Self

Monthly recap (December 2018)

Dramatic cloudy sky on the cab ride back from the airport

Major updates:

  • Trip to India to visit parents/friends/relatives
  • A unicorn-themed birthday party for Tara at home!

Minor updates:

  • A first movie night for me and Shivi (i.e. also a first for Tara being babysitted): watched Bohemian Rhapsody. An absolute delight!
  • Caught up with a lot of movies/reading this month

Watched/read:

(This is how I catch up on the movies of the year!)

  • Rewatched Raiders of the lost Ark (always good)
  • In the plane: Mission Impossible: Fallout (wow!), The predator (2018) (yuck), Avengers: Infinity War (okay), The Meg (okay), The house with a clock in its walls (okay), Ready player one (good), Bad times at El Royale (wow!)
  • While on vacation: 15:17 to Paris(okay), Andhadhun (wow!)
  • At home: Masters of the Universe (fun), Civilizations (okay)
  • Read Zero to One, Atomic Habit; finished reading The Prague Cemetery and The power of full engagement after many months
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Self

Annual recap: 2018

Me/Family:

  • I moved from Google to Pure Storage
  • Went for a memorable Warriors/Cavaliers game
  • Ran a 10K
  • Shivi moved to a new team in engineering
  • Experiments: gave up coffee for a month, did a 3-day fast
  • Travel: San Diego, Monterey, Sydney, Melbourne, Maui, Cabo, Delhi

Tara:

  • First bike
  • First board game
  • Made some shirts for her on Zazzle
  • We went on a couple of hikes
  • Kite-flying
  • Watched Disney on Ice

Review:

  • I did get to run a 10K
  • I didstart sleeping earlier (I used to routinely sleep past midnight earlier!)
  • I haven’t really become a morning person yet 😐

Tentative New Years’ Resolutions:

  • Wake up earlier in the morning
  • Write more frequently, share more of what I’m thinking, doing, learning
  • Run two 10Ks
Self

Honey Yogurt

I had slowly gotten used to the flavored Chobani yogurts (strawberry, peach ….) but the one I liked most of all was the honey flavored one.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have easy access to this anymore … but I did have plain yogurt around, and I did have honey, and … I mixed them together and it tasted pretty good!

So — I’m clocking in at a few times a day now, gotta slow down, but — this is my new addiction!

Self

Monthly recap (November 2018)

 

Random train tracks …

 

Major updates:

A week in Cabo!

  • A lot of hanging out at the pool
  • A lot of eating
  • Wandering into the towns, encountered some music
  • A boat ride and just randomly walking around (nice and warm)

Minor updates:

  • Adventures in fixing a faucet and water heater

Watched/read:

  • Read The power of full engagement
  • Watched Season 6 of House of Cards (meh)
Self

Angst about the static blog (again!)

This is beyond frustrating … after I moved everything this year to a different layout and thought I was “finally done”, I’m now wondering whether the static site is a good idea at all.

The big bottleneck turns out to be having to SSH somewhere and regenerate/refresh the site that way, which was okay earlier, but feels like a drag now.

I really want to write whenever I get time, since I’m not always onmy laptop. So I resorted to making it “async”, decoupling the writing from a separate time when I go and copy-paste everything into new posts and re-generate … except I then forget to do this sometimes, and every time I write something, I realize I have to now remember to do this other step at some point.

It would be so much better if I could just publish whenever I write. This seems to suggest one of the usual hosted platforms, and then I have to wonder why I even have two separate blogs, and I think of all the effort it would take to convert what I have into a new format (sigh!).

I’m sure there’s a sweet spot that exists somewhere. Is this the kind of thing that Ghostwould provide? Or is this what Tumblr was supposed to be?

Is having a personal hosted site simply too old-school and I need a new kind of place for this?

Or should I just have this WordPress place and — I do want to keep these two “worlds” separate — have two sets of posts? Is that possible?

I just want to be able to write and publish and forget about it 😦

Self

Monthly recap (October 2018)

 

Wings, wand, and glow-rings

 

Major updates:

  • Ran a 10K! (Stevens Creek Trailblazer at Shoreline Park)
  • Fun weekend trip to Seattle
  • Visited the Monterey Aquarium and finally saw the Giant Pacific Octopus moving around!

Minor updates:

  • Updated my older Series 1 Apple Watch to the newer one
  • Halloween fun

Watched/read:

  • Disney on Ice … not bad
  • Listened to The essential guide to NLP
  • Couple of episodes of Altered Carbon
Self

Why you should join Pure

I thought I’d share a few thoughts about why Pure Storage is a good place to consider working.

There’s no “one size fits all” answer for everyone, I’m not really aiming this at everyone … but I’m sure there’s somone out there who’ll benefit from it, so it’s worth writing. I can share my own experience, and let you decide where to take it. Pros and cons abound here, but that’s okay: there are things that seemed important to me earlier that I don’t care for now, and vice versa.

Pure occupies some of the rarified middle ground between small startups and the FAANG giants. I feel the “storage” tag is a bit unfortunate, it gives the impression of being boring, but there’s a lot of interesting technology behind the scenes here. For more context: within Pure, there is the larger, more mature, FlashArray division that has the “just replace hard disks with flash” mandate, which I know less about, and my notes apply more to the smaller, newer, FlashBlade division, where I work.

FlashBlade is still in the “everyone-can-fit-into-a-large-room-for-all-hands” stage, so it definitely feels small, since you can get to the “knowing everyone on a first-name basis” in a couple of months.

The product itself has some non-intuitive technical challenges: it is effectively a “mini-cluster”, effectively a set of server racks in the form factor of a large microwave, and so has all the interesting distributed systems challenges you might typically only associate with “cloud” systems.

Features we work on are usually those that are desperately needed to sell more of the product, or to improve its reliability/performance — which means there is a strong sense of purpose, and also a drip-drip-drip of “real” feedback, from sales and the field, as we do demos, roll out beta versions, etc.

So, my own experience:

(Pros)

  • I have an amazing team to work with, an amazing manager, and an amazing director.
  • Teams are constantly shuffled around as we work on features, so the answer to “can I switch teams after a year?” is “you must switch teams before a year”
  • Working with Slack, Git, Stash, Jira
  • You get to build whatever tools you need
  • You get to write/re-write/modify docs and processes as you see fit
  • You can change any part of the code, at any level of abstraction, ownership of the code isn’t tied to people or teams

(Cons)

  • Limited free food
  • No fancy decor
  • Generally fewer creature comforts
  • Development experience is less than perfect
  • Some wikis/docs may be missing, you need to write them
  • Some tools you may be missing, you need to build them
  • Ownership of the code isn’t tied to people or teams, you might need to read/write/rewrite code you haven’t seen before (notice the pattern here? 🙂)

As you might guess, none of the Cons listed above bother me, but I have felt differently about that in the past (and may feel differently about that in the future), but like I said right at the top, that’s fine — this isn’t for everyone, but hopefully it helps someone out there take a good look at Pure and decide to come in for an interview. If you like hard challenges, working hard with a like-minded team, a lot of control over your work, building out new features/tools, you’ll like working here.