5 Thoughts for Staying Sharp and Relevant (Boston)
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5 Thoughts for Staying Sharp and Relevant (Boston)

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This presentation, given at the Boston VMUG in June 2013, contains some thoughts and ideas about assimilating and managing information within the context of keeping up with today's fast-moving IT......

This presentation, given at the Boston VMUG in June 2013, contains some thoughts and ideas about assimilating and managing information within the context of keeping up with today's fast-moving IT industry.

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  • 1. 5 Thoughts on StayingSharp and RelevantSome thoughts and ideas on learning andthinking for today’s IT prosScott Lowe, VCDX 39vExpert, Author, Blogger, Geekhttp://blog.scottlowe.org / Twitter: @scott_lowe
  • 2. Before we start• Get involved! Audience participation is encouraged andrequested.• If you use Twitter, feel free to tweet about this session (use@BostonVMUG or hashtag #BOVMUG)• I encourage you to take photos or videos of today’s session andshare them online• This presentation will be made available online after the event
  • 3. • Two thoughts or ideas about learning• Three things I think are worth learning• 2 + 3 = 5Agenda
  • 4. “The only thing constant in life ischange.”- François de la Rochefoucauld,1613-1680
  • 5. • Metacognition: it’s useful to think about thinking (specificallywith regard to how we learn)• Rapid pace of change within IT means that we are underconstant pressure to learn• I’d like to share two thoughts or ideas on the learningprocess• First, an approach to assimilating new information• Second, some tools for managing informationTwo thoughts or ideas aboutlearning
  • 6. “An VNI terminated on an NVE maylocally associate to one or more VAPseach of which may associated withone or more TESs.”- Taken from IETF documentdraft-mity-nvo3-use-case-00.txt
  • 7. “Storage connectivity using FibreChannel, iSCSI, SVD, and FCoE issupported with VMware vMSCconfigurations.”- Taken from VMware vSphereMetro Storage Cluster Case Study
  • 8. • In education, there’s a “classical education” approach• Classical education has three major phases:• Grammar: focuses on facts, mechanics, vocabulary• Logic: focuses on the reasons behind the facts• Rhetoric: focuses on drawing conclusions, presentinginformation to others• Classical education is often repetitive, each iteration more in-depth than the previousAssimilating new information
  • 9. • How can we, as IT pros, apply this to our situation?• When learning a new product or technology, first definethe terminology. (grammar)• Once you’ve learned the vocabulary, then move to adeeper understanding of how it works. (logic)• After you understand how it works, find the relationshipsand connect it to something you already know. (rhetoric)• Lather, rinse, repeat!Assimilating new information(continued)
  • 10. • In 2008, I came across a web page that discussedsomething called “Q-tools”• You can find the original article at http://www.davegrayinfo.com/2008/06/04/q-tools/• These are a set of proposed tools (questions) to help peoplemanage informationManaging information
  • 11. • Prism: used to break information down into subgroups• Razor: used to divide information or for binary sorting• Generator: used to explore new territory or new ideas• Peeler: used to drive deeper and deeper into a subject• Flanker: used for lateral thinking and explore similar ideas• Splicer: used to build information structures by findingsimilarities• Pointer: used to gather informationManaging information(continued)
  • 12. • How can we, as IT pros, apply these tools to our situation?• You’re trying to learn a complex new technology withmany different parts. (Prism: break it down)• You’re stuck on a problem and can’t seem to makeheadway. (Flanker: think laterally, or generator: new ideas)• You want to gain a better understanding of a particularsolution. (Peeler: go deeper)• You want to link something youve learned back to existingknowledge. (Splicer: find similarities)Managing information(continued)
  • 13. “Man’s mind, once stretchedby a new idea, never regains itsoriginal dimensions.”- Oliver Wendell Holmes,1809-1894
  • 14. • Linux• Automation• PowerCLI, vCenter Orchestrator, scripting languages• Automation is a lever that multiplies your force• Configuration management• Think Puppet, Chef, or CFEngine• Your servers should not be snowflake servers!• See http://martinfowler.com/bliki/SnowflakeServer.htmlThree Four things to learn
  • 15. Three Four things to learn(continued)• A foreign language• Studies show that learning a foreign language can providea “cognitive boost”• See http://www2.uwstout.edu/content/lib/thesis/2008/2008boesen.pdf• Some studies indicate prolonged bilingualism is needed forthe cognitive boost, other studies say merely the act ofstudying a foreign language is enough—no conclusiveevidence either way
  • 16. Questions &Answers
  • 17. Thank you!Don’t forget to provide feedback and rate this session on the lastpage of your Program Guide.