On the lighter side of things , we ask the industry experts what makes them tick . . . .
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David Larson , CTO , Spirent Communications
wWhat would you describe as your most individual memorable achievement ?
In terms of career , my most memorable achievement was becoming the CTO of HP Networking . That was the pinnacle of everything I ’ d built my career on being a technical leader in an influential position in the industry for a US $ 3 billion company . It was a great individual achievement , but I ’ m prouder that my team won Data Communications magazine ’ s Best Product award for work we did on a packet shaper at a start-up called Xedia .
What first made you think of a career in technology ?
As an undergraduate working on a degree in physics , I was part of a team that implemented an algorithm to do non-destructive testing of aircraft engine turbine blades . This had no connection to anything I had studied , but we were able to take high-powered X-ray slice data and determine with optical precision whether turbine blades met specifications , without destroying them . I saw that this capability was beneficial to the world at large as well as my career and I became much more interested in the technology side of things .
What style of management philosophy do you employ with your current position ?
What I ’ ve learned is that if you surround yourself with talented people , put in the effort to understand their
strengths and skills and give them guidance and freedom to build value for the company , they will be happier in their jobs , more productive for the business and make the leadership team look better in the process .
I constantly seek ways to increase collaboration among all stakeholders who influence strategic direction , because only in a robust system of information sharing will you get to the right outcomes . Collaboration is a more efficient way of accelerating great outcomes , and while I ’ m willing to object to or override consensus , I ’ m also willing to be shown that I ’ m wrong .
What do you think will emerge as a major technology trend over the coming months and why ?
Several of the key macro trends have to do with security policy being moved to endpoints , therefore policy enforcement is moving to the Edge . Communication is increasingly global and delivered over cloud infrastructure , this trend is true even for governmental operating environments .
Another key trend in network security involves the coupling of two concepts : Secure Access Service Edge ( SASE ) and Zero Trust ( ZT ). What this tight coupling means is that the Service Edge describing is how connectivity is authorised and managed between endpoints of a particular security framework or endpoints that might be federated among multiple
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