the online braindump of James Fallisgaard


Hey guys, my name is James Fallisgaard. Welcome to my site!

I'm a data scientist currently doing freelance consulting out of Bushwick, Brooklyn, NY.

I grew up in Seattle, where I lived for the first 26 years of my life (except for a too-brief half year exchange in Seoul, S. Korea). I cut my teeth in data analysis and visualization increasing semiconductor yield and working on the "Internet of Things" with Impinj. There I spent most of my post-college career building test data management software systems and doing data science and product engineering. My BS degree is in Materials Science and Engineering with a minor in Physics from the University of Washington, where I first discovered a love for small companies founding a startup in polymer solar cells that didn't go anywhere except the finals of the UW Business Plan Competition. In the fall of 2013 I moved to New York with my girlfriend Steph, where we live with our cute tabby named Link.


Download pdf here.

why programming?

It feels like I came to the world of software development and data science through an unmarked side door. I still remember the thought that went through my head when I finished writing my first ever Perl script at work to automate crawling a folder hierarchy and format some data so I could make a graph in Excel. I had struggled so much trying to understand the basic ideas of scripting and Perl syntax, throwing questions at google, and trying stuff until finally, like magic, the script worked and produced the output I wanted. Being a formally trained engineer (in Materials Science), I was of course familiar with working and working a problem until finally receiving that jolt of euphoria when you solve it. But programming to me delivers this feeling at a much more constant rate because you're always getting that steady positive reinforcement of solving problems every time your code compiles correctly or you defeat a bug or you inch forward with whatever it is you're building. The appeal of programming is this combined with the realization I first had after finishing that very first script 3 years ago - in a world where 90% of people's jobs take place on the computer, people who can program effectively have super powers..

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