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Daily Check-In with Ned1313

Daily Check-In with Ned1313

By Ned Bellavance
A 10-minute, daily podcast from Ned1313 discussing technology, career advancement, and anything else relevant to the IT Professional in a brief, conversational style.
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Bringing Buffer Overflow Back?
I hosted a podcast called Buffer Overflow for about 4 years and 200 episodes. The company I worked for took down the podcast and all of its episodes. Should I host them on my own? Would anyone listen? I want to hear from YOU!
February 23, 2022
Disney World Retrospective
I'm going to Disneyland! Er, World. I went to Disney World, and naturally it got me thinking about technology, in-groups, and market share. Sounds strange? It'll all make sense once you listen.
February 21, 2022
Certified Recycled
There's an age old debate in tech about the utility of certifications. It's an argument we've had a hundred times. So let's have it again! This time I'm thinking about how a certification can help someone early on in their career and how the advent of the cloud and virtualization has lowered the barrier to entry for most certifications.
February 08, 2022
Pendulum Central
Is there anything inherently good about decentralization? Is one approach always more effective or equitable than the other? The realm of technology is lousy with example of both centralized and decentralized systems, and a constant flux between the two. As any complex system evolves, the more efficient solution will evolve as well. For all the folks proselytizing the inherent beneficence of decentralized solutions, the reality doesn't seem to agree. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
February 05, 2022
Web3 is like a wrench
Tools and technology are mostly amoral. What matters is the intent of the individual using the tool. A system is what it does, or more accurately what one does with it. Blockchain, cryptocurrency, and web3 are neither net positive or negative. However, their implementations certainly can be. NFT scams, crypto pump and dumps, and Bitcoin global warming are great examples of the worst impulses of humanity. But can all of these also be used for good? I think the answer is a firm maybe. Folding ideas NFT video: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
February 04, 2022
You're Already There
I read an interesting article today talking about how you don't need the cloud. Which is true! You don't need the cloud. Then the article went on to detail all the ways they are using cloud services without calling it cloud. And I felt confused! You don't need cloud, but you're using Cloudflare? Cloud is kinda in the name! Anyways, here's my thoughts about it. The article: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
February 02, 2022
Scripting 2: Electric Boogaloo
Furthering my thoughts on when to script and not, let's turn our focus to live training, presentations, and keynotes. Also, guess what I just committed to at Pluralsight? Hint: it's a bunch of courses that don't deal with Terraform! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
February 02, 2022
A Pre-script-tion
A listener asked about my thoughts on writing scripts for creating training videos or doing it off the top of my head. I've tried both approaches, and the answer for me is a hybrid mix. Scripted presentations and unscripted demos. If you're wondering what to do for your content, check out this episode! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
February 01, 2022
Nostalgia is a Helluva Drug
Are you feeling nostalgic about 15 years ago? Was it really that good back then? When I take an honest assessment of the things I'm nostalgic for, the rose-tinted lenses drop away and I realize that now is better than then. Yes, even with the pandemic. On the whole, my life is better now than it was 15 years ago, and I hope yours is too. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 20, 2022
Embracing the Grind
Most things worth doing take time to do them. And time is a commitment. As I've mentioned before, you should avoid overloading yourself, so it's important to think about whether the payoff is worth the grind. That's going to depend on your own personal value system. Personally, it's worth the grind to me if I enjoy it, it will eventually make me money, or it's helping someone else.   ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 18, 2022
Maybe Enough Is That
I'm a restless person. It's hard for me to do a single thing for any period of time. I'm always looking forward to the next thing. Trying to achieve more, better, faster. And that is exhausting. A few key conversations and a little reflection brought me some clarity today. Maybe enough is enough. It doesn't need to be more. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 15, 2022
Web3 Infrastructure
I recently had a conversation with someone about what it takes to run components of a web3 application, and where web3 apps fit into the larger picture of applications in general. It was fascinating to hear from someone deeply involved in the space, and a chance to cut through some of the sturm and drang, getting down to the fundamentals of the technology. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 14, 2022
Seems like everyone is changing jobs to celebrate the new year. Is this unique to 2022, or is it a more common thing? What would it take to drag me away from my life of luxury and self-employment. The answer seems to be DevRel, but don't quote me on that. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 12, 2022
Hard Habit to Break?
