MIDAS Seminar | Student Event

A Data Scientist Plays Games

Nick BerryData ScientistFormerly with Microsoft, GameHouse, and Facebook
Nick Berry

This event will take place over Zoom at https://umich.zoom.us/j/885210756

This is a presentation broken down into two parts.  The first is how to use mathematical techniques to analyze classic card and board games, and the second part is how data science techniques were applied in real life to support games on the Facebook platform.  This presentation is about 1.5 hours, with a target audience probably suited to CS/software engineering.  It’s light-hearted and fun.


Nick Berry, a native of the UK, has lived in Seattle for the last 25 years. He was educated as a rocket scientist and aircraft designer, graduating with a Masters Degree in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering.

Upon graduation, he joined a group of friends to form a software company, specializing in electronic mapping and route planning. This company was grown organically, and earned an unprecedented number of awards and accolades, including the British Design Award and The Queen’s Award for Technology, presented by Her Majesty in 1991. In 1994 Nick was recognized by the Sunday Times Magazine as “One of the top 50 entrepreneurs of the decade.” In 1994, after the company had grown to 50 people worldwide, it was sold to Microsoft.

Nick moved to America with the sale and spent 14 years working for Microsoft, the last ten of which were in the Microsoft Casual Game team. During his tenure, he filed a variety of patents for Microsoft, and represented Microsoft at various conferences and speaking engagements.

After leaving Microsoft, he joined RealNetworks to work as the GM of customer analytics for their games division, GameHouse.

After GameHouse, Nick spent five years as a Data Scientist, working for Facebook in their Seattle office.

In addition to his engineering expertise, Nick is passionate about data privacy and holds a CIPP qualification from the International Association of Privacy Professionals. He is an active member of the privacy community and speaks at various events about the legal and ethical aspects of data collection, use, and destruction.

In July 2013, Nick gave a TEDx talk about Passwords and the Internet, and in 2015 was nominated by GeekWire as Geek-of-the-week. In 2019 he was recognized as one of the 50 over 50 in the video games industry.


Steve Crang(734) 763-9996