Silicon Valley to Baltimore @ Grace Hopper

I would like to take a moment to introduce myself.  My full name is Penelope Peng but many people call me by my nickname “Penny”.  I am a Senior Software Engineer in the Intellectual Property & Science division of Thomson Reuters.  I have worked for the company for nearly 10 years out of one of our Silicon Valley offices.

From my early college days, I dreamed of becoming an innovator and changing the world through technology. I graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in Computer Engineering many years ago, just before the “dot com” boom started, and so eager was I to be a part of the wild innovative spirit of the Silicon Valley that I packed-up my “vast worldly” college student possessions (which conveniently all fit in the trunk of my Ford with room to spare) and left for the Silicon Valley the day after graduation.  I did the 35 hour drive, from Chicago to San Jose, as non-stop as possible.  From there, I worked for a number of iconic Silicon Valley tech companies as an Engineer, one of them being Netscape during the very early days of “dot com” boom.  There I witnessed firsthand the rising of an innovative company, which helped changed the world, lead by a young Marc Andreessen.  These experiences left an impression.  I later worked for a start-up called “Delphion” which was acquired by Thomson Reuters in 2002 and I have been here ever since.

I love my job at Thomson Reuters and there is no other company on Earth I’d rather be working for!  For the past 10 years, I have been processing, normalizing, and analyzing Terabytes of Patent Content. This content is from over 100 countries in many languages.  Using various technologies, I analyze the content for trends and patterns and find new ways to add value to it.  Analyzing Big Data is just as much of an Art as it is a Science.  I code in a variety of programming languages such as Java, XSL, PL/SQL, OmniMark, Perl, C++, etc, and push relational databases to their more advanced features. These are all useful skills in this line of work, but having a curious mind is a one of the most important skills that one can have when it comes to Big Data.  I am quickly becoming an avid Big Data technologies enthusiast and am actively learning Hadoop, Hive, and etc.  I am excited about these technologies and with it new abilities to serve our customers from combining and analyzing diverse content sets that up until now have never been combined on such a large scale.

Big Data tech talks from experts in this field are all over the agenda here at Grace Hopper 2012.  I will be attending all of these talks and blogging about them.  My goal is for the blogs to internally spark and further advance innovative ideas with collaboration from all over Thomson Reuters.  Innovation is rarely the idea of just one person, but more commonly the contributions of many people, each sharing their talents, expertise, and experiences.  Now is the era of Big Data and with all of the diverse content that Thomson Reuters possesses and has expertise in, we are poised like never before for even more greatness in providing intelligent information to our customers.  Such exciting times to be a technologist working here!