Episode 071: Learning and Teaching Azure with Lars Klint | CloudSkills.fm

Mike Pfeiffer on April, 15, 2020

In this episode I catch up with Lars Klint, fellow Microsoft MVP, software developer, and Azure instructor at A Cloud Guru.

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Full Transcript:

Mike Pfeiffer: What's up everybody? It's Mike Pfeiffer. Welcome back to another episode of the CloudSkills.fm podcast. Appreciate you tuning in as usual today talking to Lars Klint. Lars is a big time Azure expert. You probably seen him out there. Lars, what's up man?

Lars Klint: I'm pretty good. How are you Mike? Yeah, it's cold this morning in Australia, but we'll get through it.

Mike Pfeiffer: It's the opposite for me. I'm in Arizona, it's starting to heat up, getting ready for the devil's summer out here. It's crazy.

Lars Klint: Yeah, I thought you only had summer.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah. I know, right? It's pretty much summer, 100% of the time for the most part. We very rarely get rain or clouds or any of that kind of stuff. But it's good to catch up with you man because I know that you're doing lots in the Azure community. And for anybody that doesn't know you though, maybe you should kind of share who you are, what you're working on, how you got to this point, all that kind of stuff.

Lars Klint: Yeah. Well, I mean, how long have you got?

Mike Pfeiffer: Right.

Lars Klint: I've always liked technology, so I guess, I mean I sort of started when I was like seven and I bought my first Commodore 64 with my paper route money. But I mean that's not really Azure as such. So I've always had computers and I guess when I was about maybe 18, 19. I sort of realized, hey, I want to make what makes computer tick? Like how do you actually make them do stuff? And from there it's kind of been an evolving journey that's gone through four countries and stuff. And so I guess in earnest, I started really developing when I was about 26, 27 or something. I started quite late just because I don't know, I have these squirrel moments. I go, "Oh, that's cool. I'll do that." Such as accounting.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah.

Lars Klint: Yeah. So that didn't work.

Mike Pfeiffer: Right.

Lars Klint: And then, I've just in the last say maybe 10 years I been doing Azure on and off. Not in any particular thing, but all with development. And then lately since I started a new job, I've sort of got into, okay, what is all this is admin stuff, how do I use virtual machines? How do I use IS, in general. And that's been an interesting journey because I am genuinely a developer at heart. So forcing myself to learn what a firewall does and what VNet does. Yeah. It's been interesting.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah. That is an interesting kind of background and 10 years in Azure kind of seems like, hey is that even possible? But really, I mean if you're a developer 10 years in Azure is like developers first was kind of the idea. Right?

Lars Klint: I know because people keep saying there's like about 10 years, did you do AWS? I was like, "No, I don't think I ever done AWS." I think I had one project once where there was some AWS in it. No, but I started with the wet workers and the ... What were they called? All the worker roles. That was the first things.

Mike Pfeiffer: Azure classic. But I'm also forgetting now the other names and stuff. But yeah, it was a much different thing back then. But it's changed a lot.

Lars Klint: Do you remember the old portal written in Silverlight?

Mike Pfeiffer: Oh God, yeah. Remember when they first started doing virtual machines and if you wanted to like have a lab environment for demos, you had to rebuild your VMs every time off of disks that you saved because you couldn't actually stop paying for VMs even if you stopped them.

Lars Klint: Yes.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah.

Lars Klint: Yes. That's why I didn't do any VMs.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah. I don't blame you.

Lars Klint: Because I knew I'd get in trouble.

Mike Pfeiffer: Well one of the things you said, I think that all of us are kind of challenged with is having to go into these other areas. So you as a developer, you've had infrastructure things that you've had to learn for folks like me that are doing lots of infrastructure over the last several years. Having to get more into development. And I think it's like just kind of the sign of the times, right? We all got to embrace, isn't it true?

Lars Klint: Kind of, yeah. I think I still have this sort of, I don't know if it's a hope, but that we don't really need IS in the long run. Like we don't need to worry about the actual components that do up the things you want to do. I'm pretty sure that the major projects that I will be working on at least was going to be something like event hub and event grid, especially if you're talking about IOT kind of devices. You don't really want to have to manage scale sets and all the VMs and everything. So it becomes much more of Pez world in my opinion. And I think that's a good thing. I don't think we need to necessarily manage all of the infrastructure for a project if we don't have to. Of course, there's going to be projects and ideas that will generate a need for having control over a virtual machine or a virtual network or the specific storage blob section, blob container or whatever it might be. But I just don't think that's going to be the majority of projects. I don't think that's conducive to kind of this, I hate to use cliches, but move fast and break things like the whole idea of let's just try this idea out and put it up in the world and see what happens.

