What can I say about this 18 year old chai and misal loving Nashikar! I came across Nilay via a mutual friend and from then on I have been following his work.
A 25 under 25 honoree, TED speaker, TEDx speaker, BBC honoree, Chief Technology Officer – Asioto Analytics, a prodigy android programmer and a passionate young lad.
I recently got in touch with him for interview and he was more than happy to interact amidst his 12th board exams!
Without any further delay, meet Nilay Kulkarni – A Nashik based teenager who came up with a device that can prevent life threatening events like stampedes in Kumbh Mela! Read on to know more about his work.
I got my first computer when I was around 3 I guess. But I started programming around the age of 13. I’m a self-taught programmer and have always relied on online courses. I was impressed by how easy it was to get started. It’s really amazing that you can simply search ‘learn Android programming’ and start learning in a few minutes.
I feel it should be introduced just like art is introduced. Like a form of expression. If the children look at coding as a way to bring ideas to life, we’ll have a generation of programmers that have a very evolved way of looking at code. Scratch is a good language to start with and it’s already being taught in Europe and USA. I feel it’s high time we stop teaching 10th graders how to use Excel and PowerPoint.
I was fortunate to speak at TEDNYC. It taught me a lot about communicating my ideas very well, so that they don’t sound too nerdy and the audience is able to connect with my words.
I feel that chasing the quick bucks isn’t an efficient and sustainable approach. I don’t necessarily push for social entrepreneurship but I think it creates a very inclusive and sustainable ecosystem. We should consider the potential impact on humans when we are creating products and see if that looks like a good picture. Obviously you can’t predict everything in the future but if we carry the right intentions, our actions will be guided in a proper manner by our own principles.
The first time I heard about Kumbh Mela was when my grandfather told me about it when I was 9. He told me that it’s a religious event and people die during stampedes in these festivals most of the times. It was such a discomforting fact that it always stayed in the back of my head. But I could tangibly work on it only when I turned 14 and I got a chance to work with MIT Media Lab on the problem. I felt that I had a realistic shot at preventing stampedes.
(Have a look at his idea that he was able to present at Ted)
I recently finished my 12th grade ISC board exams. I decided to take a gap year before I apply for universities in the US to pursue my education in Computer Science. I want to take a step back and bring out the learner that drove my work. I’m shelving Ashioto as an effort for exploring other problems and get experiences I’ve never had before. I’m taking a few courses on machine learning and aim to expand my skill-set. I always want to start initiatives and found companies that care about problems we all face which are driven by compassion and a sense of community.