In Conversation with our Team: Walid

January 27, 2024

In conversation with Walid

Sr. Machine Learning Engineer at Vianai

Walid with his family

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I hold a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Biomedical Engineering, a field where I initially aspired to create medical devices, with a special focus on biomechanics. However, a pivotal class during my Master's studies on genomics and data science redirected my career path towards the dynamic and challenging realms of data science and machine learning.  My engineering background has empowered me to apply user-centric approaches in solving complex problems in machine learning and data science.
While I wouldn't describe myself as an avid reader, I have a keen interest in the history of science and technology, particularly in the early modern and modern periods. Currently, I'm engrossed in 'Leviathan and the Air Pump: Hobbes, Boyle, and the Experimental Life' by Simon Schaffer and Steven Shapin, and 'Classical Probability in the Enlightenment' by Lorraine Daston. These books offer invaluable insights into the roots of our scientific methodologies and challenge me to critically examine the underlying assumptions in my work as a machine learning engineer.

Gaming is another passion of mine, especially open-world and creative titles like the Legend of Zelda series. Video games often spark innovative ideas for enhancing applications. In fact, some of the LLM-agentic processes at hila Enterprise were inspired by Minecraft sessions I enjoy with my younger brother.

What is your role at Vianai?

As a Machine Learning Engineer at Vianai, my role is centered around crafting robust and scalable machine learning solutions that seamlessly integrate into our product offerings. Leveraging my extensive background in data science, I am dedicated to ensuring that our technology is not just cutting-edge, but also practical and user-friendly. A critical aspect of my work involves translating insights gathered from ongoing client engagements directly into our product development process. This approach enables us to continually refine and enhance our solutions, directly contributing to heightened customer satisfaction. Essentially, my role involves a dynamic interplay between technology, data, and direct customer feedback, all of which converge to foster continuous innovation and improvement within our products.

What are you working on these days?

Currently, my primary focus for hila Enterprise involves advancing our LLM technologies, particularly in enhancing their question-answering capabilities. A key aspect of my work is devising strategies to detect and mitigate LLM hallucinations, ensuring that our outputs are reliable and trustworthy for making critical business decisions. Alongside this, I'm also developing more sophisticated agentic systems capable of handling complex, multi-faceted tasks that go beyond standard question-answering. This involves crafting solutions that can intelligently navigate through challenging problems, providing our users with innovative and efficient ways to tackle their needs. Lastly, I'm dedicated to refining our information retrieval processes to ensure that the system consistently accesses the most relevant and accurate sources, thereby improving the overall quality and reliability of the answers provided to our users.

What is the most exciting part about the work you are doing, and how does it relate to Human-Centered AI?

The most thrilling aspect of my work lies in the challenge of integrating human intuition with the capabilities of artificial intelligence. In my interaction with industry professionals, I've observed that many tasks, especially in sectors like finance, are a blend of diverse knowledge and intricate decision-making - a fusion that often resembles an art more than a science. This intersection poses a fascinating challenge for AI development: how do we construct tools that not only support but also enhance these complex, creative processes? At the heart of Human-Centered AI is the principle of amplifying, not merely imitating, human decision-making. It's about developing AI that respects, understands, and enriches the nuanced intricacies of human cognition and creativity. This alignment of AI with the depth of human insight and ingenuity is what makes my work immensely exciting and impactful.

What do you think customers appreciate most about working with us?

What our customers appreciate most about working with us is our meticulous and proactive approach to understanding and addressing their unique challenges. Instead of merely reacting to individual suggestions, we delve deeper, identifying patterns and underlying needs in their feedback. This insightful method allows us to precisely target and rapidly implement enhancements that align closely with their specific requirements. As a result, our solutions evolve swiftly and effectively, offering a customer experience that is not just responsive, but also finely tailored to meet their exact needs.  

Why should people sign up for hila?

The hila Enterprise platform is essential for those seeking to streamline document and financial workflows with the power and precision of LLMs. What sets us apart at Vianai is our unwavering commitment to transparency and accuracy. Unlike typical LLMs, which may occasionally struggle with substantiating findings, every response generated by hila Enterprise is not only supported by verifiable sources but also undergoes rigorous validation through our specialized techniques. This meticulous approach ensures the elimination of misleading information or hallucinations. By choosing hila Enterprise, you're not just selecting a tool; you're engaging a reliable partner dedicated to providing trustworthy, well-substantiated answers that will significantly enhance your decision-making processes.