Hi! I’m Rob. The fact that you are here leads me to think that you are either entirely bored or have a propensity to read everything that you see on the internet. On the off chance, that you genuinely want to know about me, here are a few tidbits. Just remember, you asked for it.
Technobabble (What I do for a living)
From a career standpoint, I’ve spent most of my time in High-Performance Computing for research groups focused primarily on bioinformatics and physics. In 2015, I entered the private sector and am now deep in infrastructure and reliability for one of the largest mobile analytics companies that you probably have not heard of - but you probably use our customer’s apps and services. My experience spans working directly on metal and in the cloud with all of the nuances that each environment brings to the table.
Strangely enough, I’ve wound up in leadership positions in most of my jobs. It’s good or bad depending on how you look at it. Since the critical path of my career tends is focused on teams rather than hands-on at this point, I tend to spend most of my free time in the futile struggle of keeping my skills from deteriorating too much.
Even though my career path has masochistically (or sadistically - depending on which side you are on) focused on the infrastructure engineering side of technology, my true love is still software. I don’t get into those areas as much as I used to, but in my day I was an avid Ruby and Python programmer. These days, I’ve been focusing more on Rust and Go.
I’ve worked on projects that span the entire stack: From front-end development, backend service development, systems programming, and data center design/buildouts.
Deeper Down the Rabbit Hole (What I care about)
On a more personal note, I have a fantastic family and a genuinely patient partner who tolerates an overdeveloped sense of commitment to technology and work. Why she hasn’t left me yet will forever remain a mystery.
I’m very much a lover of art, music, and animals (all animals, but I have to say that I gravitate to cats). One of my favorite dates with my wife involved hopping on a plane, flying to Boston, and visiting the Museum of Fine Arts. When I was younger, I thought I was going to be an artist but found out that it was more of a hobby than something I wanted to do full time. While inevitably debugging system and application issues at 3:00 AM, I often ponder whether or not I should have taken that road.
I’m also a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom whose in-theater experiences fostered a deep-seated belief in individual and human rights - not just for humans that look and act like a select few (i.e., white and orange men - ok, that was political). Surprisingly enough, though you may hear the ‘no atheists in foxholes’ mantra from time to time, Iraq killed my belief in religion and the notion of a higher power.
Over the years, I’ve tried to pull out the weeds of intolerance and hate that came from the ultra-conservative and ultra-religious environment that growing up in a small town in Idaho brought with it. I wouldn’t say that I am militant in any of my liberal leaning views. I think that everyone is entitled to their opinions as long as they don’t try to force those views on others or restrict the actions of others based on a hyper-developed sense of morality and righteous indignation.
Well, that got pretty personal fast, and it’s probably more than you wanted to know about me, but I like to be open about my beliefs, non-beliefs, and values. I have a lot to learn and am thankful to the people that have called me out when I’ve stumbled across shitty thought patterns. I’m on a mission of constant improvement and change.
If I were to summarize who I am in a sentence it would probably be (in the 3rd person of course): Rob is a slightly neurotic and overly irreverent person who is deeply empathetic towards everything. Yeah, that pretty much says it.