He left St. Columba's High School in New Delhi, India at 16, after his junior year, to attend the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (IITK). Admission to IITK was solely through a nationwide entrance exam. At IITK, he shared the First Prize for Academic Excellence in the Core Curriculum in 1981, and the B.Tech Degree as the Best Graduating Student in Electrical Engineering (EE) in 1983. He then attended Stanford University on its inaugural Information Systems Laboratory Research Fellowship, receiving from Stanford the M.S. and Ph.D. Degrees in EE in 1985 and 1987, respectively.
Between Stanford and FullView, he was with Bell Labs Research—known for its discoveries, innovations and inventions—where in 1993, he conceived an algorithm to automatically authenticate signatures written onto signature pads like those in use today. After attending a talk there describing three competing ongoing multiyear team efforts toward this goal—by its Neural Networks, Speech and Statistics Research Departments—he speculated he could improve their performance (reduce their equal error rate) ten-fold, which he was challenged to prove. And when he did this, over two ensuing summer months, the President of Bell Labs Research, who'd been seeking his resignation for insubordination, thereon afforded him unfettered freedom, which led to FullView. Also for this work, in 1994, he won a Bell-Labs-wide competition on applications of smart cards, as are present credit cards.
In 1989, he was also on the faculty of EE at Princeton University, which led him to author A Guided Tour of Computer Vision (Addison-Wesley, 1993)—a text adopted widely, including by Stanford for its PhD qualifying exam in computer science. He's been recognized for his publications and patents; prevailed in every intellectual-property dispute he's partaken, whether as a litigant or an expert; and has given invited talks worldwide, including at MIT, Stanford, UC Berkeley, Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Google, Technion, UBC, TU Delft, IIT Delhi, HKU and INRIA SA. He was an Associate Editor of IEEE PAMI from 1994 to 1998 and was elected a Fellow of the IEEE in 2004.
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