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Exam Code: CLF-C01 Practice test 2022 by Killexams.com team
CLF-C01 AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01)

Format : Multiple choice, multiple answer
Type : Foundational
Delivery Method : Testing center or online proctored exam
Time : 90 minutes to complete the exam

Introduction
The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01) examination is intended for individuals who have the knowledge, skills, and abilities to demonstrate basic knowledge of the AWS platform, including: available services and their common use cases, AWS Cloud architectural principles (at the conceptual level), account security, and compliance. The candidate will demonstrate an understanding of AWS Cloud economics including: costs, billing, and analysis, and the value proposition of the AWS Cloud.

The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner examination is intended for individuals who have the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively demonstrate an overall understanding of the AWS Cloud, independent of specific technical roles addressed by other AWS Certifications. The test can be taken at a testing center or from the comfort and convenience of a home or office location as an online proctored exam.

Abilities Validated by the Certification
- Define what the AWS Cloud is and the basic global infrastructure
- Describe basic AWS Cloud architectural principles
- Describe the AWS Cloud value proposition
- Describe key services on the AWS platform and their common use cases (for example, compute and analytics)
- Describe basic security and compliance aspects of the AWS platform and the shared security model
- Define the billing, account management, and pricing models
- Identify sources of documentation or technical assistance (for example, whitepapers or support tickets)
- Describe basic/core characteristics of deploying and operating in the AWS Cloud

Response Types
There are two types of questions on the examination:
 Multiple choice: Has one correct response and three incorrect responses (distractors).
 Multiple response: Has two or more correct responses out of five or more options.
Select one or more responses that best complete the statement or answer the question. Distractors, or incorrect answers, are response options that an examinee with incomplete knowledge or skill would likely choose. However, they are generally plausible responses that fit in the content area defined by the test objective.
Unanswered questions are scored as incorrect; there is no penalty for guessing.

Unscored Content
Your examination may include unscored items that are placed on the test to gather statistical information. These items are not identified on the form and do not affect your score.

Exam Results
The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01) examination is a pass or fail exam. The examination is scored against a minimum standard established by AWS professionals who are guided by certification industry best practices and guidelines.
Your results for the examination are reported as a score from 100–1,000, with a minimum passing score of 700. Your score shows how you performed on the examination as a whole and whether or not you passed. Scaled scoring models are used to equate scores across multiple test forms that may have slightly different difficulty levels.
Your score report contains a table of classifications of your performance at each section level. This information is designed to provide general feedback concerning your examination performance. The examination uses a compensatory scoring model, which means that you do not need to “pass” the individual sections, only the overall examination. Each section of the examination has a specific weighting, so some sections have more questions than others. The table contains general information, highlighting your strengths and weaknesses. Exercise caution when interpreting section-level feedback.

Domain 1: Cloud Concepts 26%
Domain 2: Security and Compliance 25%
Domain 3: Technology 33%
Domain 4: Billing and Pricing 16%
TOTAL 100%

Domain 1: Cloud Concepts
1.1 Define the AWS Cloud and its value proposition
1.2 Identify aspects of AWS Cloud economics
1.3 List the different cloud architecture design principles
Domain 2: Security and Compliance
2.1 Define the AWS shared responsibility model
2.2 Define AWS Cloud security and compliance concepts
2.3 Identify AWS access management capabilities
2.4 Identify resources for security support
Domain 3: Technology
3.1 Define methods of deploying and operating in the AWS Cloud
3.2 Define the AWS global infrastructure
3.3 Identify the core AWS services
3.4 Identify resources for technology support
Domain 4: Billing and Pricing
4.1 Compare and contrast the various pricing models for AWS
4.2 Recognize the various account structures in relation to AWS billing and pricing
4.3 Identify resources available for billing support

AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01)
Amazon Practitioner study
Killexams : Amazon Practitioner study - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/CLF-C01 Search results Killexams : Amazon Practitioner study - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/CLF-C01 https://killexams.com/exam_list/Amazon Killexams : Amazon Launches Cancer Vaccine Clinical Trial In Partnership With Fred Hutchinson
Amazon Launches Cancer Vaccine Clinical Trial In Partnership With Fred Hutchinson

Amazon has been heavily supporting the healthcare system. From enhancing safety measures to investing in overcoming the hurdles of healthcare, Amazon is a trusted source for public health and welfare. Amazon at present is developing cancer vaccines together with Seattle's Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center. The project is said to be gearing up in order to start an FDA-approved clinical trial and is in the process of recruiting patients as well.

