|10 Questions with Paul Scott, IT Director
|October 19, 2011
What brought you to KS&R?
Over the years, I've held a wide variety of software development and database positions. A native of Rochester, New York, I worked at both Xerox and Kodak on projects that ranged from customer service and scheduling applications, to the launch of AOL's "You've Got Pictures!", and the first web site for The National Enquirer. Most recently I was working at another marketing research firm. When I was approached with the opportunity at KS&R and saw all of the potential here, it was a perfect fit for me.
What are the challenges facing IT as it supports market research today?
Data collection has always been a key use for technology in market research, and the challenges there continue as new means of communication are developed. Smart phones are making it possible to connect with potential respondents anywhere, at any time. There is great value in the ability to get real time feedback – for example, at the moment when a consumer is involved in a buying decision, or just completed a transaction.
IT also needs to address the question of what can be done with the social media explosion. Business realizes that the world is expressing their opinion on everything through forums like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and now newer sites like Google+. The challenge for IT is to harness that vast data source and channel it to provide useful insights to market research clients.
If you were an IP address, what would it be?
Any dynamically assigned one would do. Static addresses leave you sitting in one place for too long and grow stale. Things are moving around you and you need to move around a bit yourself to keep up.
What do you do to unwind from a hectic day?
Take the dog for a walk, read with the kids, put a game on TV.
What sound or noise do you love?
The crack of a baseball bat and the opening theme music to Halo 3.
Who is your favorite character in literature?
I'm not sure it qualifies as "literature", but my kids keep picking Star Wars books for me to read to them at night lately, and Yoda is my favorite character. I appreciate the wisdom he shares, and I like that I get to do the voice. But we all agree Darth Vader is cooler.
What word would you use to describe yourself that would surprise those who know you?
What natural talent would you most like to possess?
I'd like to be able to drive a golf ball 350 yards in the direction I'm aiming.
What is your greatest extravagance?
Are there any visionaries in business that you find particularly inspiring?
Biz Stone and Evan Williams. They have been extremely successful taking very simple ideas and deploying elegant solutions. The technology behind services like Twitter and Blogger is not very complicated. All they needed was the vision to apply existing technology to make something people wanted.