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Engineering & Product

Nick Jackson, CTO at Pyper Vision

If solving problems is something you love doing, then engineering is a great career choice according to Nick Jackson, CTO at Pyper Vision

We caught up with Nick to learn more about how he got started in the tech industry, the distinction between working as a CTO in a hardware startup versus as software startup and what gets him so excited about the journey he and the team at Pyper Vision are on. Thanks for sharing your story, Nick. 

“..we will be able to get rid of the low clouds that sometimes cancel flights. ”

Firstly, how would you explain to a five year old what it is you do?

At Pyper Vision we are creating a system that is able to clear fog from airports. This means we will be able to get rid of the low clouds that sometimes cancel flights. 

And for the adults, what does that translate to in regards to your day-to-day?

I’m a chemical engineer and lead the technology development and testing at Pyper Vision. This means I’m involved in a wide-range of activities and tasks from hands-on testing of our system, flying our RPAS and co-ordinating trials through to technology support for sales and managing the technology development work program.

What are some of the common misconceptions about working as a CTO?

When some people hear CTO they assume it must be related to software development but that is not always the case. Pyper Vision is primarily a hardware company and the technology that I oversee is our RPAS, Dispersal System and Absorbent.

“..engineering ended up being a great pathway to a career where you can work as a problem solver. ”

Was working in tech something you dreamed about doing as a kid, if not what was?

Technology has always interested me but I don’t think I ever really knew what sort of job I would want to have. I think I always wanted to be solving problems and engineering ended up being a great pathway to a career where you can work as a problem solver. 

Tell us a little bit more about your career journey and ultimately about how you ended up working at Pyper Vision? 

I studied Chemical and Process Engineering at the University of Canterbury and for my final year project I was lucky enough to get an opportunity to work with Emily and Pyper Vision to help model and test the fog dispersal solution.

Following my graduation I went on to complete a masters thesis sponsored by Pyper Vision that dug deeper into the science behind the solution and ever since I have been a full time team member. 

“I thrive working for a company that is looking to change the way things are done and is continually looking for new ways to innovate..”

What is the best piece of career advice you have ever received? 

“Never stick to the status quo”. 

I thrive working for a company that is looking to change the way things are done and is continually looking for new ways to innovate, as opposed to companies that are stuck in their ways and do things the way they have always been done which I find demotivating.

Why is now such an exciting time to be a part of Pyper Vision?

Pyper Vision is in the final stages of our R&D which means there is so much going on as we complete our large-scale trials, work on closing sales and engaging with more audiences on the product we are bringing to market. We are getting so close to solving this global problem and can’t wait to fully commercialise it.  

Lastly, Pyper Vision continues to grow and evolve, what are the key traits and characteristics of people that will be well placed to work there?

When hiring, culture-fit is one of the most important bits we seek. In practice this looks like someone who is open, innovative, has a drive to create positive change.

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