15-yr-old innovator shows why dropping out of school is not a bad idea

By Aditya Bhushan Dwivedi|13th Jan 2014
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YourStory has profiled many young people who drop out of college to pursue their dreams, but Angad Daryani brings a new twist. He dropped out of school in class IX to expand his horizons beyond school curriculum. Angad recently gave a talk at TEDx Gateway about how leaving school has been a big boon.

When he was eight, Angad first built a robot using the Lego Mindstorm, and has been developing and innovating things since then.

Though Angad left school midway, he is home schooling and appeared for high school board exams last year from ICSE (Indian Certificate of Secondary Education), IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) and NIOS (National Institute of Open Schooling). For most students it is difficult to appear for a single board exam, let alone three. Angad says the exams helped him extend his knowledge and gain exposure.


angad

 

Projects and Inventions

Angad has developed a lot of projects, including a solar-powered boat (when he was about 10 years old), Garduino, an automated gardening system which lights up and waters plants (a great use in green houses), and hand gesture-controlled vehicle among others. He has developed a Virtual Braille (in collaboration with MIT media Labs) along with his team which enables people to read e-books without depending on the mechanical voice.

At present most 3D printers in the market do not have a long shelf life and break down after a few months of usage mainly due to blockage of the extruder (nozzle clog). Angad is working on a 3D printer to solve this problem and also bring costs down (most 3D printers cost upwards of 50K, including procurement costs). He recently 3D printed a 3D printer.

 

An all rounder

Angad may come across as a nerd but he surprised us when he revealed that he was part of India's best school level football team at Don Bosco International School, Matunga, Mumbai, before he left school.

Responding to a question on how leaving school has affected his life, Angad says he now gets more time to pursue his interests and actively reads on economics and literature. According to him, in school reading is very selective and curriculum bound. Now he reads voraciously and even watches world cinema, learns programming and do many other things. "I have learned more after leaving school,” claims Angad.

 

Startup plans

Angad is also the founder of Shark Kits, a DIY kit company, which aims to give quality kits at considerably cheap rates compared to its American counterparts (Make, Jameco, Sparkfun, Adafruit, etc). At present, it is a one-man venture. He is also the co-founder of Makers Asylums, which provides an environment for collaborative ideation with prototyping tools and a physical space where you can come and create things and work on ideas.

 

Vision about future

Angad says he wants to keep learning and give back as much as possible to society --he keeps his projects open source. He says he learned everything from the internet and feels the best way he can give back is by keeping his projects open source. When it comes to schooling, he believes, segregating students based on their age is not correct. “It defeats the exact point of schooling.”

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