What does a Research Scientist do?

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Hello! Who does what at TentuPlay (Sentience, Inc.)?
This is a series of interviews with TentuPlay members.

The first interviewee is InSu Gim, a Research Scientist who conducts research on analysis and prediction models based on data collected from game services.

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Q. Hi, InSu. Please introduce yourself.

Hello, my name is InSu Gim, and I’m in charge of game data analysis.

 

Q. What is your role at TentuPlay?

  1. I have three main duties.

    1. 1. First, I analyze data collected from games through TentuPlay and segment users based on their traits.
    2. 2. I develop messages, customized according to user traits, that promote in-app purchases of products or content.
    3. 3. I analyze the effectiveness of user-customized messages and derive related insights.
    4.  

Q. When and how did you join TentuPlay?

I joined TentuPlay in March 2018. My work before joining TentuPlay involved writing research reports, which I felt were one-time documents that had no impact on research in reality. I was looking for a service capable of practically influencing research, and that’s how I came to know of TentuPlay.

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Q. Why did you choose to be a Research Scientist, and when do you find it meaningful

I majored in economics, and my interest in the discipline set me on the path to be a Research Scientist. Economics gives practical meaning to numbers, and behavioral economics even explains the irrational nature of human behavior.

For me, it is very fulfilling to think about why users play a game in a certain way, develop and test a hypothesis, and use the results to improve the game. Of course, developing an effective model or message is also highly satisfying.

 

Q. That’s impressive. There must be challenges as well. Is there anything that comes to mind?

The research itself is easy compared to the process of applying the results to an actual game or service. Since each game has different external conditions or circumstances, the results have to be modified accordingly, which presents many challenges at times.

 

Q. What were the more memorable moments during your career?

I enjoyed attending the 2019 PAX DEV in Seattle. It was my first time in the United States, and I can still recall how different it was from Korea, from the sunlight to the smell of the air.

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The conference presentations were interesting, and it was fascinating to learn that U.S. developers were pondering the same issues (retention rate, loot box, etc.) as Korean developers. The discussions were on familiar topics, but the approaches and directions surpassed my expectations.

I also enjoyed the tour of Amazon’s headquarters and had a cup of latte at the first Starbucks store.

 

Q. Which game did you have the most fun playing?

I like playing games with my friends. Some favorites are sports games like Winning Eleven and FIFA Online, and strategic games like StarCraft and LoL. I enjoy them, but that doesn’t mean I play well.

 

Q. What are some ideal qualities of a Research Scientist?

In addition to having excellent research capacity, research scientists should be capable of effective communication with others.

Cooperating with others is essential when developing services based on research outcomes. Research scientists have to provide clear explanations and help others understand their work. They should effectively communicate their research intentions, research details, and results.

 

Q. Please tell us more about how you work with your colleagues at TentuPlay.

We engage in active discussions from the planning stage and come up with improvements as a team. When developing a new model, we begin by discussing the genre to which it will be applied. Once a draft is ready, we get feedback from our colleagues and repeat the process to continuously improve the model. The finalized model is then transferred to the development team.

 

Q. What qualities do you hope to see in your future colleagues?

I hope to work with people who show consideration towards others. I’m fortunate that my current colleagues are all considerate and willing to put themselves in other people’s shoes.

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Q. What is it about TentuPlay that you are proud of?

When a problem or conflict arises, we address it through the system. Every company will face issues along the way, and a good company stands out in its handling of undesirable circumstances. TentuPlay looks at “why” rather than “who” is responsible and relies on its system to devise preventive measures. This is what makes me truly proud of TentuPlay.

 

Q. Thank you for participating in this interview. Lastly, what would you like to achieve at TentuPlay?

I would like to apply TentuPlay to all games released in Korea. The platform provides solutions that can significantly improve games, which will be beneficial for both players and game companies.

 

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This brings us to the end of the interview with InSu, TentuPlay’s Research Scientist. He has played a pivotal role in applying research outcomes to actual games and services. His detailed answers have helped us to understand his position better. Thank you for your time, InSu. Do look forward to the next post of TentuPlay People! 🤗

 

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