About Imdat Celeste Solak (They/Them)
Imdat Celeste was born in Central Turkey in a small village in 1969. In hindsight, being born in such a dirt poor environment and country in a time of turmoil seems godsend: this way they had an opportunity to experience good and bad management first-hand – whether it be in for-profit or not-for-profit organizations.
Imdat Celeste experienced the growth of Turkish society from the stage of a developing to emerging to near-developed country first-hand. This shaped their overall view of the importance of free markets.
In 1979, they moved to Western Germany (West Berlin) and lived most of their time in Germany, experiencing, again, the German unification first-hand. In 2009, they moved to New York City to work for Nokia as Vice President of Nokia’s AppStore. In 2015, Imdat Celeste permanently moved to the wonderful city of Munich, Bavaria (Germany).
Starting their career as a software engineer, Imdat Celeste continued a long journey to become an effective manager in software and digital media.
During their career they managed teams from five people to over 500 people in their organizations. Having seen good management as well as extremely negative examples of management, they created a feeling for observing managers as well as themself over the period of nearly three decades.
They have a keen interest in why people do what they do, how it can be done more effectively and what drives people to do certain things better than others.
With a scientific approach, i.e. trying to understand and replicating what is being done well, they relentlessly look for best practices in everything – from everyday tasks to managing large scale organizations.
Imdat Celeste today lives in Munich, Bavaria, Germany, and spends most of their time developing software as freelance software engineer.
Among their main projects are:
- ginlo: the only secure messenger written and operated in Germany;
- netfiles mobile client: A mobile client for the netfiles data room for Android and iOS;
- katip: a audio recordings transcription software for macOS
In 2017 they co-founded Munich Artificial Intelligence Laboratories as a consultancy specifically offering consulting services in practical application of AI/ML.
They not only look at the practical application of technologies but also at their impact on society, people and economy as a whole.
Since 2020 Imdat Celeste are working as Freelance Software Engineer. Their main work at the moment consists of the mobile app for Netfiles, development of next-generation netfiles web-app, and ginlo, mainly ginlo 2.
In 2023 they decided to choose an additional name and added “Celeste” as middle-name to their existing “Imdat” reflecting their non-binaryness (enbyness), thus calling themselves “Imdat Celeste Solak” (Imdat C. Solak or I. Celeste Solak, for short).
Imdat Celeste is a regular guest speaker at various events regarding innovation, change, sustainability, management, media and more. Here is a select list of events they attended as guest speaker:
- Minds Mastering Machines (m3) – ML und KI: Vom Algorithmus zur praktischen Umsetzung (April 2018)
- Wealth & Wellbeing: Profit & Values – Institute of Sustainable Enterprises, Fairleigh Dickinson University, NJ (Oct 16th, 2013)
- Keynote Speaker at Munich Media Days – Medientage München (Oct 14th, 2010) (Presentation)
- Innovate or Bust – German Conference at Harvard (Feb 19-20, 2010)