Can you brief us about your scope of work during this internship?
My work at ANB Systems was spent mainly working with the document recognition platform. This including building the algorithms for new types of documents and images, as well as improving existing ones. I also got to be involved in the planning and prototyping of a ‘data lake’ which is a system with the goal of making extractions and metrics more data driven.
What new skills, techniques and knowledge did you gain during your time with ANB?
Some interesting things I learned about where deployment, designing contracts, and the planning involved as part of development process. I also got to see how OCR and document recognition systems work and communicate with other services.
What are the highlights of working at what is considered a ‘smaller’ tech company?
My favorite part was that at a ‘smaller’ tech firm, the impact you can have on the product(s) through your work is pretty high. You get to work intimately with systems, have good control and creative liberty, but also a close-knit group of mentors who can guide you.
How did the internship match your expectations?
I had a really great experience at ANB. Because of the internship being remote and, for me, across time-zones, there was a bit of uncertainty in my mind before I started. But things worked themselves out, working was smooth and interesting, and I had a great, educational experience.
What are the key takeaways from your exposure to energy efficiency industry?
For me, one of the key takeaways about the energy efficiency industry is about the scope of computing and data-based tools can have to play, simply due to the diverse and large amount of data generated.
How easy/challenging is it to collaborate remotely with covid19 restrictions in place?
It was slightly challenging, just from a mental perspective – you often end up wanting a change of scenery. But things became smoother as time passed, and the work itself was enjoyable and easy to do remotely – a computer is all I needed.
What are the programming languages you are working on?
My work was mainly done in Python.
What was the biggest challenge and how did you overcome it?
For me the biggest challenge was the fact that I was working across time zones. I was back home in New Delhi, India, and working with the Houston office. One of the best things to help overcome this challenge was how communication was structured. Because of frequent daily meetings, ongoing conversations and digital infrastructure, my overall experience went really smoothly. Other interns, and people from the Houston office were really considerate and mindful and I never felt stretched!
Were colleagues supportive and how did you find the company culture?
My coworkers at ANB were very supportive, helpful, and flexible. The company culture is also pretty enriching, and my coworkers encouraged me to think critically, keeping best practices, end use, and the larger perspective in mind.