The trial claims to look at the development of personalized vaccines so as to tackle breast cancer as well as melanoma skin cancer.  The vaccine could offer a more focused and precise cancer treatment that too at a lower cost.  It is also said that the vaccine may even be a good alternative to chemotherapy. 

According to a filing on clinicaltrials.gov, Amazon and Fred Hutchinson are looking to recruit 20 participants who are over the age of 18 years for the phase 1 trial. The goal is to develop personalized vaccines that can treat both breast cancer and melanoma,which is also a form of skin cancer.

Both Fred Hutch and Amazon confirmed their partnership and that they are working on the trail together. An Amazon spokesperson said it’s being led by Fred Hutch. “Amazon is contributing scientific and machine learning expertise to a partnership with Fred Hutch to explore the development of a personalized treatment for certain forms of cancer. It’s very early, but Fred Hutch recently received permission from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to proceed with a Phase I clinical trial, and it’s unclear whether it will be successful." 

Also read: Expert Talk: How Vitamin B12 Deficiency Could Be Wreaking Havoc On Your Mood

Amazon Launches Cancer Vaccine Clinical Trial In Partnership With Fred Hutchinson

"This will be a long, multi-year process, should it progress, we would be open to working with other organizations in health care and life sciences that might also be interested in similar efforts.” the spokesperson added.

This  is the first time that Amazon has worked on its own drug. However, the company has recently shown a greater interest in enhancing the healthcare system. As the process moves along, the vaccine is still likely to be years away from launching. Despite stringent FDA trials the vaccine would take years to complete.

To note, Amazon is also not the only one in the market who's looking into personalized, DNA-sequencing-based cancer treatment as BioNTech is also working on something similar in Germany.

If you found this article helpful, share your thoughts on our Facebook page. Follow OnlyMyHealth for more!

Thu, 14 Jul 2022 07:11:00 -0500 text/html https://www.onlymyhealth.com/amazon-launches-cancer-vaccine-clinical-trial-in-partnership-with-fred-hutchinson-1657795217
Killexams : A spiritural contract with Kambo
All in on this frog thing.

All in on this frog thing.

It was about a decade ago, in the jungle city of Iquitos, Peru, that Caitlin Thompson first heard about Kambo, a traditional medicine used by some indigenous groups in the Amazon. Kambo is the poisonous secretion of the giant leaf frog or giant monkey frog (phyllomedusa bicolor), which is applied with a stick to superficial burns that have been inflicted on the patient so that the stuff may enter the bloodstream.

The wider world first learned about Kambo decades ago through the work of the journalist and explorer Peter Gorman; he was introduced to it by the Matses people, who have used it for hundreds of years as a general tonic, a treatment for malaria and snakebite, and a preparation for hunting and war. Lately, however, its use been growing in popularity all over the globe.

On the move in Indonesia.

Kambo involves effects that are powerful and formidable-sounding, even if they are short-lived. Common ones include hard and fast heartbeats, skin flushing, facial swelling, faintness, pressure in the head, bowel movements, and, probably most famously, vomiting. Understandably, Thompson was not immediately drawn to it. To be precise, she says, “I heard about it and I was like, ‘That shit sounds crazy.’”

