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Paul Golding: Engine Builder.

I am an  IEE prize-winning technologist. I mostly build “data engines”, which I have done for e-commerce, martech, IoT, fintech and telco sectors, typically focussed on revenue lift or new revenue streams.  I have a track record in solving complex problems, B2C, & B2B, via AI,/ML, novel computation and data architectures, from start-up to Fortune 500 giants.  I come from the world of DSP chip design from which I moved into software systems.

Checkout some of my projects.

I have over 30 patents in AI, Blockchain, Computer Vision, Computational Aesthetics & more. I’ve achieved notable industry firsts and filed my first Neural Networks patent in 1994 , pioneering their use in digital cellular signal processing, winning Motorola’s prestigious Patent of The Year.

I have executed tech projects globally:  Sitecore, Microsoft, Google, Motorola, O2, McLaren Racing, Vodafone, 3 UK, Acision, Art.com, Navteq, B&Q, Credit Suisse, Naspers, IBM, Telefonica, Ericsson, Prosper  LLC.

Why work with me?

Many orgs struggle to place the right bets on emerging fields like AI, Data Fabric and Web3. I can formulate, guide and even build those bets from messy starting points.

I can also work from a blank sheet of paper with uncertain parameters, able to distill solid PoCs and products that I can build independently or via a “labs” (that I might run for you).

How do I work?

I am not a “professional slide-maker” & espouser of “innovation” theories (despite various theoretical familiarities). I am hands-on. I have built many novel products and data “engines”.

I have >30 patents in  AI, Computer Vision, Blockchain, Mobile and NLP.

I am also well schooled in product design, from interpretive to data-driven methods.

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Creative

I  have a track record of creating novel solutions across a wide set of industry problems from digital art to fintech to racing cars. I use design-driven innovation to reinvent products or even entire business lines via the application of advanced computation (e.g. AI).

Business Minded

I learned from the legendary Tom Peters about the art of business. There is nothing new to add to his insights, despite modern fads like “Lean”or whatever. Put plainly: I am not a technologist for technology’s sake. I mean business and I prefer plain talking to fad-talking.  

Hands On

I am not an “innovation theorist” who comes with feel-good sticky-notes. I produce tangible, well researched outputs: I can propose, design, architect and build. My track record in technical execution is beyond question, backed by many satisfied clients and numerous project and patent achievements.

Data- and Design-Driven

I come from a signal processing background,  so data-processing is my “first language.” I am also a “data person”. However, I am also well schooled in “design thinking” and psychology etc. I prefer to fuse data-driven “bottom-up” analysis with “top-down” design-driven innovation.

Digital Complexity Transformation:

Most “digital transformation” is speeding up existing processes rather than reinventing them. This is not sustainable in the world of cognitive computation (AI) and emergent decentralized technologies (Web3). They have unique natures that transcend traditional digital transformation mindsets and methods.

Critically, the post Web 2.0 world is chaotic and reflects the reality of today’s digital ecosystems: they are Complex Systems. Mere “simplification”, the essence of many “transformation” approaches no longer works. As the Complexity maxim goes: “Complexity can only be met with Complexity”.

Consequently, if your org cannot continually adapt at the rate of change of complex external ecosystem stimuli, then you will fail in the face of smarter competitors, irrevocable technical debt and data deluge.

Organizational intelligence is rapidly becoming synonymous with “organizational cognitive intelligence”.  Put simply: if cognitive computing (AI) isn’t at the core of your org, you are most likely falling behind, even if you don’t yet notice it. 

Many orgs claims to be data-driven, yet confuse data abundance with data literacy — i.e. the ability to actively interpret and act upon data. Even then, bottom-up data-driven is not enough. It has to be met with top-down systems thinking and interpretive design that enable breakthrough performance via appropriately empowered talent.

This is an actual clustering visualization from a project I worked on in e-commerce. There’s meaning in this data. Modern orgs/markets are similar — they contain clusters of behaviour and opportunity that are discoverable via cognitive computation and strategy.

My approach:

I interpret your business into its essential mechanisms, mostly via data-driven critical reasoning guided by interview-based research. I do not use any faddish jargon-laden “consulting framework” that produces hundreds of meaningless slides.

I typically identify where untapped value might lie irrespective of existing corporate narratives (and delusions). When necessary, I enlist design-interpreting partners, such as Rick Lewis (former Ideo, former Frog, Braun Prize winner) who know how to interpret user mindset.

Using design-driven innovation, I interpret product solutions through the lens of advanced technologies, like AI.  I often propose a landscape of future direction themes into which I fit specific products ideas that emerge from the analysis.

For execution, I have experience with a range of approaches, from 1-person coding to founding an  “Innovation Lab” to directing large R&D divisions in multinationals.

