Today we are talking to Dave Wagstaff, the CTO at Bsquare.  And we discuss innovation in the IoT and machine to machine space, the importance of effective team communication, and solving a business problem before getting enamored with the technology.

All of this, right here, right now, on the Modern CTO Podcast!

Dave Wagstaff:

Bsquare Chief Technology Officer Dave Wagstaff is responsible for driving a comprehensive and integrated strategy for all products – including DataV, the company’s Internet of Things offering. Dave has held a number of senior and strategic technology positions including Chief Architect, Advanced Solutions at Lantronix (NASDAQ: LTRX), Director of Engineering at Lantronix, Director, Software Development at Open Text, Inc. and Software Development Manager at both Gauss Interprise, Inc. and Diebold from May 1980 to September 1999.


For over two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of corporate assets by making them intelligent, connecting them and using data collected from them to deliver better business outcomes. Bsquare DataV software solution have been deployed by a wide variety of enterprises to create business-focused Internet of Things (IoT) systems that can more effectively monitor assets, automate processes, predict events and in general optimize business outcomes. Bsquare goes a step further by coupling innovative software with advanced professional services capable of helping organizations of all types make IoT a business reality.

Bsquare Corporation is headquartered in Bellevue, Washington with offices throughout North America, Europe, and Asia.


  • Commutes between Washington and So Cal
  • Gets up around 3:30 – 4
  • Has an office outside of London and in Taipei
  • Bsquare was one of the co developers of Windows CE
  • Pivoted in to the IoT Space – What is Bsquare today
  • M2M is machine to machine.  Started with M2M and moved in to IoT
  • How do you measure success with IoT
  • Honeywell smart thermostat.  Start with business problem first and then use technology to solve it
  • It takes a tech savvy person to stitch all of the IoT together these days
  • If you can get the integrations working together it will be much more available
  • It’s a fact based decision with detecting things in trucks
  • Keeping it simple is hard.  Start small but think big
  • Show and convince – up to the team to demonstrate they have a good idea
  • Think first principles
  • Constantly re-learning things.  Can’t rely on what you learned in school
  • Gray2k – guys in oil and gas that have been in it for 30 years. Knowledge loss
  • Large companies are still converting out of massive main frames
  • Airline reservation system – able to do it on far less than what we have today
  • Edge in IoT – ingress of where the data comes in.  Compute that runs very close to the device that you’re trying to capture data from.
  • Monitoring 340 sensors on the truck.  Sometimes it’s cheaper to ship the logic rather than the data
  • How do you get the original large set of data to do the training on the model
  • Maintain the data on the truck and then dump it back to the cloud when they are on wifi
  • 70% of data scientist time is in the data cleansing space
  • Talk to a lot of SME’s in the transportation space then augment it with machine learning to find out things they haven’t thought about.
  • Who is your customer?  They are the middle man. They deliver a service that someone else delivers.  
  • Either try to save money and what new revenue streams can i generate that I didn’t have before
  • Business intelligence vs Data Analytics.
  • How many people are you leading in Engineering? 25.  5 in data analytics – 6 – 7 people on QA team. Being smart about what we choose to build and what we can leverage that is already out there.  Non invented air mentality.
  • People get enamored with the technology.  Start with the business problem.
  • Drowning in the data swamp
  • Henry Ford’s customers would have asked for a faster horse
  • How is the culture within your team? – A Day in the life of.  Encourage the team to live in the life of the customer. Learn new things.  Acknowledge people for doing great things.
  • Be tough and Good.  Get a team to work together. We’re all humans.
  • Worked at OpenTxt – A lot of companies have a single career track. Don’t try to make people something that they are not
  • How did the role change from Chief Architect to CTO.  More customer facing. Crafts ideas based on educated knowledge.
  • What are you most excited about?  Making life for people better in cities based around collected data

Joel Beasley

Joel Beasley founded the Modern CTO Podcast in 2017 while writing his book, the Modern CTO book, with the goal of interviewing CTOs and sharing their experiences with others in the tech community.

Joel’s conversational style and insightful questions quickly gained traction, attracting high-profile guests such as Microsoft’s CTO, Kevin Scott, and T-Mobile’s CIO, Cody Stanford. With each episode, the podcast’s popularity continued to grow, and soon, Joel found himself with a waiting list of future guests.

Today, the Modern CTO Podcast has become the number one leadership and tech podcast in the world, with over 150k active listeners, including CTOs, lead developers, and rising tech leaders. Joel’s commitment to creating a conversational atmosphere for his guests to share their experiences has inspired a new generation of leaders and innovators.

As the success of the podcast grew, Joel founded ProSeries Media, a podcast production company that helps companies worldwide create their own podcasts. With a team of producers, content creators, and podcast bookers, ProSeries Media produces over ten shows, providing a platform for companies to connect with their audience and share their expertise.

Through his work on the Modern CTO Podcast and ProSeries Media, Joel Beasley has become a respected voice in the tech industry, inspiring others to share their knowledge and insights with the wider community. His passion for creating engaging content that informs, inspires, and entertains has made him a sought-after speaker and advisor on all things tech.

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