel, we are still searching for smaller IR sensors. This way we will also be able to reduce the size of the PCB for the sensor array.


Vasuki Soni, Rounak Singh Narde and Mordhwaj Patel
National Institute of Technology, Raipur

GSM Based Wireless Notice Board


Wireless communication has announced its arrival on big stage and the world is going mobile. We wish to control everything without moving an inch. This remote control of appliances is possible through Embedded Systems. The use of “Embedded System in Communication” has given rise to many interesting applications that ensures comfort and safety for human life. The main aim of this project will be to design an SMS driven automatic display board which can replace the currently used programmable electronic display. It is proposed to design receiver cum display board which can be programmed from an authorized mobile phone. The message to be displayed is sent through a SMS from an authorized transmitter. The microcontroller receives the SMS, validates the sender and displays the desired information. Started off as an instantaneous NEWS display unit, we have improved upon it and tried to take advantage of the computing capabilities of microcontroller. Looking into current trend of information transfer in the campus, it is seen that important notices take time to be displayed on the notice boards. This latency is not expected in most of the cases and must be avoided. It is proposed to implement this project at the institute level. It is proposed to place display boards in major access points.

Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 9.09.55 amThe electronic displays which are currently used are programmable displays which need to be reprogrammed every time. This makes it inefficient for immediate information transfer, and thus the display board loses its importance. The GSM based display board can be used as an add-on to these display boards and make it truly wireless. GSM Stands for Global Network for Mobile Communication. A GSM modem is a wireless modem that works with a GSM wireless network.

GSM Modem accepts a SIM card and operates over subscription to other users connected to the Network. The display board, programs itself with the help of the incoming SMS with proper validation. Such a system proves to be helpful for immediate information transfer. The system required for the purpose is just a Microcontroller based SMS box. The main components of the kit include microcontroller, GSM modem. These components are integrated with the display board and thus incorporate the wireless features. The GSM modem receives the SMS. The AT commands are serially transferred to the modem through serial transmit and receive connection (AT commands are instructions used to control a modem. AT stands for Attention). In return the modem transmits the stored message through the same serial port. The micro-controller validates the SMS and then displays the message on the LED display board. Various time division multiplexing techniques have been suggested to make the display boards function efficiently. The microcontroller used in this case is ATMEGA32. SIMCOM 900A is used as the GSM modem. The data will be displayed only after entering the unique pass key. In addition to that address matching is done and data can be received only by the dedicated receiver, and this data is displayed on LED display. The main focus of the thesis is on displaying information on a dedicated LED display from the any part of world using GSM network, which facilitates to control any message board globally from any location. Every unit needs to be connected to power supply which is a prerequisite for its operation.

The main objective of our project is to display the message thus received by the controller through GSM Modem. The Message is to be displayed on the Large Screen, hence visible to all and larger in size. So, we use LED screen for this purpose. It consists of Individual LEDs in matrix by which message is thus conveyed to all the people around. While working with the Integrated Circuits Power supply is one of the most important part of the circuitry, which defines the functioning of the circuit. If Power Supply signal at any time exceeds any of the specifications defined, then IC(s) being used may blow up. So the Power Supply needs to be taken care of seriously. As the GSM Modem requires constant external supply of 12 volts and 2 amperes, so using Switched Mode Power Supply whose accuracy is much higher than the Linear Regulated Supplies. But, the rest of our components require constant 5V constant power supply, so we use converter to down-convert the Power fed to GSM Modem to 5V and feed it to the Controller circuit and LED Display.

To save system form the attacks we need to add something more owing to the Security of message. So, not only the message but a short code also needs to be sent as a prefix to the message. Thus, even though GSM Modem may receive the message but the controller will display only if the prefix code matches to the one in the Controller. In this way, unauthorised access can be avoided.

This project has capability to be used at school, colleges and various public places including bus stand, airport and railway station for displaying notices. Besides this the project can be used along the roads to convey and control the traffic movement.

Believing in the Ramayana


Way back I remember being involved in a discussion centered about the fact that whether the Ramayana existed. It had started on a skeptic note. The person raising this doubt had his reasons. “Given that we move forward in technology with time how could we have flying-vehicles in that era and then had to wait for eternity to invent airplanes and hot-air balloons.” “How do you explain scientifically the flying of a person having simian appearance?” Yeah, he sounded blasphemous and could have invited trouble had there been present some extremist people but fortunately for him the people there were more interested in driving home the necessary point rather than showing him the way to hospital.

ramynanaSo, is the Ramayana only about all those flying vimans and those seemingly impossible miracles? And when have science come up with plausible explanations to all the phenomena occurring around the world? Well, the very essence of Ramayana transcends all these and should not be veiled under their attractive magnificence. Facts and information never remain the same as they travel across generations and places and no doubt we have different versions of Ramayana at different places. A line from the Rigveda echoes this- Ekum sat vipraha bahudha vadanti, that is, there is only one truth, only men describe it in different ways.

