Python, Puppet, Hadoop help you prepare for Artificial Intelligence

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | NAVEENA GHANATE
Published Jul 29, 2018, 2:11 am IST
Updated Jul 29, 2018, 2:11 am IST
Blockchain is not only used in IT, but also in retail, governance.
Representational image.
 Representational image.

Hyderabad: Python, Puppet, Hadoop, Django are the new words in programming, superseeding C, C++ and Java. These are the underlying languages used in artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), data science, big data and internet of things (IoT). In keeping with the trend, Ameerpet, the gateway for graduates to enter the IT sector, has changed courses to meet the new needs. Each training institute claims of expert level training from DevOps, data science to big data and Amazon web services. Few institutes offer emerging technologies like AI/ML, blockchain, cybersecurtiy and IoT and these are not pocket-friendly.

Most technologies have underlying programming languages. These technologies gained prominence to an extent that NITI Aayog released national strategy on AI.
If Naresh Technologies offers a 40-day course in C at Rs 900 and core Java at Rs 1,000, introduction to AI for eight weekends is priced at Rs 10,000. Other institutes offer data science at up to Rs 15,000. Only about five institutes teach IoT, which includes Python and a hardware device, Rasberry Pi. Most centres said predominantly students and some techies joined the courses. While IT companies do a lot of internal training, retrenched techies who became victims of automation said they were learning blockchain and data science on online courses.

 

Mr Apuri Satya, retrenched from Tech Mahindra, said, “While I was looking for jobs, I took up an online course with a premier institute on blockchain. I researched a lot and found that blockchain has many uses, not just in IT but in retail, manufacturing and governance.” While techies prefer to learn online, some attend weekend classes at Ameerpet.

Another retrenched techie said, “I did my BTech project from Ameerpet. After being shown the door, I visited Ameerpet again to understand industry trends and then picked an online course in data science. It needs knowledge of statistics and probability which we would have learnt in school or Intermediate. I am learning Python on Youtube, there is a lot of information available online.”

While big companies have internal programmes to upskill staff, techies in smaller firms need to take training courses. As part of the Role Development Plan, having a secondary skill is an added advantage when it comes to stalling layoffs, getting promotions and onsite opportunities. Experts said that at Ameerpet, techies can learn new concepts which improves their profile.  Mr Sandeep Kumar Makthala of Telangana IT Association said, “Compared to Bengaluru, it is inexpensive for techies to acquire skills in Ameerpet. There are some high-end institutes which offer courses and are aligned with industry standards. Some have live projects which techies would prefer and are an added advantage.”
Instead of waiting for the layoff, it is important to take initiative to learn new as it is professional obligation to updated

Anthropologist and IIIT-Hyderabad professor Nimmi Rangaswamy who researched the Ameerpet model of training said, “Ameerpet is a market-driven model, with teachers from industry and no bureaucracy or exams. Because they are from the industry or have connections, they are very quick on their feet to bring new courses.”

IoT gains relevance in the age of ‘upskill or perish’

Internet of things (IoT) is the new skill that techies are embracing. Unlike typical software programming and coding, IoT is an ecosystem of hardware, firmware and analytics. IoT is the concept of connecting devices with the Internet. Such devices could be anything including fitness bands, smart watches, smart phones, headphones, speakers, televisions, washing machines, air purifiers and cars which can use sensors and can be monitored remotely.

Microsoft expects there will be more than 200 billion interconnected devices by 2020 within the IoT framework and these will generate an incredible amount of data to process. Mr Sanjeev Malhotra, CEO of Nasscom Centre of Excellence, said, “There will be definitely increase in software and hardware related jobs. The software part will dominate in terms of creation of jobs.”

Edureka, an online-learning platform, said there was 200 per cent surge in enrolment to courses related to technologies for adding sensors to machines. Prof. Ramesh Loganathan, head of innovation and research outreach, IIIT-H said, “It is a niche area. Someone who understands hardware and software will have an edge. IoT in itself has various roles to offer as it is more of an ecosystem and needs serious engineers.”

MS office top skill on LinkedIn

Microsoft Office, Excel, Word and SQL are among the top ten skills in LinkedIn apart from team and project management skills. The most viewed roles are that of analyst consultant, mechanical engineer, product manager, program manager and interns. Experts opine that having these skills are as important as communication skills.  Prof. Ramesh Loganathan, co-innovation, IIIT-Hyderabad, said, “As you grow, skills like Microsoft Office will be used to functional and design presentations, project frameworks. It is not the most sought skill in IT as such.”

Mr Sandeep Kumar Makthala of Telangana IT Association said, “As more and more small business are going online, many people need to know how to use it. Microsoft Office is like an email we use daily. It is not a skill, but a requirement. The trending technology in IT is artificial intelligence and machine learning.”

Contest to help women win big

The women’s start-up pitch competition organised by the US India Business Council in association with We-Hub and has opened for applications for entrepreneurs. This competition is meant to support small business entrepreneurs seeking capital to grow. The winners will get $5k and access to the three-month accelerator programme. 

Finalists will have access to the We-Hub facility in Hyderabad, as well as its resources online. Start-ups registered after January 2016 where women who own or co-own (majority women ownership) early-stage start-ups are eligible to participate. Applications will be closed by August 10 after which a semi-final round will be held in Mumbai on September 5.

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