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Shyamnath Gollakota

  • Associate Professor, Computer Science and Engineering
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering
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                    [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_9640" align="alignleft" width="404"]Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota, holding the passive Wi-Fi devices. Photo credit: MIT EECS Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota, holding the passive Wi-Fi devices. Photo credit: MIT EECS[/caption]

UW Electrical Engineering Adjunct Assistant Professor and Computer Science and Engineering Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota was named a Forbes 30 Under 30 All-Star Alumni.

Gollakota shares the honor with other luminaries and exceptional talents, like Taylor Swift and Lebron James. The highly-selective list presents 600 of the "brightest young entrepreneurs, innovators and game changers."

Gollakota has been recognized for his work developing "passive Wi-Fi," which allows devices to communicate using 10,000 times less power than traditional Wi-Fi signals. Using this system, a device will be battery-free, removing the analog component (which is currently not energy efficient) to optimize the digital component (which has evolved to be highly energy efficient). 

Congratulations, Shyam!
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Researchers and faculty in the Departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Engineering have introduced a new way of communicating that allows devices such as brain implants, contact lenses, credit cards and smaller wearable electronics to talk to everyday devices such as smartphones and watches.

This new “Interscatter communication” works by converting Bluetooth signals into Wi-Fi transmissions over the air. Using only reflections, an interscatter device such as a smart contact lens converts Bluetooth signals from a smartwatch, for example, into Wi-Fi transmissions that can be picked up by a smartphone.

Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Engineering Josh Smith and electrical engineering Ph.D. students, Bryce Kellog and Vikram Iyer, have worked alongside Computer Science and Engineering Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota and research associate, Vamsi Talla. The research was funded by the National Science Foundation and Google Faculty Research Awards.

The new technique is described in a paper to be presented Aug. 22 at the annual conference of the Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Data Communication (SIGCOMM 2016) in Brazil.

“Wireless connectivity for implanted devices can transform how we manage chronic diseases,” said co-author Vikram Iyer. “For example, a contact lens could monitor a diabetic’s blood sugar level in tears and send notifications to the phone when the blood sugar level goes down.”

Due to their size and location within the body, these smart contact lenses are currently too constrained by power demands to send data using conventional wireless transmissions. That means they have not been able to send data using Wi-Fi to smartphones and other mobile devices.

Those same power requirements have also limited emerging technologies such as brain implants that treat Parkinson’s disease, stimulate organs and may one day even reanimate limbs.

The team has demonstrated for the first time that these types of power-limited devices can “talk” to others using standard Wi-Fi communication. Their system requires no specialized equipment, relying solely on mobile devices commonly found with users to generate Wi-Fi signals using 10,000 times less energy than conventional methods.

“Instead of generating Wi-Fi signals on your own, our technology creates Wi-Fi by using Bluetooth transmissions from nearby mobile devices such as smartwatches,” said co-author Vamsi Talla, who graduated from The Department of Electrical Engineering this past spring.

The team’s process relies on a communication technique called backscatter, which allows devices to exchange information simply by reflecting existing signals. Because the new technique enables inter-technology communication by using Bluetooth signals to create Wi-Fi transmissions, the team calls it “interscattering.”

Interscatter communication uses the Bluetooth, Wi-Fi or ZigBee radios embedded in common mobile devices like smartphones, watches, laptops, tablets and headsets, to serve as both sources and receivers for these reflected signals.

In one example, the team showed how a smartwatch could transmit a Bluetooth signal to a smart contact lens outfitted with an antenna. To create a blank slate on which new information can be written, the UW team developed an innovative way to transform the Bluetooth transmission into a “single tone” signal that can be further manipulated and transformed. By backscattering that single tone signal, the contact lens can encode data — such as health information it may be collecting — into a standard Wi-Fi packet that can then be read by a smartphone, tablet or laptop.

“Bluetooth devices randomize data transmissions using a process called scrambling,” said lead faculty Shyam Gollakota. “We figured out a way to reverse engineer this scrambling process to send out a single tone signal from Bluetooth-enabled devices such as smartphones and watches using a software app.”

The challenge, however, is that the backscattering process creates an unwanted mirror image copy of the signal, which consumes more bandwidth as well as interferes with networks on the mirror copy Wi-Fi channel. But the UW team developed a technique called “single sideband backscatter” to eliminate the unintended byproduct.

