(1) India – Lots of People, Lots of Fun!
I love drawing people. Over the past three years, I have
been working on a project which is a collection of cartoon
illustrations to celebrate the people and the crowds of
The sheer variety and diversity of the people in India
amazes me. The language we speak, the food we eat, the
clothes we wear – they are so different for every few
hundred kilometers we travel in India – and yet there is
something that binds all of us together.
We are a collection of different characters with different
characteristics. We are different persons with different
personalities. Each of us is a unique story, a unique tale.
All these stories need to be told, and they need to be
This is my humble attempt at documenting current day
India seen through the eyes of a cartoonist.
I plan to publish all these cartoon illustrations into a book
called “India – Lots of People, Lots of Fun!!!”.
I also share these drawings regularly on instagram
Creating Digital Learning Environment for Design in India (‘e-kalpa’)
In IDC over the past 6-7 years, I have been working on a
project along with my colleague Prof. Ravi Poovaiah and
my Research Associates to make animation education available
online for free for anyone who wants to learn.
This is part of a larger project (funded by the Ministry of
Human Resources, Govt. of India) called D’source.
(Resource for Design learning)
Details of the project are as follows:
This project on “Creating Digital Learning Environment for Design in India” also called ‘e-kalpa’, is sponsored by the Ministry of Human Resources (MHRD),
Government of India, as part of the National Mission in Education through Information and Communication Technology (NMEICT)
The key themes and my role as a Co-PI of this project:
Digital online content as courses and case studies for learning design with e-learning programs in design.
- Social networking for higher learning with collaborative learning space in design for synchronous and asynchronous interaction.
- Digital design resource database including the craft sector
This initiative ‘e-kalpa’ is being collaboratively developed by three institutes – IDC at IIT Bombay, NID at Bangalore and DOD at IIT Guwahati
along with the support of other design related institutions and organizations.
- 250 Gb of content has been uploaded at dsource.in
- The site has 20,000 page views per day approximating 500,000 page views per month
- With 30% return viewers and the viewers spending an average of 10 minutes
The site contains
- 120 courses on design learning in different domains
- 650 resources in the form of fine examples of design and crafts
- 150 case studies of design projects undertaken by faculty members, professionals and design students
- 50 video lectures and presentations by subject experts
- 800 case examples of a visual gallery that has documented works of the rich tradition of art and design seen across different regions of India
Prof. Ravi Poovaiah, IDC, IIT Bombay is the PI and I am the Co-PI for this research and documentation open design project.
Project details in brief:
Project duration: 2010-2014 (Phase 1) and 2014-2017 (Phase 2)
Faculty involvement: 35 faculty from three institutes – IITB, IITG and NID Bangalore
Research and Project staff involvement: 30 project staff, 50 design graduates as design associates, 85 graduate/undergraduate students
My contribution to the D’source project:
Completed and Uploaded Animation Course Modules and Case Studies: 38
Animation Course Modules/ case Studies in progress: 6
Further planned Animation course modules/case studies: 8
Total Contribution (Animation modules) : 52
Please check the D’source website and for the
animation modules that I worked on, please check:
(3) The Animation Industry in India
Another project under D’source that I am currently
working on to document the Animation Industry in India.
While on one side, people call the animation industry in
India “nascent”, on the other, there have been veterans
and organizations that have tirelessly contributed to the
industry for more than 3-4 decades. Neither have these
contributions been recognized and acknowledged, nor has
the history and evolution of the animation industry in
India been documented at any place.
I am being very ably helped by my Research Associate, Swati Agrawal (an
award-winning clay animator herself) in this project.
For this we had to get in touch with various organizations
like the Film Archives in Pune, The NASSCOM, Films
Division of India etc and get permissions to use their
footage and historical data. We also got in touch with the
veterans in animation, who have done so much for the
industry, and interviewed them. This project is ongoing,
and the scope of the project is overwhelmingly large.
The Centre of Social Media Innovations for Communities (COSMIC):
http://www.cosmiccentres.org/ and http://cosmic.nus.edu.sg/
My role as Visiting Research Scientist at NTU, Singapore (January to June, 2014)
The Centre of Social Media Innovations for Communities (COSMIC) is a collaborative initiative between three centers of excellence – two from Singapore, the NUS (National University of Singapore) and the NTU (Nanyang Technological University), and one from India, IITB (Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai). The centre is supported by the multi-agency Interactive Digital Media Programme Office (IDMPO) hosted by the Media Development Authority (MDA) of Singapore.
COSMIC aims to empower communities, through social media innovations that improve the way they live, work and play, specifically those in the informal economy who are typically underserved by existing technology vendors and telecom service providers.
The research investigates new interaction paradigms and information technology scenarios, which have the potential to empower the next large user group – focusing on the common man in his everyday pursuit of activities in the 21st century.
The strategic goal of the projects is to leverage social media applications for large scale use through scaling up of solutions across countries from Asia and Africa with similar socio-economic-cultural contexts. The Centre is partnering with industry and institutions in Singapore/India and elsewhere to field test and deploy technologies.
As an invited visiting research scientist on behalf of IIT Bombay, I spent six months based at the NTU campus in Singapore. During these six months, my role was to interact with the team of researchers and developers of the COSMIC lab for building social media applications/solutions/interventions. My project was to work on the development of “PUBBY”, which is a gesture driven, device free, Play and Learn social media tool for children. This project has been prototyped and tested, as is being implemented.
Details of the COSMIC Project:
– Collaborations between 15 faculty from three institutes – IIT Bombay, NUS and NTU
– 30 research staff, 22 PhD students, 9 Post Docs and 55 Graduate/UG students
– Papers published in top tier international journals and conferences: 67