The Gateway to Algorithmic and Automated Trading

Automated Trader Magazine Issue 22 Q3 2011

William Essexsignature

Interesting, isn’t it, how sometimes a dominant theme can emerge from nowhere, and then – before you know it – start turning up everywhere? We never actually decided to make this the ‘future of technology’ issue, and there was never an editorial meeting at which we sat down and discussed our planned coverage of AI, machine learning, long-term IT decision-making and above all, how best to build longevity into an IT infrastructure. But if you’re looking for new ideas, fresh thinking, perhaps some immediate action points but certainly some long-term strategic planning questions and answers – well, that’s the issue we seem to have built.

Or rather – our contributors have built. The key, really, is to go to the people who know, and let them speak for themselves. Read, for example, Peter Wiesing, CEO of Global Arbitrage Group on page 6. Peter made his first appearance in Automated Trader in our ‘Buyside Beat’ feature (Q1 2011 page 18), and I know I can speak for the whole team when I say simply: he’s back by popular demand. Sonia Schulenburg, CEO of Level E Capital, joins us on page 24. Dr Schulenberg is, as the introduction to that feature puts it, the principal human intelligence behind the AI of the MAYA Fund, and perhaps I’ll just say this: if a machine is going to learn effectively, it needs to start with a good teacher. Go to page 24.

It was a great pleasure – indeed, a thought-provoking great pleasure - to read Carl Ververs, Head of Product Development at RTS Realtime Systems, on how to discover a technology solution – no, more than that, how to discover, design, devise, build a technology strategy, infrastructure, solution, model, architecture (all of it, really) that will not only deliver now, but keep on delivering into the future. This is insight in depth, based on long experience, and you’ll find it on page 36.

It helps, of course, to have a Founder and Chairman – and for much of this month’s content, a lead interviewer – who has been applying automation to trading pretty much since pocket calculators were invented. Andy Webb asked many of the questions this month, and I think you might agree with me that a good interview becomes a great interview when both parties are like-minded, experienced professionals sharing issues that they consider (a) fascinating and (b) personally and professionally mission-critical. Andy turns up again at the head of his Wrecking Crew on page 59. They’re trying to break IB-MATLAB, and I’m happy to say – spoiler alert – that they don’t succeed.

Finally – to go back to this page’s theme about asking the people who know – may we ask you a few questions? Turn to page 45. After the success of our Algorithmic Trading Survey last year, it’s here again in 2011. If – as it was for me – your reaction to this is something like: don’t we do that all the time, talking to people, asking them questions? If, as I say, that’s your reaction – yes, we do, and the results are interesting (just read this issue). But this is a readership-wide project, we’ll be writing up the results, and yes, I think that feature might just be very interesting indeed. I hope you’ll participate.

William Essex

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