Akshit

I make Things

Akshit

About me

People who are really serious about software should build their own hardware- Alan Kay (1982)

I try to approach things from an entrepreneurial mindset, having gained relevant technological skills from my past experiences. I have won several hackathons (ratio 6 wins/9 participations) and various competitions in the past years owing to my technological skills and business acumen. Recently, graduated cum-laude in both MSc Embedded Systems and MSc Computer Science from TU Delft owing to a period as visiting student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Senseable City lab which lead to two papers (one submitted Nature Sus., one in-progress) and an invention disclosure with the MIT Technology Licensing Office. My specialization in the domain of optimization and networking aspect of embedded systems and the artificial intelligence domain for computer science enables me to modularise and ideate based on raw hardware and software from the ground up. I am mainly interested in applied problems in machine learning and hardware-based sensing.

In my free time, one can find me running (race class: 5k, 10k, 21k), survival-run training with Slopend, spinning and strength training at TU Delft X, spartan workouts with a tinge of calisthenics, and listening to music. Occasionally and on rest days, I also like playing tennis, volleyball (recreation only), and reading books. Sometimes, I like getting lost in understanding world economics and philosophy.

I try to collect the thoughts and ideas that I find interesting or learned the hard way on this page: Words for Words

AWARDS

2022 Climate Action Programme Research Grant

€23995 worth grant awarded for a proposal based my master's thesis for large-scale deployment and testing in Delft, the Netherlands.

Honoury Prize (Top 10) - IEEE VTS Innovation Challenge: Advanced Air Mobility Concepts

USD 500 for being in top 10 of all submissions for https://ieeeunt.org/aam/. With Jose Ignacio de Alvear Cardenas, R. Venkatesha Prasad

2nd Prize: MIT Water Hackathon (2022)

At the MIT Water Hackathon in Feb 2022, our team was awarded $3000 for developing SafePlaces, a computer vision based flood response platform to rank areas in a city hyper-locally based on their danger scores and help general citizens find safest places during floods.

Grants, Gifts and Funding for Research, Travel and Living Expenses at MIT (2021)

During my masters thesis, to support my travel to Boston, living expenses and research at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, I was awarded TU Delft FAST Fund, EFL Stichting Travel Grant and funding by Fundatie van de Vrijvrouwe van Renswoude de Delft. The total funding was €3725.

€1000 Prize: Hack the music Industry (2021)

My team Webduet was awarded €1000 in the hack the music industry Hackathon organized by Ultrahack in October 2021. WebDuet is an online platform that allows real-time collaboration with other musicians, even across borders, using a low-latency peer-to-peer connection to connect MIDI instruments. Developed majorly by Shaad Alka, refined, prototyped, and pitched by Akshit Gupta and Pablo Biedma.

Winner: HackZurich 2021 (Xylem Challenge)

We built a deep learning based decision support system to provide danger ratings for the images obtained from CCTVs to optimise rescue team deployment during floods. Our team was awarded $2500 along with goodies and declared winner for the challenge proposed by Xylem out of more than 1200 participants at HackZurich 2021. The project was later covered by media outlets including businesswire and yahoo finance amongst others.

Fellow at Sigma Squared Society (Formerly Kairos Society)

The Sigma Squared Fellowship brings together the world’s best entrepreneurs under 26 each year. 103 new Fellows were accepted in 2021 from all over the world. See: https://www.sigma-squared.org/

DJ100: The 100 most sustainable young frontrunners in the Netherlands

The "DJ100" is a jury-selected list of the top-100 young entrepreneurs, young professionals and students with the most innovative and inspiring initiatives, ideas, and start-ups in the field of sustainability. I was selected in the list in June 2021. See: https://dj100.nl/akshit-gupta/

Sponsorship: Dragon’s Den by Stud Delft

Respire was awarded €750 sponsorship and personnel hiring support at the Dragon’s Den event organized by Stud Delft.