Still, what she heard in Iquitos piqued her interest enough to send her onto the internet after she arrived home for a look into the matter. She was intrigued by one study she found about some of the chemical makeup of the substance. She thought, “Oh, there’s actually some science on this. Which I found interesting.” She learned about some of the peptides in Kambo — some that are opioids, some that lower blood pressure — but afterwards, she says, she just stopped thinking about it. That is, until her close friend Edward Deull came over one day and told her that he had been “going deep with this frog medicine lately.” She liked and trusted Deull, and was disposed to listen with an open mind when he began to talk about what he was getting out of his experiences. Before that, “no one had ever told me about why you’d want to do it.” So she hadn’t heard about the positive, non-vomitous side of Kambo: the relief of physical pain, the mental clarity and courage that devotees report. Before, “it just sounded crazy and dangerous and awful.” But now, her trusted friend was serving as an envoy from the Kambo world, and through him, she took the opportunity to provide it a try — in someone’s home out in the desert.

“It was during that first Kambo experience where I started to rapidly heal,” Thompson says. After many years of dealing with a wide variety of autoimmune, digestive, and mood problems — she provided a list of around a dozen conditions that she summarizes as “just a lot of words to describe someone who is, overall, not well” — she experienced, first, “a complete abolishment” of pain. The experience highlighted for her just how bad she had been feeling for so long. That was followed by the firm sense that the origins of her problems were “psycho-spiritual.” She felt a new awareness that they extended beyond her, backwards into generations of her family, and perhaps most importantly, that she could be freed from them. The revelation: “This isn’t yours. You don’t have to carry it. You don’t have to attack yourself.”

“I guess I’m all-in on this frog thing,” she realized.

After she finished up her sessions in the desert, Deull taught Thompson to self-administer. Soon she started working on friends, then strangers who heard about it. “Next thing I knew, I fell into being a practitioner.” She decided it would be good to get some more formal training, and sought it through the International Association of Kambo Practitioners. “Once I came back from the training,” she recalls, “it exploded, and it never slowed down until I literally left the country and hid from it during the pandemic.” Here she is referring to her self-imposed exile in Bali over the last two years. Before that, she was conducting up to 400 sessions a year, which took a toll on her. But she never really felt that she could just walk away from it, or that she could do something easier. Thompson feels that she is in a deal, or “spiritual contract,” with Kambo. She says, “This medicine is like, ‘Hey I can be here to provide you a vibrant chance at health, and sustainable income, and purposeful work, and you can help people, and help your family and your animals and your friends, but you work for me.”

Applying kambo during a session.

And the deal is not an easy one to keep, whether she is the facilitator or the participant. “I’ve got to be honest: I don’t want to keep burning myself and doing Kambo. It’s uncomfortable. I’d like to just be healed and be over it.” Yet, she says, “for me, it’s an integral part of my life, and it’s a medicine that continues to save my ass. This medicine has saved my life. It has given me life.” Further, she still finds it deeply gratifying to bring this experience to other people, in whom she sees what she calls “miracle after miracle.” She says she has a special interest in working with people who, like her, have dealt with chronic health problems.

When we met, Thompson had been back in San Diego for only a week, and was sporting lots of new tattoos, acquired in Bali for her 30th birthday. The new adornment included several representing in molecular form the “chemical allies to my healing process: nutrients, love, botanicals, endogenous neurotransmitters, synthetic psychedelics, plant-based psychedelics. Then I have some of the peptides from the frog on my leg.” Her right arm features a large Ganesha — the elephant-headed Hindu remover of obstacles — intricate geometric patterns, and a likeness of her beloved late dog’s eyes.

She’s busy now looking for a new home, one that will also serve as the setting for her Kambo work. And soon, she will be off on a journey to the jungle again, as she brings her first group of American practitioners on a Kambo retreat with some of the Matses friends she has made in Peru.

Wed, 13 Jul 2022 04:03:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2022/jul/13/golden-dreams-spiritural-contract-kambo/
Killexams : Competing on Analytics

The Idea in Brief

It’s virtually impossible to differentiate yourself from competitors based on products alone. Your rivals sell offerings similar to yours. And thanks to cheap offshore labor, you’re hard-pressed to beat overseas competitors on product cost.