1. Establish the true mandate.

What do you *really* want? This is always the starting point. Everyone says “we want to get better at X” but seldom do they articulate the real constraints. Via a series of conversations with executive sponsor(s), I tease out the true mandate with constraints, which is often a tricky process and conversation. If I don’t see a meaningful mandate, I walk away. I have no desire to get paid $$$ for work that will never translate into value. Life’s too short for vanity projects.

2. Capabilities discovery

Clients know their business the best, but often via a biased, dogmatic, historical and diffused set of filters. I tease out current capabilities so that I can begin to fit appropriate innovations. This step includes a kind of “digital what-if”, like if X is the digital future of Y (e.g. some pivotal capability or market characteristic) then how might that impact our view of the business?

3. Map a digital landscape

Irrespective of what a client tells me about their business, I often develop an independent view of the landscape with the goal of unearthing scope and limits. For example, if the core of a client’s financial business is essentially aggregating data, then I will explore the limits of aggregation were we to apply infinite resources. Are these limits informational, process, speed, or something else? I then explore these limits in order to interpret the possibilities. Doing this over a range of core processes, I construct a digital landscape of possible business futures.

4. Develop a design framework

Via a process akin to design-driven innovation, I attempt to unveil the actual meaning of a current product and/or intended innovation in the “mind of the market.” For example, perhaps a financial loan product is really an “insurance policy” in the mind of its users. In which case, the “insurance properties” of that product might become its design-driven purpose. This might entail looking more broadly at the theme of “insurance” and seeing how it might be re-imagined via the use of advanced technologies, like AI, etc.

5. Synthesis

Finally, I synthesize the above steps into a set of digital product and tech initiatives. I typically aim to expose a set of proposals via what I call “pillars of change”. These are themes around which an actual strategy might be constructed to make use of the specific product/tech proposals. It is seldom my place to state a strategy, but rather to suggest what it could be given the above synthesis.

Chief-Scientist "in Residence"

Besides hands-on consulting, I sometimes provide “virtual” Chief Scientist In Residence services more suited to clients who need to “out-brain” complex thinking. It can literally make you millions!

Find out more about “virtual in-residence” retainer options.

As one client put it: “Paul is our tech guardian angel”.

About Me: Intrapreneur

The short version is that I’m a multi award-winning technologist with a list of prestigious clients. I have helped to interpret and build their technological futures through the lens of advanced computation (inc. AI, IoT, Data Fabrics, or similar). [See my projects.]

I am not a “sticky notes” consultant who holds fluffy workshops. My list of technical accomplishments is long, embarrassingly so, but always couched within a realistic business context.

Originally from the UK, I have a background in Electronic Engineering and Signal Processing that I honed whilst designing silicon-chips for Motorola. I was Motorola’s youngest recipient of the Patent of the Year award with co-processor designs pivotal to the commercial success of scalable digital cellular.

I founded Europe’s first mobile apps company and built numerous mobile services for corporate clients (IBM, Credit Suise, Dell, Lucent Technologies etc) and many carriers. I wrote one of the worlds’s first mobile apps textbooks (Wiley) and helped to define the mobile app category. I built the world’s first fully over-the-air mobile email system for Microsoft Exchange, before Blackberry (who later sued my client to cause interference).

Working alongside Google, Motorola and Sun, I was one of only a few individual expert members of the Java Community Process that created the original mobile app framework (MIDP) in 2005 — the precursor to Android.

To pursue a career of intellectual stimulation in technology, I have mostly consulted in order to choose my clients and projects carefully. I have acted in various interim roles, like Chief Architect/Scientist, Head of R&D, etc.

During my formative years in silicon R&D, I conducted industry and EU-sponsored post-grad research (3D compression for Augmented Reality) at the prestigious University of Southampton mobile labs alongside novel methods for solving the canonical “co-channel interference” problem that determines the limit of cellular network capacity.

I have crafted my career to work for some of the most interesting companies in their respective sectors (e.g. O2, McLaren Racing, Prosper) often helping them to put more “tech” into the “tech company” equation (definitions of “tech company” notwithstanding).

I so often find myself innovating and evangelizing from inside an existing company, that I have come to think of myself as an “intrapreneur”.

 

Testimonials

Passionate, bright and filled with big ideas and most importantly a whole systems thinker

Ivy Ross, VP Hardware (Google)

A pretty unique bundle. A deeply experienced hands on technologist, a strategic thinker that understands the challenges facing both large and small businesses

James Parton, Europe GM (Twilio)

Paul has a brilliant grasp of the technical opportunities open to the mobile industry and a real passion for driving breakthrough change

Derek McManus, COO (O2 UK)

His knowledge and experience is as vast as his drive and thirst for uncovering what is possible with the latest technologies

Jason Cale, Product Design (Facebook)

Unique, different, diverse, challenging, direct, open and a total disregard for the “norms” in any situation

Tracy Isacke, MD (Silicon Valley Bank)

Start your cognitive transformation…

Talk to Paul.