“That means that we can use just as much bandwidth as a Wi-Fi network and you can still have other Wi-Fi networks operate without interference,” said co-author Bryce Kellogg.

The researchers — who work in the UW’sNetworks and Mobile Systems Lab and Sensor Systems Lab — built three proof-of-concept demonstrations for previously infeasible applications, including a smart contact lens and an implantable neural recording device that can communicate directly with smartphones and watches.

“Preserving battery life is very important in implanted medical devices, since replacing the battery in a pacemaker or brain stimulator requires surgery and puts patients at potential risk from those complications,” said co-author Joshua Smith.

“Interscatter can enable Wi-Fi for these implanted devices while consuming only tens of microwatts of power.”

Beyond implanted devices, the researchers have also shown that their technology can apply to other applications such as smart credit cards. The team built credit card prototypes that can communicate directly with each other by reflecting Bluetooth signals coming from a smartphone. This opens up possibilities for smart credit cards that can communicate directly with other cards and enable applications where users can split the bill by just tapping their credit cards together.

“Providing the ability for these everyday objects like credit cards — in addition to implanted devices — to communicate with mobile devices can unleash the power of ubiquitous connectivity,” Gollakota said.

More News:

[post_title] => Smart Contacts and Credit Cards that 'Talk' Wi-Fi [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => ee-faculty-and-students-develop-first-ever-implantable-devices-smart-contacts-and-credit-cards-that-talk-wi-fi [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-10-28 12:39:27 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-10-28 19:39:27 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://hedy.ee.washington.edu/?post_type=spotlight&p=6865 [menu_order] => 140 [post_type] => spotlight [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 652 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2016-03-15 00:53:05 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-03-15 00:53:05 [post_content] => A new Passive Wi-Fi system developed by a team of UW researchers has been named one of the top 10 breakthrough technologies of 2016 by MIT Technology Review. The Passive Wi-Fi system, which uses 10,000 times less power than conventional methods, not only saves the battery life of devices such as smartphones and computers, but also may enable the Internet of Things by connecting everyday objects to the Internet. Led by EE Adjunct Faculty member and assistant professor of computer science & engineering Shyam Gollakota, the project also involves associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science & engineering Joshua Smith and graduate students Vamsi Talla and Bryce Kellogg. By consuming relatively little power, the Passive Wi-Fi system saves the battery life of various devices, which are drained by most Wi-Fi systems. Passive Wi-Fi also uses 1,000 times less power than existing energy-efficient systems, such as Bluetooth Low Energy. Passive Wi-Fi has the ability to impact the Internet of Things, which connects everyday objects to the Internet, allowing battery-free household devices and sensors to communicate. By adding sensors to everyday objects, the goal is to better monitor specific areas, from health to infrastructure. Until now, the implementation of the Internet of Things has been limited by communication and power issues. The team’s research paper will be presented in March 2016 at the 13th USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation. Congratulations to Shyam, Joshua, Vamsi and Bryce! See Also: [post_title] => Passive Wi-Fi Named Breakthrough Technology of 2016 [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => passive-wi-fi-named-breakthrough-technology-of-2016 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-04-22 22:16:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-04-22 22:16:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://hedy.ee.washington.edu/?post_type=spotlight&p=652 [menu_order] => 946 [post_type] => spotlight [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) [_numposts:protected] => 6 [_rendered:protected] => 1 [_classes:protected] => Array ( [0] => block--spotlight-tiles ) [_finalHTML:protected] => [_postID:protected] => 1178 [_errors:protected] => Array ( ) [_block:protected] => [_db:protected] => WP_Query Object ( [query] => Array ( [post_type] => spotlight [date_query] => Array ( [0] => Array ( [after] => Array ( [year] => 2015 [month] => 12 [day] => 15 ) ) ) 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Shyam Gollakota, holding the passive Wi-Fi devices. Photo credit: MIT EECS Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota, holding the passive Wi-Fi devices. Photo credit: MIT EECS[/caption] UW Electrical Engineering Adjunct Assistant Professor and Computer Science and Engineering Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota was named a Forbes 30 Under 30 All-Star Alumni. Gollakota shares the honor with other luminaries and exceptional talents, like Taylor Swift and Lebron James. The highly-selective list presents 600 of the "brightest young entrepreneurs, innovators and game changers." Gollakota has been recognized for his work developing "passive Wi-Fi," which allows devices to communicate using 10,000 times less power than traditional Wi-Fi signals. Using this system, a device will be battery-free, removing the analog component (which is currently not energy efficient) to optimize the digital component (which has evolved to be highly energy efficient).  Congratulations, Shyam! [post_title] => Adjunct Professor Named Forbes 30 Under 30 All-Star [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => ee-adjunct-professor-named-forbes-30-under-30-all-star [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-02-20 21:12:11 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-02-21 05:12:11 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.ee.washington.edu/?post_type=spotlight&p=9637 [menu_order] => 103 [post_type] => spotlight [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 6865 [post_author] => 15 [post_date] => 2016-08-19 21:06:45 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-08-19 21:06:45 [post_content] => ScreenShot2016-08-17at11.52.54AM

