Life in the tech age

Judy Estrin, former chief technology officer at Cisco Systems, recently wrote a book titled “Closing the Innovation Gap: Reigniting the Spark of Creativity in a Global Economy.” She said now that we have a strong information technology framework in place, the interesting work begins.

FCW: If you could instantly create one new technology tool or capability, what problem would you seek to solve?
Estrin: One of biggest problems in IT is security authentication. The Internet has brought us a richness of information but also a real problem in terms of being able to authenticate information and users. Enterprises spend millions of dollars on this.

FCW: What disruptive technologies do you see making their presence felt in the next two to four years?
Estrin: The most interesting developments in IT will be interdisciplinary, blending information from the physical world with information-processing systems. People think IT is a dead field. In terms of computers and networking, IT is a reasonably mature market now. But the application of information processing to the fields of medical data and imaging, security, alternative energy, and consumer entertainment will be exciting.

FCW: What technology or consequence of technology do you find most fascinating? Are there any that you think are regrettable?
Estrin: All advances have consequences. The Internet is a wonderful thing that amplifies both the good and bad of human behavior. Often when we invent technology, we don’t think enough about the human behavior part. I hope if we can get more collaboration between users and technology developers earlier on, we can think about some of the consequences. 

About the Author

John Zyskowski is a senior editor of Federal Computer Week. Follow him on Twitter: @ZyskowskiWriter.

Who's Fed 100-worthy?

Nominations are now open for the 2015 Federal 100 awards. Get the details and submit your picks!

Featured

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above