Presenting our team - Hello, Lars

January 20, 2017
Andreas Heim
VP of Engineering

In this blog post, we’d like to present one of our recent hires, Lars Bakke Krogvig. Lars works at Unacast as a Data Engineer and his main responsibility is to make sure the data we receive from our partners flows steadily through our processing pipelines. In his spare time, he’s a road cyclist, and almost as passionate about speed-solving Rubik’s cube as he is passionate about freestyle skiing.

Lars, who are you?

I’m Lars, 27 years old, born and raised in Oslo. I have a Master’s Degree in Applied Mathematics from NTNU in Trondheim. I used to be pretty serious about twin-tip skiing but never got seriously injured. Now I’m more into road cycling, and yes, I suppose I occasionally maybe devote some time to improve at solving Rubik’s cubes. I also like programming, and lots of other things!

What did you do before you started at Unacast

I worked as an Information Management Consultant in the private sector, where I designed, built and maintained reporting systems.

Why did you start working at Unacast?

My main motivation was that I wanted to roll up my sleeves and work more hands-on with design of information flow and implementation of processing pipelines. As a consultant I felt distanced from the problems I solved, I was more of a helping hand than a stakeholder. I wanted to be more involved.

I also want to become better at programming, and so I felt that it was a good idea for me to do more of that in my work (and perhaps slightly less in my spare time).

Another important factor for me was the opportunity to work with emerging technologies, which I believe are more fun and gives me a good skill set for the future.

What kind of problems do you solve, and what are the tools you use?

My main tasks are to rationalize the logic and sequence of what we do with data in Unacast and place that into a structured processing framework.

When working on data problems my job is to figure out where we are and where we want to go, and then to structure the steps in between and make it possible for everyone throughout the company to grasp what actually happens. I try to make complicated processes understandable for everyone, and have everyone around the table wholeheartedly nod and say “this makes sense”.

Regarding tools and methodology, I usually throw together a proof of concept using BigQuery and SQL, and when the concept is validated I put that into our pipelines with Dataflow.

What is the most fun thing about working at Unacast?

I really like that we have short lead times from an idea on a whiteboard to production, and the flexibility the toolset we use provide us with. It is also very rewarding (and sometimes scary) to see my ideas ending up having a big impact on the business, and having the power to influence the company in this way.

Beyond that I really enjoy working in a relaxed environment with colleagues I can have fun with at work. I get to travel to the US and work with people there, which is a new and rewarding experience for me. Everyone seem to tolerate my dry sense of humor, and even respect me enough to not borrow my markers without asking, which is all anyone can ask for.

What will you gain from working at Unacast?

I see this as a rare opportunity to work with leading technologies and processes are becoming standards internationally, but have not yet gained so much momentum here in Norway. I think this is will be a big advantage for me in the long run.

Right now I benefit from being able to work from wherever I want, which gives me a lot of personal freedom few companies are able to offer. I get to learn a lot and from our skilled developers and draw on their experience, which I think is really nice.

All in all, I get to do the things I want to do in a great environment, and have fun along the way!