Meet Tony Zhang, MSc Expert Systems, Director of MAVES dedicated Scientific Research & Experimental Development Team.

Kristiner Taylor of our Marketing team sat down with Tony for a one on one.


Q. Tell me about your educational background.

Tony: I graduated from the National University of Defense Technology with a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Software at age 20. Later I returned to study for my master’s degree in Artificial Intelligence (Expert Systems) and I graduated at age 22.

Q. How would you describe your role at MAVES?

Tony: My department is strictly dedicated to working with advanced technologies not yet in common use. My role is to evaluate and determine how they might be used to create better functionality for 3PL warehousing and transportation (logistics). For example, how good would it be if you could just ask the computer any question, e.g. “Which orders are going to Kentucky tomorrow?” and get a full answer, rather than searching for the task or report which was preprogrammed to give you that answer? Today we can answer that and much else in our experimental database, without programming any specific questions or answers. Our goal is to retrieve any and all data by voice with none of the specific programming that is required today. We are getting much better at it but are not quite there yet.

Q. What do you like to do in your spare time when you are not researching answers to questions that no one is asking?

Tony: I enjoy Volleyball and Golf.

Q. You have two young kids, correct? Tell us about them.

Tony: Yes, both son and daughter were recently in VEX world robotics competitions.

Q. Please describe what that means.

Tony: Vex competitions test STEAM skills (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) by tasking teams of students to design and build a robot to play against other teams in a games-based engineering challenge. These tournaments are held year-round at the regional, state/province, and national levels, culminating in the national winners going on the VEX Robotics World Championship each April.

Shot of daughter's team receiving World Champion award for Robot Skills

Q. And how did your kids fare in these competitions?

Tony: My daughter’s academy (Dr X Academy) won both the 2019 VEX IQ Robot Skills World Championship, and the VEX IQ Teamwork Challenge World Championship for the Middle School Category. Teams from China came second.

My son’s team placed 8th in the world in the High School Category.

Q. Why do you feel it is so important that your kids attend Dr X Academy?

Tony: My wife and I believe that the future belongs to kids who have STEAM skills, regardless of the profession, trade or other vocation they eventually choose.