Lars Klint: So yes, it has been interesting learning about configuring virtual machines and making sure you create the right one and set the policy on it and all that stuff. But I just don't think that's going to be the majority of at least what the developers are going to be doing in the future. That's just my prediction.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah, I couldn't agree more. And this is coming from somebody that started with infrastructure. I spent a couple of years doing dot net web development. So that's why I've got some perspective about software dev and I still do some lightweight stuff, but I'm mainly an infrastructure person and as an infrastructure person I can totally agree with you and say that, there's things that differentiate you as a business and doing a bunch of infrastructure work usually, isn't that right? And so going more managed service, is just going to be a natural progression. What is the most impressed or what service to you in Azure in terms of a managed service do you think is most rock solid? What's your favorite?

Lars Klint: Oh, you had to put the solid word in there, dammit. No, I think it's ... I keep coming back to the ... I still think it's Cosmos DB even though ... So Cosmos DB, for the people that may not know has been around for a long time. It didn't always, you used to be called Cosmos, but it sort of, Cosmos had been become sort of an umbrella service for actually a lot of products, but the core of Cosmos in terms of being able to just have geo redundancy and have incredibly fast and writes anywhere in the world to me is just magic. I still don't understand how they do it. Like this 10 millisecond write, no matter where you are, if you set it up correctly, of course. It's just pure magic to me and yes, people say, "Oh, but it's so expensive and Oh, you rack up bills really quick and yada, yada, yada." Yeah, you may do that, but then maybe you also not using it for the right purpose or in the right way. It's not, Oh, let's sped up my app that does calculations or flashlight app or whatever. It's not what it's for. It's for large infrastructure project.

Lars Klint: And it just works. I've been very impressed with the bits that I've used of it, which is not much granted. And then the fact that they have a free TNO. I think I just thought I'd bring that up because there's a free ... One Cosmos DB database on your account can be free. For a certain level. But that's cool.

Mike Pfeiffer: That is cool. And it's interesting too because Cosmos DB I agree with you is probably the biggest pushback you'll ever hear is about the cost. But to your point, what you can do is pretty compelling. But I think a lot of like the baggage from the old days of doing relational database, people still have to work through that and figure out what you can do with NoSQL. Right. And that's a pretty good statement. And in that you said, if you're spending too much, maybe you're using it for the wrong reason or you're trying to wedge some old solution into this new service. So I agree with that.

Mike Pfeiffer: The other thing that I'm baffled by as well after building SQL server clusters for years back in the original, or I guess I should say the virtual machine days or the on prem physical days of building availability groups or SQL server clusters and then just going into Azure SQL and saying, "Hey, I want to replicate a database to another region." And it's literally clicking through a wizard and you're done in five minutes. Basically you're waiting for the data replicate but the process of doing it's just mind boggling and you're just like, man, it just works.

Lars Klint: It's really impressive and I guess for the people that used Azure SQL five years ago, it's different now. There's actually parity now in the SQL language and it works because there was some teething issues initially, which I ran into. I remember I had a project I was working on for sort of a mid sized logistics company in Sydney and they were like, "No, we need to be in the cloud because we don't want to rely on our tech guys to always be on call." And all the right reasons, and then they tried to wedge this enormous database ...

Lars Klint: They tried to wedge this enormous database replication system into Azure sequel, and it was an absolute nightmare. But you can do that now. So it has definitely progressed.

Mike Pfeiffer: It has. Yeah, it has. I'm curious since you know you have such a deep development background, one of the things that I spent a lot of time on last year I was trying to help developers as well as infrastructure teams, architects, managed services in the cloud. One of the push backs you get from core infrastructure teams is, "Oh, we don't want public IPS on all this managed services. So we want to put something in front of that." Like walling stuff up inside V-Net and stuff, which it's cool because now you have the ability to do that just about in any managed service you can drop it in a V-Net and isolate it. But to me sometimes those conversations feel like over-engineering. What do you think about that? Do you agree and are you hearing a lot about that?

