Microsoft Research India
I am a senior researcher in the Technologies for Emerging Markets Group at Microsoft Research India. My research focuses on building appropriate information and communication technologies that contribute to the socio-economic development of low-income communities (ICT4D). This work often encompasses human-computer interaction (HCI), online education, mHealth, crowdsourcing, and other areas. Previously I worked on programming languages and compilers, for multicore processors as well as microfluidic chips. I received all of my degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where I completed a Ph.D. in computer science in 2009.
- Two recent talks distill much of our experience in applying technology towards development goals. The first talk, presented at Carnegie Mellon, John's Hopkins, FHIES, and other venues, gives an overview of our projects in health, citizen journalism, and other areas. The second talk, presented with Ed Cutrell at Learning at Scale, describes our perspective on technology in education, including MOOCs in the developing world.
- CGNet Swara, our voice portal for citizen journalism in rural India, continues to have impact. Recent highlights include an academic paper in ITID and stories by National Geographic and The Hindu.
- At CSCW 2014, we presented a paper on VidWiki, a system that enables the crowd to improve the legibility and language localization of online educational videos. VidWiki makes it easy to translate videos into a style called TypeRighting, as we described in CHI 2013.
- We have released IVR Junction: a free tool that makes it easy to set up interactive voice systems and connect them to global social media. IVR Junction was recently declared a winner of the Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention. For more details, see this blog post, paper, or slides, co-authored with Aditya Vashistha.
- A great mini-documentary about our work with Operation ASHA and Innovators In Health on using biometrics to improve adherence to tuberculosis medications. For more information, see the press release, the eCompliance website, or a recent study (paper, slides, audio recording) presented at Persuasive 2012.
- At UIST 2012, we demonstrated a system for low-cost system for audience polling that utilizes computer vision and printed cards as a replacement for electronic "clickers". We have written up the results of the live poll during the conference, which spanned 270 people. Here is the original paper.
- Our study on participant response bias in HCI (paper, slides) appeared at CHI 2012. This paper (led by Nicki Dell) has some of the most eye-opening results I've seen since coming to India. Be careful what you ask your users, or your study will be doomed to succeed!
- Our study on mobile crowdsourcing (paper, slides, Tech Review article) appeared at CHI 2012. It describes a clever system (designed by Aakar Gupta) for sending picture-based tasks via SMS, with viral uptake by over 200 users in India.
- I recently co-organized DataDev 2012, the International Workshop on Mobile Data Collection in the Developing World, where over 30 organizations presented their requirements and tools for mobile data collection.
- I also taught an intensive one-week course on building mobile services for emerging markets at Carnegie Mellon's fantastic new campus in Rwanda. Parts of the curriculum are being reused by MIT AITI.