Monday, January 04, 2016

What's up with Gordon in 2016?

First off, let me say that I’m not planning big changes although I’m sure my activities will continue to evolve as the market does. Red Hat’s doing interesting work in a diverse set of related areas and I’ll continue to evangelize those technologies, especially as they span multiple product sets. With that said, here’s how the year looks to be shaping up so far.

Travel and speaking. Last year broke a string of most-travel-ever years with airline mileage ending up “just” in the 60,000 mile range. This was partially because I didn’t make it to Asia last year but it was still a somewhat saner schedule overall. It remains to be seen what this year will bring but I’ll probably shoot for a similar level this year.

I already know I’ll be at Monkigras in London, ConfigMgmtCamp in Gent, CloudExpo in NYC, Interop in Vegas, and IEEE DevOps Unleashed in Santa Monica. I also typically attend a variety of Linux Foundation events, an O’Reilly event or two, Red Hat Summit (in SF this year), and VMworld (although I always say I won’t); I will probably do most of these this year as well. I may ramp things up a bit—especially for smaller gatherings—in my current areas of focus, specifically DevOps and IoT. This translates into DevOps Days and other events TBD.

If there’s some event that you think I should take a look at or would like me to speak, drop me a line. Note that I’m not directly involved with sponsorships, especially for large events, so if you’re really contacting me to ask for money, please save us both some time.

Writing. I have various papers in flight at the moment and need to map out what’s needed over the next six months or so. I also begin the year with my usual good intentions about blogging, which I was reasonably good about last year. My publishing schedule to this blog was down a bit but but I’ve also been writing for,, and—as well as a variety of online publications.

You’re reading this on my "personal" blog. It's mostly (75%+) devoted to topics that fall generally under the umbrella of "tech." I generally keep the blog going with short link-comments when I'm not pushing out anything longer. The opinions expressed on this blog are mine alone and the content, including Red Hat-related content, is solely under my control. I’m also cross-posting to Medium when I feel it’s justified.

My biggest ambition this year is to publish a new book. This has been the subject of on-again, off-again mulling for the last 12 to 18 months or so. I began with the intent to just revise Computing Next to bring in containers and otherwise adapt the content to the frenetic change that’s going on in the IT industry today. However, as time went on, this approach made less and less sense. Too much was different and too many aspects required reframing.

Therefore, while I will probably repurpose some existing content, I’m going to start fresh. The pace of change still makes writing a book challenging but, given where we are with containers, xaaS, DevOps, IoT, etc. I’m hopeful that I can put something together that has some shelf life. My current plan is to shoot for something in the 100-120 page range (i.e. longer than pamphlet-style but shorter than a traditional trade paperback)  for completion by the summer. I’d really like to have it done by Red Hat Summit but we’ll see how likely this is. Working title is Phase Shift: Computing for the new Millennium and  it will focus on how new infrastructure, application development trends, mobile, and IoT all fit together. 

Podcasts. I grade myself about a B for podcasts last year. I think I had some good ones but wasn’t as aggressive about scheduling recording sessions as I could have been. I expect this year will end up similarly although I’m going to make an effort to bring in outside interview subjects on a variety of topics. I find 15 minute interviews are a good way to get interesting discussions out there without too much effort. (And I get them all transcribed for those who would prefer to read.)

Video. Video seems to be one thing that largely drops off my list. It’s takes a fair bit of work and I’ve struggled with how to use it in a way that adds value and is at least reasonably professional looking. It probably doesn’t help that I’m personally not big into watching videos when there are other sources of information. 

Social networks. I am active on twitter as @ghaff. As with this blog, I concentrate on tech topics but no guarantees that I won't get into other topics from time to time.

I mostly view LinkedIn as a sort of professional rolodex. If I've met you and you send me a LinkedIn invite, I'll probably accept though it might help to remind me who you are. I'm most likely to ignore you if the connection isn’t obvious, you send me a generic invite, and/or you appear to be just inviting everyone under the sun. I also post links to relevant blog posts when I remember.

I'm a pretty casual user of Facebook and I limit it to friend friends. That's not to say that some of them aren't professional acquaintances as well. But if you just met me at a conference somewhere and want to friend me, please understand if I ignore you.

I use Google+ primarily as an additional channel to draw attention to blogs and other material that I have created. I also participate in various conversations there. As with twitter, technology topics predominate on my Google+ stream.

I use flickr extensively for personal photography.

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