Lars Klint: Sort of. To your specific point right now, there's a new thing called private link, which I think is a command or preview, I'm not sure. It essentially means that new data within Azure will never ever go on the public internet. And it also supports the marketplace, Azure marketplace. So the third party stuff, so obviously they have to opt into it and do the right things or whatever. I'm not sure how the development cycle of that works.

Lars Klint: But yes, I guess I'm fortunate right now. So I work in a cloud first company, which is again one of these niche marketing terms. But it essentially means that we do everything in the cloud. We don't have any servers at all. We just started getting some virtual machines, because we took over another company but we never had any BMZ though. So everything was sort of very much like, "Okay, how can we do it as nimble as possible."

Lars Klint: So I haven't had to have those discussions really. But when I was freelancing and I was trying to help, one of my main roles was to essentially help companies understand how modern infrastructure and cloud stuff works. There was a lot of those conversations of ... Yeah, but this is really ... Say we have credit card details, we don't want that in the public internet or we don't want to have to set up new SSL certificates constantly or whatever it might be. There was an awful lot of excuses and the majority of them were, well, justified concerns absolutely. I don't remember any scenarios where it couldn't be resolved with cloud or ... And back to you.

Lars Klint: Actual point of engineering things. People trying to take this on-premise mindset and then translate into cloud. And that's really dangerous because a lot of the infrastructure that you have that you manage on site just isn't in Azure. It just doesn't exist. And that's the whole point. You don't have to. There's certainly, of course old school admins or IT pro whatever term you prefer that really don't like giving up that control. And I don't know if that's an issue of mistrust maybe or maybe not having the right information or afraid of losing your job or whatever the reason maybe, I don't think there's a good reason. Just embrace it and then learn that new thing.

Mike Pfeiffer: I agree. Yeah. I agree 100%. There's always variables and circumstances. Everybody's got their own thing. But fundamentally, as people, as humans, we just don't like to change. So that's part of it. I think that's the core of it. But one of the things that you mentioned, you're working for a startup. I think a lot of the people listening to the show, probably know where you work. And I'd love to get into that actually, because content creation is something that I do a lot of. So, if I'm not mistaken, you're still at A Cloud Guru, right?

Lars Klint: I am. My job is content creation more. Pretty much 100%.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah. I've talked about this a lot on the show. Building content and doing that, not just consuming it, but building it. I think the people in the audience, especially in this show really liked that concept because there's a lot of people considering getting the game. I know it was a game changer for me, my career, and I would love to hear about maybe your journey there in like kind of switching from doing day to day developments, getting into content creation and now that's kind of like what your remaining role is, right?

Lars Klint: Sure. Yeah. It certainly was a change. And before I worked for A Cloud Guru, I worked for curl site. As a contractor course by course for a long time. Initially I was working as developer for just a consultancy in Melbourne, which was really cool. Like lots of different projects, lots of different things. We use barrels out all the time and I was like, "Okay, hang on, I could probably do one of these courses. I think I could."

Lars Klint: I mean that's the first step is that you've got to believe that you actually can do it. And then that's the conversation that I had in the last eight years or whatever with a lot of people about, well how do you even? I say, "Well, you've got to want it." That's the first step. I found an old email address in some old blog post at that time, old blog posts and I emailed this email address and say, "Hey, look at me. Look at me." And that was the start. I had what they call an audition and Cloud Guru used to have the same audition kind of principal. You got to record a little bit. You've got to show how you out on screen. You got to put some material together and make sure that you, of course you can speak English properly because that's the motive of teaching.

Lars Klint: So nothing against people that know other languages, but just in this case it was English. English is not my first language. Of course that's a concern for most people. So that's the sort of process of it. But once you're in it, it's this appetite or this urge to learn a new thing, that really drives it. So I've been doing mostly as Azure stuff, over the next couple of years that's probably going to change because we always change, we always adapt. And I guess with A Cloud Guru, the bit I really enjoy is that we have this creative freedom. So for me it's always been a creative process.

