Christina Domecq, co-founder and chief executive of SpinVox, which converts voicemails to text messages, talks about her likes and dislikes
What’s in your pocket?
A Sony Ericsson P1 smartphone. I change them every two months because I write on the screen as my input method and they get scratched. I’ve always used Symbian (operating system) based smartphones but I’m moving to the iPhone.
One of the first iPods. You could actually hear the hard drive operating and it had a physical wheel. I spent a lot of time listening to the Police, REM and Cat Stevens on it.
IT True Love?
The wow moment was the first time I saw internet service provider America Online. It made me realise how small the world is.
The MacBook Air. Talk about sexy. I’ve just bought it and it’s on my desk. I also loved the launch, with Apple’s Steve Jobs taking it out of an envelope.
What makes you mad?
Laziness in its broadest sense. Nothing frustrates me more than people not living up to their full potential. If you’re a bricklayer, be the best bricklayer you can be.
Try and go beyond what you think you can do.
What’s your most embarrassing moment?
I was at the Mobile World Congress to give a big presentation and my laptop crashed. I could not get the PowerPoint presentation up. And I didn’t have a back-up system.
I felt as though there were thousands of eyes looking at me … and expecting dynamism. Instead they got something more free-form.
What would you most love to see?
I’d love to see the moon up close and personal. To have moon dust on my boots, and hang out there. Part of the thrill would be the journey, being able to see the Earth from space.
If money was no object?
I would use it to come up with answers to the growing crisis in Africa of Aids and poverty; and to create opportunities there. Africa’s potential is enormous.
Favoured communication method?
A mobile phone that uses SpinVox to convert voicemails into text messages, so I can browse through all my calls quickly. Everyone leaves messages in a different way, so each friend or contact has a kind of digital signature.
Worst mobile working experience?
As I was coming out of one meeting and heading for the motorway, I noticed I had 14 voicemails. But I was in a rush and didn’t have time to listen to them.
So I raced to the next meeting only to find that one of the voicemails was telling me the venue had changed.
I was so upset, I decided there had to be a better way of retrieving messages. Within a month, I had hired an engineer to find it.
How wrong have you been?
I underestimated the economic impact of the bombing of the World Trade Center. I had a business in New York doing IT training six blocks away and I ended up having to close it. It was the toughest management decision I ever had to make. I had to sell the assets to a competitor and let 75 per cent of the staff go.
Company to watch (not yours)?
Suunto, a Finnish company that makes sports watches and dive computers. I’m wearing a Suunto Lumix watch with altimeter, barometer and compass. It also tells me what time the sun will rise and set. It’s the best design for keen cyclists like myself, and looks good too.
Left field technology
Wire-free power sources and more powerful batteries, so we can power all our devices remotely, and for longer.
It’s not just mobiles and computers: my electric toothbrush always seems to be running out, too.
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