What was your first job, and how did you get into IT?
My first ever real job was working at Tesco in what was then termed the grocery section. This was quite a broad term and as I was a young, fit, and well-built lad, I ultimately worked in the warehouse loading and unloading delivery cages for filling the shelves with produce, frozen foods and general goods.
I ended up in IT by accident, really. In my early career, I was an engineer who had to rely on a number of electronic design automation tools. These all ran on high-end Unix systems, so I also had to build, install, plan and manage a Unix system, L2 networks and my own back-end storage. In a roundabout fashion, I ended up in IT sales.
Planes, trains or automobiles?
Trains for sure. I can work while travelling and don’t need to worry about them falling out of the sky all the time. With cars, yes, I’m in control, but I just can’t stand queuing in traffic. As for planes, I hate them - they’re cramped, expensive and turbulent. Need I go on?
What could prompt you to give it all up and join the revolution?
Cheryl Cole. Have you seen her? If she ever picks up the phone to ask me to be her personal IT guru (if you’re reading, Cheryl, you can find me on Facebook), I won’t say no.
What is your favourite joke or the one you heard most recently?
Oh, that’s easy. I have a mathematics one here: How do you kill all the competition with one golden bullet? Raise completion to the power of zero, and shoot.
We all know that anything raised to the power of zero equals one, don’t we?
Print or online news?
Online news for sure. I find the print version to be just too clumsy and messy.
Is IT well taught in schools?
In my view, it’s very badly taught indeed.
Quite simply, most teachers do not understand what IT actually is, how these things gel together - or even how it touches our lives in so many diverse ways these days.
What is one thing you miss from being a kid that you no longer do or can do?
The one thing I miss most from being a kid is the level of adventure. That’s not to say that what I’m doing now isn’t fun. The difference is that I always wanted to do certain things and go to certain places.
I’ve travelled the world, but that’s kind of the point. My list of adventures has almost been realised. The other thing I really miss is my core of close friends. Many of them are all over the globe now.
What is the most important thing in business?
Trust. Without trust there is no business outside of a simple transaction.
Stuart Taylor is senior solutions consultant at Virtual Instruments
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