Large-Scale Manufacturing Sciences (Process and Product Design)
About me: I joined MIT as a doctoral student in Fall 2010 after graduating from IIT Kanpur (B.Tech-M.Tech, dual-degree, 2005-2010). Before joining MIT I used to do research in community of nature inspired optimisation and application of these methods to engineering real-world-problems.
Nature adapts itself smartly and finds a solution based on principles of evolution rather than solving mathematical equations. It was only around 1950's or later that John Holland and others picked upon the idea of evolution and started developing intelligent computer programs mimicking the principles of nature to solve a wide range of problems. Nearly after 6 decades now "Evolutionary Computation" is emerging as a unified field with practioneers applying principles of nature to solve a wide range of problems. With breakthroughs in computing, principles of nature can be encoded into computer programs and complex systems can be solved....there is a long way ahead......
One of my research passions is to develop efficient computational approaches for hard engineering problems (in design/manufacturing) using principles of nature which are almost intractable by any conventional means, if not impossible.
The evolutionary techniques have only limited provability unlike conventional mathematical techniques which makes them less popular than traditional optimisation techniques -- but if nature has persisted longer than mankind and mathematics can't we have a little faith in something inspired by nature...? --Nikhil Padhye