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Fun at Factual: Murder Mystery Edition

Written by Katie O’Nell – Places Team Intern – Summer 2018

Ask anyone what they like most about working for Factual, and they’ll tell you that it’s the culture. As a Factualite, you get to work on cool problems with even cooler people, spend time exploring new techniques, and have fun while doing it.

During my internship this summer, I’ve seen my fair share of Factual’s fun side while participating in our intern events, which have ranged from karaoke in Koreatown to Star Wars at the Hollywood Bowl. I also got the opportunity to put on an event of my own for my coworkers on the Places Team — a murder mystery dinner!

On a dark and spooky night (okay, maybe just 6 PM in sunny LA), the Places Team engineers entered the home of James and Morticia Mycroft, dressed to the nines in their newly-acquired Goodwill costumes. Shortly thereafter, their host died of a mysterious poisoning, and his ghost tasked them with solving a series of puzzles to bring his killer to justice. We spent the next three hours eating Thai food, solving the puzzles I had written, revealing different characters’ motives (with terrible fake accents no less), and having a great time.

The fact that I was encouraged to put on this murder mystery dinner and that the grand majority of my team actually stayed after work to hang out and solve puzzles together is emblematic of what makes Factual such a great place to work. We’re encouraged to take ownership of projects and to make life better for our fellow Factualites, and given the flexibility and freedom to do so in fun ways.  

Beyond being a ton of fun, this internship has been a great opportunity to learn more about how to extract meaningful insights from rich, complex data. I’ll be headed back to MIT for my final year this fall, and I’m super excited to use my new data science skills as I finish my degree in neuroscience!