What technology’s potential over the next 10 years most excites you?
AI. Less because of the technology per se—it is relatively mature, even though there will be new breakthroughs in machine learning, language recognition and emotional learning—but more because of the ubiquity of the technology across all industries and because of the explosion in sensor data and other data collection which de facto will transform the cognitive and predictive ability of systems driven by AI.
Who has most influenced your thinking and why?
Probably my advisor at grad school. He was both a great physicist as well as one of the more successful real-estate developers in town. His uncanny ability to simplify complex problems and get to root cause and effect had an indelible influence on my thinking. To this day that training helps me override the “noise” of complexity and aim for clarity of thinking and purpose.
What attributes do you look for in an entrepreneur?
Like all of us, entrepreneurs come in all “shapes and sizes”. Some, you could put in an empty room and unsolicited they will come up with new ideas. Others, are born from “necessity is the mother of invention”. The ones who are more likely to succeed seem to have an incredible level of persistence and an unwavering belief in the value of what they are doing. Add to that: a strong sense of ethics and fairness, awareness of one’s actions while being open and adaptable.
What skill would you like to learn?
Play the pipe organ and tour some of the great cathedrals of the world while blasting all of Bach’s Toccatas and Fugues (not happening this time around).