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C-Suite Talk Fav Tech: Derek Paterson, Craneware plc

28-07-16-derek-paterson-craneware-plcName: Derek Paterson 

Job title:  CIO

Company:   Craneware plc

Industry:  Healthcare Software

Location:   Edinburgh, Scotland

Years’ of experience:   17


What is your favourite personal gadget?
My favourite gadget at any time tends to be my most recent purchase. You can’t beat a new toy. However, the ubiquitous smartphone wins overall.

Do you have a favourite piece of personal software?
There are many useful tools I like to work with that make my life a lot easier. However, for personal use I really enjoy using the Guitar Pro Tablature.

What was the first piece of technology you got really excited about?
The Commodore 64 was an absolute classic. I was terrible at coding on it, but it fascinated me so much I wanted to learn more.

What device improves your life most at work?
It’s back to the smartphone. When we first started Craneware there was no such thing, and as an international company supporting clients in the US we had to spend many nights in the office until the early hours supporting key client installs or sales calls. When I got my first BlackBerry it was a revelation - I could respond to anyone immediately and give clear guidance from anywhere. This came in especially useful if any code required tweaking.

What software keeps you most productive at work?
Quite seriously, the ability to switch off Outlook! If you use it properly to assist with tasks it can be very effective. You just need to be careful not to get dragged into the rest of the mire.

Is there any technology that has become extinct that you would like to resurrect? 
I accept that things usually go extinct for a reason; however, I do think there should be more smartphones with real tactile keyboards. The excuse that this would result in smaller screen space just doesn’t cut it for me, who needs to see that much Candy Crush?

Is there any technology you would personally recommend that you don’t think enough people know about? (Hardware or software, work or personal)  
Mindjet for Business is fantastic. It can be used for anything from mind-mapping to white-boarding, which are still essential parts of our business. It’s also incredibly helpful with project planning and status updates, or even Kanban.

Do you think anything about your personal use of tech would surprise your colleagues? 
I hope not, as CIO I’m supposed to set an example about not going off the reservation with my tech choices. If I try something I think works well, or that I particularly enjoy using, I tend to share my findings with the team. I guess the most surprising would be my telescopes and associated crates of accessories and, in particular, handling delicate focus equipment while having wee dram on the weekend!


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