Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Tang Zhichao & STOB

Computer Engineering graduate Tang Zhichao was born in Nanjing, China, and moved to Singapore when he was 16 to do high school here, and eventually became Singaporean. He started his company STOB with a fellow SoC alumnus, Deddy Marzuki. Zhichao takes (guilty) pleasure in implementing things that he thinks are useful, but that others haven't considered. When he isn't working, he enjoys reading, travelling, watching movies, hanging out with friends and playing snooker.

What do you do now? 
I am the co-founder and the CEO of STOB Pte. Ltd. I enjoy my work very much - since we are start-up, there are very few employees, so I mainly take care of business planning, marketing, project management and coordinate the product development between customers and our engineering team. I travel quite often to meet customers, source factories for OEM and find partner companies to work together. It provides me wider vision of what we are doing.  
My first job inspired me to do this - I was a technical engineer in one of the control system, building automation company, I loved the products they had and wanted to make it better.  
I am working on developing a new concept smart home system. It allows me to learn more skills and also apply more skills I learnt. [With this type of technology,] people can live a more efficient, safer and greener world.

Describe your SoC experience.
It was very busy and competitive when studied in SoC, but it gave me a very solid foundation in both computing and non-computing skill sets. Furthermore, I met many talented students and nice professors during the study in SoC - two of my partners of the startup company I am working with were SoC mates.

Which faculty members made impressions on you? 
A/P Wong Weng Fai, who was my HYP adviser - he encouraged me during the research work of my HYP projects and most importantly, he inspired me on the choices in my life and career. 

What do you think made your student experience different than that of any other student?
I already set my goal in my life when I was studying in SoC, and I am still following my goal now.

What do you count as your most significant achievement to date?
I designed and programmed the control systems for the hotel and EXPO in Marina Bay. That inspired me to set up a company 5 years later. 

Quick-fire! Most interesting development in technology this year?
Nest learning thermostat - simply smart. 

Favourite sport?
I like to play snooker and pool.

Pet peeve?
People calling my phone while I am sleeping.

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