Nicholas McQuire, "Always stay positive. It certainly has  helped this year!"

Artificial intelligence is a topic which too often is covered in the abstract, a vague and perhaps aspirational technology solution for all that ails your business. Nicholas McQuire is the antidote to that approach. Nick writes about how businesses are specifically introducing AI into their processes, as well as the moves providers are taking in the area — and just as importantly — the moves they should be making. Nick's past columns were frequently dispatches from vendor conferences located near and far. This year continued that trend, however the conferences were in most cases attended from his home office.

As VP enterprise research and AI research at CCS Insight, Nick leads the company's enterprise research, which covers machine learning, cloud computing and the digital workplace.  

What kept you sane during 2020?

For me, it was the time I got to have with my kids which I think is one of the main silver linings of 2020 for many people. Prior to COVID-19, my job involved lots of travel which was replaced this year with more family time which was awesome.

Where do you look for inspiration for your articles?

I really like the way CMSWire contributors write so often, it’s here within this community.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Always stay positive. It certainly has helped this year!

Which of your projects or research from 2020 (or upcoming for 2021) are you most excited about and why?

I am going to focus more on the business side of AI, and how leaders, without technical experience with machine learning can reorient their business processes to support data and AI based decision making in their companies.

If you could only recommend one business book, what would it be and why?

I really liked "The AI Organization" by Microsoft’s David Carmona. A real practical look at how businesses can take full advantage of AI.

Speed Round

What was the best book you read in 2020?

It’s a three-way tie between three very different books: "The Road" by Cormack McCarthy, "Beastie Boys Book" by Michael “Mike D” Diamond and Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz  and "The Three-Body Problem" by Cixin Liu.

What was the best movie you watched in 2020?

"Wolf of Wallstreet." Had to watch it again and again, it delivered.

What was the best meal you ate in 2020?

Simple but when we came out of the first lockdown, I ordered fish and chips from our local pub which was absolutely sublime!