IIT Delhi's start-up launches world's first do-it-yourself Artificial Intelligence kit

WION New Delhi, India Jan 29, 2020, 10.16 PM(IST) Written By: Praphul Singh Edited By: Sparshita Saxena

The kit was launched by Professor V Ramgopal Rao, Director, IIT Delhi. Photograph:( Twitter )

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The BUDDHI kit is the brainchild of Professor Manan Suri of IIT Delhi, who was recognized by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US as one of the world's top 35 innovators under the age of 35.

CYRAN AI Solutions, a deep-tech start-up of IIT Delhi on Monday launched BUDDHI (Build Understand Design Deploy Human-like Intelligence) which is THE world's first do-it-yourself (DIY) AI (Artificial Intelligence) kit. The kit is invented and made in India, for the world.

The BUDDHI kit is the brainchild of Professor Manan Suri of IIT Delhi, who was recognized by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US as one of the world's top 35 innovators under the age of 35.

The kit was launched on Monday by Professor V Ramgopal Rao, Director, IIT Delhi in the presence of representatives from the education/skills sector, NGOs, schools as well as students.

The BUDDHI Kit is the first-of-its-kind highly interactive and easy-to-use DIY educational kit that can be used to quickly learn the basics of AI and build AI-based solutions for real-world problems without any prior domain knowledge or training. The BUDDHI Kit can be used by young students, tinkerers, makers, innovators, hobbyists, teachers, educationists, artists, parents and professionals from any background.

The kit helps bridge the gap between theoretical and practical aspects of AI for end-users by helping them develop an intuitive understanding of the subject. The DIY nature of the kit helps users develop core skills such as problem-solving, creative thinking and the ability to work in teams. With BUDDHI Kit, the creative possibilities are endless as it can be used to easily introduce AI in any existing STEAM (science technology, engineering, art and math) project.

Professor Manan Suri in a conversation with WION said BUDDHI is a complete learning eco-system on its own and will help in experiencing AI, learning AI basics and building AI-based projects.

Here are some excerpts from his conversation with WION.

WION: Every day we hear the term 'artificial intelligence' or 'AI' multiple times, but not many of us understand the term? Can you please explain what it means?

Professor Suri: AI is an interdisciplinary field of science and technology that lies at the intersection of advanced mathematics, computer science, neuroscience and data sciences. The basic goal of AI is to be able to design systems, machines or solutions that can intelligently solve real-life problems.

WION: Tell us something about the BUDDHI AI DIY kit and how does it work? Also, how easy or difficult is it for anyone to use this kit?

Professor Suri: BUDDHI AI DIY kit its an indigenous AI learning kit that we have built at IIT-Delhi. The term BUDDHI here stands for 'Build Understand Design Deploy Human-like Intelligence'. The BUDDHI kit is a complete learning ecosystem in itself. With the kit, one can experience AI, can learn the basics of AI and can also build their projects which involve AI or they can build simple AI projects.

WION: What led to the creation of "BUDDHI"?

Professor Suri: AI is a complex subject. If you need to build something with AI or you want to build AI itself, you need very complex or rigorous mathematical training and advanced computer programming.
The motivation was to bring this complex subject to a much younger audience so that we could gently nudge them towards the scope of the applications of AI. In a much easy manner, we can remove the barriers of complexity to introduce a new topic or an advance topic of AI to a young population. The motivation was to remove the barriers of complexity and make the subject more intuitive and more practical so that students can enjoy and do not get drowned in the complexity of the subject.

WION: What all things are needed to use BUDDHI DIY Kit?

Professor Suri: You just need the kit, some creativity, and the intent to explore. The kit in itself is sufficient, you can connect it to a smartphone, a tablet, a display, a screen, so the kit is self-contained in itself. We have a lot of additional learning resources that come along with the kit. You can just unbox the kit and start using it right away.

WION: How deep-rooted is AI in our lives at this stage? Also, how important is it to understand the changes it will bring to our daily lives shortly?

Professor Suri: AI is extremely important and the extent to which it is entering our lives is increasing everyday which cannot be ignored. It becomes important for the younger generation to engage with AI in a more meaningful way. What is important is we don't just use AI, we also learn what it means, how to build with it. There are tonnes of examples of how AI is already playing an important role in our lives.

WION: How fast is AI growing in India vis-à-vis the rest of the world?

Professor Suri: India is doing great in terms of AI-related growth, one of the reasons for that is that India has a lot of intellectual and innovative ability, Indian academics and researchers are doing a fascinating job related to AI-related research and development. One of the feeders for AI is data and India is an extremely large storehouse for data of any kind which makes us very strongly positioned. India is in the right direction with the several government initiatives that are being taken around related to AI, the academic initiatives, India is in a good shape but a lot more work needs to be done.