Nevertheless, I’m here to help. This is the place where software engineers come to solve their data problems.
I am Matthew Kirk, and I help you excel with machine learning…with these two principles to guide me:
1. The language you program in doesn’t matter. Ruby, Python, R…I’ve used them all. They all have their place.
2. You can learn machine learning without an advanced degree. You just have to take a different approach.
I grew up in the greater Tacoma, WA area. I spent most of my childhood reading programming books and taking apart electronics.
After finishing my math degree, I had grandiose plans to rise the ranks in the finance world. But I found myself a victim of the 2008 recession, with a mortgage to pay. Insert career change.
After six months of odd jobs, a friend of mine joined a new company and casually mentioned they needed developers for a website launch. Despite never coding professionally, I jumped at the opportunity…and found that my “new career” wasn’t so new after all.
For nearly ten years, I’ve worked with dozens of venture-backed startups with their data problems, integrating test-driven development principles. My top three moments include:
- Studying diamond pricing for six months to build a recommendation engine…and trying to explain why diamonds are overpriced to my wife.
- Being sent an email from a virtual sales assistant that I worked on…when trying to price shop a car.
- Reducing a database by 260 GB…and saving the company 40k a year in server costs.
I believe machine learning can be to show the potential of smarter software development. It can be a way to take a leadership role on your team, without the managerial duties. And it will give you a plethora of interesting conference talk topics. If you have the courage to apply it.
If you’re ever in the greater Seattle area, I’d love to have a cup of coffee with you. You can reach me at matt at matthewkirk dot com.