After graduating with my BS in Computer Science, AI moved to side project status as I took a job as a Full Stack Software Engineer at Pivotal Labs. The side project years of my AI life made slow progress. I managed to play with some algorithms that one time when I was trying to learn golang. I eventually implemented my logic gate pool genetic algorithm as part of a more ambitions side project I called thoughtnet. Jobs had passed at this point as I went from Pivotal, to SchoolKeep, to freelancing, to BCG. I played with the thoughtnet algorithm from time to time, but always was demotivated by it’s fundamental inability to benefit from hardware acceleration. While BCG has an incredible culture where you become very close with your colleagues, it has been the kind of demanding job that doesn’t leave much time for side projects.
Fast forward to a project for a client in the construction industry looking to make an AR app for selling their product. I managed to get some time on TensorFlow to build a model to figure out where their product should go in pictures. I didn’t have to write any actual TensorFlow myself, since the code was all available online, but I was in love. I had always thought of TensorFlow as beyond my grasp, and now it seemed like it was mine for the taking.
Now enter COVID-19 quarantine. Suddenly, time for projects grows, and I’m able to pursue my AI dreams again. I gave my AI passion project a name, Macronizer, because it is focused on extrapolating simulations. I started iterating on a TensorFlow project for the first time and I felt the power of deep learning course through my veins. I occasionally get stuck on this project and switch on to my other project, but I am still very excited by it because it seems to be making progress and I lovingly call it my PhD thesis, even though there is almost no chance of a PhD coming out of it :-D