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Employee Spotlight – Keith Thompson, DevOps Training Architect

Posted on August 31, 2018 by OliviaOlivia

Our Training Architects worked super hard to create 150+ new enterprise-grade, hands-on training this Summer and the DevOps team released 6 new Courses and 52 interactive Learning Activities.
Meet one of our DevOpsTraining Architects, Keith Thompson, below and see why he loves working at Linux Academy.
Currently listening to: Coder Radio
1. What do you do at Linux Academy?
I’m currently a DevOps Training Architect, but it looks like I’ll be creating development related content in the future. The end of October will mark my first year with Linux Academy.
2. What did you do before this? 
I was a software engineer prior to joining LA. Most of my work was web development, but I also spent a lot of time working on automation and development tools. I was also a “YouTuber” on nights and weekends, which is how LA found me.
3. What do you like most about what you do?
I really just like helping people. When I first switched from studying mathematics to computer science I felt like I had so much to learn. It was true, but I didn’t realize how helpful people in technology can be, and I owe a lot of my success to others who were further along in their career providing me guidance and help.
4. What’s your favorite part of working at Linux Academy? 
Interacting with students is my favorite part of my job. I love to teach, but it wouldn’t be near as fulfilling if I didn’t have any interaction with our students.
5. You just released a new course, Basic Chef Fluency Badge, can you tell us about it?
Basic Chef Fluency Badge was my first certification course and it was an update to a course that Anthony James created, so I felt a lot of pressure to do a good job. The course and exam cover a broad range of topics within the Chef and the surrounding tools so I have to cover quite a few different things in the course, but I had one main goal for myself: ensure that the student would be comfortable using Chef by the time they finish the course. I knew that if I could meet that goal, then the students would have no trouble passing the exam. I’m confident that I achieved what I set out to do with the course and I’m proud of it.
6. How do you live out one of our core 5 missions?
“We put our students’ futures first” is the mission value that I think about the most. Every piece of content that I create is filtered through that idea. If I create something and then later find that it was more of a novel idea and not truly useful to a student bettering themselves, then I simply discard it and try again until the benefit is undeniable.
7. What do you like to do in your free time? 
I like to play video games, read, and program. In the three months of nice weather we get in the midwest USA, I also enjoy golfing.
8. What’s your favorite food?
Tacos. I love all sorts of tacos.
9. What’s your favorite quote and why?
I’m not a big quote guy, but the first that comes to mind is “slow is smooth, smooth is fast.” Everything I’ve ever achieved a decent level of skill in points back to this idea (and a love of practice). If something is worth doing then it’s probably worth doing well, and if you want to do it well then start slow.
10. What’s something you’re really excited about right now?
My wife and I recently moved into our first house, and I’m still pretty excited about that.
11. What do you like to collect?
Books. I love learning and books are a nice way to learn about things other than technology.
12. If you could have any superpower, what would it be, and why?
I’ve thought about this a lot and I’ve got to go with teleportation. Its great for business (ie instant delivery), no more wasted time traveling in the car or plane, safer than a car, and there aren’t any downsides that I can think of.
13. You’re a new addition to the crayon box, what color would you be and why?
Some shade of orange for no other reason than I like orange.
14. Teach us something we may not know in 10 sentences or less.
If you’re playing table tennis, you must toss the ball up at least 6 inches from an open palm before hitting it on the way down so that it hits your side of the table first. In singles, the area of the table that the serve hits on either side doesn’t matter, but in doubles, you need to server cross court from your right-hand side to the opponents’ right-hand side. Outside of organized play, a lot of people seem to get these rules wrong.
15. If you could interview one person (dead or alive), who would it be?
King Solomon. There’s something enticing about being able to ask the “wisest person to ever live” any question.
16. What’s one thing on your bucket list?
I would like to publish a book. It will probably something related to tech or personal finance, but I have no idea when I’ll be able to make time to get to it.

Check out Keith’s new course: Basic Chef Fluency Badge to get prepared to pass the Basic Chef Fluency Badge exam! Through the lessons, hands-on labs, and live environments in this course, you’ll gain the experience necessary to be able to deploy and utilize Chef for configuration management. Learn basic Chef terminology, product offerings, design philosophy and more!

Chef Hands-On Labs in this course:

  1. Setting Up A Chef Server, Workstation, and Bootstrapping a Node
  2. Writing and Deploying a Chef PostgreSQL Cookbook
  3. Configuring Chef Nodes Using Roles

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