Nithin Kumar vividly remembers the day he received the email. The CEO of the company that produced a smartwatch that Nithin and his team had helped engineer wanted to share a letter sent by a customer. The customer explained that he had received an alert from his smartwatch about a potential heart problem. When he arrived at the hospital to get checked, the doctors told him that he was on the verge of having a massive heart attack. Fortunately, the doctors were able to treat him in time. In turn, the customer wrote to thank the CEO. The smartwatch that Nithin helped develop had saved his life. Reflecting on the event, Nithin says “It’s impossible to not be happy when you work on things that save someone’s life. It mattered.”
Nithin is the director of engineering for the Internet of Things Group at Intel India. He oversees teams leading research and development on hardware platforms and chips—and so much more. “In a simplistic sense, we work on things that matter. Things that will matter to people three years down the line.”
Outside of life-saving smartwatches, his teams are developing cutting-edge technologies in the fields of artificial intelligence, edge inferencing, and augmented reality. “We work on technologies that are constantly changing. So, we adapt. We evolve. It’s like trying to solve a new problem every minute,” he notes.
Not every problem is solved successfully at first. With innovation comes failure. Nithin says they failed three times when developing the smartwatch. “Of course we were concerned about failing during development. Every failure introduces an element of doubt in terms of believing you’ll be able to deliver. But there is a tremendous amount of support and experience at Intel that helps push you beyond failures. It is truly a global community that will come together and work around the clock, from all geos around the world, to solve a problem—as one Intel.”
It’s this sense of community and collaboration that keeps Nithin looking forward to the next challenge. Whether the next product saves lives or enables an amazing user experience, Nithin takes pride in the fact that the technology will matter. “Our future is exciting. Artificial intelligence. Augmented reality. Edge inferencing. These are cutting-edge technologies we work on day in and day out. And we’re excited about the type of products we’re going to build with them.”
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