4. Who has been the most influential person in your life? Why?
My parents are the most influential people in my life. They taught me
the value of hard work and accomplishment. Both my parents considered
learning and education very important. My parents had come from Poland
after World War II. As a first generation American student, I was
encouraged to study harder and learn more. My father often told me to
"learn something new every day." Because of their example, I believe
that if you go after your dreams, you can accomplish whatever you set
out to do.
5. What lessons have you learned that would be valuable to women beginning their careers in technology?
I advise women to take advantage of the opportunities that Information
Technology offers and will continue to offer in the global market. There
are excellent opportunities for women today in the fields of science and
technology; their skills are needed. It is important for women thinking
about a technology career to develop their math and science skills. They
need to believe in themselves, in their qualifications and capabilities,
and then they need to go after their dreams. The world of technology and
the ability to enable successful business through technology require
"brain power," which implies that women, who represent approximately
fifty percent of the population, must be equally represented as
technology leaders and resources.
6. What new technology do you believe will have the most positive impact on the world in the next 20 years? The most negative impact?
I think that the most positive impact will be made by e-commerce.
Technologies that enable Internet and mobile computing services for
customers, that allow them to gather research information, trade
securities online, receive insurance quotes, check their credit card
balances, find a home, and manage their retirement accounts will change
the way business is conducted throughout the world.
The most negative impact will be caused by a lack of security in
technological environments. New strategies and rigorous standards are
Over the next ten or twenty years, I expect to see a concentrated and
mandatory approach toward application development methodology and
processes. I suspect that Information Engineering will achieve the
engineering discipline required to enable business success.
Irene Dec answers these questions:
1. What was your first job in technology?
2. Who has been your most significant mentor? Why?
3. What has been your greatest challenge and what strategies did you use to overcome obstacles?
4. Who has been the most influential person in your life?
5. What lessons have you learned that would be valuable to
women beginning their careers in technology?
6. What new technology do you believe will have the most positive
impact on the world in the next 20 years? The most negative impact?
On the lighter side:
1. If you could have dinner with any 2 people (living or not),
who would they be?
2. What was the last book you read? What books do you love to recommend?
3. If you were to choose a different profession, what would it be?
4. What is your definition of success?