Rajalakshmi Nandakumar. (University of Washington Photo / Sarah McQuate)
Rajalakshmi Nandakumar awoke to some good news this week.
Not only is the PhD candidate at University of Washington’s Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering our latest Geek of the Week, but Nandakumar’s research into wireless technology and sleep apnea has earned her a distinct honor. Nandakumar has been awarded a 2018 Marconi Society Young Scholar Award.
Nandakumar is a self-professed “geek who is passionate about making a difference in people’s lives.” She’s achieving that with her work in the Mobile and Networks Systems lab with Dr. Shyam Gollakota and the ApneaApp.
Sleep apnea is a common breathing disorder that affects more than 18 million Americans. Diagnosis in a medical clinic is a labor intensive and time-consuming process. Nandakumar found a contactless way to do it using smartphone technology, which she describes below.
Born and brought up in southern India amidst people who love spicy food, cricket and mathematics, Nandakumar was fascinated by new advances in computers around the early 2000’s. She pursued her bachelors in computer science and engineering at College of Engineering Guindy in India.
“The four years taught me the basics of computer science,” Nandakumar said. “At the end, I was offered a unique opportunity to learn to conduct research in computer science at Microsoft Research India.”
Nandakumar worked on using wireless technologies to enable localization of people and devices in indoor spaces. She found a love for research and pursued that passion to the Allen School.
Learn more about this week’s Geek of the Week, Rajalakshmi Nandakumar:
What do you do, and why do you do it? I use wireless sensors in existing smartphones to develop novel healthcare applications that can improve the quality of people’s lives.
Recently, I developed a wireless technology to diagnose sleep apnea with a smartphone. Sleep …read more