Lars Klint: I usually say, if you start yawning or if you bored of my courses, just please, please shoot me because that's the last thing I want you to be. Learning has to be, it doesn't have to be joke after joke after joke, but it has to be an interesting thing that you want to do. There has to be some sort of entertainment value in it because you got to keep engaged. No one is engaged for slide 50 of the same bullet points. It just does not work. So that to me is a big part of is trying to understand how can I make it better? How can I actually change the way that I teach this material? And this came kind of, I still see it now as kind of coming to fruition last year when I finished Azure 900 course.

Lars Klint: Azure 900 is the Azure fundamental certification. It's very much aimed at people that are not you and me, Mike, it's very much aimed at people that have probably never even looked at cloud or even a computer. So it could be your sales manager needing now to sell cloud services. It could be your you HR that now has to use cloud in some way or understand what it is the company does. It could be someone trying to change their career from maybe being a factory worker, maybe being an auto mechanic. Like it really is that broad. And I was really struggling initially with how do I teach these people? How do I make sure that I didn't become this arrogant dude that says well you should know this already a kind of thing. Because I didn't want to lose people in the first 10 minutes.

Lars Klint: So that became really the mantra of how do I keep people engaged. And the way I kind of came up with doing it was, okay, I'll have these slides and I'll make sure there's no bullet points because I hate bullet points, I can't have it. So it was all slides that would move all the time. So every 10 seconds there would be something happening at least. And then interject that with what we call face to camera stuff. So essentially I was explaining concepts of cloud computing using just everyday things like Lego bricks or coffee mugs or glasses of water, just having that real life sort of anchor point.

Lars Klint: Content creation is as much about knowledge of the subject as it is about figuring out how do you pass that knowledge on. And I enjoy both things, I still consult freelance for one client I have, just because I need to keep my hands on the tools. I can't just only teach, I need to do as well. It's a balance. Certainly content creation is not easy and especially not if you want to make it impactful and useful. I don't know. Does that answer your question kind of was that-

Mike Pfeiffer: It does.

Lars Klint: Oh, I don't know. Does that answer your question?

Mike Pfeiffer: It does, yeah. There's a lot of good stuff there. The one thing that I just keyed on at the end there, was a conversation I was actually having with somebody recently as well, which was like a lot of what you were saying, which is, it's not just about the binary data, it's also about the personality in the delivery and the art of communication in conveying that information. And I think the people that are interested, maybe in the back of their head, they get into the content game, producing stuff, whether it's video, audio, texts, whatever it is. Sometimes this thing comes into your head, like, "Well, it's already out there. Why would anyone want to hear it from me?" And your point is that the whole reason I want to learn it from Lars, is because I connected with you. I saw your content and I liked the way that you're doing it. Yeah. It's already in the documentation, right? And so I love that. I think that was awesome.

Mike Pfeiffer: The other thing that ... Yeah. The other thing that you said in that, that I really appreciate, was just the creative approach and using what you've got to explain stuff and not thinking that you have to stay in the lane. Was that an experimentation process for you to get into that or did you ever have any formal training?

Lars Klint: No, I don't. I've always liked teaching. I was that annoying guy at school that did really well. I've always enjoyed school. Yeah, I know. Don't look at me like that people. But what I also got a kick out of was helping the other kids that weren't as good. I had, especially one other guy, his name was also Lars, and he really struggled with maths, and that's one of the things I always ... It just made sense, right? One plus one is two. It just clicked. So I helped him, and I found ways of helping him in class in ways that didn't involve mathematics, because he didn't get it. His brain didn't understand numbers. It just didn't work that way. So, it really started there really early. But I haven't had any formal training at all. And maybe I should have, I don't know. That's a possibility.

Mike Pfeiffer: I don't know. I've been in a lot of classes with formal teachers that I couldn't stay awake in.

Lars Klint: That's what I'm thinking.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah.

Lars Klint: I've had many discussions with university teachers or lecturers about, "Hey, what you're doing is dead boring." And then they always get offended because they've been doing the same thing. There's this concept that ... I stole this from somewhere else, but I love it, is that people go, "But I have 20 years experience of doing this, and then you go, "Well, no you don't actually. You have one year experience 20 times over. You never ever evolved, right?" And I see that so often. I take that internally in Air Cloud Guru. I take that on me as well, is that I enjoy being in front of a camera. I enjoy doing the content and I want to see all of my colleagues have that same personality come through. They don't have to be silly dad jokes like I like to do all the time, but if you like knitting, then why don't you incorporate knitting into your course?

