Kernel Masters: Bridging The Skill Gaps With Industry-First Realistic Training Modules Kernel Masters

Kishore Kumar, Founder & Chief InstructorEmbedded systems are used to help keep you safe, provide you with goods and services that you could never otherwise have, and generally enhance your quality of life. From the computer systems that control safety features in the latest automobiles to the ATMs we use regularly to access cash, embedded systems can be found everywhere in our society. From the time you wake in the morning, you can already thank embedded systems for the role they play in your life.

Technology has been an inevitable constant that played a crucial role in human evolution. India has demonstrated phenomenal growth toward becoming a global leader in industrialization and technological development. Particularly, embedded systems are at the core of many different products, machines, and intelligent operations, machine learning and artificial intelligence applications that help in enhancing the quality of life. However, something that hinders the technological advancements is the lack of sufficient number of skilled resources.

Embedded Systems is the core technical field of Electronics graduates, but many graduates are unaware of the field itself, let alone the skillset required to enter the field. The education they get at the graduation level fulfills only academic requirements. When it comes to the real-world job market they need to enter after education, they prefer to enter only the IT field as it is the only field they must have been known since the time they decide to become an engineer. Engineering branch has no particular significance as all the fields lead to the ocean of IT field eventually.

It is the sad part for all the core fields especially the fields like Embedded Systems which provides the same kind of opportunities, financial growth and lifestyle as the IT field, but has remained under a dark shade of misinterpretations. People misunderstand Embedded Systems jobs as underpaying jobs, as they have no idea that Embedded Systems also has a Software Development part. Infact the main difference between Embedded Systems and IT is that the former develop software for any electronic devices, whereas the later are only limited to Computer software.

The biggest challenge faced by many companies working in Embedded field is finding the right resources, in sufficient number. The students who pass out of colleges are not equipped with the basic skillset. So they have to look towards Training Institutes as the Finishing schools who bridge the gap between candidate's knowledge and Industry expectations. The training institutes help ease the challenges by providing the basic skillset before they are hired by the companies.

The candidates are required to have his Engineering basics strong and have good programming skills to begin with. Hardware hands-on will be an icing on cake. Otherwise they need to spend further time and resources to train them on the hardware.

Hyderabad headquartered Kernel Masters, an Industrial Embedded Systems Training Institute, is making a massive difference in the industry by training candidates with the required skill-set with a perfectly designed curriculum that will match with any company's requirement. In 2012, Kishore Kumar B, the founder and chief mentor of Kernel Masters, established the institute with an ambition to fill the gap of essential skillset and practical knowledge required for the embedded engineering field.

How is Kernel Masters different from the other Institutes?
Mr. Kishore proudly says Kernel Masters is India's one and only Industrial Embedded Systems training institute. How is it different from the other Institutes? They train the candidates purely on the technologies the Industry is currently working on and make them ready for on-boarding without further training. From the use of Industry grade hardware boards for projects to including skillset that is required on job, after joining Embedded Field, from how to understand a data sheet to how to write a program and deploy to the hardware and make it up and run, how to debug and trouble shoot etc everything in the course is well planned and structured.

Along with advanced lab facilities, limited classroom strength allowing individual focus, performance monitoring and technical discussions with the mentors, the student gets everything here. And the best part, they do not have any pre-requisites. The candidate is considered as just an empty sheet of paper. The training starts from the very basic topics that they should have known from their academics, so that every student is at same level before we actually begin our curriculum. and more". Kishore announces this is where the candidate truly understands the subject in a way which makes sense in the real-time and starts enjoying the learning curve.

Apart from college freshers, Kernel Masters also offers advanced courses in Embedded Linux Development for those already working in Embedded field. Through this course they get to explore each and every aspect of the topic on Beagle Bone Black board practically, an opportunity which they usually won't get during their actual job.
Unlike other training institutes, Kernel Masters provides practical hands-on experience with real industrial hardware, like STM32 & Beagle Bone Black boards, instead of hardware simulators. This approach offers students, a chance to face real-time challenges and brings an opportunity to learn by solving the real-time issues. Further elaborating, Kishore explains, "We do not use educational boards like Raspberry Pi and Arduino as they are not suitable for product development in industry. We design and develop our own development boards using the ARM Cortex controllers with extra peripherals so that students get to explore many devices like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, touch screen, audio, video, key pad and more".

Exceptional Approach to Authentic Skill Development
With an extensive experience of more than 18 years in the Embedded Industry in companies like Qualcomm & SAMSUNG, Kishore laid the foundation to Kernel Masters. As the founder of Kernel Masters, Kishore lays down the strategy for the programming segment and quality education with the help of his partner, Mrs. Madhuri. Kernel Masters ensures that every candidate, with or without prior knowledge of the embedded system, should be a successful embedded developer. Kernel Masters undoubtedly gives more weightage to quality rather than quantity.