And interestingly they often get too spiced up over the generations to seem real. But the core essentially remains same. What believing in the Ramayana implies is to believe that a person of a character as fine as it could possibly be, existed; that there indeed was a Maryada Purushottam – the embodiment of truth, morality and valor who set for the generations to come the model behavior and conduct to be followed as a ruler, as a son, as a brother and as a husband. The different types of situations found in the Ramayana are very similar to the commonplace occurrences in our life and we are expected to assimilate in us the threefold Dharma (code of conduct) pertaining to the individual, the family and the society. You are supposed to believe that there existed an ardent disciple, a devotee (Hanuman) whose every action was motivated by his love for his master highlighting the concept of Bhakti (pure, selfless and adoring devotion) rather than being concerned with his supposed long jump over the sea.

So, the debate was sort of being dismissed due the vagueness the topic itself had incorporated with it but it did bring into light how the perception have changed over the years; quite palpable from the sorry state of affairs we find ourselves right now in. Despite all the global developments we have had in all walks of life, still a challenge remains for us. And that challenge is at an individual level how to distinguish between Dharma (right) and Adharma (wrong) and then follow Dharma.

Shivanshu Kumar Singh

Image credits: fineartamerica.com

Being Chef


Being Chef

beingchefGood food and magic, both leaves you spell bound with its sheer innovation and simplicity. We thought of combining the two in one simple box so that we can offer you the best of both the worlds – The Being Chef box. Our magical box makes cooking streamlined and hassle free, transforming you into a world class chef even with a limited knowledge of cooking.

Mr. Shubham Maheshwari is a graduate from NIT Jaipur, presently the founder and CEO of a cooking advisory firm, Being Chef. Most of us, even after joining graduation institutes, have no idea what interests us and who we really want to be. But very few of these confused minds choose to explore every possible field and end up mastering one which suits them perfect. Such is the brain of Mr. Maheshwari. Initially he worked in the technical field, starting with robotics in the first year of his graduation, went on to work on a car for an international competition in second year and published a research paper on management in third year. He also explored the fields of fashion and dramatics. He did as many as seven internships during the four years of his graduation in various fields ranging from technical to management. The monotony of his technical internship at one of the leading automobile production firms helped him finally decide to go for management.

The whole idea of Being Chef was born because he missed his mother’s food, like we all do when away from our homes. Its concept is to facilitate cooking. There are a lot of issues we face while we cook. What we generally do is decide what to cook and dive into the world of internet to figure out the ingredients and the recipe. Some don’t understand the recipe as there are a few foreign exotic ingredients that are not very common in our country . Being chef takes care of all these issues. For any specific recipe, It gives filtered ingredients in precise quantity in separate packets followed with a recipe card that guides the user to prepare a meal in just 8 simplified steps Initially funded by his parents, both business personnel, he now, single handedly takes care of the whole firm. When asked about his marketing strategies, he simply denies the existence of any in his idea. For him, marketing is all about networking with people, interacting with them and most importantly, being true to his concept to facilitate cooking. In his words, it’s all about how we present ourselves, so that people are ready to buy our ideas, convincing comes automatically. He headed the marketing section of his institute for four years, where he earned most of his contacts. He never went for certificates and appreciations, he merely went to the people, with whom he shared a warm relationship over the years.

When he started off with the idea, it was not really the cake walk it seems to be now. He mentions how difficult it is to implement the whole idea practically. Only 30-40% of the whole plan actually gets implemented. Also, he started at an age very tender for the business world; obviously he was not taken seriously by the society that took pleasure in bugging him and trying to bring him down. The huge initial cost was also a problem. With the blessings of god and his supportive parents,he conquered all of them. He is a firm, organized and has acted professionally throughout. He has always been a risk-taker and suggests all the young buds to be one. He suggests that especially for the engineering graduates, who he believes have nothing to lose and can always risk it to discover who they are and who they want to be, while the management graduates are more of pessimists, though better organized and calculated, they hardly go on to risk their career for the joy of it. He suggests that if someone feels strongly for something, believes in his idea deeply, he must go for it, ‘just give it a shot’. The pros and cons would become clear in no time and determination will find its way through the hurdles and finally we’ll have a well cooked idea served with honor.

Cooking for the world, as you would know , is easy now! Thanks to Mr Maheshwari

Build Networks. Make Connections.