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Five Questions For Gene Kim, Co-Founder And CTO Of Tripwire

Kim created Tripwire's change-auditing software with the help of Eugene Spafford, the legendary Purdue University computer science professor. Today, Kim finds parallels between change management and the spirituality of yoga.

Gene Kim

Photograph by Tim Jones

Gene Kim
Co-Founder And CTO Of Tripwire

Interview by Larry Greenemeier

1
CHANNELING CHANGE
An organization's worst enemy can be change. "Eighty percent of all system outages result from system changes."

2
INSPIRED BY WORMS
Tripwire was a reaction to the 1988 Morris worm, one of the first worms distributed via the Internet. Morris "subverted trust systems connected to the Internet because it made unauthorized changes without going through the change control process."

3
HIGHS AND LOWS
Kim in 2004 co-wrote The Visible Ops Handbook, a study of high-performing companies with low amounts of downtime and strong compliance practices. "Low performers have a mentality of victimhood."

4
TIPS OF THE TRADE
Auditors look at access to information and changes to IT systems. "If you have the right controls in place, compliance is a task, not a project that resembles doing archaeology on your systems."

5
YOGA LESSONS
Kim has been practicing yoga for six years, and he finds that it has many synergies with change management. "When you're doing things the right way, there's no wasted motion, you get hurt less, you're healthier and more efficient."