How to pull ahead of the pack? Become an analytics competitor: Use sophisticated data-collection technology and analysis to wring every last drop of value from all your business processes. With analytics, you discern not only what your customers want but also how much they’re willing to pay and what keeps them loyal. You look beyond compensation costs to calculate your workforce’s exact contribution to your bottom line. And you don’t just track existing inventories; you also predict and prevent future inventory problems.

Analytics competitors seize the lead in their fields. Capital One’s analytics initiative, for example, has spurred at least 20% growth in earnings per share every year since the company went public.

Make analytics part of your overarching competitive strategy, and push it down to decision makers at every level. You’ll arm your employees with the best evidence and quantitative tools for making the best decisions—big and small, every day.

The Idea in Practice

To become an analytics competitor:

Champion Analytics from the Top

Acknowledge and endorse the changes in culture, processes, and skills that analytics competition will mean for much of your workforce. And prepare yourself to lead an analytics-focused organization: You will have to understand the theory behind various quantitative methods so you can recognize their limitations. If you lack background in statistical methods, consult experts who understand your business and know how analytics can be applied to it.

Create a Single Analytics Initiative

Place all data-collection and analysis activities under a common leadership, with common technology and tools. You’ll facilitate data sharing and avoid the impediments of inconsistent reporting formats, data definitions, and standards. Example: 

Procter & Gamble created a centrally managed “überanalytics” group of 100 analysts drawn from many different functions. It applies this critical mass of expertise to pressing cross-functional issues. For instance, sales and marketing analysts supply data on growth opportunities in existing markets to supply-chain analysts, who can then design more responsive supply networks.

Focus Your Analytics Effort

Channel your resources into analytics initiatives that most directly serve your overarching competitive strategy. Harrah’s, for instance, aims much of its analytical activity at improving customer loyalty, customer service, and related areas such as pricing and promotions.

Establish an Analytics Culture

Instill a companywide respect for measuring, testing, and evaluating quantitative evidence. Urge employees to base decisions on hard facts. Gauge and reward performance the same way—applying metrics to compensation and rewards.

Hire the Right People

Pursue and hire analysts who possess top-notch quantitative-analysis skills, can express complex ideas in simple terms, and can interact productively with decision makers. This combination may be difficult to find, so start recruiting well before you need to fill analyst positions.

Use the Right Technology

Prepare to spend significant resources on technology such as customer relationship management (CRM) or enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. Present data in standard formats, integrate it, store it in a data warehouse, and make it easily accessible to everyone. And expect to spend years gathering enough data to conduct meaningful analyses. Example: 

It took Dell Computer seven years to create a database that includes 1.5 million records of all its print, radio, broadcast TV, and cable ads. Dell couples the database with data on sales for each region in which the ads appeared (before and after their appearance). The information enables Dell to fine-tune its promotions for every medium—in every region.

We all know the power of the killer app. Over the years, groundbreaking systems from companies such as American Airlines (electronic reservations), Otis Elevator (predictive maintenance), and American Hospital Supply (online ordering) have dramatically boosted their creators’ revenues and reputations. These heralded—and coveted—applications amassed and applied data in ways that upended customer expectations and optimized operations to unprecedented degrees. They transformed technology from a supporting tool into a strategic weapon.

Companies questing for killer apps generally focus all their firepower on the one area that promises to create the greatest competitive advantage. But a new breed of company is upping the stakes. Organizations such as Amazon, Harrah’s, Capital One, and the Boston Red Sox have dominated their fields by deploying industrial-strength analytics across a wide variety of activities. In essence, they are transforming their organizations into armies of killer apps and crunching their way to victory.

Organizations are competing on analytics not just because they can—business today is awash in data and data crunchers—but also because they should. At a time when firms in many industries offer similar products and use comparable technologies, business processes are among the last remaining points of differentiation. And analytics competitors wring every last drop of value from those processes. So, like other companies, they know what products their customers want, but they also know what prices those customers will pay, how many items each will buy in a lifetime, and what triggers will make people buy more. Like other companies, they know compensation costs and turnover rates, but they can also calculate how much personnel contribute to or detract from the bottom line and how salary levels relate to individuals’ performance. Like other companies, they know when inventories are running low, but they can also predict problems with demand and supply chains, to achieve low rates of inventory and high rates of perfect orders.

