Eric Colson: Shopping and Machine Learning at Innovate! and Celebrate

Tech.Co and Consumer Technology Association (CTA) this upcoming September for the Innovate! and Celebrate conference in San Jose, CA. Register now to attend!

With the advent of artificial intelligence and machine learning, companies are going to great lengths to understand human behavior. Between virtual assistants and platforms that predict our needs, humans barely have to lift a finger to get what they need done. One person who has seriously contributed to building out products that streamline our life is Eric Colson.  At Innovate! and Celebrate 2016 in September, you’ll have the chance to hear him speak about everything from machine learning to shopping.

Eric Colson is currently the chief algorithm officer at Stitch Fix, a women’s clothing retail website that prides itself on providing personalized shopping experiences to everyone that click on their link. His contribution to the website is immeasurable, as he provided the company’s first machine learning algorithm in 2012, helping them to establish a personalized retail experience for their customers.

“Clothes are an extremely personal thing for consumers, so it’s important that you both cater to their individual preferences but also factor in social norms, such as current fashion trends,” said Colson in an interview with the Center for Data Innovation. “You have to balance in that bit of conformity with people’s need for individual expression. Fortunately, through our business model we have this nice symbiotic relationship with our customers.”

If “chief algorithms officer” is a title you aren’t familiar with, you aren’t alone. Colson has struggled in past jobs to explain what he does in a simple and understandable way. For him, “data scientist” never sat right because he didn’t want to get lumped in with the IT department. He knew that algorithms was a way to improve companies, and he wanted a title to reflect his skills.

“Chief algorithms officer was the right fit,” said Colson in the same interview. “We have algorithms all over the company, for style recommendations but also to manage inventory, to support customer outreach, and dozens and dozens of other places.”

Speaking of past jobs, Colson has the golden standard for tech resumés. In addition to being an advisor to budding startups like Data Elite and Mortar Data, he’s held analytical positions at Yahoo, Blue Martini Software, Proxicom and Information Resources. Oh yeah, and he was the vice president of data science and engineering at Netflix. Heard of it?

Innovate! and Celebrate 2016 is over so join us for 2017

Come join us at the Innovate! and Celebrate conference in San Francisco, CA. The event will take place October 9 – 11, 2017, and is held in partnership with the Consumer Technology Association (CTA).

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Written by:
Conor is the Lead Writer for For the last six years, he’s covered everything from tech news and product reviews to digital marketing trends and business tech innovations. He's written guest posts for the likes of Forbes, Chase, WeWork, and many others, covering tech trends, business resources, and everything in between. He's also participated in events for SXSW, Tech in Motion, and General Assembly, to name a few. He also cannot pronounce the word "colloquially" correctly. You can email Conor at
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