Hey everyone! Hopefully you are all enjoying the summer months of 2020 despite the craziness of covid. If you've been following me for awhile you may have noticed that I have slowed or stopped blogging all together. That is not the case, I have been working on new projects and learning new topics!

I have been keeping busy sharpening my technical skills. Here is a quick rundown of subjects I have covered since March:

  • AWS DevOps Engineer Professional
  • Golang
  • Terraform
  • Jenkins pipelines

I achieved the AWS Certified DevOps Professional in early March before the stay-at-home orders were issued. It was a grueling exam and took me nearly nine months of focus studying. To be honest I was studying on and off for an additional three months before I buckled down.

It took me awhile to take the exam because no one course covered all of the topics on the exam. I used numerous courses and practice exams, all-in-all I spent many sleepless nights testing in my AWS labs. Practice makes perfect in this exam. There is no way to pass this exam unless you lab and play with the services. Breaking and fixing them is the best way to learn. I was not lucky enough to pass the exam in early fall of 2019 when I first attempted the exam. That failure forced me to rework my studying and overhaul my website by migrating it AWS.

That was an eyeopening experience and helped solidify my understanding of ECS. Though I migrated it once again to Vultr, I'm still using AWS for ancillary services for my blog such as Route 53, S3, and EFS.

Golang (Go) took me a month to learn the basics, I have not used C-like styled languages in production before, but I'm slowly learning. My first use case for Go is to use it for infrastructure as code unit testing. Crazy, I know, however Terratest makes it easy to spin up and test Terraform configuration files.

Not only have I been honing my skills in the devops/SRE profession, I have also branched out to freelance writing. I started writing for Pluralsight in May! I find it ironic that I'm writing because creative writing and English classes were not my strong suit in school, however they are a great way to express my passion for technology and pass the time while practicing social distancing. I view it similar to writing in a journal and serves as an extension to my terrible memory.

If you want to get into writing content for Pluralsight, go ahead and submit an audition. They are looking for content that guides readers on how to do anything technical. I wrote a basic tutorial about a deployment pipeline. Yours can control how deep you want to be as long as your audition. Try to make sure your audition's voice stays in second person. You want to convey that it is a conversation between you and the reader. There are tons of technical writing guidelines out there, but the one I follow is Digital Ocean's guide.

The pandemic may have slowed 2020 down, however that will not stop my technological progress.