Congratulations to alum Jeff Adler
(MA ’17), who will soon be starting a new job at NLP Ad Tech company Semasio
. He reports:
Starting May 21, I will be working at a new NLP Ad Tech company Semasio, currently based in Germany and Portugal, but moving their HQ to New York City. Semasio uses “semantic behavioral targeting” to create user profiles that advertisers can use to more accurately and efficiently reach their target audience. For anyone whose interesting, I’ll unpack what that means:
One of the primary focuses of Advertising Tech (“Ad tech”) is to discover algorithmic methods of chopping up the population into demographic segments, so that the right people are hit with the right advertisements. Semasio’s language-based take on this challenge is to first, extract keywords from the web, and build a gigantic semantic network based on which keywords correlate with others. Then, information is gathered about where past consumers of a given product would fall in this network. That is, what is the semantic profile of people who have purchased a given product in the past. Finally, we locate users who have not yet purchased the product, but fall in similar quadrants on the network. In this way, we use a linguistic bottom-up, data-driven approach (= probabilistic, = Surfeit (= Not Poverty) of the Stimulus, = Generativisits will roll their eyes but haters gon’ hate, right?) to build consumer profiles.
My role at the company will be Client Development Manager. Basically, that means I will be consulting with our clients to show them how to best use our software, and what kind of analytic insights we can gain by tweaking different parameters. So, this means is that I will not be doing much NLP or data science or even coding myself, but rather, acting as an ambassador for the product, and the language/data scientists that built it. The reason I say this is to make the point that, for any graduate students who are flirting with the idea of leaving academia, but are afraid that, unless they can code, they will have no avenue, they are Dead Wrong.
There are tons of opportunities for people who, even if they do not want to be on the technical side of things, can communicate technical topics in a easily-digestible manner. In other words, if you’re the type of person who, like me, hated learning R but loved giving talks, or just discussing interesting topics, you’re so much more marketable than you think you are. To that end, if anyone wants to talk about how to find those opportunities, feel free to write!
Congratulations again, Jeff!