Meet the team – Head of Research, Oliver Tearle

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I sat down with Head of Research and Corsa enthusiast, Oliver Tearle for a cup of coffee and a chat about what he’s working on, becoming a doctor and 80’s heavy metal…

Hi Ollie, in 3 words, describe what you do here at ai?

Innovate, automate, grow

How long have you worked here?

I’ll have worked for ai for 4 years in September and I’ve been Head of Research for 2 and half years.

I’ve heard that you are starting your PhD through work, very exciting. What is it that you are studying?

I’m going to be researching cutting edge financial fraud detection methods as well as what else can be done with that type of financial data. The fraud detection part only considers a very small proportion of the data to be important, there is a lot left to do such as automated trend reporting on a variety of subjects, customer value tracking and more.

What inspired you to start the PhD?

I wanted to expand my data science skills and become an expert in data science for fraud detection and financial data as well as take my research directly from the PhD and apply it to the SmartProducts.

How will this benefit your role as Head of Research?

It will allow me to grow as a data scientist, I’ll have more exposure to what’s going on in academia and I’ll be able to apply some of that knowledge and thinking directly into the product set. There are also lots of other skills I’ll be able to take from it and apply to my daily role.

When do you start and where?

I’m due to start at the end of September and I’ll be studying at the University of Southampton.

What made you choose this degree in particular?

I have a degree in Electronic and Computer engineering from the University of Surrey, I wanted to expand my skills and do some research which I can directly apply to my role and the research and products here at ai.

What is the first thing you are going to do when you become DR Tearle?

Celebrate! I think Mark (CEO) will probably want to throw a big party after 4 years of waiting!

It was in the news this week that Google’s A.I, AlphaGo showed man and machine working together to improve human talent (read the article here). Man AND machine or man VS machine?

I believe the future is always man AND machine, we currently perform many tedious manual processes which could be performed by machine, allowing us to spend more time doing what we do best: being creative.

What are you working on at the minute?

I’m working on the next generation of SmartScore and SmartRule, I can’t say any more other than the fact they’re very exciting.

SPEED ROUND

What trend are you sick of?

‘Craft beer’ – I’m a real ale man.

What would people be surprised to know about you?

I love to listen to 80’s metal, I maintain it’s the best era for metal.

Favourite piece of tech?

Games consoles! Especially Nintendo. I have all the home consoles with the exception of the NES and SNES. I’m especially pleased with my collection of games to go along with those, I have some rather rare ones.

Last gadget you bought?

Samsung Galaxy s8+, I like phones with big screens and my note 3 just died.

What are you most proud of?

My work on the SmartProducts. I’ve been working on them from the start (I wrote the first line of code!) and have been involved with almost every part of the system from the engineering and system design to the data science and inception of new features.

3 websites you visit every week?

TechRadar
Xkcd
Current Porsche stock (I can dream)

Thank you Oliver, we wish you all the best with your PHD and look forward to seeing what’s next from the research department.

Sam – Marketing Manager

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