Hire Andrew Siemer!

I have always felt that other people can sell me better than I can sell myself. Below are some recommendations from former and current colleagues. And of course you can always see more recommendations like these by visiting my LinkedIn profile.

Musings of a worker bee

Since my move back to consulting I have been involved with a bunch of different big and small companies each with several big and small projects.  The one thing I almost always see missing is the ability to measure the success of a project from any of the numerous ways to gauge success.  I have been a fan of the notion of “Measure anything, measure everything” since reading it in February of 2011. 
It’s official, I’ve been nominated and accepted by Microsoft as a Virtual Technology Specialist (vTSP) in Azure! I’m extremely excited to be considered among the elite in the Microsoft Partner Community, and I look forward to learning more about the program and helping businesses find value using Microsoft Azure.
Scott Hanselman recently posted about putting yourself out there by publishing an open source project in which you do the best you can today and put it out there for others to use …and ultimately critique.  And that is hard.  I recently posted an image I love describing where the magic happens which touches on the idea of stepping out of your comfort zone to push yourself to be better.  This notion applies to nearly every industry it would seem  And this seems to be a common topic that is top of mind for many people – throughout our history as people!
Josh Handel presented some great inner detail around Azure Search this week. Here are his slides and a recorded video of the meeting if you missed it.
I couldn’t agree more with this graphic.  Find something that is truly next level in your world and do it.  Generally it is something that is being done by the “successful” people you admire in your field.  Something you might feel uncomfortable with.
I have been digging deep in Azure and AWS a lot lately.  And have been looking at the new world of internet of things.  And eventually this combination leads you to the new Event Hubs tool from Azure and the Kinesis tool from Amazon.  While researching bits for a presentation on “A Tale of Two Clouds” where I am comparing the features of the two top cloud vendors I came across a great slide deck around “Event Loop”.  And nestled in that deck was this wonderful graphic that I am sure to re-use in my “Introduction to CQRS” presentation.
I can’t wait to go to Silicon Valley this weekend.  I haven’t been there in a long time.  Taking the wife.  We figured it would be a great get away location for us!
I was just accepted to speak at this years Austin Code Camp!  In this talk we will take a look at a standard web application hosted in Azure with a few different backing data stores. We will see how to wire up the common interactions (get one, get many, pagination, search, add, delete) as it pertains to each storage type. And then we will load up 1 million records see how each of the different configurations perform in those common scenarios.
Great news!  We have locked up October and November presentations.  We will have Josh Handel at the next Meetup discussing faceted search in Azure Search.  He will also show us the new Elastic SQL.  In November we will have Paul Drew show us how to build environments using BoxStarter and other tools.
Another speaking engagement has been confirmed!  I am delivering a talk at this years InnoTech Austin.  The talk is entitled “A tale of two clouds – a side by side comparison of Microsoft Azure and AWS”.
There have been a few outages in Azure land in the past month or so.  This of course has impacted some of their customer base and created the loud question “how do I ensure that their outages don’t bring my applications down?”.  The first step is to understand that simply having your application in a cloud does not make that application Highly Available.  HA is not a default behavior…it is a planned and configured behavior.  Let’s learn how to make an application highly available in Azure.
Normally I don’t mind when something automated PERIODICALLY fails due to the underpinnings of the infrastructural world.  However, lately I have been banging my head on all things Azure.  Last night scripts that have been running amazingly for a long while stopped working.  I received the error “ConflictError: Windows Azure is currently performing an operation on this hosted service that requires exclusive access.”
Last week was great fun. We got to see Andrew Siemer (me) present on the topic of Azure Search and DocumentDB. Next month we have a couple of people that have potentially raised their hands to speak…but are not yet entirely confirmed. If you are interested in sharing with the group let me know!  Here is the code and slides from last weeks presentation: https://github.com/asiemer/AzureAustin-20140917
I read an interesting post from Scott Hanselman the other day pertaining to microphones and remote workers. Oddly enough we have been battling an issue in the office over the past couple of weeks where a person’s microphone would be awesome at the start of a meeting…but then slowly degrade over time.  Not degrade in quality, just that the volume would slowly get lower and lowers.  So he would be speaking and it was as if he just started to walk away from the conversation.  As we use google voice, skype, and gotomeeting, there were three apps (we thought) potentially cancelling one another out.  We looked and looked through the app settings for the culprit and finally just decided to look for an all app solution.  As it turns out there is an easy one!
I have a talk coming up at AzureAustin (tomorrow actually).  It is about Azure’s new Document DB and Search services.  Both of these are data intensive.  Using crap data in those environments won’t quite give the full impact that might be needed for such a presentation.  Thanks to Jeep – I love JEEPS – I now have a fun set of data by simply spidering through some data on their end and making the generator just a touch smarter.