Simon McCalla leads the team responsible for the technology behind Nominet’s registry services, a resource on which millions of businesses and individuals depend.
McCalla regularly represents Nominet amongst technical, government and media audiences. He also helped co-ordinate an international review of the security and stability of the global domain name system in 2011.
McCalla is a fellow of the British Computer Society and has over 20 years experience overseeing IT for global enterprises across retail, entertainment and consultancy sectors.
His Hot Seat follows on from a host of leading industry figures ranging from government operating officer Stephen Kelly to Hotels.com chief technology officer Stuart Silberg.
V3: What’s your favourite part of your current job?
Simon McCalla: I enjoy working across a diverse range of tasks. Day-to-day my role sees me do everything from ensuring operational resilience, to innovating and delivering products and services, to working with Nominet’s broad range of stakeholders.
What would be your dream job (apart from your current role, of course)?
I'd like to create new, innovative IT products and services that touch millions of people, regardless of income or geography.
Which mobile phone and tablet do you currently use?
I use both an iPhone and iPad. I have just started playing with the Windows 8 surface, but the jury is still out on that.
Which person do you most admire in the IT industry?
Marc Harper, who used to work for me in a previous role and is now head of IT service delivery at White Stuff. He delivered an incredible IT service on a tiny budget and in difficult conditions – all with a permanent smile on his face.
How can we get more school children interested in IT careers?
We need a fundamental re-think about how IT is used and taught in schools. We are still teaching IT the same way we did in the 80s, instead of embracing the way people use IT in their everyday lives today.
We need to get children interested in logic and problem solving using tablets and touch devices to excite their curiosity.
We don’t need a nation of PowerPoint users, we need new developers writing apps, building exciting new services and solving the challenges of cyber-crime.
Which technology has had the biggest impact on your working life?
Mobile computing. It lets us deliver IT services across different platforms to any location in the world.
What’s been the highlight of your career so far?
Working within the international internet community to improve the resilience and security of the internet. This has given me the chance to work with everyone from internet pioneers through to government ministers.
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