Technology Buzz Technology – what's hot and what's not? 

Technology – what's hot and what's not? 

Whether it's the catwalk at London Fashion Week or the street styles of Harajuku, the fashionistas of Hong Kong are working hard to make sure they are not caught by the fashion police. If you thought it was difficult keeping up with the seasonal changes of the fashion industry, software developers and alike are facing tougher challenges in an industry that evolves at a pace where technology trends could become fads in days, if not weeks. 

One way Credit Suisse Equity Derivatives APAC software developers ensure they know what's hot and what's not, is by fostering a culture of knowledge sharing amongst peers through an initiative known as Bootcamp. Credit Suisse hires and grows its own talented software developers, who have both broad and niche interests, that they follow in the technology industry. The Bootcamp coordinators have built out the support network, to help tap into and distribute this knowledge peer-to-peer.

It's common for technology companies, such as the giants and dwarves, in and around Palo Alto, Mountain View and San Francisco to operate similar models. Employees often share their knowledge via informal sessions, community meet-ups and conferences. Bootcamp coordinators focus more on organising video conference seminars across APAC, as well as spontaneous bite-sized talks that take place at a developer's desk. There has been strong engagement from the developers, who are eager to share their knowledge, and positive feedback from those receiving it.

Marcus Lo, a developer with Equity Derivatives APAC, started his first Kaggle competition in 2015 and ranked in the top 10% for a ‘Taxi Trajectory Prediction' competition. He kindly shared his passion for data science in a well-received seminar, discussing different aspects of machine learning. This included, preprocessing, feature engineering, feature selection, model training, cross validation, hyper parameter optimization and model ensemble learning.

Manikandan Kumar, a Thoughtworker residing with Credit Suisse, has been exploring Lua and OpenResty to set up RESTful web services within his team. He shared his experience using this powerful, efficient, lightweight and highly embeddable scripting language.

Juntao Zhu, a developer on Fixed Income Front Office projects, discussed his enthusiasm for crypto-currencies, and the potential uses of block-chain technology and smart contracts, outside and inside financial institutions.

Additionally, Equity Derivatives APAC's embedded systems specialist, shared their two cents on vectorization – a data parallelism method that makes uses of low level machine features available on many machines, from exotic to commodity desktop hardware.

The Bootcamp initiative encourages developers to attend technology conferences around the globe. This has helped to keep fresh insights flowing into the firm from the forefront of the industry. Last year, Credit Suisse Application Developer Job Family APAC in collaboration with the Bootcamp initiative, sent developers to Red Dot Ruby Conf, the largest Ruby conference in South East Asia. The Bootcamp coordinators also worked closely with local programming community, Codeaholics, to help host their conference Code Conf Hong Kong at Credit Suisse.

The Bootcamp initiative has been instrumental in driving a positive shift in the culture of the workplace with knowledge distribution being abundant, and vast improvements in communication across team boundaries. Paul Gresham, Chief Information Officer for Equity Derivatives APAC believes Bootcamp's successful model of informal, open sharing of information and ideas is not limited to software development, but can bring significant benefits to all areas interested in excellence and innovation.