Ngā mihi ki a Caleb

10 May, 2018

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Caleb Moses is all set to join Dragonfly later this month. He will bring valuable experience in machine learning, natural language processing, data analysis and data visualisation to the company.

Caleb is currently employed at Stats NZ as a statistical analyst. His work includes developing scalable methods for protecting privacy, visualising changes in land cover and injury data across the country, and working on environmental reporting.

His first job at Dragonfly will be with the Kōrero Māori project, which Dragonfly is working on with Te Hiku Media and Te Pūnaha Matatini. Its end goal is to produce a Māori ‘Siri’ for digital devices.

“I discovered the project on social media, listened to the story on RNZ, tracked down who was producing the code and the trail eventually led to Ed and Dragonfly. I was so keen to get involved that I volunteered to help out, but in the end I was offered this job, which I very happily accepted.”

Caleb says his values and skillsets are closely aligned with Dragonfly’s.

“What these guys use every day is what I’m really passionate about – open source tools and cutting edge statistical models. Ever since I finished my studies I’ve been building my capability with the open source tools used by machine learning experts. I want to use my knowledge to solve problems and create new technologies.”

Caleb has a bachelor’s degree and a postgraduate diploma in science from the University of Auckland. Although his degree and diploma are in pure mathematics, he also added in Japanese, philosophy and physics to his studies.

“I love languages and as a result, I enjoy playing with text data. Machine learning algorithms are great at this, but we have to make sure the associations we teach them are real and reflect our values. Navigating this kind of ambiguity makes building language models very satisfying for me.”

Caleb is keen to use his language modelling skills to build up Te Ao Māori and has already met other talented Māori people through working on Kōrero Māori.

“I usually say that I know enough Te Reo to go to a marae without embarrassing myself, but working on this project is motivating me to get even better. My family are all very proud.”

Caleb starts at Dragonfly on 28 May.

Read more about the Kōrero Māori project.