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Engineers in India lack competence to innovate!

Posted: 04 Jan 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:ESDM  design engineers  innovation  cloud 

Remember? In seventies, eighties & even first half of nineties, our engineers went abroad for further studies to build up the "competence." Since during those days we did not have ecosystem in place to utilise their competence, they stayed there and contributed to the International "Electronics System Design & Manufacturing" ecosystem. Today, Indian design engineers are very well recognised and respected the world over for their "competence to innovate".

But, the present generation! Alas, they want to innovate and become entrepreneurs in a hurry. The industry leaders, VCs and even the government, all are harping about innovation & entrepreneurship. Nobody ever focuses on building the competence. India is nowhere on the "Patent Filing" scale. It is because; our design engineers or the so-called innovators do not have the competence to do the kind of research that leads to patents. They are a very complecent breed that stays very happy being part of the "Design or Innovation Ecosystem". To them it really does not matter whether they themselves innovate or not; they are satisfied doing the "soft skills" jobs, as long as they are well paid. The values of today's generation have reached an unprecedented low. Their gratification comes from commercial and financial success and not from having led a meaningful life and contribution to their chosen field, leaving aside the society or nation.

We need to "first build up the competence before we focus on innovation."Today, this becomes the most imperative approach to follow if we are serious, as a nation and as an industry to build up our leadership in the global arena. Without building up the said competence, none of our plans and government's policies will reap the desired results.

The mindset of Indian design houses has still not changed, in spite of tremendous pressure from the ESDM ecosystem to play a more comprehensive and inclusive role for enabling India as a preferred partner of the global manufacturing enterprise and location strategy for most of the conglomerates with global footprints.

On the 'Design Challenges' front, some of the issues that need to be addressed are:

 • Cost of display, battery & touch screen. Today, these constitute around 60-70 per cent component of the total cost of any portable computing or communication device. The processors and memory, which used to be the major cost component of any such devices, have relatively become cheaper because of intensive innovations in the fields. Now the focus needs to be on these components to be cost effective.
 • The 'Battery Technologies' have not kept pace with the 'Processor' technologies to meet the ever-growing demand of the mobile computing.
 • 'Touch Screen' technologies also need to catch up for price performance index with processors and memories.

Talking about the technological trends in our society, success or failure of any technology, application or a trend is driven primarily by the user experience. Today, 'consumer is the king'.

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