Lack of sufficient testing kits is proving to be a great stumbling block in the fight against coronavirus.
To help the world fight the pandemic on a war footing, two Indian Americans have come up with an AI-powered advanced diagnostic system which will help in quick detection of the Covid-19
Software developed by a University of Dayton Research Institute scientist to quickly diagnose COVID-19 has been exclusively licensed by Greenville, South Carolina, software development company Blue Eye Soft. The technology, which detected the presence of the COVID-19 disease on a dataset of chest X-rays in seconds with 98 percent accuracy, was adapted from existing medical diagnostic software in a matter of hours, then licensed in less than three days.
Blue Eye Soft owner Srikanth Kodeboyina—an alumnus of UD—and his team further developed the technology, and he plans to submit a full proposal to the FDA for approval within a matter of days. The company has already filed a provisional patent on the software.
“We hope to be able to bring this new tool to market very quickly,” Kodeboyina said, adding that his start-up company’s staff of 40 employees has been virtually joined in the last several days by more than 100 professionals based in Singapore, India and across the U.S., all contributing their expertise in artificial intelligence, medical licensing, cybersecurity and other related fields, to help expedite the development of the product.
The software, developed by UDRI research scientist Barath Narayanan, uses a “deep learning” algorithm that searches for markings on X-rays that indicate the presence of COVID-19. Narayanan, who spends his days working on sponsored research programs in artificial intelligence for manufacturing and other commercial applications, has for several years been working evenings and weekends pursuing his principal passion: advancing research in AI to help doctors diagnose and treat patients more quickly.
Using medical imaging including X-rays, CT scans, blood smear slides and eye scans, Narayanan had already developed a number of software codes that successfully detect—with 92 to 99 percent accuracy—lung and breast cancers, malaria, brain tumors, tuberculosis, diabetic retinopathy and pneumonia. When a set of chest X-rays from patients with and without COVID-19 were recently made available, Narayanan quickly switched focus to develop coding to detect the disease on the images. Drawing on expertise developed on and off the clock, he quickly developed an algorithm that classified the images as having, or not having, COVID-19 with a high degree of accuracy.
Narayanan, who received his master’s and doctoral degrees in electrical engineering from UD, said he enjoyed the image processing aspect of his graduate student research, and decided to use the field to help people in some way. “I wanted to do something for the common good, and medical imaging seemed a good way to do that,” he said. “Software-based diagnostic tools can serve as a valuable, virtual second opinion for medical professionals, especially in parts of the world where medical teams are short-staffed. With additional research, these technologies can be fine-tuned to detect even the slightest anomalies on images—those that are difficult to see with the human eye—helping doctors diagnose and treat patients more quickly.”
Kodeboyina, who received his master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from UD in 2011, has also been on a mission to develop software that will enhance human life, he said. “I launched Blue Eye Soft in 2017 with a mission to create job opportunities in areas that are innovative and impactful,” he said. “Right now one of the most pressing needs on the planet is addressing the COVID-19 crisis. Artificial intelligence can be an important solution to support the healthcare industry in its fight to mitigate the impact of the disease, and we are on the leading edge of developing that technology.”
BES brought in a third-party company to validate its new diagnostic system, and a number of customers in the public and private sectors are already prepared to adopt the technology once it has received FDA approval, Kodeboyina said. In the United States, end-users will include hospitals, laboratories and medical professionals, he added.
UD vice president for research John Leland said the University has been working to execute technology licenses quickly, but completing an agreement between UD and BES in only two and a half days was unprecedented. “We were driven to help Blue Eye Soft make this technology available as quickly as possible,” Leland said. “We are also excited that a UD grad has licensed one of our technologies and is working diligently to provide medical professionals a new tool in the fight against the spread of this devastating disease.”
While Narayanan is hoping to find funding that will enable him to further develop AI tools for the medical field, he said he will continue to work on his own time to help bring them to the healthcare industry. He credits his graduate advisor Russell Hardie, professor of electrical and computer engineering in the University’s School of Engineering, with ongoing guidance and support in his off-hours pursuits.