1st Prize: ReadyToStartup

Respire was chosen as grand prize winner of ReadyToStartup! organised by YES! Delft and Rolland Berger winning EUR 1500 in Feb 2021. What was more satisfying than winning was coming up with a competitive financial plan validated by companies like EY and Rolland Berger.

Winner: HackZurich 2020 Roche Challenge

My team was awarded 900 CHF and declared winner for the challenge proposed by Roche out of more than 1095 participants at HackZurich 2020. Whats more exciting is this was my first(and hopefully, not last) foray into Healthcare and Coding. We built a conversational interface to be used diabetes patients along with a smartphone based glucose detection module developed by Roche Diagnostics.

Winner: Wildcard Dutch 4TU Impact Challenge

Project Respire was chosen to represent TU Delft at the Dutch 4TU Impact challenge 2020 (national) based upon societal impact out of 80 other projects.

Philips Innovation Award - Encouragement Prize (2019)

Awarded for being amongst the 10 best ideas of the idea stage of the Philips Innovation Award 2020. Finals will take place in May 2020.

2nd Prize EIT Deephack: Hacking Mobility with IoT (2019)

My prototype on optimising electric vehicle charging infrastructure was awarded as the most implementable idea and first runner up in terms of cash prize, winning EUR 1500.

2nd Prize: TU Delft Global Initiative Prototype (2019)

My prototype on low cost distributed wireless sensor network (Respire) was awarded as 2nd Prize, winning EUR 5000.

First Runner Up Tech Quest: YES! Delft And Aramco (2019)

My team came 2nd in this one day challenge to solve a real world problem faced by Aramco. Won direct entry to Co-Lab in YES! Delft.

Winner: IoT Dragon's Den (2019)

Smart sensors for resilience. Our project tackles the lack of air pollution monitoring systems in african cities. We were awarded 1st prize along with a study trip to Ghana for hands on implementation on TU Delft Global Impact Day.

Winner #IndiaBuildsActions Campaign by Google (2018)

My Voice Action for Google Assistant "Penalty Shootout" won the #IndiaBuildsActions by Google with submissions from all over India. Showcased at Google Devfest 2018 in Bangalore. This is currently live on the Google Assistant Store (Actions on Google).

Airtel-Pluralsight Tech Ninja Award (2018)

Awarded Tech Ninja at Airtel for excellent proficiency in Java and Android.

Merit Scholarship for Academic Excellence (2014-17)

Awarded scholarship for academic performance for 3 consecutive years of the undergraduate degree from 2014-2017 by University Of Delhi.

Gold Medal for Academic Excellence (2012)

Awarded Gold medal and trophy for academic excellence spanning 7 consecutive years in High School

My Work...

Respire

This involves creating a low cost distributed sensor network for air pollution monitoring. More Details available here.

Won 2nd Prize in TU Delft Global Prototype Competition.
Nominated for
and
Won Encouragement Prize (Top 10 Innovative Ideas) at PHIA 2020 Idea stage, top 9 in Ideation Category of TU Delft Impact Challenge ,was chosen as one of the 2 projects (out of 80) to represent TU Delft at the Dutch 4TU Impact Challenge 2020, Finalist of ClimateLaunchpad Netherlands 2021 and Winner (1st Prize) of ReadyToStartup by Yes!Delft and Rolland Berger in Feb 2021.

treeScanner

TreeScanner

A novel technique to opportunistically measure health of urban trees using sensors mounted on moving vehicles like taxis and garbage trucks. This was my masters thesis at TU Delft in collaboration with the MIT Senseable City Lab. Involves extensive use of custom developed deep learning-based models for fusing low resolution and high resolution sensor data on the edge device.

paper

Second Chance for a First Impression? Trust Development in Intelligent System Interaction

Suzanne Tolmeijer, Ujwal Gadiraju, Ramya Ghantasala, Akshit Gupta and Abraham Bernstein

