Meet a Text IQer: Engineer & Researcher Yi-Hsiang Kao

Meet a Text IQer: Engineer & Researcher Yi-Hsiang Kao

Highlighting the talents and perspectives of our individual team members, our "Meet a Text IQer" blog series provides an insider view of the key players who drive our company. This installment features Yi-Hsiang Kao, Engineer & Researcher. Entrenched in the Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) that’s at the root of Text IQ, Yi-Hsiang, strives to find new ways to bring structure to an increasing amount of unstructured data. 

A modern-day renaissance man, Yi-Hsiang Kao, is balancing his passion for solving problems and puzzles within data at Text IQ, with his passions for languages, music, and now, cooking. Yi-Hsiang moved to New York a few years ago from his native Taiwan, and brought his love of learning, his trumpet, and a love of Tawainese food with him. YHK_trumpet-1When not deep in code, he could be found taking in a Broadway show, a musical performance, or checking out New York City’s Taiwanese food scene (pre-pandemic). While his current hobbies have shifted in recent months to cooking at home (check out his favorite dish, Taiwanese stinky tofu), he can still indulge his love for solving language problems (he speaks 3 human + multiple computer languages) while working on Text IQ projects. 

What led you to Text IQ?

Ultimately, it was an alignment of my interests and passions that made me feel that Text IQ would be a great fit for me personally and professionally. I have a personal interest and passion for reading and writing, which led to my love of solving language problems. It’s fascinating to find the hidden structures inside literature and language. These structures are fundamental to solving the puzzle of how language “works” and what drives our understanding of actual intelligence - for man and machine. This drove my passion towards pursuing a career as a researcher, engineer, and problem solver. 

When I learned what Text IQ was doing with artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and deep learning (DL), I saw an immediate connection to my own personal interests and my Masters work at NYU. The experimentation to find how far we can go to understand the unstructured data sources and applying deep learning to the puzzle really keeps me motivated. 

How’s the culture and work environment at Text IQ?

Besides the awesome NYC location, the view, and office itself, which I haven’t actually seen in months, I’ve been very impressed with the people at Text IQ. Everyone is very talented, collaborative, and positive. Whenever I ask questions, everyone is always super eager to help me. I get to work with our CEO, Apoorv, and a lot of very intelligent engineers that I can gain a great deal of industry knowledge from and continue to grow professionally. 

Can you share what you’ve worked on?

I’m a Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning Engineer at Text IQ, so I’m involved with a lot of their core applications. Currently, I’m working on research for parsing data. There are new forms of data that come up within organizations constantly. Emojis, for example, are commonplace in text messages now, but new to parsing. I’m working to ensure that the Text IQ platform has the intelligence to understand the structure behind these different sources of data, like emails, calendar invites, text messages, and, yes, emojis. 😊

The parser can find knowledge provided and parse millions of documents with minimal human intervention. It solves the issue of writing programs to parse documents, which takes the place of a lot of engineers and saves a lot of time. This innovation has unlimited applications across almost all industries. It can be used whenever a company needs to understand and parse unstructured data within documents.

What about Attorney Finder?

This is a smaller-scale project by Text IQ that I’ve been updating. Attorney Finder helps find unknown attorneys, domains, and law firms within unstructured data, and identifies the true roles of those providing legal advice within an organization. The ability to identify these “unknown” attorneys is very helpful in protecting sensitive information from leaving an enterprise. 

Are you using your AI powers for good?

Yes, I’m very interested in using my skills in AI and machine learning for the betterment of society. I’ve worked on programming that aids in privacy protection, legal issues, sexual harassment investigation, and inclusion. I’m also working to identify bias in language in a programmatic way and solving issues relating to human biases. This technology has the ability to understand so much of our language and social network within an organization, that I see a lot of potential in uses for social justice. I enjoy being able to apply my work to the betterment of society and create better working environments for people.

While Yi-Hsiang misses the view from the Text IQ office in New York City, his eyes have been on his work while he’s been quarantined at home during the past few months. Be sure to keep an eye out for new innovations at Text IQ driven by Yi-Hsiang’s technical prowess in AI! 

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