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Automation isn’t just for scale

A few years back, in a sidebar discussion at a tech conference, one of Netflix’s engineering managers asked me if I was using any automation tools at work. I said, “Not really. It’s a small environment and we’re not delivering any web apps that require…

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How to lead without authority

I spent a lot of time being angry when I started my career. My employers and bosses frustrated me. My coworkers frustrated me. End users, customers, everyone frustrated me. I got angry about decisions that made no sense to me. Most of my complaints fell…

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How to take legacy apps to the cloud

Some apps are easy to move to the cloud. Some apps are born there. Some… aren’t. A scenario a lot of us see as we migrate workloads is that we end up with shiny automated hotness in the cloud and then a bunch of old…

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The scary leap from SysOps to DevOps

I have at least one existential crisis a week during which I stress out about how much there is to learn and the finite amounts of time and attention I have to do that learning. Someone releases a new cloud service, a new programing language,…

Satya Nadella just fixed Microsoft’s biggest problem

For as long as I can remember there have been two Microsofts: Microsoft Sales and everyone else. It’s a split that exists in most tech companies, but those that are most successful at the moment have a different divide; Google is Engineering and everyone else,…

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A local colo is not the place to start your cloud migration

If you’re in IT leadership, you’re probably getting flooded right now with salespeople from regional colos and managed services companies trying to get you on-board for their cloud services. Most of those services are just rebranded flavors of what they’ve been offering for years — I’ve seen…

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Don’t stop at IaaS

Two years ago, I sat in a room of engineers listening to a Microsoft instructor describe Azure’s Infrastructure-as-a-Service. One of the engineers who worked for a large retailer rolled his eyes at everything the instructor said. It was clear he wasn’t attending out of personal…

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Pivoting BestTech.io

Last year, Jarin Dykstra and I launched BestTech.io with the idea that it would be a little like The Wirecutter for enterprise IT products and services. We created recommendations for Desktops-as-a-Service, Identity-as-a-Service, and several other categories with the hope that other IT people could leverage…

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Do’s and Don’ts For Writing Online

If you were to ask me for one thing to do to advance your career, my answer would be: write. Even if no one ever reads what you write, it’s worth it. Writing helps you think things through and work out problems, both personally and…