When most people imagine a software developer’s career path and training, they think of serious-looking, simple people carrying laptop bags down the halls of MIT and Harvard, and getting employed by top corporations straight out of school. They think of introverted youngsters who were enrolled in coding classes as kids by their parents, young people who had always recognized their affinity for computers.
Not many would imagine the highly unusual path of Jan Rautenbach, a leading software developer, serial entrepreneur, tech innovator and CEO of Kvell LLC, an exceptional company that provides marketing and Sales strategy, consulting and outsourced services to technology companies and media publishing services. He oversees the company’s operations throughout the US, Australia, and South Africa, where he grew up.
Rautenbach only has a high school degree and no college qualifications (excluding a few classes here and there), but he’s been severally recognized as one of the most innovative and trailblazing personalities in the field of commercialized software technology. He started as a retail store worker in Durban, South Africa, doing a job he hated and not knowing what the future held for him and his dreams to own a business.
“I always from a very young age had the burning desire to start and run my own business, whatever it was going to be I had no idea – as long as it was going to be my business,” he said.
From another job as an audit clerk in SA, Rautenbach discovered his love of computers and painstakingly taught himself to code using the most outdated manuals on a computer that is now nearly obsolete. From one debtors-creditors system to another, one ledger system to the next, companies ordering in development requests after another, Rautenbach later developed a fully integrated Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System that launched his career into the stars. From scratch, he built the Rautenbach Software and Insight Systems in 1985 and FutureKids in the ‘90s, a company geared toward early education in technology.
40 years later, his beautiful wife still supporting him, three kids, four grandkids, and a massive network of grateful clients and impacted students, Rautenbach is still moving forward and pushing the visions he strongly believes in.
He has this to say to business persons going through the inevitable entrepreneurial challenges: “It took some years to win and build trust, but by giving excellent service, being reliable, dependable counts for far more than wearing the same school tie, and people quickly forget that. This has helped me understand and be patient to settle into our new country and business community.”
Rautenbach’s latest innovation – Linguistic referencing for psychographic profiling
Advancement in the Artificial Intelligence field in the past decades has been focused solely on the machines and barely on the humans they work with. Very little work has been put into analyzing and understanding the dynamically progressive people to which these machines are projected on. AI is a two-way concept and when one part is neglected, the system is never fully efficient.
In collaboration with researchers from the Texas State University, Oxford, Harvard, and several renowned psychologists from all over the world, Kvell LLC recently developed a linguistic referencing solution, a tool that is able to create a personality or psychographic profile of a person by analyzing their speech and use of language. The whole process is fully legal with no intrusion to the customer’s privacy and is dependent on data they’ve consciously provided online access to. This tool is a remarkably innovative creation because it has the potential to enhance every aspect of a business that directly involves the customers.
Kvell’s newest software is gearing up to the next big thing the world of digital advertisement. The tool would be able to profile customers and match them to best-suited items and products using data points sourced from social media accounts. It will allow vendors and companies to optimize their marketing budgets better and receive massive conversion in shorter periods because people respond better to communication that resonates more with them. Generally, the idea is to promote air-tight cohesion between customer wishes and vendor provisions for a massively profitable alignment (for both parties).
It was designed to improve existing machine learning technologies where AIs are now able to incorporate aspects of human purchasing behavior into their predications.
In sales and negotiation, human relations with existing employees and recruitment of new staff, risk assessment and mitigation, and total risk aversion, the linguistic referencing tool would help to match a computer’s core intelligence code and algorithms to a human’s emotional and psychological background.
On the future of the excellent technology, Rautenbach said: “Our next step is to develop tools that will enable users to easily integrate this as an advertising tool with media platforms and creative.”
Michael Peres is a journalist, software engineer, radio host, founder, and traveler. Peres is the editor and chief at Peres Daily News and covers topics relating to entrepreneurship, politics, entertainment, and daily events. He currently resides in Seattle, Washington.Read more