Lars Klint: If you like, whatever, your carburetor in a car, we'll use that. Just have something that shows who that person is, because that's what students connect with. I found that over and over and over again. And little things, leaving in your mistakes. If you're creating a cloud service, say you creating Cosmos DB, you get an error message, leave that stuff in. Show them what happened and how you fixed it. It is so valuable, because yeah, we make as many mistakes as everybody else. There's no difference in that regard. So, don't make it too polished.

Mike Pfeiffer: Right. Fixing the mistake is the learning opportunity, right? That's a teaching opportunity.

Lars Klint: Oh, totally.

Mike Pfeiffer: That's great. I would love to ask you about A Cloud Guru. I know that there's been big news over the last couple of months. You mentioned it earlier. You guys acquired ... What was it? Linux Academy, right?

Lars Klint: Linux Academy, yeah.

Mike Pfeiffer: And so, I'm curios. I'm sure everybody listening, and there's a lot of people that listen to this show that use your guys' content to ramp up and stuff. So, how's the acquisition going and what does it mean for learners over there and all that kind of fun stuff?

Lars Klint: It's going really well. I'm not going to go into all the marketing [inaudible 00:22:10], because we don't do that, to be honest, in the company at all. No, it's gone really well. Put it this way, it's basically two companies that used to compete with each other, having the exact same goal, now doing it together. We haven't had to change anything of what we do in terms of how we want to engage with students and stuff like that. Of course, there's a ton of internal changes, a whole new organizational structure, yada, yada, yada. A Cloud Guru went, for example, from maybe 10 full-time instructors and a whole bunch of freelances, to now we have 60 something full-time instructors. There's a lot of changes in that sense, yeah.

Lars Klint: So, of course, that changes how we manage things internally, how we plan courses, all of that. So, for all intents and purposes, we are still two separate companies. We're still working on how we're going to combine that. And there's some timelines around that, of how that's going to happen. But for learners, it means that you're essentially ... you're going to have all of the resources from two companies going into each course kind of thing now. I think it's very exciting and it's probably the best way forward.

Mike Pfeiffer: So, is it going to be a unified brand and unified, or is it still going to be two different ... You guys are working together but it's still Linux Academy and A Cloud Guru? Or is that just going to be all A Cloud Guru eventually?

Lars Klint: I'm not sure. And I'm not sure if I knew, that I was allowed to tell you. Yeah. The whole strategic stuff, we don't get involved in too much. I know that we're all working together on trying to figure out how to produce content for both platforms and come up with processes. Of course, we help each other as much as we possibly can. Some people are really good at one thing and some people are good at another thing, then we try and combine those things. So, the content is only going to get better and better and better. But I would imagine that down the track there would be one brand, or two brands under umbrella, or something to that effect.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah. It's fascinating to see two companies both grow up right in front of you on the internet. And both of them, their success is purely predicated on Cloud and it's just speaks the truth to us. You can see where this is going. This is a big deal and it's just a good example of that.

Mike Pfeiffer: But switching gears a lot here, or a little bit here. I know that you do a lot of community work. I know that you're doing some stuff, like a virtual user group and things like that. So, maybe you can talk about some of that, what you've got going on.

Lars Klint: Oh, for sure. So, for the last 10 years I've been doing a conference in Melbourne, which is my closest city. I live in the middle of nowhere. Out that window next to me I have llamas, right? That's how far out of the world I am.

Mike Pfeiffer: I was wondering if I was going to see a kangaroo or anything outside the window.

Lars Klint: Oh, hang on. We can do this. So, if you're recording the video, just for the visual viewers. I'm not going to hang up. Give me a sec here. There we go. I'm going to do that. And we can do this.

Mike Pfeiffer: Nice. Zoom backgrounds are the new thing man. It's awesome.

Lars Klint: Yeah, I know. So, we were asked at A Cloud Guru to do some instructor backgrounds, so that people could use them. And this was one of them. I don't think they've been released or anything yet, but that's kind of fun. But yeah, there is a llama and those are the actual llamas up that paddock there.

