In our series of ‘meet the team’ interviews, we chat with Tom Haynes, Technical Consultant (Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence).
Tell us a little about yourself
I studied Aerospace Engineering at Manchester and started my career at Dstl, working for 11 years as a test and evaluation engineer for camouflage and stealth technologies. I was lucky enough to be involved in lots of field trials and had some fantastic experiences, getting to travel to some very interesting and unusual places.
In addition to practical work, I was a subject matter expert in modelling and simulation where I developed a genetic algorithm for generating and camouflage patterns as well as investigating machine learning techniques for object detection.
What attracted you to join Alliants?
Alliants offered me the opportunity to work in a technical area that really suited my interests. I liked the idea of working for a smaller, more dynamic company, and the flexibility of working from the office or remotely was a real plus.
What are some of your passions?
I’ve always loved making and fixing things, I’ve got a couple of motorcycles I try and do most of the work on and I’ve made small drones and a few other electronics projects. I’m into photography and try to take my camera with me wherever I can, though most of my experience is on the more technical side of cameras, I’m now working on the artistic aspects.
Who has been the biggest influence in your career?
Early in my career, there were a few stand-out people who went out of their way to create opportunities for me and take the time to teach and support me. It inspired me to always try and do the same for the people around me.
What is a great day off for you?
I’ve got a six-month-old at home so anything involving an uninterrupted night’s sleep is looking pretty good right now!
What’s been your best travel experience?
Field trials included some of my best (and worst) travel experiences, I got to travel to some really unique places with the highlight probably being a week spent working from a cable car in the Bavarian Alps.
Your best travel tip?
Local knowledge is invaluable whether it’s a guide, a friend of a friend, or a helpful taxi driver. It’s great for finding restaurants and bars but also knowing the best places to go and when to go there.