Srikanth Kodeboyina, founder and CEO of Greer-based Blue Eye Soft Corporation, seems on a fast track in the IT world. Next week, the India native and Greenville resident will participate in the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Hyderabad, India. He will be one of about 1,200 entrepreneur delegates attending. The U.S. delegation is led by Ivanka Trump.
Selection as a delegate is the second recent major milestone for the naturalized U.S. citizen. Earlier this year, Kodeboyina was among 17 people selected by the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) as an Emerging Young Entrepreneur. During the GES, Kodeboyina will be representing South Carolina and he says he has been coordinating with the Upstate Alliance, the South Carolina Governor’s Office and the S.C. Dept. of Commerce for the trip.
“This is a big honor for me,” Kodeboyina says. “I’m excited to be one of the entrepreneurs chosen for this invitation-only event.”
In addition to entrepreneurs, the conference will be attended by about 400 investors. Kodeboyina says he hopes to speak with several of them to discuss the advantages of locating in South Carolina.
Just 29 years old, Kodeboyina announced in late October that Blue Eye Soft is moving to a facility in Greer and will create 120 jobs over the next two to four years.
Blue Eye Soft has three areas of business: 20 percent staffing, 60 percent services, 20 percent software/hardware resale. Kodeboyina believes his company is well-positioned to fill a need in the region.
“None of major companies are willing or capable to sponsor visas (like H1, L1 or other),” Kodeboyina notes. “It is a cumbersome and hard process. Having personally gone through the process, I am more competent and skilled in doing that. This way, we can provide the best talent from the globe and induce them to the local market and companies’ needs.”
Kodeboyina says his company is currently serving major automotive and engineering and construction firms.
“At a [recent] NEXT monthly CEO luncheon, when I mentioned about hiring 200 people over the next few years, most of the experienced native entrepreneurs and CEOs mentioned that it is hard to find the necessary high-skilled labor, so I have a unique value proposition to offer the local technology ecosystem.”
Blue Eye Soft has moved into 3,000 square feet of space at 44 Parkway Commons in Greer. Kodeboyina says his company will eventually need to find a larger facility to accommodate its projected growth. Blue Eye Soft previously operated at an office on North Pleasantburg, which remains its official corporate address.
Asked how he came up with his company’s name, Kodeboyina offers this explanation: “Business intelligence and analytics is my key core area & personal competence (I have been doing it for the past 12 years). Analytics and intelligence are meant to have deeper insights to run business. In plain terms, you need to see something which others can’t see. Blue-eyed people are very rare and they have special abilities. Moreover, I wanted to be a little bit cooler and non-nerdy with something with more fun.”
After forming his company a little more than two years ago, Kodeboyina looked around the U.S. for a potential permanent location. He says he fell in love with the Greenville area while working on a project for BWM. He says he picked Greenville because of its relatively inexpensive operational costs, its good weather, and a $1.24 million incentive offered by the state over the next five years.
Kodeboyina came to the U.S. seven years ago to further his education at the University of Dayton. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Andhra Pradesh, Kodeboyina chose Dayton based on a recommendation of a friend of his brother’s.
Information technology solutions company bringing more than 120 new jobs to Greer facility
COLUMBIA, S.C. – Blue Eye Soft Corporation is expanding its corporate operations into a new facility in Greenville County. Located in Greer, S.C., the company projects it will create more than 120 new jobs over the next two to four years.
Blue Eye Soft is a U.S.-based information technology (I.T.) solutions, services and staffing company which focuses on providing right managed services and solutions to support clients’ needs. Many of the company’s services are facilitated by custom software and data solutions to medium and large enterprises throughout North America.
