Hi, I’m Niels Quinten, I collect data. Well, rather, I explore data. No wait.. I explore missing data. No, one more time.. I explore which data is missing. Ah yes, that’s it!

You see, a huge problem exists of data that’s not there (hint: it actually should be there). I’m talking about data for artificial intelligence (AI), of course.

It’s a long story, but the short version is that AI systems are often trained on data that unevenly reflect the world (e.g. including only certain groups of people while excluding others). As a result, these systems cause a lot of harm to those excluded.

So why am I of all people trying to find the missing data? Well, I personally made this picture of a cow stuck with its head in a waste bin on the banks of the Ganges in Varanasi, India. I also made this picture of people willingly getting shot with fireworks in Tainan, Taiwan, including myself and SpongeBob.

What I’m saying is.. oh, one more? Ok. I also made this picture of a heater hanging near the ceiling in a hostel in Warsaw, Poland. So, to continue what I was saying,I’m kind of already into exploring the huge variety of the world. To address the problem of missing data in AI, we need to actively search for this diversity as well.

Also, I have a PhD. Well, la-di-da. I know.. I even used design and qualitative methods. Auwch. Look, don’t worry. I know the quantitative people are way way (yes, two times way) smarter than me. But here’s the thing, we really need to use qualitative methods to include the right data from the right people. In the end, it’s people who use the AI systems, and these people will be harmed if the data doesn’t represent them. Purely technical solutions will only get us so far. That’s why I’m translating the qualitative methods I learned within Interaction Design to the field of AI.

Just send me a message if you’re interested!

PS: I’m currently not affiliated to any company or institute. However, I love giving lectures and presentations, so you can contact me for that too if you want. I also published several papers.