Well, I’ve done a bunch of different stuff, mostly in the machine-learning/AI part of the tech world:
Math PhD (applied harmonic analysis, old-school machine learning methods)
data science at Palantir (boy do I have stories)
ML video analysis for self-driving trucks
now I work at Nanotronics, where we build AI-controlled factories for every manufacturing industry.
I also like to write. You might know me from elsewhere on the internet:
my old blog #1, srconstantin.github.io
my old blog #2, Otium
s_r_constantin on Twitter
I live in Brooklyn, NY, with my husband Andrew, and my two kids Simon (5) and Molly (1).
What’s “Rough Diamonds”?
This is a blog about, primarily, science and tech innovation.
I’m mainly focused on analyzing promising, underrated opportunities — potentially awesome stuff we could do, that looks tractable but hasn’t been fully explored yet.
I talk here about my philosophy for the blog:
The thing I’m trying to do with this newsletter is something less like science journalism and more like “techno-economic analysis” or “scientific due diligence.”
How well does the tech work?
How close is it to being cost-effective?
How does it compare to other technologies that aim to do the same thing?
Plus a bit of “explainer”-style information:
How does the tech work?
Who is working on it?
How much traction does it have so far?
Mostly, science news articles don’t have this information, or have it at a pretty superficial level.
My goal for each post is:
If you work in the field I’m writing about, you’ll find my overview basically accurate.
If this is the first time you’re reading about the field at all, you’ll still be able to understand my post.
If you’re in a position where you’re deciding what technologies to work on, use, fund, invest in, or otherwise make a decision about, you’ll find the information in my post useful and decision-relevant.
I’m trying to produce usable resources, not just interesting content.
This newsletter is broadly pro-science, pro-technology, pro-industry, and pro-commerce.
I’m interested in ways knowledge can be used for the “relief of man’s estate” — how humanity can learn things, build things, and grow richer, safer, and happier.
“Everybody can have lots of everything they want” is the utopia I think is worth aiming for.
I’m mostly writing for an audience that shares assumptions like, all things being equal,
global economic growth is good
automation is good
more energy production is good
more efficient manufacturing, construction, and agriculture is good
life extension is good
space exploration is good
I try to focus on the positive but also use critical thinking — how real is the putatively awesome tech? How far is it from doing the thing we dream of? What do we still need to do before achieving the dream?
And what cool early-stage projects are brewing that you can contribute to or fund?