Hi, I’m Josh Adkins. I am a third year PhD student in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science working with Prabal Dutta and Lab11 at the University of California, Berkeley. I am currently on an NSF GRFP Fellowship.

My research focuses on creating, deploying, programming, and interacting with ubiquitous sensor systems. I’m currently most interested in two problems: 1) How can we enable the easy deployment and management of dense sensor networks, and 2) Programming systems that will allow us to easily specify programs for an entire set of these sensors and actuators while still working within their power and memory constraints.

I am most actively working on the design, construction, deployment, and management of power grid reliability sensors in Accra, Ghana as part of the GridWatch project. These sensors will help us to both independently evaluate the impact of grid improvements on reliability, and, in collaboration with a team of UC Berkeley economists, to quantify the socioeconomic impacts of (un)reliability. We currently have a deployment of nearly 400 sensors and many phone applications running in Accra.

Other recent projects include the Signpost platform for city-scale sensing, and a new generation of indoor sensor nodes. Signpost is a modular, energy-harvesting platform that attempts to lower the bar to city-scale sensing by removing the need for wired power and networking. The paper was presented at IPSN 2018. The new indoor sensor nodes are energy harvesting, include a primary cell battery to increase reliability, and are being designed with the newest technology to achieve longer lifetimes. I collaborated with Neal Jackson on a paper about their design, which he will present at IPSN 2019.

In the past I worked on Monoxalyze, which works with a smartphone to provide a keychain-sized smoking cessation compliance mechanism; a paper on the topic appeared at SenSys 2016.


March 2019: Won departmental outstanding GSI award for work on EECS 149/249 in Fall 2018

February 2019: Completed deployment of over 200 additional PowerWatch sensors in Accra

January 2019: Capacity over Capacitance for Reliable Energy Harvesting Sensors accepted to IPSN ‘19

December 2018: Freeloader’s Guide Through the Google Galaxy accepted to HotMobile ‘19

September 2018: Started teaching and redesigning labs for EECS 149/249 - Intro to Embedded Systems