Principal Scientist, Wipro & TED Speaker & Researcher Indic Knowledge systems

He is a multi-potentialite – With deep passion in technology, Dr. Rama developed skills and deep expertise in various areas of engineering – mechanical, electrical, embedded & electronics design and Software Systems covering AI and ML in particular. Additionally, he also specializes in domain skills such as Robotics, Computer vision and its applications to various domains. He has an innate knack for the arts and design and has worked in diverse areas ranging from humanities, liberal arts and Indic knowledge systems to psychology, literature, culture & heritage. He has acquired skills of traditional methods in metal sculpting and iconography for 3 years under the tutelage of a National award-winning artisan. He has studied and researched on Cognitive systems, the psychology of human learning as part of his PhD. Dr. Rama can draw & sketch, paint, sculpt, design and also code.

His Vision as a Techie – Dr. Rama is keen on applying all his learning and skills in technologies and other areas that can change the way we live and enhance the qualitative experience of life. This, in a way is to help India grow and establish itself as a leader in the new areas of technologies. He started his career 27 years ago with Wipro. He heads the AI & Robotics Practice of TECH BU. Incidentally, Dr. Rama is also Wipro’s prestigious Distinguished Member of the Technical Staf.

He is an organization start-up strategist – He specializes in setting up Collaborative Consortium/co-creation org structures. He started the Aerospace Network Research Consortium (ANRC) along with the Boeing company and India’s premier research institute, IISc and Wipro. Recently, he has created the Wipro-IISc Research and Innovation Network(WIRIN) for Autonomous Systems and Robotics. He works with IEEE research communities and also teaches at leading design schools of India such as NID as a visiting faculty. He is a social entrepreneur – he has digitized more than a million ancient heritage manuscripts of India through a non-profit research outfit – Mahabharata Research Foundation. He was awarded a Presidential honour in 2007 by the then President of India – Dr. Abdul Kalam in recognition of his efforts to develop and use technology for Indian classical works, culture and heritage preservation and promotion. In the process of working on the tangible heritage of India, he stumbled upon the world’s largest living world heritage site – Hampi in 2008 and created a concept called Digital Hampi, which was presented in the world’s most sought-after conference – TED in 2009 on their invitation.

Significant milestones
1. Presidential Honour @ Rashtrapati Bhavan – 2007
2. Talk in TEDIndia – 2009
3. Who is who of the world – 2010 (Published in Marquis Who is who of the world)
4. Top 50 Influentials of Bangalore – DNA INDIA report – 2010 (Published in DNA Newspaper)
5. IEEE ComSoc Award – for best long paper – 2011
6. Distinguished Member of Technical Staff of Wipro – 2014
7. Ph.D. in Cognitive Computing(AI) and communications from IISc – 2017

Specialties: Research in AI, Machine Learning and Cognitive systems & networks, Imaging, Image processing, Computer vision, AR/VR/MR/XR, Robotics, HCI, and HCD, Design thinking, aesthetics, philosophy, cognitive/behavioral psychology as applied to design etc.

Visibility: His geeky credentials and works have been featured in National and International media such as MIT TechReview, WIRED, NYTIMES, Times of India, Indian Express, The Hindu, Bangalore Mirror, DNA, Deccan Herald and many other magazines.

His current work: Dr. Rama actively develops systems such as Social Robots, New HCI, Virtual and Augmented Reality systems, Bio-Inspired models for networks & systems etc. He conceptualized, designed, built and demonstrated Wipod – Wipro Autonomous Vehicle. Besides his professional activities, he is actively involved in a pioneering work – compilation of an “Enyclopedia of the Mahabharata”