This is a paper eliciting the elusive concept of trust in automated Systems. My contributions include the creation of scenarios for crowd computing tasks and overseeing the technical development. Published UMAP 2021 (29th Conference on User Modeling, Adaptation and Personalization)

toTrustOrNot

To Trust or Not To Trust: How a Conversational Interface Affects
Trust in a Decision Support System

Akshit Gupta, Debadeep Basu,  Ramya Ghantasala, Sihang Qiu and Ujwal Gadiraju

This paper elicits research on trust development in decision support systems of the future using conversational and web-based interfaces using a crowd computing paradigm. Published WWW ’22.

mmwave

mmWave (60Hz) based People Counting and Localisation

Prototyping and implementation of privacy preserving detection of social distancing and human localisation using millimetre Wave radar sensors (60GHz). This was a team project in response to Covid-19 with Erwin Russel and is continuation of our effort on a custom made android app based on WiFi and Bluetooth for contact tracing using indoor localisation. Under the guidance of Prof. Marco Zuniga and Prof. Fernando Kuipers.

ResqueueLogo

Res-Queue

An AI based decision support system called Res-Queue was developed in 40 hours in HackZurich 2021. This helps rescue management control room to optimise rescue teams deployment during disasters by utilising a multitude of digital data.
This won the the Xylem Challenge at HackZurich 2021.

Penalty Shootout – Action on Google Assistant

Developed a game for Google Assistant that simulates penalty shootout using voice interface in the FIFA World Cup fever season.VUI using Dialogflow, Fulfillment in node.js. Published in Actions on Google Directory.
Has more than 5K invocations within first 20 days of launch.

This won the #IndiaBuildsActions campaign by Google India in 2018

AppButton (Formerly WhatsFace)- Android App

Simulates combining of Whatsapp and Facebook(Two apps that most people spend time in college). The app has currently more than 2,00,000 downloads on Google Play Store. A headache throughout as it suffered from trademark infringement from Facebook leading me to change the name and regular depreciating of Android APIs. A screenshot summary of installation data is available here.

Crypto Handler – Alexa Skill

Voice Skill for Amazon Alexa with multi turn dialog and understanding user context for getting the prices of various cryptocurrencies in various fiat currencies. Published in Alexa Skill Store.

DLproject

Day Ahead Pricing forecasts in Power Markets based on RNNs

As part of course CS4240 at TU Delft, an independent reproduction of the results published in a paper based on BLSTMs  was performed on a different dataset from ground up. We describe the entire process along with our intuition as we moved through each step of reproduction as well as highlight the ambiguities present in the original text provided by the authors. Furthermore, we compare our results with those provided by the authors.

QuadRotor Drone

As part of course CS4140 at TU Delft, A QR drone was developed with custom firmware developed for roll, pitch, yaw and height control in a team of 4 students. A custom communication protocol was developed for to control the drone from both the keyboard and joystick. My contribution lie in the communication protocol design, yaw control implementation and custom P controller used in pitch and roll controllers.

LemonTea – Icon Pack for Android

Icon Pack for Android Custom launchers.Provides perfect icon masking for non themed icons. 300+ Icons Themed. Published in Google Play Store and has been downloaded more than 1000 times so far. A screenshot summary of installation data is available here.

Text Extractor for POI/POA

Android app which uses ML-Kit for on-device machine learning for text extraction from Proof of Address and Proof of identity. A pertained model from firebase is used. Open Sourced on GitHub.

Smart Home With Real Time Face Identification and Voice Control

Interactive and scalable Smart Home system with custom built hardware, firmware and open source Software and services.Machine Learning services used in backend server made the system cognitive.
Raspberry Pi used as Central Server and Hub running Home Assistant.
Azure Face API used for face identification and Alexa Voice Services used for Voice control.

Laplace Charge

For EIT Deephack Hacking Urban Mobility with IoT, we built a peer to peer platform for EV charger sharing.

It was awarded as the most implementable idea and first runner up in terms of cash prize, winning EUR 1500.

