If the idea of code careers conjures images of code monkeys dwelling in a dark basement, we’ve got news for you! Modern code careers have seen the light of day, and can take you on some fun and unexpected pathways.
Whether you’d like to work in health, animal conservation, architecture or sport, there’s a code career for you that can bridge the best of both worlds.
PROBLEM SOLVED: Retaining biodiversity
As a community campaigns officer at Taronga Zoo, Darcie Carruthers was involved in the development of the Wildlife Witness app. The aim? To stop illegal wildlife trade in Southeast Asia. “Behind habitat destruction, the illegal wildlife trade is the second biggest threat to species’ survival,” she says.
Taronga has partnered with wildlife trade monitoring network TRAFFIC to bring the Wildlife Witness app to life. Users simply snap an image of what they have witnessed, pin the location and send the information to the Wildlife Crime Analyst at TRAFFIC.
“For species such as the Sumatran tiger, fewer than 400 individuals remain,” says Darcie. “This means every individual is critical to the future of that species. Innovative technology is essential for how we better understand and protect our world.”
Protect the planet: wildlifewitness.net
PROBLEM SOLVED: Smart, sustainable buildings
Anthony Merlin, managing director at architect firm i2C, knows all about bringing buildings to life and using CS to do it. “One of the main programs we use is Autodesk Revit,” he says. “It’s a more powerful tool than simple drafting – it’s virtual construction. We can build smart, flexible, parametric elements that contain data which can then be used to calculate quantities and cost estimates to help us accurately design buildings to a budget.”
The architecture world already employs computer scientists to help code, program and gather data that helps the overall design and building process work more efficiently.
“Technology is making a massive difference to costing, programming, visualisation, staging, manufacture, time of construction, accuracy, building maintenance and management, waste minimisation and sustainability,” Anthony says.
Build the future: bit.ly/CwCautodesk
PROBLEM SOLVED: Better sports data
Champion sports teams need champion tech to stay ahead of the competition. Sure, you’ve got athletes out on the field, the pitch or the court running around doing their thing, but stats and digital info are becoming increasingly important. Enter Aussie company Champion Data, the leading stats experts in the AFL.
Over the last 17 years, Champion Data has developed every kind of stat collection you could imagine with the aim of helping AFL clubs break down plays, get microscopic intel on player movements, and decipher ball movement. This type of data helps teams hone their game plan to be better, stronger and more precise on the field. And guess who puts it all together? Coders.
Check out the data collection in action: bit.ly/ChampDATAvid
PROBLEM SOLVED: Personalising medicine
Dr Liviu Constantinescu, principal software engineer at Genome.One, did his dad a favour and solved a few tech problems for a research group, not realising he’d end up with a job offer helping to save lives. As part of the crew building rare disease sequencing and high-end genomics at Genome.One, Liviu has used CS to provide clinical products not available anywhere else in the world, to serve patients and research participants with critical health data.
When you take medication, there are side effects. “They’re intended for a generic person kind of like you,” Liviu explains. “If we read your genome, we might find a drug better tailored to you.”
The ability to ‘sequence’ the human genome is of huge benefit to the medical world. “It’s an incredible time to be in tech,” Liviu says. “AI is changing every industry, including medicine.”
Get study savvy: bit.ly/CSplusGarvan
FIELD: CS+Social good
PROBLEM SOLVED: Helping others
Web developer and animator Daniel Harris describes himself as a nerdy, hard-of-hearing guy who is passionate about all things related to technology and science. “I’ve been passionate about computers from a young age,” he says. However, programming wasn’t his first love. “I didn’t have the patience for it,” Daniel says. But a successful website build gave him the confidence to find out where coding might take him.
Now Daniel solves complex programming or coding issues through his work at The Salvation Army. “It’s exciting to follow the developments in programming languages over time.”
Beyond his day job, Daniel has experienced the potential tech has to transform lives. “Taking advantage of the technology available to hard-of-hearing people is so important,” he says. “Coding is richly rewarding.”
Learn about how to do good: salvos.org.au
– Pippa Duffy
Author: Pippa Duffy
Refraction Media’s Deputy Editor, Pippa has a passion for sharing cool, interesting information and spreading the STEM message.