I guess I’m the generalist type… I have a growing passion for data science, machine learning, statistics, math, physics, computer programming, philosophy, sociology, social psychology, communication, product management, growth hacking, photography, design, user experience (no particular order) and I’ve always wanted to invent stuff that could change the world.

Don’t worry, I know what you’re thinking…  “here goes another Homo universalis“, or how can someone be passionate about ALL those topics and still make a worthy contribution in his life.  I’m definitely NOT the best at any of those topics taken individually, and there is always someone who knows more, I know that, but each of those topics, taken individually, was in my top #3 interests for at least 3 years.

I think that if you are an autodidact who can dedicate enough time to a specific topic of interest, and if you do this for multiple related and non related topics at some point you’ll be able to connect the dots in an unpredictable new way, bringing highly valuable results.

I am not against mastering a single topic of interest (specialization) but I think that this method is highly overused, abused and limiting.

I have a lot of admiration for people like Benjamin Franklin, Buckminster Fuller, Isaac Asimov, Howard Hughes, Blaise Pascal, Leonardo Da Vinci, Brian May, Richard Feynman, C.S.Lewis, Elon Musk, Thomas Edison, Steve Jobs, Walt Disney, Jeff Bezos, and Peter Thiel (no particular order).

Finally, I believe that the most important breakthroughs in the next few years will come from applied artificial intelligence. I have no doubt that we can today influence and advance most of our future through one single thing: artificial intelligence.

My main interests lately are AI and security.

One of my top ongoing objectives is to understand how to create and hack/fool any AI/ML based decision system (and algorithm). I think that, at some point in the future, it’s very likely that these systems will control the world, and people behind them will control the world through them. By that time it may be too late to start learning how these systems work and more importantly: how they can be hacked.


@raulpopa | linkedin

PS. In my day to day life I’m the CEO, cofounder and data scientist at TypingDNA (an AI based typing biometrics authentication startup).

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