Researchers and faculty in the Departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Engineering have introduced a new way of communicating that allows devices such as brain implants, contact lenses, credit cards and smaller wearable electronics to talk to everyday devices such as smartphones and watches.

This new “Interscatter communication” works by converting Bluetooth signals into Wi-Fi transmissions over the air. Using only reflections, an interscatter device such as a smart contact lens converts Bluetooth signals from a smartwatch, for example, into Wi-Fi transmissions that can be picked up by a smartphone.

Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Engineering Josh Smith and electrical engineering Ph.D. students, Bryce Kellog and Vikram Iyer, have worked alongside Computer Science and Engineering Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota and research associate, Vamsi Talla. The research was funded by the National Science Foundation and Google Faculty Research Awards.

The new technique is described in a paper to be presented Aug. 22 at the annual conference of the Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Data Communication (SIGCOMM 2016) in Brazil.

“Wireless connectivity for implanted devices can transform how we manage chronic diseases,” said co-author Vikram Iyer. “For example, a contact lens could monitor a diabetic’s blood sugar level in tears and send notifications to the phone when the blood sugar level goes down.”

Due to their size and location within the body, these smart contact lenses are currently too constrained by power demands to send data using conventional wireless transmissions. That means they have not been able to send data using Wi-Fi to smartphones and other mobile devices.

Those same power requirements have also limited emerging technologies such as brain implants that treat Parkinson’s disease, stimulate organs and may one day even reanimate limbs.

The team has demonstrated for the first time that these types of power-limited devices can “talk” to others using standard Wi-Fi communication. Their system requires no specialized equipment, relying solely on mobile devices commonly found with users to generate Wi-Fi signals using 10,000 times less energy than conventional methods.

“Instead of generating Wi-Fi signals on your own, our technology creates Wi-Fi by using Bluetooth transmissions from nearby mobile devices such as smartwatches,” said co-author Vamsi Talla, who graduated from The Department of Electrical Engineering this past spring.

The team’s process relies on a communication technique called backscatter, which allows devices to exchange information simply by reflecting existing signals. Because the new technique enables inter-technology communication by using Bluetooth signals to create Wi-Fi transmissions, the team calls it “interscattering.”

Interscatter communication uses the Bluetooth, Wi-Fi or ZigBee radios embedded in common mobile devices like smartphones, watches, laptops, tablets and headsets, to serve as both sources and receivers for these reflected signals.

In one example, the team showed how a smartwatch could transmit a Bluetooth signal to a smart contact lens outfitted with an antenna. To create a blank slate on which new information can be written, the UW team developed an innovative way to transform the Bluetooth transmission into a “single tone” signal that can be further manipulated and transformed. By backscattering that single tone signal, the contact lens can encode data — such as health information it may be collecting — into a standard Wi-Fi packet that can then be read by a smartphone, tablet or laptop.

“Bluetooth devices randomize data transmissions using a process called scrambling,” said lead faculty Shyam Gollakota. “We figured out a way to reverse engineer this scrambling process to send out a single tone signal from Bluetooth-enabled devices such as smartphones and watches using a software app.”

The challenge, however, is that the backscattering process creates an unwanted mirror image copy of the signal, which consumes more bandwidth as well as interferes with networks on the mirror copy Wi-Fi channel. But the UW team developed a technique called “single sideband backscatter” to eliminate the unintended byproduct.

“That means that we can use just as much bandwidth as a Wi-Fi network and you can still have other Wi-Fi networks operate without interference,” said co-author Bryce Kellogg.

