Series: Yearly Review
2020 in Professional Review
Here I’m mostly going to focus on professional achievements.
Here’s the short list, and then details in sections below.
- Continued Microsoft MVP
- About the same blog traffic
- Speaking at conferences and at meetups and at work
- Technology trends in 2020 in my career
- Other Education and Experiences
Continued Microsoft MVP
I became a Microsoft MVP in 2018, and then I got it again in 2019, and then I kept it in 2020. I’ve met a lot of people because of that and it’s helped make introductions more easily. I’m very fortunate.
About the same blog traffic
I published 2 blog posts in 2020.
Far less blog posts were published in 2020 compared to 2019; however, there was almost no decreased traffic. In fact, blog traffic became more focused with the more popular posts becoming more popular and most of the rest fading into the background.
Speaking at conferences and at meetups and at work
I almost entirely stopped giving talks to conferences and to meetups. It’s been challenging this year to spend a lot of extra time making speaking content suitable for those remote audiences.
On the other hand, I have given dozens of remote talks and training at work, some successful and some not so much. These work talks have been quite a different dynamic of preparation required since the vast majority of topics have been subject domains that I live with every month.
These talks have had a great advantage of not having to create many slides since I often have relevant practical examples to show. Subjects have included SQL Server database tuning and maintenance, Python ETL best practices and deployment, Azure deployment, unit testing, Azure Data Factory, Active Directory integration, OIDC, data standards for cross-platform integration, a whole host of employer-specific processes/domains, and more.
Technology trends in 2020 in my career
- Azure. A lot of Azure professionally. I like the cloud and Azure is great because it’s a good platform in which I have free credits.
- Kubernetes I have a kubernetes cluster at home that I’m constantly messing around with. I hope to have a lot of blog posts coming out soon on my adventures here.
- SQL. I’ve done a lot of SQL performance tuning and investigation, and general SQL Server administration this year on many projects. I expect SQL to keep increasing as I get more and more into the data world.
- Linux. Personally increased a lot. My old desktop dual-boots ElementaryOS and Windows 10, and that Windows 10 installation is only used for video games with friends. Otherwise, I’ve mostly been running Kubuntu 20.04 on my personal machines. The particular distro doesn’t much matter to me so long as it’s stable.
- Python Python has appeared both personally and professionally. I really enjoy Python development, and it’s going to increase.
- Golang I’ve done a little bit more this year, but not nearly as much as I want to. I really enjoy Go as a language and the ecosystem.
- C# & .NET. Nothing surprising about this, it’s been part of my career for years.
- Salesforce. Professionally only. As far as platforms go, it’s not bad. Most of my quibbles here are with the inane administration interface, and the terrible default data models.
- Oracle and Oracle E-Business-Suite. Professionally only. This has definitely shown up more than is comfortable.
- ReactJS. I have several sites using ReactJS. I like it, but I only use it personally. It will show up in a few more things I haven’t released yet.
- Angular. I like it and I appreciate that it has a batteries included mindset. It’s just leaving any active work lately.
- F#. I have a lot of personal projects in F# but only my game project is being worked on. Apart from the game project I just haven’t been doing F#.
Other Education and Experiences
It’s impossible to capture all progress made purely in technological buzzwords above. So I want to call out some education and experiences this year.
I’ve worked almost fully remote this entire year. This wouldn’t bother me if I had the leeway to go have a social night afterwards, but this year hasn’t been conducive to that. Most of my social interaction this year has been via video-conferencing with my work teammates. I’m a fan of remote work with intent to continue, but it’s been a difficult year for remote work.
I’ve had the senior honorific in my job titles for some years now. During this time I’ve learned many things, made many mistakes, changed some views, and yet I still have so much more to learn. I can never become complacent in the status quo. I must always strive to understand more. To this purpose, I have every intent of a professional goal in stepping it up this year with a formal recognition as a technical leader.
I’m not going to list out details of jobs, I’ll leave that to my LinkedIn. 2020 was a strong but quiet year for me. Whatever 2021 holds for me, the best I can do is to face it with a strong attitude. Here’s to hoping for a good 2021!