KDnuggets : News : 2008 : n07 : item5 < PREVIOUS | NEXT >


Subject: James Taylor on starting in IT and new ideas

This is part 2. of the interview with James Taylor. Here is part 1 of the interview.

Gregory Piatetsky: James, how did you get started in IT?

James Taylor James Taylor: Well, back in the mists of time I did a degree in Geological Geophysics and Mathematics. The math in geophysics is awful, so you rapidly become a user of whatever computing power you can lay your hands on. Computers were just becoming a standard tool for geophysicists and so using them was part of day to day study for me. When I graduated the oil price was in free fall, unlike today, so there were no jobs in geophysics. It seemed quite natural then to go into IT, given how much we used computers.

I think the fact that I was introduced to computers not as something to be studied but as something to be used was one of the defining aspects of my thinking in IT. I have always been much more interested in what you can do with them than in how they work or the details of their internals.

Gregory Piatetsky: What new ideas are you excited about?

James Taylor:
Besides enterprise decision management (EDM) and smart (enough) systems you mean? Well, I think the rapid evolution of robotics, and of robotics platforms, is very interesting. You start combining the sensor and robotic technology you see in the DARPA grand challenge, for instance, with the kind of systems we talk about at Smart (enough) Systems and you get very exciting opportunities for machines and vehicles that don't think for themselves but can respond appropriately and "intelligently" to the world as it happens. I also think the convergence of touch and gesture-based interfaces, powerful visualization, pervasive sensors and business user-controlled systems may finally make the "business manager as fighter pilot" analogy a good one. It is not enough to be able to have an instrument cluster (dashboard), we must be able to get results from every part of the enterprise, synthesize this data, present it so it can be instantly understood and then manipulate our enterprises in real-time with levers that make sense and have predictable results.

Lastly I think the impact of the next generation of workers is going to be profound. Their willingness to mess around with technology, their assumptions about being online and connected at all times and their unwillingness to do certain kinds of work will combine to dramatically change the world of business.

Bookmark using any bookmark manager!

KDnuggets : News : 2008 : n07 : item5 < PREVIOUS | NEXT >

Copyright © 2008 KDnuggets.   Subscribe to KDnuggets News!