The researchers — who work in the UW’sNetworks and Mobile Systems Lab and Sensor Systems Lab — built three proof-of-concept demonstrations for previously infeasible applications, including a smart contact lens and an implantable neural recording device that can communicate directly with smartphones and watches.

“Preserving battery life is very important in implanted medical devices, since replacing the battery in a pacemaker or brain stimulator requires surgery and puts patients at potential risk from those complications,” said co-author Joshua Smith.

“Interscatter can enable Wi-Fi for these implanted devices while consuming only tens of microwatts of power.”

Beyond implanted devices, the researchers have also shown that their technology can apply to other applications such as smart credit cards. The team built credit card prototypes that can communicate directly with each other by reflecting Bluetooth signals coming from a smartphone. This opens up possibilities for smart credit cards that can communicate directly with other cards and enable applications where users can split the bill by just tapping their credit cards together.

“Providing the ability for these everyday objects like credit cards — in addition to implanted devices — to communicate with mobile devices can unleash the power of ubiquitous connectivity,” Gollakota said.

More News:

[post_title] => Smart Contacts and Credit Cards that 'Talk' Wi-Fi [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => ee-faculty-and-students-develop-first-ever-implantable-devices-smart-contacts-and-credit-cards-that-talk-wi-fi [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-10-28 12:39:27 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-10-28 19:39:27 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://hedy.ee.washington.edu/?post_type=spotlight&p=6865 [menu_order] => 140 [post_type] => spotlight [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 652 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2016-03-15 00:53:05 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-03-15 00:53:05 [post_content] => A new Passive Wi-Fi system developed by a team of UW researchers has been named one of the top 10 breakthrough technologies of 2016 by MIT Technology Review. The Passive Wi-Fi system, which uses 10,000 times less power than conventional methods, not only saves the battery life of devices such as smartphones and computers, but also may enable the Internet of Things by connecting everyday objects to the Internet. Led by EE Adjunct Faculty member and assistant professor of computer science & engineering Shyam Gollakota, the project also involves associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science & engineering Joshua Smith and graduate students Vamsi Talla and Bryce Kellogg. By consuming relatively little power, the Passive Wi-Fi system saves the battery life of various devices, which are drained by most Wi-Fi systems. Passive Wi-Fi also uses 1,000 times less power than existing energy-efficient systems, such as Bluetooth Low Energy. Passive Wi-Fi has the ability to impact the Internet of Things, which connects everyday objects to the Internet, allowing battery-free household devices and sensors to communicate. By adding sensors to everyday objects, the goal is to better monitor specific areas, from health to infrastructure. Until now, the implementation of the Internet of Things has been limited by communication and power issues. The team’s research paper will be presented in March 2016 at the 13th USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation. Congratulations to Shyam, Joshua, Vamsi and Bryce! See Also: [post_title] => Passive Wi-Fi Named Breakthrough Technology of 2016 [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => passive-wi-fi-named-breakthrough-technology-of-2016 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-04-22 22:16:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-04-22 22:16:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://hedy.ee.washington.edu/?post_type=spotlight&p=652 [menu_order] => 946 [post_type] => spotlight [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) [post_count] => 3 [current_post] => -1 [in_the_loop] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 9637 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2017-01-12 10:38:09 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-01-12 18:38:09 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_9640" align="alignleft" width="404"]Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota, holding the passive Wi-Fi devices. Photo credit: MIT EECS Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota, holding the passive Wi-Fi devices. Photo credit: MIT EECS[/caption] UW Electrical Engineering Adjunct Assistant Professor and Computer Science and Engineering Assistant Professor Shyam Gollakota was named a Forbes 30 Under 30 All-Star Alumni. Gollakota shares the honor with other luminaries and exceptional talents, like Taylor Swift and Lebron James. The highly-selective list presents 600 of the "brightest young entrepreneurs, innovators and game changers." Gollakota has been recognized for his work developing "passive Wi-Fi," which allows devices to communicate using 10,000 times less power than traditional Wi-Fi signals. Using this system, a device will be battery-free, removing the analog component (which is currently not energy efficient) to optimize the digital component (which has evolved to be highly energy efficient).  Congratulations, Shyam! 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Representative Publications

  • Passive Wi-Fi: Bringing Low Power to Wi-Fi Transmissions, Bryce Kellogg, Vamsi Talla, Shyamnath Gollakota, Joshua R. Smith, Usenix Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation (NSDI), 2016.
gshyam@cs.washington.edu
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