And analytics competitors do all those things in a coordinated way, as part of an overarching strategy championed by top leadership and pushed down to decision-makers at every level. Employees hired for their expertise with numbers or trained to recognize their importance are armed with the best evidence and the best quantitative tools. As a result, they make the best decisions: big and small, every day, over and over and over.

Although numerous organizations are embracing analytics, only a handful have achieved this level of proficiency. But analytics competitors are the leaders in their varied fields—consumer products, finance, retail, and travel and entertainment among them. Analytics has been instrumental to Capital One, which has exceeded 20% growth in earnings per share every year since it became a public company. It has allowed Amazon to dominate online retailing and turn a profit despite enormous investments in growth and infrastructure. In sports, the real secret weapon isn’t steroids but stats, as dramatic victories by the Boston Red Sox, the New England Patriots, and the Oakland A’s attest.

Employees hired for their expertise with numbers or trained to recognize their importance are armed with the best evidence and the best quantitative tools. As a result, they make the best decisions.

At such organizations, virtuosity with data is often part of the brand. Progressive makes advertising hay from its detailed parsing of individual insurance rates. Amazon customers can watch the company learning about them as its service grows more targeted with frequent purchases. Thanks to Michael Lewis’s best-selling book Moneyball, which demonstrated the power of statistics in professional baseball, the Oakland A’s are almost as famous for their geeky number crunching as they are for their athletic prowess.

To identify characteristics shared by analytics competitors, I and two of my colleagues at Babson College’s Working Knowledge Research Center studied 32 organizations that have made a commitment to quantitative, fact-based analysis. Eleven of those organizations we classified as full-bore analytics competitors, meaning top management had announced that analytics was key to their strategies; they had multiple initiatives underway involving complex data and statistical analysis, and they managed analytical activity at the enterprise (not departmental) level.

This article lays out the characteristics and practices of these statistical masters and describes some of the very substantial changes other companies must undergo in order to compete on quantitative turf. As one would expect, the transformation requires a significant investment in technology, the accumulation of massive stores of data, and the formulation of companywide strategies for managing the data. But at least as important, it requires executives’ vocal, unswerving commitment and willingness to change the way employees think, work, and are treated. As Gary Loveman, CEO of analytics competitor Harrah’s, frequently puts it, “Do we think this is true? Or do we know?”

Anatomy of an Analytics Competitor

One analytics competitor that’s at the top of its game is Marriott International. Over the past 20 years, the corporation has honed to a science its system for establishing the optimal price for guest rooms (the key analytics process in hotels, known as revenue management). Today, its ambitions are far grander. Through its Total Hotel Optimization program, Marriott has expanded its quantitative expertise to areas such as conference facilities and catering, and made related tools available over the Internet to property revenue managers and hotel owners. It has developed systems to optimize offerings to frequent customers and assess the likelihood of those customers’ defecting to competitors. It has given local revenue managers the power to override the system’s recommendations when certain local factors can’t be predicted (like the large number of Hurricane Katrina evacuees arriving in Houston). The company has even created a revenue opportunity model, which computes real revenues as a percentage of the optimal rates that could have been charged. That figure has grown from 83% to 91% as Marriott’s revenue-management analytics has taken root throughout the enterprise. The word is out among property owners and franchisees: If you want to squeeze the most revenue from your inventory, Marriott’s approach is the ticket.

Clearly, organizations such as Marriott don’t behave like traditional companies. Customers notice the difference in every interaction; employees and vendors live the difference every day. Our study found three key attributes among analytics competitors:

Widespread use of modeling and optimization.

