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Expressing Narratives of Panchatantra through Dance in Chennai to teach Lessons of Life

Stories of Panchatantra are all about separation of friends, gaining of friends, war and peace, loss of gains and ill-considered action or rash deeds

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Dancing to stories of Panchatantra
Indian Dance Form. Pixabay
  • A dance narration was organized as a part of a recent summer program for high school pass outs at IIT-Madras
  • The recital is based on the stories of Panchatantra, also known as five principles of life that are the ancient Indian collection of animal fables
  • These principles of life were narrated to the princes in the form of tales by Vishnu Sharma

Chennai, June 29, 2017: Dancing is a form of expression that exhibits power to educate one of the practical ways of life. When a narrative is communicated through dance, it leaves an indelible impression on the learner. On similar grounds, a dance narration was organised was organised as part of a recent summer programme for high school pass outs at IIT-Madras.The recital is based on the stories of Panchatantra, also known as five principles of life that are the ancient Indian collection of animal fables.

The Research Science Initiative-Chennai programme, organised by PSBB Group of Schools is a six-week exhaustive research programme as part of which selected participants are trained in different subjects under experts from reputed colleges and bestowed life lessons through amusing and educative cultural programmes.

Being a part of educational programme this year, dancer Pavithra Srinivasan was summoned to teach students on the stories of Panchatantra through the dance form – Bharatanatyam.

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According to Pavithra, the reason behind choosing the stories of Panchatantra was presenting the examples related to all types of human conditions.

When such narratives are expressed through a visual medium like dance, it prompts speculation of thoughts thus creating an in-depth understanding of the subject and spurring critical reasoning skills among the viewer, says Pavithra.

She further added, “The most interesting aspect about the Panchatantra is that the words of wisdom are imparted by animals interacting with humans.”

Pavithra chose the story of the monkey and the crocodile for narration The tale teaches how to think intelligently in difficult situations. Another story of a crow who tries to emulate the peacock is a lesson which edifies that one should cherish its own peculiar character.

Psychologists confirm that such setups of storytelling help the viewer to easily perceive the message hidden in the story.

“Storytelling involves a combination of audio-visual and kinesthetic (hand movements by storyteller) movements. This makes it easier for the viewer to visualise the story and learn it faster. Anything that we picture stays in the brain for a longer time. This makes storytelling a powerful learning tool,” says psychologist Dr Nappinai Seran.

It is believed that Panchatantra was inscribed in the 3rd century BC by Vishnu Sharma. Sharma devised this medium of instruction to educate the three sons of the king Amarasakthi. Panchatantra according to Sharma

Panchatantra is all about separation of friends, gaining of friends, war and peace, loss of gains and ill-considered action or rash deeds. These principles of life were narrated to the princes in the form of tales. Many of these stories have formed the background of Tamil literary works like Silappadikaram, the tales have also found a spot in the Western literary works as well, having been primarily translated into classical Persian.

– by Naina Mishra of Newsgram. Twitter: @Nainamishr94

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IIT-Madras Develops AI Model for Learning and to Solve Engineering Problems

The researchers utilised a data-driven AI and a deep learning model to arrive at solutions for engineering problems after training the AI with data sets

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IIT-Madras
The researchers of IIT-Madras are going to establish a start-up to deploy their AI Software called 'AISoft' to develop solutions to engineering problems in varied fields. Pixabay

The Indian Institute of Technology, IIT-Madras on Monday said its researchers have developed algorithms that enable novel applications for artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and deep learning to solve engineering problems.

The researchers are going to establish a start-up to deploy their AI Software called ‘AISoft’ to develop solutions to engineering problems in varied fields such as in thermal management, semiconductors, automobile, aerospace and electronic cooling applications.

“We tested AIsoft and used it to solve such thermal management problems. We found it to be nearly million-fold faster compared to existing solutions currently used in the field,” said Vishal Nandigana, Assistant Professor, Fluid Systems Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering.

“Our AI works on any generalised rectilinear and curvilinear input geometry. Our research saves the computational time, which is the bottleneck to solve most engineering problems, Nandigana added.

The researchers utilised a data-driven AI and a deep learning model to arrive at solutions for engineering problems after training the AI with data sets.

These prior data sets can be from existing big data in the relevant engineering industry where there are lots of experimental data available.

IIT-Madras
IIT-Madras on Monday said its researchers have developed algorithms that enable novel applications for artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and deep learning to solve engineering problems. Pixabay

Also, if data is not available for training the AI, it can be generated using commercially-available CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) software on small independent pieces of the full-blown problem.

This idea is new and is only now being looked at by a few research groups across the world. Most of these research groups use Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN) or C-GAN (conditional generative adversarial network) to solve engineering problems.

They have also developed hardware products using graphics processing unit (GPU) and multi-threading processing to solve thermal management problems in thermal and electronic cooling industries.

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Both the software and hardware products are several times faster than commercial numerical method software and open source software in the market.

These algorithms will solve a lot of pressing problems for industries and can also be used for educational purposes. (IANS)