Back to my roots


Posted on 03 December 2015 by jose

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My first job out of college saw me working as a consultant for Northrop Grumman, on a project for another defense contractor. In June 2014, I returned to that world with BlueMetal Architects as a consulting Software Engineer in their nascent Open Source practice. Since then, I've become immersed in new and interesting technologies, surrounded by colleagues I respect immensely and whose technical talents are impressive, to say the least.

Consulting is project-based, and for one project, I've delved into Azure, setting up SUSE Linux Enterprise Server on that platform in order to run RabbitMQ, NodeJS, and Cassandra. I've gone deep into AWS for another longer-term project, administering production and non-production RHEL 7 instances running a standard LAMP stack. I've managed deployments on those instances via Jenkins jobs, hooking into GitHub for continuous deployment on the Dev instance. I've configured Salesforce to integrate with a Drupal site and pass data back and forth, adjusting page layouts and creating custom objects and reports to facilitate the integration. I've migrated a .NET site to NodeJS and Express. I've managed other developers, a first for me.

In the classic vein of "the cobbler's children have no shoes," however, I've neglected this site. I've done a number of exciting things in Drupal-land, including a flirtation with a pre-alpha Drupal 8 wedding site (my desire to use a handful of not-yet-ported modules led me to go back to Drupal 7 for that site); with the release of Drupal 8, I'm now looking to return to the migrate module, which I experimented with long before it made it into core D8, and bring this site into the new world of D8. I may even migrate hosts; though my current host has been great, and my hosting costs are quite low, I must admit I enjoyed the AWS experience enough that I'm considering a move in that direction.

There's a lot of work before I can move the site to D8: I need to do a full site evaluation, decide what I want to do for my theme (which is NOT responsive), decide what I want to do about my host, decide what I want to do about my version control workflow, and come up with a content migration strategy. There are other technologies I use to run other sites within the hackwater.com family that I also need to consider, which leaves me with a nice technical to-do list for making improvements here. I'll try to keep posting on this subject, since these articles are a nice way to keep track of progress, but my family, BlueMetal, and my clients there come first. Still, I'd like to keep a record of tools I'm working with, experiments I'm enjoying, and so forth, and this place is perfect for that.

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