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Tech Mahindra and Mahindra University have signed an MoU to set up a new ‘Makers Lab’ for research and development in quantum computing, explainable artificial intelligence and the Metaverse.
Tech Mahindra already has 10 Makers Labs worldwide and the new unit at Mahindra University will be the 11th facility globally and the second in Hyderabad.
Emphasizing the need to focus on quantum computing development, Tech Mahindra MD and CEO CP Gurnani told PTI that the industry is looking at an explosion of data with the growth of cloud computing, data centers and 5G driving changes in the current computing system.
“I think the foundation of quantum computing is quantum physics. Quantum physics clearly shows that there is always this inflection point and then either current hardware or quantum developers will suddenly be able to create magic. My only personal belief is that the pressure on systems will come because of the data explosion,” he said.
Mahindra University Vice-Chancellor Yajulu Medury said one of the best things about the MoU is that it is a collaboration between academia and industry.
“We have a lot of faculty in quantum physics, artificial intelligence, etc., but it’s really the work that’s coming to the forefront of industry-driven areas. Whether you’re talking about quantum computing, 5G, our faculty is now able to work with Tech Mahindra. Makers Lab and other people and look at different ways to really embrace more industry-oriented work,” Medury said.
As part of the partnership, Mahindra University students will get the opportunity to work on the intellectual properties created in the Makers Lab and will be deployed in research and development projects on campus.
Students will also work with coding groups such as Engima within the university to gain access to projects, internships and work opportunities.
Tech Mahindra’s global head for Makers Lab, Nikhil Malhotra, said that quantum computing is very much in its infancy and there are a lot of noisy structures coming.
“This partnership is about what the future of quantum technology is. We see two or three main things. One is in the drug design industry, because we basically see that quantum can really take over the molecule design space much better than current artificial intelligence systems. That is a huge huge market when it comes to the drug design industry,” he said.
The Makers Lab will focus on the impact of quantum on image optimization for satellites, etc., and explore work on explainable artificial intelligence (AI) in collaboration with Mahindra University, Malhotra said.
Explainable AI helps present data in a way that people understand.