Intervalometer using 8085

An intervalometer was made using 8085 microprocessor which controlled DSLR and clicked photos at regular intervals as specified by the user depending on fps required .Later all these pictures are stitched using a pre made software to make a time lapse video.

Doctor Sugar

We built a conversational interface to be used diabetes patients along with a mobile based glucose detection module developed by Roche.

Our team was awarded 900 CHF and declared winner for the challenge proposed by Roche out of more than 1095 participants at HackZurich 2020.

Word Clock

A word clock based on Arduino. Micro controller level programming in objective C and ton of soldering leds. Made among the top five popular posts on reddit r/India for the day.

Screenshot 2020-02-27 at 12.21.19 AM

SeamEye

We have built a novel (no other research publication till date which utilises a similar approach) wearable device, SeamEye, to measure the bowling speed of cricket bowlers during training using low cost accelerometer, gyroscope and machine learning on the edge. A project which shows how physics, embedded sensors and machine learning can coalesce to solve a problem which was considered impossible till 2018.

Extensible Home Automation System in a Budget (HAB)

Made a home automation system using Raspberry pi as hub and Arduino as nodes.(Action node and Sensor node both).Here OpenHAB was used as central software controlling all the nodes which could be accessed from an app as well as web interface. Also, nodes could be added by the user on a plug and play basis.

RGB Mood Light

RGB light with over 16 million colors based on Arduino and can be controlled from an android app via bluetooth.

Slice

Rider in the Storm- Control website using Voice

This is an action published on Google Assistant Directory which enables the controlling of this site using voice. Both the control device and the site can be on separate networks, thus simulating Machine to Machine Communication.

I've worked / studied here...

Visiting Student Researcher (Master Thesis)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Senseable City Lab)Feb 2021 - Present

My research deals with developing a novel method to measure tree health autonomously and terrestrially on a city-wide scale at high temporal resolutions.

Double Masters: MSc. Embedded Systems + MSc. Computer Science (Thesis Based)

TU Delft2019-2022

Graduated cum-laude in MSc. Embedded Systems (Track: Software and Networking). And cum-laude in MSc. Computer Science (Track: Artificial Intelligence). Combined with Annotation Entrepreneurship. My thesis dealt with the development of a novel method to measure the health of urban trees autonomously and terrestrially on a city-wide scale at high temporal resolutions. Thesis Grade: 9.0/10.0

B.Tech Electronics and Communication Engineering

N.S.I.T. ,Delhi2013-2017

My place of undergrad. Took ECE over CS even though was offered both and that really has shaped up my understanding of any tech product out there today from hardware to software.

Research Assistant

TU Delft - ENS Research GroupOct 2020 – Feb 2021

Prototyping and implementation of privacy preserving detection of social distancing and human localisation using mmWave radar sensors (60GHz) and wifi trace analysis in response to COVID-19 with Prof. Marco Zuniga.

Research Engineer

TU Delft- WIS Research GroupJuly 2020-Sept 2020

In the summer of 2020, I worked at Web Information Systems Research Group at TU Delft under Prof. Alessandro Bozzon and Prof. Ujwal Gadiraju. Our project focused on the development of conversational agent to simulate behaviour change among students in response to the Coronavirus crisis while also using it to gather insightful data for crowd-computing tasks.

Software Engineer

Airtel2017 - 2019

- Joined as one of 14 engineering graduates from all over India for the Young Technical Leader Programme at the second largest mobile network in the World. - Spearheaded the development of Google Assistant based Digital customer care from ground up (Industry first of its kind) which runs on smart speakers, connected cars, smart displays and other IoT devices.

Android Engineer-Intern

Baatna 2016

Developed several features, improved UI considerably and performance enhancements for the Android app. A startup where I would like to work again, if given a chance.

Embedded Systems-Intern

EmTech2015

Programming at the hardware level, learnt about memory constraints, performance issues and really got hold of why space and time optimization is needed if resources are crux.

In the Media..

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