Summer 2018 Roundup

I haven’t posted to this blog in awhile, but that’s mainly because it’s been a crazy first half of the year. I’ve started a new job as a cloud architect and serverless community advocate at Trek10, moved to a new state, and put time into some exciting side projects. I was also named an AWS Serverless Hero a few days ago. This is a new program that recognizes AWS community leaders in the specific area of serverless applications, and is already helping me to meet and help more people on their cloud journey.

Recent Writing

Most of my technical writing is now appearing either at Trek10 or at A Cloud Guru. The “FaaS and Furious” cartoon series is going strong and can be found via A Cloud Guru’s social media channels.

I also originated and have been co-hosting the Think FaaS podcast to help educate the serverless community. The episodes are short and fluff-free, so why not subscribe?

Yesterday one of my short fiction pieces — the first of several — appeared at Daily Science Fiction, a professional SFWA-qualifying publication. This is part of a larger project that I hope to share more about at the end of the year.

Upcoming Speaking Events

July 17th – “DEV12 – Living On The Edge with AWS Greengrass” – AWS Summit NYC

I’ll be speaking in the Dev Lounge at the AWS NYC Summit. Come for the Greengrass war stories, stay for the soon-to-be-infamous IoT Rap.

July 30-August 1st – ServerlessConf San Francisco

I’ll be heavily involved in this year’s ServerlessConf. Here’s my tentative agenda:

  • July 30: Leading an all-day serverless workshop
  • July 31: Hosting the main talk track
  • Aug 1: Joint talk with Jared Short: “How To Win Coworkers and Influence Organizations for Serverless”

The Think FaaS podcast will also be featured live on both days of the main conference with an excellent lineup of guest speakers. I hope to see you there!

September 8th – “Serverless for the Enterprise” – IT Weekend Ukraine

Looking forward to sharing some serverless best practices at one of Eastern Europe’s largest IT events.


Summer 2018 Roundup

The 100 Books Challenge: Full Reading List

In 2017, I set a goal of reading 100 books. I made up the reading list as I went along, using friends, the internet, and random trips through Goodwill as inspiration. Here is the full list. Links go to Amazon. Books that I especially recommend have a star (★) by the title.

By the Numbers

Total Books Read: 101

Categories: 25

Fiction/Nonfiction: 31/70

The 100

Continue reading “The 100 Books Challenge: Full Reading List”

The 100 Books Challenge: Full Reading List

How to read 100 books in a year (and still have a life)

HackerNews discussion

/r/books discussion

The stack.

You have one. So do I. It’s sitting on your bedside table now, or on the floor, or spread around the house – that growing, tottering, guilt-inducing pile of books that you are absolutely going to read.

Soon. One of these days. When you’re not so busy.

I know how you feel. I’m pretty busy, too. But I got tired of feeling guilty about all those unread books, so at the beginning of 2017 I decided to take action.

I decided to see if I could read one hundred books this year, without cutting anything else – school, work, family, side projects – out of my life.

Continue reading “How to read 100 books in a year (and still have a life)”

How to read 100 books in a year (and still have a life)


Big news! I’m excited to announce that I will be partnering with the fine folks at A Cloud Guru as a writer and cartoonist, starting…well, yesterday. In particular, the ongoing “Serverless Superheroes” series will be migrating to their blog, as well as the “CloudPleasers” cartoons. (I plan to be drawing those much more frequently!) I am also hoping to develop some other exciting cloud-focused content with A Cloud Guru in the coming months – more on that later.

This blog will remain my place for short technical notes, general career-related posts, and the occasional lapse into embarrassing silence.

If you enjoy my writing here, I hope you will bookmark as well! They have some of the best and brightest members of the cloud community creating great content over there – I’m honored to join them.


SERVERLESS SUPERHEROES: Adam Johnson, Monitoring, and the “No Ops” Myth

Welcome to “Serverless Superheroes”. In this space, I chat with the innovators, toolmakers, and developers who are navigating the brave new world of “serverless” cloud applications. For today’s edition, I chatted with Adam Johnson, the cofounder of IOpipe. The following interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Continue reading “SERVERLESS SUPERHEROES: Adam Johnson, Monitoring, and the “No Ops” Myth”

SERVERLESS SUPERHEROES: Adam Johnson, Monitoring, and the “No Ops” Myth

OMSCS: A working professional’s guide to the $7k CS master’s degree

I’m currently twenty-one credits into a master’s degree in computer science at Georgia Tech, one of the world’s top five graduate schools in computing. I also have a family and work full time in the software industry. How is this possible? Meet GaTech’s OMSCS (“Online Master of Science in Computer Science”), the improbable CS master’s degree you can do in your spare time for a grand total of less than $7,000.

The course lectures are delivered on video via Udacity, a popular MOOC platform. But OMSCS shares as much in common with a standard university distance learning program as with a MOOC: you adhere to a regular college semester schedule, get real grades from real professors and TAs, and at the end you walk away with a sweet Georgia Tech diploma that looks just like the ones they give out on campus.

Continue reading “OMSCS: A working professional’s guide to the $7k CS master’s degree”

OMSCS: A working professional’s guide to the $7k CS master’s degree