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The V3 Hot Seat: Santa Claus, the father of Christmas

24 Dec 2012


Santa Claus hardly needs an introduction.

Although he is not commonly associated with the technology industry, Santa runs a research and development centre larger than any other.

V3 asks him the usual Hot Seat questions and finds out how technology changes are affecting his work.

Santa follows other leaders in the V3 Hot Seat, including Google UK head of enterprise Thomas Davies and Microsoft chief privacy officer Brendon Lynch, as part of V3's weekly insight into what makes those in the IT industry tick.

What's your favourite part of your current job?

Bringing joy to kids around the world, and riding my sleigh with Rudolph.

More and more I'm also beginning to admire all the cool gear tech vendors are creating to make my job easier.

What would be your dream job (apart from your current role, of course)?

Santa Claus is my dream job but I wouldn't mind being the tooth fairy. She's been telling me she uses tracking technology and the latest innovations in big data analytics to track down the toothless children she needs to bring gifts to.

The Easter Bunny, by contrast, just seems to make the same old chocolate eggs year after year.

Which mobile phone and tablet do you currently use?

I was a fan of the iPhone until the new version received a poor mapping app, although it could be worth another look now Google has released its latest maps app for iOS. Generally my support lies with Nokia, as it's headquartered near my home town in Lapland.

Which person do you most admire in the IT industry?

Nicholas Negroponte for founding the One Laptop per Child non-profit orgnaisation, and for bringing joy and education to some of the world's poorest children by distributing free laptops.

Which technology has had the biggest impact on your working life?

Google Maps and the navigation systems that now deck out my sleigh. It certainly makes life easier for the reindeer. We still use Rudolph's nose to brighten up our path though.

Video conferencing is also useful. Now Mrs Claus can come on my Christmas Eve journeys with me, without even leaving the North Pole.

Which websites do you have bookmarked at work?

Apart from Google Maps, I also bookmark to find out what I'm up against on Christmas Eve.

I keep tabs on a number of retailers likes Toys R Us and Argos to see what kind of products they're making so I know how best to satisfy my lovely little customers.

What's been the highlight of your career so far?

Meeting Will Ferrell during the filming of Elf.

What's your favourite thing about working in the IT industry?

My elves are always hard at work in the technology field to keep up with the IT industry's latest smartphones, laptops and tablets. This keeps me busy as I'm focused on leading this research and development. It keeps my mind active, and ensures I don't get too complacent.

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Rosalie Marshall

Rosalie Marshall is the special projects editor and chief reporter at V3. Previously she was a reporter for IT Week and channel editor for online television site Rosalie covers government IT, business applications, IT skills, open source technology and social networks.

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