Being a generally contrary person, I find it hard to create habits. As soon as I have a steady schedule or solid set of expectations, my contrary nature wants to subvert it. I've used that to hack my own workflow, but it's still kinda weird. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 08, 2022
Resumes are an outdated concept
Except they aren't. The reality is more nuanced and complicated, especially for folks early on in their career. As you grow more senior and build your professional network, the need to have a resume ready to go lessens. Personally, I haven't had to submit a resume in the last decade. Each job was through my professional network and I don't expect that to change. But early on in my career, applying to jobs required a resume and a whole lot of luck. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 04, 2022
2021 Year in Review
2022 is upon us! And it's already off to a shaky start. Let's look back on 2021 and I'll share some of my accomplishment and things I'm proud of from the year. There was a lot of technical content created, podcasts recorded, and posts blogged. Even if it was a challenging year personally; professionally I learned a ton. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
January 03, 2022
Clarity Through Writing
I've found a renewed focus on writing and I believe it is improving my presentations and courses. The process of writing out a technical topic forces you to really think through how things work. It also forces you to structure your thoughts with a narrative bent. By embracing writing, I believe that even unrelated content, like videos and podcasts will also improve. Also, I forgot how much I simply enjoy the process of writing. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 23, 2021
Managing Terraform Cloud with Terraform
As I prepare my course on Getting Started with Terraform Cloud, I am learning a lot about how companies might want to manage Terraform Cloud at scale. The answer is to use automation, and what better tool to use than Terraform itself. And if you're going to use Terraform, you might as well use Terraform Cloud. Which means I am writing a module for you to run on Terraform Cloud to manage organizations and workspaces on Terraform Cloud. What a time to be alive! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 22, 2021
Training for 2022
This year was a fantastic year for creating educational content. My Pluralsight catalog grew by six courses, and I started working on a series of liveProjects for Manning. I thought I would reflect on what I accomplished in the past year, and look to the future and my plans for 2022. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 21, 2021
Passing the Terraform Associate Exam
The Terraform Associate exam is meant to test those with an associate level understanding of Terraform and about six months of solid experience with the software. How can you prepare yourself to pass the exam? What can you do beyond videos and books? The answer, of course, is time in front of the keyboard! To learn it, you must use it. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 17, 2021
Networking without expectation
A few things have coalesced in my brain in the last couple weeks. The first is something I've strived to do in my career, and it has really paid off. That thing is being kind and approachable. The second is to approach interactions without a transactional mindset. If you go into a conversation with genuine empathy and interest, not only will you be rewarded with a better conversation, you'll also find new opportunities you weren't even looking for. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 15, 2021
Web3 isn't what you think it is.
Blockchain, cryptocurrency, web3? Is it all just a solution in search of a problem? Or is there something real underneath. I believe there is a real use for blockchain, but it's not the revolutionary technology that will free us from the shackles of our oppressors. At best, it's a way to have a non-fungible identity you can use on a platform. And that's not totally useless! Blog post: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 14, 2021
Infrastructure as Data?
Continuing my thoughts on the need for a CDK when developing IaC, I came across an interesting post (hat-tip Scott Lowe) about Crossplane and the concept of Infrastructure as Data. While I'm not convinced that Crossplane is the way of the future, it does push me closer to the idea of static IaC files as an artifact of the build process. Blog post: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 11, 2021
HashiCorp IPO
The software that HashiCorp creates has had a profound effect on my life. And the people behind that software are some of the best folks I know. I've never been prouder to be part of the HashiCorp Ambassador programs, and I wish nothing but the best for them as they move into this new phase as a publicly traded company. Well done! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 10, 2021
Why You Need a CDK
In Terraform, I was trying to do a data transformation and it broke my brain for a bit. I've since recovered, but it got me thinking about the proper place for data manipulation for infrastructure as code. The solution might be to use a general purpose programming language and a CDK, instead of the domain specific languages directly. Blog post: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 08, 2021
Can You Afford an Outage?
Yes. Yes you can. The recent AWS outage today served as a reminder that even cloud services fail, no technology is infallible, and you should always plan for downtime. It will also be a chance for people who know nothing to spew platitudes about availability zones and multi-region architectures into the social media ether. Please ignore those people. You know what is best for your applications, not them. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Website: Pluralsight: GitHub:
December 08, 2021