About

Introduction

Hi everyone. My name is Jeff Zemerick and my interests are in software engineering, DevOps, cloud architecture, big-data, and natural language processing. In high school I created one of the first software development companies in West Virginia. The best way to get in touch with me is through LinkedIn.

Me, My History, and Experience

I have worked in many domains from government, to commercial security, healthcare, and search. I got my feet wet with cloud when AWS first launched around 2008. My interest in NLP was sparked in 2012 when I was working with structured and unstructured data and learning about the difficulties of handling unstructured data. That interest led me to Apache OpenNLP. I started contributing to the Apache OpenNLP project where I could and today I am the current chair of the Apache OpenNLP PMC. I owe the Apache OpenNLP team a lot of gratitude for their help and guidance over the years.

I started out with QBasic, QuickBasic, and Visual Basic for DOS. I picked up C++ through Visual Studio 6 before moving to .NET. I moved to Java around 2010 and have since predominantly used Java as my high-level language. I have experience with Scala. I have been picking up Go and Kotlin. I do a lot of Bash, CloudFormation, and Terraform scripting and use Linux almost exclusively. Ubuntu has been my first pick since it was versioned using single digits but I also use Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Amazon Linux.

I have been an entrepreneur having started one of the first software development companies in West Virginia while in high school. I made software to manage instant messaging for parents, schools, and law enforcement agencies. (Remember ICQ, MSN Messenger, and AOL IM?) I graduated from West Virginia University with a BS and MS in Computer Science.

Today I make software that sits nicely in the intersections of cloud, big-data, and NLP through my company Mountain Fog. I enjoy tackling data problems around data ingestion and search. Some of my favorite tools are Apache Kafka, Apache NiFi, and Apache Flink. Combining these applications and frameworks can create very powerful platforms for data ingestion and manipulation. I believe search is important (and often overlooked) because without the ability to efficiently locate data the data is practically worthless.

I believe the future lies in distributed computing across disparate cloud platforms. The internet of things will continue to grow and expand and will bring lots of technical and ethical challenges. I hope I can find ways to contribute for the betterment of society.

I live outside Pittsburgh, PA, USA, with my wife Courtney and our two dogs, Eli and Amos.

My AWS and Google Cloud Experience

I am proud to have 11 AWS certifications and 4 Google Cloud Certifications. You can see my certifications transcript. I have been a contributing author to the AWS SysOps Adminstrator, AWS Solutions Architect Professional, and AWS Developer exams. I am an AWS Community Builder for 2021. My first AWS certifications were in 2014.

Conference Presentations

In 2018 I discovered the reward in conference presentations. The ability to refine my work to be shared with the community and then get feedback is invaluable and simply a lot of fun. My conference presentations are listed below.

Strata Data
September 2019 – New York, NY USA
Title: Protecting the Healthcare Enterprise from PHI Breaches using Streaming and NLP
Technologies: Apache Kafka, Apache Flink, NLP

Activate Search and AI Conference
September 2019 – Washington, DC, USA
Title: Leveraging Neural Networks and Learning-to-Rank in Document Workflows
Technologies: NLP (document classification), Learning-to-Rank

DataWorks Summit Washington DC
May 2019 – Washington, DC, USA
Title: Improving Organizational Knowledge with Natural Language Processing Enriched Data Pipelines
Technologies: Apache NiFi, Apache Kafka, Apache OpenNLP, Apache Superset

PyData Washington DC
November 2018 – McLean, Virginia, USA
Title: Using Sockeye Neural Machine Translation in a Streaming Pipeline
Technologies: Apache Flink, Sockeye

Activate Search and AI Conference
October 2018 – Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Title: Embracing Diversity: Searching Over Multiple Languages
Technologies: Apache NiFi, Apache OpenNLP, Apache Solr, Sockeye

Haystack Search Relevance Conference
April 2018 – Charlottesville, Virginia, USA
Title: Embracing Diversity: Implementing Multi-language Search
Technologies: Apache NiFi, Apache Joshua, Elasticsearch

Looking for help?

If you need help with AWS, Google Cloud, data ingestion, or NLP feel free to get in touch. If I don’t have the bandwidth to help I will likely know someone who can. So connect with me on LinkedIn and send me a message.