Kent Lee

Principal kdb+ Developer

What is your background and how did you come about joining AquaQ?

I studied Actuarial Science at QUB with a minimal programming background. After graduation, I wasn’t keen on continuing the actuarial path and was looking for different role that suited me. The KDB+ role in AquaQ was referred by my Math professor. So, I took the chance, applied, and secured the starter role with AquaQ.

I was quite surprised that I was accepted since I wasn’t from a Computer Science background. But because the KDB+ technology is quite niche and different from most programming languages, you will need to learn it from scratch despite your background. After the training and project assignments, I am here now as a KDB+ expert with 8 years of experience which I am grateful for.

How has your career progressed within AquaQ?

When I first started in 2012, I was given some basic KDB+ training and buddied with my mentor to get a better view of daily development workflow. After months of training, I was assigned to a project under another senior dev’s supervision. From there, I started to learn how a KDB+ platform is structed, what responsibility I have as a developer, etc.

As time moved on, I had been rotating between different clients and different projects. That has given me a wider range of experience since I got to work with different frameworks, different platform designs, meet different experts to exchange ideas. Along the way, I have also worked on lower-level development which gave me more of an insight into how the KDB+ technology works.

With the accumulated experience, I also helped to bring new joiners up to speed with KDB+, gave out Friday programming challenges, provided training to clients etc. The skills that you can develop is not limited to coding, but so much more when you expand your exposure to different projects. As long as you are eager to pursue what you like to do, the firm is supportive in helping you to achieve your goals.

What advice would you offer to any graduate / experienced developer for their career progression?

Don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and try to do different things. I don’t really think a role should restrict what you can do in your career. It is not just about coding/programming, it is about self-progression and contributing your skills to the community. Plateau is a scary thing, when you start doing the same thing or solving the same problems every day, it can have a bad effect on yourselves physically and mentally. So do try to explore the things that you can do or want to try to do, look out for your peers/colleagues, be genuine in what you do and enjoy life.

Sharon GilmoreKent Lee