Kai Staats, MSc is a filmmaker, researcher, writer and speaker.
In 1999 Staats co-founded and for ten years was CEO of Terra Soft Solutions, developer of Yellow Dog Linux. Staats’ leadership helped to shape Linux for the Power architecture in the high performance computing space. An early project was the foundation for yum, the defacto standard package manager for RPM-based Linux distributions. Terra Soft systems were used to process images from the Mars rovers at NASA JPL, to conduct real-time sonar imaging on-board the U.S. Navy submarines, and to conduct bioinformatics research at Argonne National Lab, among many others. In 2008 Staats sold Terra Soft to Japanese firm Fixstars.
Kai splits his time between film production at Over the Sun, LLC and several research projects in the space sciences. Building upon Kai’s experience in working with leading scientists and researchers across the U.S., Kai returned to his passion for science as a storyteller, capturing the curiosity, passion, and drive of those who work a lifetime to better understand the inner workings of the universe around them on film. At LIGO, Kai applies Machine Learning to the isolation of glitches, discovery of mechanical couplings, and detection of supernova in gravitational-wave astronomy data. At the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), South Africa continues his MSc research in the application of Machine Learning to the mitigation of RFI in radio astronomy data and at the Ohio State University he guides the application of evolutionary computation for the design of improved antennae for neutrino detection. At Arizona State University, Kai is leading an Interplanetary Initiative to build a mathematical model and gaming interface to an isolated, human community on Mars.
Kai is a lover of all things untouched by human hands, in places where mobile phones and the drone of machines do not reach. When not coding Python or editing a film, Kai is to be found trail running, rock climbing, and backpacking.