Any company can generate simple descriptive statistics about aspects of its business—average revenue per employee, for example, or average order size. But analytics competitors look well beyond basic statistics. These companies use predictive modeling to identify the most-profitable customers—plus those with the greatest profit potential and the ones most likely to cancel their accounts. They pool data generated in-house and data acquired from outside sources (which they analyze more deeply than do their less statistically savvy competitors) for a comprehensive understanding of their customers. They optimize their supply chains and can thus determine the impact of an unexpected constraint, simulate alternatives, and route shipments around problems. They establish prices in real time to get the highest yield possible from each of their customer transactions. They create complex models of how their operational costs relate to their financial performance.

Leaders in analytics also use sophisticated experiments to measure the overall impact or “lift” of intervention strategies and then apply the results to continuously Excellerate subsequent analyses. Capital One, for example, conducts more than 30,000 experiments a year, with different interest rates, incentives, direct-mail packaging, and other variables. Its goal is to maximize the likelihood both that potential customers will sign up for credit cards and that they will pay back Capital One.

Further Reading

  • Analytics 3.0
    Analytics Feature

    How to compete on the quantitative turf.

Progressive employs similar experiments using widely available insurance industry data. The company defines narrow groups, or cells, of customers: for example, motorcycle riders ages 30 and above, with college educations, credit scores over a certain level, and no accidents. For each cell, the company performs a regression analysis to identify factors that most closely correlate with the losses that group engenders. It then sets prices for the cells, which should enable the company to earn a profit across a portfolio of customer groups, and uses simulation software to test the financial implications of those hypotheses. With this approach, Progressive can profitably insure customers in traditionally high-risk categories. Other insurers reject high-risk customers out of hand, without bothering to delve more deeply into the data (although even traditional competitors, such as Allstate, are starting to embrace analytics as a strategy).

An enterprise approach.

Analytics competitors understand that most business functions—even those, like marketing, that have historically depended on art rather than science—can be improved with sophisticated quantitative techniques. These organizations don’t gain advantage from one killer app but rather from multiple applications supporting many parts of the business—and, in a few cases, being rolled out for use by customers and suppliers.

UPS embodies the evolution from targeted analytics user to comprehensive analytics competitor. Although the company is among the world’s most rigorous practitioners of operations research and industrial engineering, its capabilities were, until fairly recently, narrowly focused. Today, UPS is wielding its statistical skill to track the movement of packages and to anticipate and influence the actions of people—assessing the likelihood of customer attrition and identifying sources of problems. The UPS Customer Intelligence Group, for example, is able to accurately predict customer defections by examining usage patterns and complaints. When the data point to a potential defector, a salesperson contacts that customer to review and resolve the problem, dramatically reducing the loss of accounts. UPS still lacks the breadth of initiatives of a full-bore analytics competitor, but it is heading in that direction.

Analytics competitors treat all such activities from all provenances as a single, coherent initiative, often massed under one rubric, such as “information-based strategy” at Capital One or “information-based customer management” at Barclays Bank. These programs operate not just under a common label but also under common leadership and with common technology and tools. In traditional companies, “business intelligence” (the term IT people use for analytics and reporting processes and software) is generally managed by departments; number-crunching functions select their own tools, control their own data warehouses, and train their own people. But that way, chaos lies. For one thing, the proliferation of user-developed spreadsheets and databases inevitably leads to multiple versions of key indicators within an organization. Furthermore, research has shown that between 20% and 40% of spreadsheets contain errors; the more spreadsheets floating around a company, therefore, the more fecund the breeding ground for mistakes. Analytics competitors, by contrast, field centralized groups to ensure that critical data and other resources are well managed and that different parts of the organization can share data easily, without the impediments of inconsistent formats, definitions, and standards.

Some analytics competitors apply the same enterprise approach to people as to technology. Procter & Gamble, for example, recently created a kind of überanalytics group consisting of more than 100 analysts from such functions as operations, supply chain, sales, consumer research, and marketing. Although most of the analysts are embedded in business operating units, the group is centrally managed. As a result of this consolidation, P&G can apply a critical mass of expertise to its most pressing issues. So, for example, sales and marketing analysts supply data on opportunities for growth in existing markets to analysts who design corporate supply networks. The supply chain analysts, in turn, apply their expertise in certain decision-analysis techniques to such new areas as competitive intelligence.

