Chief executive, NCI Technologies
Which tech figurehead do you admire the most?
Charles Babbage will remain in history as the father of computing. His battle to gain funding for his ideas against all political issues and clashes of personality meant he couldn't achieve his goal in his lifetime but his work has created what is today our IT industry, my career, and the source of advancements in all our hardware.
What's the biggest challenge facing the industry no-one is talking about yet?
The risk to our civilisation lies in technology and the security of such. Ransomware is now a common thing but that is only small fry compared with countries hacking countries. Secrets stolen, leaders of countries manipulated, bribery and corruption. We as an industry need to stop looking at the low-cost options and instead provide the software and firmware that keeps our data safe, or at least informs us that it is being stolen.
If you could invite three famous people to dinner, who would they be?
Charles Babbage to ask how in the world he thought of the idea for the first computer and then printer without having any previous data to go from; Ada Lovelace to ask how she created the first recognised algorithm to be processed by a machine - Charles Babbage's machine; and Alan Turing, to ask how he felt about being the man who was responsible for reducing World War II by many months - if not years - then being treated abysmally by our country.
How has 2017 been for you?
Personally I have really enjoyed 2017. I have created personal projects that have really kept me occupied in my spare time and can see them going through well into 2018. Business-wise, again, we are striving forward in the solutions we offer to customers and customer satisfaction remains very high. I do get frustrated sometimes with some global vendors whose marketing departments don't understand what people need and only focus on what they want to sell. Jealousy in our industry is rife, especially in the US where companies are less likely to create ideas themselves and more likely to try and jump on the bandwagon of other people's ideas.
What's the most extravagant business lunch you've ever had?
Being flown to Los Angeles for dinner and flying back the next day. The two-hour dinner was extremely worthwhile to both parties though I can't reveal the content of the discussions.
Which global city best matches your personality?
This is difficult but I would probably say Mumbai. There are many parts to Mumbai that remain undeveloped either because of finance issues or having time to work on them, but the areas they do have focus on are spectacular. My life will always remain unfulfilled. There is always something I want to do, to achieve, to create. Always people I want to help achieve their goals. Mumbai has many good people who want the same for their people. It is a friendly place that is striving to lead.
What would be your super-hero power?
Mine would be "power mimicry"; the ability to mimic other people's superpowers. This way it doesn't matter what my rivals had as their sole superpower, as I would eventually have them all.
Complete this sentence. The worst thing about our rivals is… they smell.
What makes you nervous?
Having seen many things in my life and having had to adjust, there are very few things that faze me. I would probably say sudden shocks such as someone jumping out at you makes me the most nervous.
If you could eat one type of food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Roast dinners. I love them, the type you get at home that are stacked with roast potatoes and gravy - not the restaurant type that just don't have the same taste.
Sum up the channel in three words
Exciting, challenging, confused.
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