Data Idols and our partners at the Data Science Festival are fortunate to know some incredible leaders in Tech across the world, and have even heard a few of them present at our events.
Tom Ewing, Principal ML Engineer at Saint-Gobain, has given us some insights into his life, career & everything tech! ?
A data professional who has turned their hand to Data Science, Analysis, Data Engineering and most recently Machine Learning Engineering. Jack of all trades, master of none!
I managed to get a job on a Data Warehouse project in the Government in around 2001. From there I progressed through MI Development, Statistics, Analysis, and finally into AI.
That’s a tough one since success is subjective! In my current job (Machine Learning Engineering), I encourage my team to be thorough and build things “for the ages” so success for us means the services we build do the job they’re intended to with minimal intervention required from us.
Best: I have a lot of freedom in terms of “how” to solve problems and challenges. This means some discussion with the team, coming up with a plan and design and then executing that. When it all comes together and works, it’s a great feeling. Processes can be powerful things.
Worst: Working with Data Scientists!! Haha, no I’m kidding obviously. I’m a leader and manager now, so the time I spend writing code has shrunk. That makes keeping my hand in on the technical side of things much harder, especially considering that AI is moving at an astonishingly fast rate.
Don’t neglect your soft skills. For example, being able to communicate technical concepts clearly and in simple terms is probably the most important skill I have.
Being with my baby girl! She’s just turned 1 and a positive thing about the COVID pandemic is that it’s made working from home the new norm, which means that I get to see her a lot more than I would otherwise. I took her out for pizza and to a museum the other day. We had a great time!
Get good at learning. I’m presented with problems I don’t immediately know how to solve on a daily basis and being able to quickly figure out the background and solve things is vital.
As I said earlier, staying abreast of AI and tech is difficult. I’m hoping to transition into a more “upstairs” role with more strategy, process development, and leadership.
Speak fluent Italian! My wife and her family are Italian and although I’m learning slowly, it would be great to be able to have proper conversations without asking what some words and phrases mean.
Five predictions? That’s a lot! I’ve been in the game long enough to know that you can’t make predictions in tech, but I’ll make three…
Watch Tom’s session at the Data Science Festival here:
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