In traditional companies, departments manage analytics —number-crunching functions select their own tools and train their own people. But that way, chaos lies.

The group at P&G also raises the visibility of analytical and data-based decision-making within the company. Previously, P&G’s crack analysts had improved business processes and saved the firm money; but because they were squirreled away in dispersed domains, many executives didn’t know what services they offered or how effective they could be. Now those executives are more likely to tap the company’s deep pool of expertise for their projects. Meanwhile, masterful number crunching has become part of the story P&G tells to investors, the press, and the public.

Senior executive advocates.

A companywide embrace of analytics impels changes in culture, processes, behavior, and skills for many employees. And so, like any major transition, it requires leadership from executives at the very top who have a passion for the quantitative approach. Ideally, the principal advocate is the CEO. Indeed, we found several chief executives who have driven the shift to analytics at their companies over the past few years, including Loveman of Harrah’s, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, and Rich Fairbank of Capital One. Before he retired from the Sara Lee Bakery Group, former CEO Barry Beracha kept a sign on his desk that summed up his personal and organizational philosophy: “In God we trust. All others bring data.” We did come across some companies in which a single functional or business unit leader was trying to push analytics throughout the organization, and a few were making some progress. But we found that these lower-level people lacked the clout, the perspective, and the cross-functional scope to change the culture in any meaningful way.

CEOs leading the analytics charge require both an appreciation of and a familiarity with the subject. A background in statistics isn’t necessary, but those leaders must understand the theory behind various quantitative methods so that they recognize those methods’ limitations—which factors are being weighed and which ones aren’t. When the CEOs need help grasping quantitative techniques, they turn to experts who understand the business and how analytics can be applied to it. We interviewed several leaders who had retained such advisers, and these executives stressed the need to find someone who can explain things in plain language and be trusted not to spin the numbers. A few CEOs we spoke with had surrounded themselves with very analytical people—professors, consultants, MIT graduates, and the like. But that was a personal preference rather than a necessary practice.

Of course, not all decisions should be grounded in analytics—at least not wholly so. Personnel matters, in particular, are often well and appropriately informed by instinct and anecdote. More organizations are subjecting recruiting and hiring decisions to statistical analysis (see the sidebar “Going to Bat for Stats”). But research shows that human beings can make quick, surprisingly accurate assessments of personality and character based on simple observations. For analytics-minded leaders, then, the challenge boils down to knowing when to run with the numbers and when to run with their guts.

Their Sources of Strength

Analytics competitors are more than simple number-crunching factories. Certainly, they apply technology—with a mixture of brute force and finesse—to multiple business problems. But they also direct their energies toward finding the right focus, building the right culture, and hiring the right people to make optimal use of the data they constantly churn. In the end, people and strategy, as much as information technology, provide such organizations strength.

The right focus.

Although analytics competitors encourage universal fact-based decisions, they must choose where to direct resource-intensive efforts. Generally, they pick several functions or initiatives that together serve an overarching strategy. Harrah’s, for example, has aimed much of its analytical activity at increasing customer loyalty, customer service, and related areas like pricing and promotions. UPS has broadened its focus from logistics to customers, in the interest of providing superior service. While such multipronged strategies define analytics competitors, executives we interviewed warned companies against becoming too diffuse in their initiatives or losing clear sight of the business purpose behind each.

Another consideration when allocating resources is how amenable certain functions are to deep analysis. There are at least seven common targets for analytical activity, and specific industries may present their own. Statistical models and algorithms that dangle the possibility of performance breakthroughs make some prospects especially tempting. Marketing, for example, has always been tough to quantify because it is rooted in psychology. But now consumer products companies can hone their market research using multiattribute utility theory—a tool for understanding and predicting consumer behaviors and decisions. Similarly, the advertising industry is adopting econometrics—statistical techniques for measuring the lift provided by different ads and promotions over time.

Things You Can Count On

Analytics competitors make expert use of statistics and modeling to Excellerate a wide variety of functions. Here are some common applications:

Function Description Exemplars

Function

Supply chain

Description

Simulate and optimize supply chain flows; reduce inventory and stock-outs.

