Dr. Vishal Sikka, CEO of technology solutions company Infosys, and Dr. Alan Kay, a foundational researcher in computer science, discussed innovation in technology.
Kay, on his early career in the 1960s: “If I had to characterize the ARPA [Advanced Research Projects Agency] community at that time, I would say this was a community that knew how to argue and never tried to win. And they used argument as a way of allowing diverse viewpoints to coexist in a meaningful way and actually get things done.”
Sikka, on the interaction of people and technology: “We are nowhere close to the point where the work people do can be replaced by artificial intelligence, but it has tremendous potential to improve the things we do, to make us more focused, to make us more productive, and that should be our endeavor.”
Sikka, on the importance of a strong workplace culture: “Look at hospitals, law firms, airlines, [the] armed forces – places that create a context, a culture around the individuals who work there. Individuals provide the value, the contact and the service, but there is a context around them which makes them extraordinarily more powerful than what they are. Culture makes a huge difference and we don’t spend enough time on it.”