Kernel Masters' courses make the learners implement the knowledge in real-time projects. The courses include a firmware development course using STM32 controller and a device drivers course that covers Embedded Linux development using Beagle Bone Black board. The institute ensures that the knowledge gained during these training programs is worth more than two years of real Industry experience. It is because of the opportunity to learn and train in a real-time working environment and have the freedom to explore in-depth.

Embedded engineers pour life into an electronic device by giving them all senses and sometimes even brain. Anything smart would not have been possible without a skilled embedded software engineer ­ kishore, kernel masters

Pandemic put down a lot of industries to its knees, education being one of the most crucially affected. Consider this; a skill that requires hands on experience to learn, seemed difficult given the lockdown and personal health safety. Despite all the odds, Kernel Masters managed to continue its learning programs. During the lockdown, the institute sent hardware to every candidate, and conducted online lab sessions, thereby helping them to complete their real-time projects, with the same diligence as before.

Scheme of Designed Courses
Ever since the option of online and offline modes of learning became an alibi to education, Kernel Masters on-boarded the online learning bandwagon and started offering training courses for fresher and experienced professionals in online and offline modes.

The fresher training' syllabus includes basic knowledge such as Linux basics, C Programming basics, number systems, digital logic, computer organization, Micro Controller programming with Embedded C, and a real-time project on STM32 hardware. The course proceeds to interview-oriented training on Advanced C Programming and Data Structures. And the content of the next module would be Linux System Programming & Linux Device Drivers, with the opportunity to attend campus placements provided by Kernel Masters.

Kernel Masters also offers Experienced Professional training course for those who want to brush up their knowledge and get updated with the latest technologies. Embedded Linux Device Driver Developer is a course for experienced ones, and it comes in three levels. Level one is Essentials, and it includes Linux System Programming and Linux Device Drivers. Level two is Real-time projects, including Embedded Linux with Beagle Bone Black, Yocto Project, Linux Debugging Techniques, I2C Framework, Real-time project, Advanced C & Data Structures, and Placement Support. The last and third level is Addons, including Network SPI, Embedded Android, and IoT. The courses aid the candidates to upgrade their profiles with their new skill set and enhance their career opportunities.

Building Conceptual Clarity in Technology from Ground Up
Kernel Masters follows a very exceptionally particular methodology to make the courses more effective. The institute spends some initial days refreshing the basics before focusing on improving their logical thinking and problem-solving skills. The well-designed assignments, surprise tests, doubt clarification classes, and other assessments, including regular lab exams and objective tests & viva weekly, help the candidates improve the learning process. Further securing an aspirants future, Kernel Masters also opens opportunities for trained candidates to get hired as an intern in their own firm Raayan Systems Private Limited. With this stint, the student gets an opportunity to learn more in-depth by working on the various research & Development activities under the guidance of Kishore Kumar who is also the founder & managing director of Raayan Systems, an Embedded Systems solutions firm.

Kernel Masters has limited strength per batch, i.e., not more than 45, which enables focusing and monitoring every student. The lab instructors will also handle their doubts, suggest resolutions for their issues, and conduct weekly assessments & vivas effectively because of the limited strength. The performance monitoring is done in a structured way every month and the report is shared with the candidate.

As mentioned earlier, the institute led by Kishore and Madhuri believes in the noble nature of education. Efforts are made to share that knowledge. In line with this belief, Kernel Masters has provided its hardware boards to Engineering colleges for their lab support and has trained their faculty as well. "We believe that the actual education system should include the real-time education as a core part, rather than just teaching them the age old theory," states Kishore.

A Word of Advice from the Chief Mentor
Kernel Masters is committed to providing unmatched quality education and skilled resources to the embedded industry. The institute expects a similar kind of commitment from the candidates to reap the benefits of this dynamic technology-oriented training. After all, efforts from both sides would promise to get the best results.

Adding to the school of thought and advice to students, Kishore emphasizes the importance of classes, lab sessions, assessments, and regular attendance to class; however, the rules are made to generate a discipline in students to learn the skills in correct way. If a candidate tries to attempt the assignments independently or with the guidance of lab instructors, it would be beneficial for them. He says, "The real-time project is a crucial part where the candidate needs to work with the hardware boards. Candidates should complete the tasks by themselves and learn the subject with passion. As every learning process requires complete involvement of the learners, embedded field needs to be pursued with love and passion; only then the true joy can be experienced".

There's no exaggeration here, but Embedded systems are essential to modern civilization. The field provides numerous opportunities for suitably skilled candidates. On a concluding note, Kishore addresses the students saying, "We are providing complete knowledge from our pockets, students need to give their 100 percent time and commitment for their own future".