Lars Klint: But no, coming back to the conversation. I've been doing DDD Melbourne for the last 10 years, and that's a community conference to start out with 120 people. It was free. Then, last year we were about 800, 750 people or something. And we're charging for it, because free events don't work. No one shows up. And so, that's the background of the community effort. Combined with, obviously, meetup, presentations, and all the other stuff that a lot of MVPs in particular do. It was actually at Ignite in Orlando. I met with a Dutch friend of mine and his company, and they were thinking about doing an online Azure community initiative, because there's a lot of people that just can't get to meet ups for many, many reasons.

Lars Klint: I'm going to take that silly background off. Hang on. It's very distracting. There we go.

Lars Klint: It would be people like me that live too far away. It could be people with kids that just can't ... You don't have time between six and eight. That's when you're with your family. It can be people that can't physically commute that far. Many, many, many reasons. So, we wanted to bridge that gap and have some sort of dedicated and concerted effort of how do we bring the Azure content to more people. And I then teamed up with [Geet van der Klusen 00:26:57]. That's probably horribly wrong said, but Geet is from the Netherlands and he's kind of the.

Lars Klint: ... But [inaudible 00:27:01] is from the Netherlands and he's kind of the spearhead of this initiative, he does most of the cool stuff. And then there's me and Esteban that kind of try and keep up. Esteban Garcia, he's an MVP and a regional director from Florida as well. As of this time of recording, we've done 11 meetups online and they've been all sorts. The first ones, we had a couple of Microsoft employees, Donovan Brown and Laurent Bugnion, who just talked about Azure. And obviously these guys do it for a living. They're professionals and they have all of Azure inside their head, I think. Holy crap, there's a lot of knowledge there. So that was interesting. Then we did a couple of meetups with MVPs and community experts and we've done a couple of lunch and learn sessions just to try a different format, so half hour sessions and then lunchtime in a particular time zone.

Lars Klint: Because it's global, we have on purpose, people from Oceania, which is here basically Australia, New Zealand, from the US time zone,and from Europe time zone, just so we can try to cover all bases. And it's been cool. It's been interesting on multiple levels. One being, okay, how do we even make this work? So we use Skype as a communication with the person presenting, put that into what's called OBS and then stream it up to YouTube, which I think is a reasonably common way to do it. So that's presented some interesting things because here on this connection, I'm on satellite Internet. That's pretty interesting, streaming on satellite Internet. But we've had, yeah, just all sorts of different topics already and different presentation styles and it's all done online. It's all via camera and a microphone and it's very cool. I'm really enjoying it.

Mike Pfeiffer: That's really timely, right? With all the pandemic and everything, you guys are set up and ready.

Lars Klint: I know. Didn't plan it that way, I promise.

Mike Pfeiffer: You guys didn't have any inside information I guess, huh?

Lars Klint: No. We started in December, we recorded all our little promo things and whatever, and then did the first one in January and then the world just went bang. So yeah, it's timely. We've offered a lot of help to various groups that we know just because, "Hey, how do we move this to online now?" So that's been cool, at least sharing that kind of information.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah, that's awesome. User groups were transformational for my career and I would encourage anybody listening to get involved, whether it's Lars's or anybody's, it's super beneficial. And now, there's even more virtual meetings and meetups and user groups than there's ever been, yeah-

Lars Klint: And everybody's so friendly, there's no problem. Don't be afraid of, "I've never done it before." That's fine. You'll get all the help you need and if you don't, find a different user group, because you should get all the help you need.

Mike Pfeiffer: You'd probably appreciate this as a fellow trainer, teacher. I was just thinking about this the other day. I always tell people, do what the surgeons do, which is see one, do one teach one. Right? So get some training, get some hands on, turn around and teach it to somebody else. It's the best way to get every perspective-

Lars Klint: For sure.

Mike Pfeiffer: But one of the things I've realized I guess over the last couple of months is I think the other thing that that does for you is it puts you into the mind of the other person and that's a skill that if you develop, you become a much better practitioner. Because especially now when you're trying to work across teams, do you find that the same way? Actually really getting super clear on what other people are experiencing and then making sure what you're working on takes that into consideration?

