Guest Author: Tadrash Shah
With the education system and the current socio-educational situations that we live in, knowledge definition seems to have changed. The perception to knowledge and education has changed. It matter on how we perceive the term, “Knowledge”. Now here the perception creeps in and matters. Matters a lot. It is perception of the problems that triggers innovations. It is the perception of what we want to learn from where and how. We have four major forces teaching us: teachers in common people, teachers around us, teacher within us and the Mother Nature. It is our perception that will guide us to learn what, how, when, from where and from whom.
The basic anomaly we face today is we feel grown up, over-analyse the things and are apprehended to the extent that eventually kills the child in us. We stop questioning. We have done away with inquisitiveness. A child risks because he is unaware of the amount and the repercussions of the risk involved. He always asks: “Why?”, “Who?”, “How?” and what not. We get irritated at the questions he throws. But have we learnt to revitalize the child within us from the child? In the process we don’t feel the need. And in case we feel we don’t respond. In case we respond, we don’t pursue. In case we pursue, we don’t articulate. We have learnt to live with the problems. Many don’t. And that’s where the innovation happens. We don’t get surprised. Surprise instils learning. Digesting the learning will call for wisdom.
Let me share some examples. A girl designed a wheel chair that climbs the stairs. Another girl designed a stroller bag which contains an embedded seat to sit and rest at the railways or bus stations. These are problems we have faced, all of us. Haven’t we? But we ignored the search for solution. These are the people who denied accepting the problem. Just common students, none from IITs or NITs. A point I want to make is intriguing nature and the quest for innovation is something not singular to the elites.
What to be done then? We all want to innovate. We all want to solve a problem that others don’t. We all want to prove our excellence. What to do? Just observe. Get surprised. Ask questions. Lastly, if you don’t find any problem to solve don’t be disheartened. If you have started observing, you find someday. This has to be integrated with your thinking process, it may not happen right away.
Research is also something that all talk of and few do. Pure research like the one that invented a computer or a rocket, are difficult I agree. But we all can work to improve something that someone else may have done. We can setup a better solution, optimize an existing one, analyse the existing methodologies and that is research too. Research is not something too great that few elites can only do. Simple research can also be very important, you never know. There are number of solutions left unattended, not pursued, given up by many; you can give it a try. And why not? If you don’t get a result you can leave it for someone else to solve with your own guidelines. Even they are equally important. They may guide many future endeavours.
We all are engineers and have thus have the skill to design sustainable solutions that others may not be able to. We know the cores and have acumen to make research viable to all. Put that to work. And let me assure you that once you start to work there is no limit, not even the sky. Opportunities and directions will come your way, without your specific efforts going into that. Get started.
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