Kayode Ayankoya  - AI Warriors

Perspectives

Kayode Ayankoya relishes how working with data and AI allows him to continually push the limit for innovation and help his clients solve complex problems.

The AI Institute is proud to introduce a new series profiling AI warriors who are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in the search for new and innovative uses of AI.

Can you share the most interesting part of your career journey as an AI expert?

My academic background is in statistics, but I started my career as a software engineer and had opportunity to support clients in financial, retail, and manufacturing industries for close to a decade. Subsequently, I became more interested in business processes and intelligence as I moved from core software engineering to a slightly product implementation–focused role. As a result, I decided to register for an MBA program where my interest for quantitative approach to solving problems became amplified. Unconventionally, this gave me a space in a PhD program in computer science where my research focused on AI-based, predictive analytics for prices of agricultural assets on the stock exchange.

I find it interesting that even when I could not define what I was looking for, I was set on the journey of becoming a data scientist many years ago in a very unconventional way.

It is generally recognized that a data scientist brings a combination of statistics, programming, and business knowledge for answering unique questions and creating business value. I find it interesting that even when I could not define what I was looking for, I was set on the journey of becoming a data scientist many years ago in a very unconventional way. I have since had the opportunity to use my skills for providing solutions in the pharmaceutical industry and for technology-focused clients.

What excites you most about working with data and AI?

We have continued to create an enormous amount of data across several industries. While the goal is to use data as an asset for creating value, the complexities around the volume, velocity, variety, and veracity can make it difficult. But it is exciting to note that the industry has continually evolved to develop tools, systems, and processes that enable us to ask questions that would have been considered stupid or simply impossible before now.

I am excited about our work in data analytics and artificial intelligence.

As a result, working with data and AI allows us to continually push the limit for innovation and help our client solve complex problems. Who would have thought that we could imagine a clinical trial that brings a product to market in fewer than two years? Who would think of using personalized diagnostics and precision medicines to improve health care several years ago?

These are now common trends due to the power of artificial intelligence and the amount of data available and some of the reasons I am excited about our work in data analytics and artificial intelligence.

Describe an interesting project that you have worked on.

I have spent some of my time at a large technology organization in recent times, and it has been interesting to see data science and artificial intelligence drive major value creation decisions and customer experience at scale.

Some of the key focus areas include “extreme obsession” about user experience, reliability, and accurate possible infrastructure demand forecasting. For example, A/B testing is a common statistical methodology based on hypothesis testing for comparing two versions of something to figure out which is better.

The technique is deployed to solving complex problems daily by constantly testing and monitoring thousands of metrics to ensure that the customer is happy and the product is reliable—meaning that data at enormous scale is thrown at experiments constantly to ensure there is no regression at any time in strategic metrics despite multiple updates and fixes, but a 0.5% improvement can be considered a huge win.

AI warriors

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