Footsteps on the beach

You’re probably wondering whether you are dealing with a reliable source….fair enough.

About the Author

Well, I’ve been in the hedge fund software industry for over 5 years, at a company named Linedata, which makes middle and back office solutions for hedge funds. Currently, I’m a developer again. I work on the real-time hedge fund portfolio reporting solution, i.e. the one that’s being used at many of the largest European and Asian hedge funds. Previously, I worked at Linedata as an implementation consultant. This meant lots of direct contact with hedge funds big and small-including getting a reasonable understanding of their business models.

How I Got Into Hedge Funds

Ever since my dad convinced me to enter my 7th grade science fair with a project using a Monte Carlo approach to estimate value of pi (3.14259…) in old school DOS BASIC, I’ve been convinced that sometimes randomness has structure. Despite not impressing my pimple-faced peers with this exploration of the relationship between a circle and a square, my geeky project left a mark on me.

Naturally, when I stumbled upon Jack Schwager’s classic Market Wizards at the public library in high school, I was utterly fascinated with these traders. They made a living looking for patterns in the markets, which most people incorrectly believed were completely random.

I ended up studying economics and finance, while primarily working since college in software. It’s quite fitting I do this hedge fund stuff nowadays. I’m curious about the world and how it works. Learning and personal growth motivate me. I also have a creative streak which I somehow manage to combine with my analytical side, as a professional software guy.

Favorite quote

“Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist”. — John Maynard Keynes, defunct economist.

My Writing Style

Apparently, I write like Cory Doctorow. Proof: http://iwl.me/s/31398c21.

Why I Write

Software fascinates me. It’s been THE “game changer” for my generation, not just as pure technology, but the impact it has on our lives and our businesses. You can see programmer team dynamics in the structure of the programs they create, reading the code like tea leaves. “E-business” has just become a part of business.  It’s hard to find an example of an industry completely unaffected by software. Now it’s moving from desktop computers into our pockets and our hands, on ubiquitous mobiles. Our cell phones have become an extension of who we are: just ask any iPhone user what he thinks about Blackberries. Better yet, did you ever lose your mobile phone?

It’s had enormous  impact in the world of trading, also. Many investment strategies require well thought out code to run. Many investors wouldn’t even exist without software. Liquidity is completely different. Software gave rise to the world of options valuation, which can be applied in unrelated financial contexts itself.  It’s one of the reasons the efficiency market hypothesis is an expensive delusion. Most importantly, it forces you to really think through your strategy.

Basically, I want to explore the divergences, the surprises, the curiosities I come across, since they may be useful for you. I want to clarify my own thought process, to avoid taking life at face value, and hopefully nudge you into doing the same. Writing forces self confrontation and results in useful self-awareness. I’d like to share my experience, discussing ideas that I’ve found that are practical, although that may not intuitively seem so.

My areas of interest include IT, finance, and math, especially how they overlap within automated trading. In practice, the blog will probably include capital markets strategic commentary, interesting theory related to investing, programming approaches, or anything else I come up with. Describing a complex phenomenon simply is hard; nonetheless, simplifying it is worthwhile for the readers/end users. That is what I intend to do. Hold me to it.

Keep In Touch

You can check out my  LinkedIn profile, my google+ profile, or my twitter account. You can figure out my professional interests from this blog’s content. Other than that, you might want to know that I live in the suburbs of London (note to self: insert relevant Croydon joke here). Or probably not.

I’m interested in keeping in touch with people from capital markets and hedge funds. Drop me a line, if you find my blog’s contents useful, or if you have a question.