Meet a Steering Committee Member: Toru Shimogaki of NTT DATA

Posted on November 22nd, 2021

Meet Toru Shimogaki, the Head of Green Innovation Office and Head of Advanced Computing Technology Center at NTT DATA and learn what he thinks about green software.

Meet a Steering Committee Member: Toru Shimogaki of NTT DATA

Tell us about your  career path, interest in green software and your journey to the Green Software Foundation (GSF)

As a software engineer, I initially worked on performance improvements and feature additions for PostgreSQL, an open-source software - RDBMS. I am the original developer of a data loading utility called pg_bulkload. After that, I supported the introduction of Apache Hadoop, Apache Spark, and Apache Kafka, which are big data platforms.  

I also wrote four books with my colleague on the subject and worked on dissemination and deployment.

What do you, as an individual, expect to achieve by working with the GSF and in green software? 

When it comes to CO2 reduction in IT, it seems that the focus is on hardware and data centers. However, as a member of the software industry, I realized through this project that software used by hardware and data centers has a great power to contribute to climate change issues. The issue of climate change is now a topic that everyone in the world should be aware of. I want to convey the message to people involved in software to be aware that they are not an exception.

What obstacles do you see to the cause of green software? How can we overcome them? 

The first obstacle is that it is not intuitive and difficult to understand how software can contribute to CO2 emission reduction. One approach would be to develop emission standards for software, clarify how to use those standards, and make them easy to use.

In addition to improving the software itself, I think it is also necessary to develop easy-to-understand standards and methodologies for using the software for Carbon Aware.

Any other matters you would like to share with us in the cause of green software?

As someone who has dealt with big data infrastructure, I have been using computational resources without awareness. However, we should also look for ways to do the same processing with less environmental impact. Although promoting research needs many computational resources,  we need to make efforts and be aware of both the social significance and the necessary research results.

Check out what our other Steering Committee members say about green software

Jeff Sandquist of Microsoft

Elise Zelechowski of Thoughtworks

Erica Brescia of GitHub

Santiago Fontanarrosa of Globant

Dan Lewis-Toakley of Thoughtworks

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Nilooka Dissanayake
Nilooka DissanayakeEditor & Content Creator