Exploring  the Next Big Thing in Gen AI with Sandeep Singh

Nitika Sharma 30 Nov, 2023 • 4 min read

This Leading with Data Session unfolds the firsthand experiences of Sandeep Singh, Head of Applied AI at Beans.ai. He shares insights from his journey, from comprehensive workshops shaping generative AI engineers to the transformative potential of combining computer vision and natural language processing (NLP). The conversation unveils the exciting future AI holds.

Key Insights from our Conversation with Sandeep Singh

  • India’s AI ecosystem is uniquely positioned for rapid adoption and productization, unlike the Bay Area’s research-focused AI landscape.
  • Workshops at DataHack Summit offer a rare, end-to-end experience for transitioning into generative AI engineering.
  • The fusion of computer vision and NLP is the next breakthrough in AI, with applications in accessibility and digital content interaction.
  • Building projects end-to-end and documenting the learning process are crucial for AI beginners, emphasizing practical experience over theory.
  • The future of AI in enterprise software may shift from writing code to defining abstract concepts, potentially making English the main programming language.

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Now let’s look at the questions that were asked from Sandeep Singh along with his responses.

How was your Experience at the DataHack Summit in Bangalore?

Thanks for asking, Kunal. Having attended numerous AI conferences globally, the DataHack Summit in Bangalore stood out with its unique mix of industry experts and hands-on practitioners, including many Kagglers. The organization was top-notch, with a seamless flow of logically clustered talks. Engaging with so many individuals passionate about AI was a pleasure, and I was impressed by the high potential for productizing AI technologies in India. The Indian AI landscape is application-oriented, with a rapid adoption rate of the latest technologies, which is quite different from the research-heavy tone in the Bay Area.

Comparing AI Ecosystems: What are the Key Differences in India vs. the Bay Area?

The Bay Area, or Silicon Valley, has a distinct AI landscape heavily influenced by research due to the presence of institutions like Stanford and Berkeley. Discussions here often involve extending the field with new technologies and research papers. In contrast, India’s AI ecosystem is more focused on building products and adopting these technologies at a higher rate. For instance, the number of IT companies in Bangalore showcases the scale at which India embraces AI for product development.

What’s the Quality of Workshops in the Bay Area Compared to those at the DataHack Summit?

The workshops at the DataHack Summit set a high bar. Unlike many workshops I’ve attended in the Bay Area, which often provide introductory hooks and code samples, the workshops in Bangalore were comprehensive and end-to-end. They were designed to transform a software engineer into a generative AI engineer, a level of depth not easily found in the Bay Area.

Can you share your Journey into AI and Computer Vision?

Certainly, Kunal. I started as a computer science engineer and worked in Bangalore before moving to the US. Initially, I was drawn to investment banking and even joined BlackRock. However, a pivotal moment at a deep learning school hosted by Andrew Ng and his PhD students at Stanford changed everything for me. The potential of AI to change the world became apparent, and I decided to switch my career. I left BlackRock, joined Oracle, and pursued a master’s from Georgia Tech in Machine Learning. By building projects and engaging with the community, I transitioned from a computer science engineer to an applied AI engineer.

What was your “Aha!” Moment with Generative AI?

My “aha” moment came in January 2021 with the release of the CLIP paper. A revelation occurred when we observed the fusion of text and images in a latent space, offering a fresh perspective on context and providing new insights. This advancement hinted at a future where technology could significantly impact how we interact with images and text, potentially aiding those with disabilities like blindness.

How do you see the Computer Vision and NLP Combination Shaping the Future?

The next big “aha” moment in AI will likely be computer vision and NLP fusion. We’re heading towards a future where text-to-image and image-to-text technologies will become commonplace. For instance, smartphone manufacturers are working on technology that generates emojis and GIFs on the fly based on text input. Editing photos might soon be as simple as typing how you want them to look. This integration will redefine our interaction with digital content.

What Advice would you give Someone Starting their AI Career Today?

Firstly, try to build something end-to-end, no matter how basic. The process of creating a complete solution is invaluable. Secondly, write about what you learn and build. Documenting your journey not only helps others but also solidifies your understanding. Lastly, embrace the non-linear learning path of AI. Pick up concepts as needed and build a solid foundation to support your growth in the field.

Summing Up

As we explore the fantastic world of AI, Sandeep Singh’s story shows how exciting and diverse this field can be. India and the Bay Area have AI styles, but India focuses on making things work in real life. The podcast talks about workshops that guide new AI folks step by step. Imagine a future where computers understand images and words together! Sandeep suggests trying things out if you’re curious about AI, write down what you learn, and be ready for a unique journey.

Join us for more such insightful sessions with AI and Data Science leaders in our upcoming Leading with Data sessions!

Nitika Sharma 30 Nov 2023

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