Cable Operator: National: Yvette Kanouff

Yvette Kanouff is no stranger to these pages — she’s had a storied technology career on both the MSO and vendor sides of the industry. In March, Kanouff, 46, was named technology executive vice president at Cablevision Systems, and is leading the company’s groundbreaking work on network DVRs, strategic Wi-Fi and advanced user interfaces. (The multiscreen “Onyx” guide launched on Oct. 3.)

MCN: First job in cable?

Yvette Kanouff: At Time Warner Cable, to launch the Full Service Network in Orlando. It was a great time in our industry — [we] were just moving to digital and creating two-way cable networks. I was a mathematician and software developer in an RF world. It was a lot of fun.

MCN: First job in technology?

YK: Lockheed Martin (at the time Martin Marietta). I started as a student coop, and ended up working there for 10 years. By the end I was a senior radar engineer, focused on compression and pattern recognition algorithms.

MCN: Kids, cats, dogs?

YK: Four beautiful children, awesome husband, two cats, one dog.

MCN: Tech people you look up to?

YK: Jim Ludington, executive vice president at Time Warner Cable, for bringing me into cable.

Also Wilt Hildenbrand [senior adviser/ engineering and technology, for Cablevision] for being an enabler and for helpings others to succeed and rise to their potential.

Last but not least: Steve Jobs, for being an inventor and thinking outside of the box.

MCN: When did you know for sure you were destined to be in tech?

YK: In eighth grade, when my mathematics teacher made me solve an equation in front of the class. I was so nervous, and then realized that this stuff is a lot of fun!

MCN: Stuff you’ve built or rebuilt?

YK: A radar system on an Apache helicopter … and, of course, building and bringing video-on-demand to the cable market.

MCN: The thing that drives you the most crazy about engineers/technologists?

YK: It’s important to see the world (products, services, business drivers, etc.) that technology fits into — many times, we see technology as the center of the universe.

MCN: The thing that drives you most crazy about non-techs?

YK: Their frustration that technology is not error-free.

MCN: Top three things on your work to-do list for the rest of 2012?

YK: Launching our new Cablevision user interface, enhancing our monitoring and management tools and several new technology launches.