Ambitious Goals Encourage Success
From when he was a youngster, summa cum laude graduate Mr David Shiller enjoyed the challenge of understanding how complex problems could be abstracted into simple concepts, so it was no surprise to anyone who knew him when after matriculating from Westville Boys High School he registered for a Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Computer Science at UKZN.
‘Getting a degree was always a dream of mine,’ said Shiller. ‘In my first year, however, I failed a maths module which took a massive psychological toll on me. To prove to myself and to my loved ones that I could achieve something, I decided to endure the pressures of late night studying. My dream was to make something of myself!’
After completing his degree in 2014, Shiller registered for a BSc Honours in Computer Science. ‘With the advancement in computing and technology, doing my Honours in Computer Science was always a must,’ he said.
Shiller’s research examined the hand gesture recognition for the interpretation of South African sign language (SASL). His main goal was to identify the viability of the Leap Motion depth camera for capturing and analysing static and dynamic hand postures to enable further research in the field of low cost sign language translation systems for developing third world countries.
Academic Leader for Computer Science, Professor Aderemi Adewumi, said he was fortunate to supervise Stiller. ‘He is an extremely hardworking and intelligent student. He carried out his work with utmost dedication and independence. I believe David will return to do a Master’s degree in Computer Science.’
Currently, Shiller is working at 2Cana Solutions, a consulting firm in Umhlanga. ‘I get to challenge myself on an ongoing basis,’ he said. ‘Often I feel stupid, surrounded by people with years more experience and wisdom. Each day I learn more and try to grow into someone who can eventually start his own company and help make South Africa a better place.’
Shiller lives his life to the following maxim: ‘Aim for the stars, and if you fall short you still hit the moon. If you aim for a pass you may get a pass, but if you aim for a 90 you will do a whole lot better.’