Hello world! Let’s start with the formalities: I’m Jesús Martínez, a Software Engineer with a young but vibrant passion for Artificial Intelligence. Inside this vast field, I’ve focused on the sub-area of Machine Learning, and more recently, on deep neural networks.
My interest originated approximately two years ago, in late 2015. Back then I was a complete newbie who just got a new job in one of the biggest players in the online payments industry here in Colombia and, I dare to say, even in Latin America. As often happens in any of the software industry leviathans, my first weeks were fairly monotonous, mainly focused on the setup of the development tools, getting access to the CVS and… *drum roll* meetings! (You saw that coming, didn’t you?)
In one of those meetings, which I always expected with an overflowing excitement (nope), our boss (a local Rockstar) decided to share with us his impressions on the competitors’ products. Long story short, this is what he said: “We must catch up with them because while the core of our product is a bunch of IF-ELSE statements, theirs is machine learning, dawg!” (that “dawg” part didn’t happen, but wouldn’t it be cool?)
After scanning my teammates faces (all of them way more experienced than me), I was surprised by the realization they didn’t know what he was talking about. Immediately I decided to turn myself into a machine learning expert and prove my worth to the others. So, what do you think I did? What any sensible person would: Enroll in Andrew Ng’s Machine Learning course on Coursera. I devoted my lunch breaks and weekends to the task of becoming the “go-to guy for ML related stuff” in my job.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have the chance to apply my recently acquired knowledge in that job. But, hey! That didn’t discourage me a little! Au contraire, my dear friend! It pushed me to be more creative, bolder and braver in the seek of knowledge. Thus, since then I explore all things related with machine/deep learning for my own enjoyment and, why not? Benefit.
The aforementioned Andrew Ng’s course was followed by a couple of Udacity’s Nanodegrees on Machine and Deep Learning. Finally, to go full circle, I enrolled in the deep learning specialization being offered in, yep, Coursera by DeepLearning.ai (Guess who’s the founder).
On this journey I’ve experimented with amazing tools such as TensorFlow, Keras and TFLearn (I even built a neural network capable of driving a car!). I’ve worked with the immensely popular machine learning library for Python: scikit-learn, and I’ve even played a bit with R. The web is full of great resources for learning these tools and languages. From blogs to online courses. You name it. It’s there.
More recently I've gotten really interested about how we humans see and make decisions based on visual input. I truly think that many breakthroughs will come from the field of computer vision and countless lives will be improved as we teach machines to experiment the world with brand new eyes!
Do you share this passion with me? If so, join me in this exciting journey and together we can discover the many jawdropping applications computer vision has to offer!
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