I’m Tom, an engineer living in San Francisco. I’m originally from Liverpool, England; I’ve also lived in China and Thailand.
I work for a series-B startup called Primer.ai, building a self-writing Wikipedia. Prior to that, I worked for an analytics startup within SAP, for which I was the lead engineer (it started out as just me on the engineering side and grew to a team of 9).
I began coding on a Commodore 64, later falling in love with Amigas and becoming really good at QBasic. Then I started experimenting with assembly on a PIC-16C84, and programming compilers in C, making robots, getting into amateur rocketry, and other nerd pursuits.
After getting my Masters in Electronic Engineering in London, I qualified as a lawyer and worked as a patent attorney for a while. Later this took me out to Hong Kong, where I focused on developing innovation in China, public speaking, supply chain analysis, account management, lobbying, and managing teams. In parallel I was working with inventors to engineer inventions for patent applications.
During this time I developed a very diverse set of skills, and also helped found and run Hong Kong’s first hackerspace, Dim Sum Labs. I also got a HAM radio license! In 2010 I began working on a number of small startups, which all failed, but also working on algorithms that in 2013 led me to launch a funded startup using AI to revolutionize law.
It didn’t work out, but it was a good year. After my startup failed I headed to South East Asia to regroup, and funded myself for a few years doing all kinds of full-stack jobs, from hardware engineering to SEO. Given the kind of work I was doing, I became an expert in Linux (which I’ve used since 1996 anyway) but also taught myself to draw and trained my ‘aesthetic eye’ with a certificate in graphic design from UCSD.
Always seeking to better myself, in 2016 I moved to the Bay Area, since then I’ve become an AWS-certified Solutions Architect, got a certificate in Deep Learning from USF, and generally got great at building data products.
Building stuff takes up most of my free time; genuinely I want to make the first AGI and work towards that constantly. Outside of geeky stuff I enjoy nature and hikes in CA’s wonderful state parks, BBQs, camping, gothic culture, roleplaying, playing guitar and piano (…badly), puns, British comedy TV, collecting gems, board games, electronic music (and DJing …badly) and in general not taking things too seriously.