To expand its Greenville County operations, the company will be moving into an existing facility, which is located in Greer, S.C. Hiring for the new positions should begin in the fourth quarter of 2017, and interested applicants should visit www.blueyesoft.com or send resumes to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Blue Eye Soft is pleased for the trust and support. We are happy to bring technology, our unique culture and capability to Greenville County. Our mission is to be the technology hub of South Carolina. We don’t have ‘bosses,’ only mentors. Join us to experience “Holacracy,” and together let us make I.T. happen.” –Blue Eye Soft Corp. Founder and CEO Srikanth Kodeboyina
“Companies like Blue Eye Soft Corporation invest in South Carolina because we have shown the world that we have the workforce and the competitive business environment needed for innovation and continued growth. We’re grateful for the commitment to our state that this investment represents, and for the 120 new jobs that will benefit the people of Greenville County.” –Gov. Henry McMaster
“A terrific win for the Upstate, today, we congratulate Blue Eye Soft on their expansion in Greenville County. This announcement proves that South Carolina is an ideal location for businesses to thrive and grow.” –Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt
“Entrepreneurial enterprises like Blue Eye Soft are putting Greenville on the map for cutting-edge I.T. companies and the jobs that come with it. This expansion is a testament to Greenville’s stellar technology workforce and competitive business climate, particularly for information technology companies. Greenville is grateful for Blue Eye Soft’s continued commitment to this community.” –Greenville County Council Chairman H.G. “Butch” Kirven Jr.
“We are thrilled to welcome Blue Eye Soft to the Greer community. Our partnership with the Greenville Area Development Corporation and the Upstate Alliance has proven critical in attracting the attention of blue chip office projects like Blue Eye Soft. We hope that their success in Greer leads to even more opportunities to bring balance to our growing economy.” –Greer Development Corporation Chairman Wryley Bettis
FIVE FAST FACTS
- Blue Eye Soft Corporation is expanding its Greenville County operations.
- Creation of more than 120 new jobs.
- Blue Eye Soft is a U.S.-based I.T. solutions, services and staffing company.
- The company will be expanding into an existing facility in Greer, S.C.
- Hiring for the new positions should begin in the fourth quarter of 2017, and interested applicants should visit www.blueyesoft.com or send resumes to email@example.com.
Growing up as the son of illiterate farmers in rural India, Srikanth Kodeboyina ‘11 has created his own version of the American Dream as a University of Dayton graduate engineering student, IT manager and now successful business owner. But perhaps his proudest accomplishment — his U.S. citizenship — is providing him the opportunity to give back.
“Becoming an American is a moment I’ll cherish for life,” said Kodeboyina. “I personally feel satisfied and want to thank all the University members as they have helped me accomplish my dreams. I am on my way to proving the American Dream is still alive and a Flyer made it.”
After launching a successful career and becoming a U.S. citizen, Kodeboyina enlisted in the U.S. Army reserves. His technical skill set, leadership and work ethic caused his superiors to recommend him for commission as an officer. He will be formally commissioned as a captain or first lieutenant managing information services for the Army in the near future.
“Doing something with more impact and living a purposeful life are two reasons why I am choosing to serve,” said Kodeboyina. “Even though I have had a prosperous career, I was bored with my corporate job. Money, alone, didn’t make me feel that I was successful. Public service was always my motive.”
Although uneducated themselves, Kodeboyina’s parents invested in his education — sending him to private schools and then college where he excelled. He received his undergraduate degree in India and followed in his cousin’s footsteps to obtain a graduate degree in America.
He choose the University of Dayton because of its reputation for engineering and the recommendation of a UD grad who worked with his brother.
Kodeboyina arrived in the U.S. in 2010 and earned his master’s degree from the School of Engineering in electrical and computer engineering the following year. He was actively involved on campus as a member of the CEO club, International Students Club, IEEE and the Indian Student Association. He also took part in the UD Entrepreneurship Program.
“I owe a lot to the University of Dayton professors,” said Kodeboyina.
“I found him to be a sincere, highly intelligent, devoted and hardworking young man,” said Robert Chelle, former professor of entrepreneurship at UD.
Kodeboyina became a project manager after graduation, working for Fortune 100 companies. In 2016, he left the corporate world to devote himself to his newly launched company, Blue Eye Soft Corp.
The next year he relocated to Greenville, South Carolina, to participate in the Greenville Chamber’s Minority Business Accelerator Program. His firm now employs 18 people and offers software training, business intelligence solutions, mobile app development and many other services. He hopes to come back next spring and recruit some UD engineering and computer science grads to join his growing enterprise.
Launching his own company led him to receive the South Carolina Small Business Development Center’s (SBDC) New Business of the Year award in 2018. Kodeboyina was also appointed as a South Carolina State Education and Economic Development board member by South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster last year.