Lars Klint: Oh for sure. I always adjust. We have a very active forum on acloud.guru, and we use it a lot. Any kind of feedback is really treated sort of like as, "Okay, there's probably an opportunity to do better." Of course, there's also sometimes where you go, "Well, I don't think that's going to work" kind of thing, but feedback is crucial. If I sit in a presentation at a conference, for example, and it's a presentation that's either from a new person or someone I know a little bit or something I enjoyed, I always tell the people, "Hey, here's my impression of what you did. Here's all the cool things. Here's what you could probably improve on." Because otherwise you don't know, and you're not going to improve unless people tell you what they like and what they didn't like.

Lars Klint: And that's why we need to keep that feedback loop open, I think. And people are often afraid to, especially the person that stands on stage, they go, "Oh no, that's the big speaker." Well, no, they're just like you. They just happen to be on the other end of, they're presenting. There's often very little difference other than they took the leap and stood on the stage or in front of the webcam as it is now. But yeah, there's absolutely room. Just tell them. And if they're being an idiot about it then so what? It's no skin off your nose.

Mike Pfeiffer: Yeah, that's a good point too, what you just mentioned when you're getting up there and presenting. Another way that makes that easier is presenting something you built because it's already in your head. You already got your own perspective instead of just trying to jump up there and worry about presenting. But this is all gold, man. Because anytime we get into these conversations on this show, everybody always really loves this type of content. I think this is great. So going forward, in the show notes we're going to put the user group. What else should we send people to that you're working on outside? Anything that we've talked about so far? Anything else?

Lars Klint: That's a good question. I have a blog and I try and write more on it. I'm not very active right now but if you go back a couple of years, I have written about these exact things, how to kind of find the right ... I do mentoring as well. I mentor a couple of people at a time in one-on-one and just some of the common themes are, "I don't know how to get from here to here from A to B," or "I'd love to do this thing, but I don't have enough time." Especially the time factor I always find interesting. Everybody has the same amount of time. There's no difference. And I love helping people find that extra time that they think they don't have. So I don't know. I do many things. I've just set up Ubiquiti Wi-Fi. Have you ever played with that?

Mike Pfeiffer: I have not, actually.

Lars Klint: Oh man, it's ... I did not consider myself a network guy. Wi-Fi is something you plug in and you use it, right, and you have a connection. And I decided to cover my whole farm in Wi-Fi because I was always moving around and I'd lose connection and it was annoying. And I just got so nerdy into it. It's hilarious. I wrote this massive blog post about it, about covering things and trying and error. And yeah, it's hilarious. But yeah. So anyway, I do lots of things besides just the teaching that you may see online.

Mike Pfeiffer: Right. That's awesome. I did the same thing with my house. I used the Google Home wireless stuff or whatever they're calling it. It works good. Yeah. Putting the access points all over the place. I have a gigantic house so it's a big family and stuff. So I want it everywhere I go in the house, I want to do it wireless. You said that you're on satellite, man. I had flashbacks to the old days when you couldn't hardly do anything on satellite. That's amazing that this is actually working right now.

Lars Klint: Well when we first moved into this place, we were on the old satellite as you say. And I had to drive up the top of the hill in my Jeep to get a proper connection to download our database backups and stuff, and then drive down and then do the work. I did that a couple of times a day. Or Team calls, I would drive up the hill and get a proper connection. Because the satellite connection, which is for browsing a text page kind of thing. But no, the Australian government has fixed that, so now we have reasonably good satellite Internet.

Mike Pfeiffer: Wow, man. That's a slow iteration cycle of having to drive up to the top of the hill to get dat and to come back-

Lars Klint: Was it ever. And then I found out that the cafe in town I could go in, which is like 10, 15 minutes away, I'd drive in there and use their Wi-Fi instead.

Mike Pfeiffer: There you go. Awesome. Well, Lars Klint, such a pleasure, man, and I appreciate everything you're doing out in the community, all that stuff. Thanks so much for being here.

Lars Klint: Absolutely. Thanks, Mike. I appreciate it.

Mike Pfeiffer: Hey everybody, if you want to keep up with what's going on in the cloud, we have a weekly email newsletter called Cloud Skills Weekly, and you can subscribe for free by going to cloudskills.io/subscribe. Every single week I'll send out my five best tips and resources that cover what's going on in the cloud. We'll focus on Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, and more. Topics will include things like cloud architecture, application developments, containerized applications, dev ops and automation, certification strategy, career tips, and more. So if that sounds awesome to you, head over to cloudskills.io/subscribe and join the Cloud Skills Weekly newsletter today.

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