Trent likes to build things that matter for humanity in the long term. He is currently working on a shared public database for the internet, to allow sovereign management of personal data and to celebrate the cultural commons while compensating creators. This is via BigchainDB blockchain database software, the IPDB network & foundation, COALA IP protocol, and serving as an advisor to the Estonian E-residency program. These are building blocks towards his long-term goal - to help ensure that humanity has a role in an increasingly autonomous world.
He started his career by doing AI research for national defense in the 1990s, while still an undergraduate. Then, in his first startup (ADA), he explored the relation between human creativity and AI-based machine creativity. ADA was acquired in 2004. Trent extended that work while obtaining his PhD in electrical engineering from KU Leuven in Belgium, and found a way to reconcile machine creativity with existing engineering knowledge.
Trent's second startup was Solido, a provider of variation-aware design and characterization software. While building this company he leveraged AI to help drive Moore's Law, which was under threat due to high manufacturing variations. Now, Solido software is used for most modern chip designs.
Following Solido, he co-founded Ascribe to help compensate creators in the digital era (via IP on the blockchain). During this time he ran into issues of database scalability, and IP flexibility; in response, that work has evolved into BigchainDB, IPDB, and COALA IP.
In addition to all the above Trent has written two books, Did ML research for Canadian Department of National Defense, in the second half of the 90s, and have given talks at MIT, Columbia, Berkeley, JPL, Nvidia, IFA+ Summit, Data Science Day Berlin, PyData Berlin, more. Lecturer at Data Science Retreat