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Tom's 20th Anniversary: A Retrospective With The Editors-in-Chief

Patrick Schmid (2005 - 2006, U.S.; 2007 - 2010 Worldwide)

Tom's Hardware: What are some of the highlights that you recall from your time at the helm of Tom’s Hardware from an industry happening standpoint?

Patrick Schmid: One of my favorites is the Tom’s Hardware Overclocking Competition that we executed in five countries in 2008. We took care of all winning teams from the United States, Germany, France and Italy, and flew them to Paris, France, where they battled for high scores on liquid nitrogen. It sounds almost common today, but in 2008 no one before Tom’s Hardware had executed such an event. We called the event "Overdrive," which reflects pretty much how it felt.

TH: What about from an internal Tom’s point of view — here I’m talking about milestones or significant achievements on a brand level?

PS: Few tech magazines have been available in multiple languages for so many years, and even less have managed to maintain a balance and be attractive to grassroots enthusiasts as well as for decision makers that need to be sure their budgets are spent the right way. Tom’s is the bank, so to speak.

TH: What are some of the technologies that excite you most today? What do you think holds the most promise?

PS: I’m looking forward to industries working on ease of use and interoperability when it comes to IT topics. There is plenty of technology: smart home concepts, mobile infotainment, the entire IoT spectrum, mobile connectivity. I personally don’t need killer features, but I want things to be really accessible and reliable. We should not have to deal with dropped calls, with device incompatibilities, or with complicated interfaces anymore. I would love my parents to be able to utilize new technology with confidence.

TH: Are there areas where you feel as if the hardware technology providers are failing?

PS: History will tell. Hardware tends to fail if there is no ecosystem, no application or no software to create a solution.
TH: What are you up to now?

PS: I’m still hanging with Tom’s Hardware in Europe. I guess I cannot let go.

Fritz Nelson
Fritz Nelson is Editor-at-Large of Tom's Hardware US.