Shine’s Technical Excellence Leadership Group (TEL) has had a stellar year! In this post we’ve pulled together our top picks from 2016 that we think deserve a special shout out before the year comes to a close. But first, a quick recap on what the TEL group actually is.
TEL was established in 2011 with the aim of publicising the great technical work that Shine does, and to raise the company’s profile as a technical thought-leader through blogs, local meet up talks, and conference presentations. TEL is allocated a yearly budget from the super-duper generous Shine directors, and the members of the TEL group are put in charge of overseeing how it is spent.
The budget comprises two parts: money and time. The monetary portion of the budget goes to prizes and bonuses for producing material. The time portion is for staff to draw upon to get away from their day-to-day work commitments and to produce their material. So, now that you know what TEL is all about, let’s have a look at the highlight reel from 2016 shall we?
SELECT highlight FROM 'TEL.highlights' ORDER BY date ASC:
- Recognition: Shine boasts the only two official Google Developer Experts for cloud in the whole of Australia. Graham Polley and Pablo Caif were interviewed at the start of the year for the official Google Cloud Platform Podcast (episode #10). Never has a podcast had such an eclectic mix of accents, and been so hard to decipher. It’s still worth a listen nevertheless. Trust us. Really. Go on.
- Local meetup talk: Christian Catchpole was invited to give a talk about his homegrown robot that he has built using a Raspberry-Pi at the January MelbJVM meetup in Melbourne. You can see it in full action right here. Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..
- Blog: Pablo Caif wrote a cracking blog on Swift that continues to get a lot of attention even though it was written almost a year ago. All hail our new Apple overlords!
- Conference presentation: Pablo Caif (yes, him again) presented at GCPNext 2016 (Google’s annual cloud event) in San Francisco on the exciting big data work we do at Telstra using BigQuery, Dataflow and PubSub.
- Local meetup talk: Dmitry Pokidov spoke about the Angular2 roadmap at Melbourne’s local Angular meetup. Isn’t there a newer/better/hipster’er frontend framework out by now though? Surely – it has been more than a few months.
- Recognition: Shine hosted a Digital Leaders Breakfast at our brand new HQ office in Melbourne. Telstra’s Jeff Mentiplay did a lot of hand waving, and remarked several times on how good the food was. Thanks Jeff!
- Blog: Ben Teese broke character and ruffled his feathers when he blogged about the importance of picking the correct HTTP status codes. His conclusion was that everyone should just use HTTP code 418 for everything.
- Blog: Gareth Jones made some enemies at AWS when he blogged about moving massive amounts of data from EC2 instances to Google BigQuery for analysis – which also included a tip for saving AWS egress charges by using compression!
- Local meetup talk: James Sinclair presented the AWS meetup in Melbourne on CloudFormation Change Sets. Shame the demo gremlins showed up right at the end. But James did make sure to inform everyone that he got it working on the train home. We’re still waiting on proof of that James! PROOF!
- Blog: Gareth Jones came close to getting fired for racking up a massive bill in Google BigQuery when he wrote THE.WORST.PYTHON script ever. But, we still love him at Shine.
- Conference presentation: Gareth Jones (uh, not again) presented on PWAs at YOW! Connected 2016 (Mobile & IOT). Surely, the coveted prize of best talk title must be awarded to him – “Progressive Web Apps: What Has The Web Ever Done For Us?“ (I’ll just leave this here for our iGeneration readers who are scratching their heads right now).
- Conference presentation: Pablo Caif rocked the stage at the very first YOW! Data conference in Sydney. He spoke about Google BigQuery, and really emphasised how much better he thinks working on the Google stack is than working on the Apple one. Hear, hear!
- Hackathon: Several Shiners participated in a month long hackathon at the Adobe Marketing Cloud – Community Expo. Team 1 (Michael Leroy, Arthur Cavallari, Chris Rzepa & Ryan Siebert) built “Pokemon Go Lure Management on AEM“. Team two’s (Cliff Subagio, Michael Diender, & Stephen Shim) topic was “Building An AEM API Clients Ecosystem“. Great hacking guys!
- Conference presentation: Michael Leroy (our AEM gun) presented at the Adobe Source Event in Sydney – not once, but TWICE! How he managed to get the energy to do both still baffles us. Most presenters know that doing just one talk is exhausting enough.
- Hackathon: Cliff Subagio, Stephen Shim and Michael Diender got busy writing serverless AWS chatbots for the AWS Serverless Chatbot Hackathon:
- Blog: Chris Rzepa wrote a top notch blog post on how to ease the pain when you need to create rich email templates. Chris also gets the award for best featured image. How awesome is that octopus huh?
- Blog: Darren Cibis’ blog post on the battle between AWS Athena -vs- BigQuery created a lot of chatter in both the AWS and Google camps. So much so in fact, that the GM over at AWS for Athena & EMR emailed him directly about his post. That’s what TEL is all about. Great work Darren!
- Recognition: Google posted an article with their top-10 list of Google BigQuery user experiences for 2016. In it, two blogs from Graham Polley made the cut (number 2 & 7). Yes we know, Graham’s such a Google fan boy!
If that’s got your mouth watering, then just wait for 2017!