About

Hi I'm Mars! I'm a computer science and machine learning researcher, as well as a generalist tech freelancer and educator. I am currently working towards my PhD in Computer Engineering at the University of Tasmania and CSIRO, where I work to adapt radio telescopes for spacecraft and space debris tracking. I live in Hobart, Tasmania and I look like this.

Contact + Links

You can contact me at @TheMartianLife via: Email, Twitter, Mastodon, GitHub, GitLab, or LinkedIn.

You can also find a selection of my talk recordings on YouTube, or assess my suitability for media appearances on Scimex or STEM Women (Australia, Global) or through the Superstars of STEM program.

Recent Press

Code

My day-to-day work is mostly programming, either for research, clients, or myself. Much of my professional work has been uncredited or is under NDAs, but my experience broadly covers:

  • Radio telescope software—including multi-tone spacecraft tracking software SCTracker, data format validation utility VDIFHeader, [current] a successor to the NRAO's popular DiFX I/O libraries mark5access and vdifio, and [private] real-time commensal space domain awareness software for ATCA.
  • Machine learning software—including [redacted] work in CCTV analysis at the University of Tasmania, [redacted] work on the Design Automation team at Canva, and [redacted] work on [redacted].
  • Coding/STEM activities—including the Swift Rockets code-along activity for National Science Week, the award-winning Resource, Respond, Rescue! Minecraft: Education Edition scenario for the CoRE Learning Foundation, and the official tutorials for the popular Open Source narrative framework Yarn Spinner.
  • Native iOS and macOS Apps—including the [retired] National Science Week app, and the dozens of apps I have written for books and courses on iOS and macOS development.

I primarily code in C (incl. CUDA, OpenCL), C++, C#, Python, and Swift, and for teaching I often use Java and Prolog. But I love learning new (and old) languages, and in my free time I write LaTeX packages for fun.

Publications

So far I have written two books:

I unfortunately had another book cancelled, after its topic project was sunset by Google without warning. And I was also a proud tech reviewer for the fantastic Swift Style, Second Edition by the equally fantastic Erica Sadun, for The Pragmatic Bookshelf.

I have recently begun consulting for news media on space debris and technology topics, including:

For research publications, see ORCiD logo ORCiD 0000-0001-8512-2434

Speaking

I have been a frequent speaker at tech events all over the world, including:

  • Machine learning conferences—TensorFlow World, AI Conf, YOW! Data, Strata Data, Reinforce AI.
  • Software/FOSS conferences—PyCon Australia, linux.conf.au, CocoaHeads, Software Architecture Conf, SwiftAlps, OSCON, /dev/world.
  • Game development conferences—PAX Australia, GDC, NZGDC.
  • General technology events—TasICT Conference, Something Digital, ACS Emerging and Deep Tech, AWS Community Day, CreateWorld.
  • STEM outreach events—Ignite by D2L, Science in the Pub, Royal Society of Tasmania Showcase, Beaker Street Science Festival, West Coast Community Learning Pathways, Women in Data Science, National Science Week, ACS Big Day In, and Careers Day events all over the place.

And on podcasts:

I also semi-regularly feature on the radio as an expert in technology-related topics, such as on ABC Hobart's Your Afternoon and Breakfast shows about myriad topics, and on 3RRR's Einstein-A-Go-Go for their 20 PhDs in 20 Minutes special.

Teaching

I am an intermittent teaching assistant, tutor, and advisor at the University of Tasmania's School of Information, Communication and Technology, as well as an individual tutor through the Riawunna Centre for Aboriginal Education.

In this capacity, I have been responsible for teaching undergraduate Artificial Intelligence (KIT108) and Introduction to Data Science (KIT102), and am currently engaged as a unit design advisor for postgraduate Mobile Dev for Market (KIT614).

When my work schedule permits it, I also offer private tutoring in programming and computer science topics.

Outreach

I am currently serving as an Executive Council Member for the AUC (fka. Apple University Consortium) and act as Conference Organiser for the annual /dev/world Apple developer community conference.

I also previously served as the Student Member Representative and Tasmanian Branch Executive Committee Member for the Australian Computer Society, where I was a founder of the annual Information Overload scholarship fundraiser.

In addition to these, I enjoy regular volunteering at tech and/or educational events—including participation in large-scale STEM outreach programs such as Young Tassie Scientists and Superstars of STEM.

Recognition

I have received a number of awards, for both myself and projects I have worked on, spanning:

Other

But it's not all work. I have other hobbies and interests too! For example:

  • I love space! This includes science fiction film, tv, and video/board games, as well as real outer space. Though my work focuses on radio telescopes, I own multiple specialist optical telescopes as a hobbyist stargazer.
  • I have been a professional and competitive Minecraft builder, including multiple years of contribution to the world-record-breaking WesterosCraft project—a collaborative effort to recreate the entire world of Game of Thrones in Minecraft.
  • I live in the most beautiful place in the world, in a Tiny House, with my best friend, adhering as much as possible to an eco-friendly lifestyle.

Website design inspired by smushing together the styles of Darius Kazemi's Run your own social and Gilles Castel's Lecture notes. Written and drawn by hand.