Exemplars

Dell, Walmart, Amazon

Function

Customer selection, loyalty, and service

Description

Identify customers with the greatest profit potential; increase likelihood that they will want the product or service offering; retain their loyalty.

Exemplars

Harrah’s, Capital One, Barclays

Function

Pricing

Description

Identify the price that will maximize yield or profit.

Exemplars

Progressive, Marriott

Function

Human capital

Description

Select the best employees for particular tasks or jobs, at particular compensation levels.

Exemplars

New England Patriots, Oakland A’s, Boston Red Sox

Function

Product and service quality

Description

Detect quality problems early and minimize them.

Exemplars

Honda, Intel

Function

Financial performance

Description

Better understand the drivers of financial performance and the effects of nonfinancial factors.

Exemplars

MCI, Verizon

Function

Research and development

Description

Improve quality, efficacy, and, where applicable, safety of products and services.

Exemplars

Novartis, Amazon, Yahoo

The most-proficient analytics practitioners don’t just measure their own navels—they also help customers and vendors measure theirs. Walmart, for example, insists that suppliers use its Retail Link system to monitor product movement by store, to plan promotions and layouts within stores, and to reduce stock-outs. E.&J. Gallo provides distributors with data and analysis on retailers’ costs and pricing so they can calculate the per-bottle profitability for each of Gallo’s 95 wines. The distributors, in turn, use that information to help retailers optimize their mixes while persuading them to add shelf space for Gallo products. Procter & Gamble offers data and analysis to its retail customers, as part of a program called Joint Value Creation, and to its suppliers to help Excellerate responsiveness and reduce costs. Hospital supplier Owens & Minor furnishes similar services, enabling customers and suppliers to access and analyze their buying and selling data, track ordering patterns in search of consolidation opportunities, and move off-contract purchases to group contracts that include products distributed by Owens & Minor and its competitors. For example, Owens & Minor might show a hospital chain’s executives how much money they could save by consolidating purchases across multiple locations or help them see the trade-offs between increasing delivery frequency and carrying inventory.

The right culture.

Culture is a soft concept; analytics is a hard discipline. Nonetheless, analytics competitors must instill a companywide respect for measuring, testing, and evaluating quantitative evidence. Employees are urged to base decisions on hard facts. And they know that their performance is gauged the same way. Human resource organizations within analytics competitors are rigorous about applying metrics to compensation and rewards. Harrah’s, for example, has made a dramatic change from a rewards culture based on paternalism and tenure to one based on such meticulously collected performance measurements as financial and customer service results. Senior executives also set a consistent example with their own behavior, exhibiting a hunger for and confidence in fact and analysis. One exemplar of such leadership was Beracha of the Sara Lee Bakery Group, known to his employees as a “data dog” because he hounded them for data to support any assertion or hypothesis.

Not surprisingly, in an analytics culture, there’s sometimes tension between innovative or entrepreneurial impulses and the requirement for evidence. Some companies place less emphasis on blue-sky development, in which designers or engineers chase after a gleam in someone’s eye. In these organizations, R&D, like other functions, is rigorously metric-driven. At Yahoo, Progressive, and Capital One, process and product changes are tested on a small scale and implemented as they are validated. That approach, well established within various academic and business disciplines (including engineering, quality management, and psychology), can be applied to most corporate processes—even to not-so-obvious candidates, like human resources and customer service. HR, for example, might create profiles of managers’ personality traits and leadership styles and then test those managers in different situations. It could then compare data on individuals’ performance with data about personalities to determine what traits are most important to managing a project that is behind schedule, say, or helping a new group to assimilate.

Further Reading

There are, however, instances when a decision to change something or try something new must be made too quickly for extensive analysis, or when it’s not possible to gather data beforehand. For example, even though Amazon’s Jeff Bezos greatly prefers to rigorously quantify users’ reactions before rolling out new features, he couldn’t test the company’s search-inside-the-book offering without applying it to a critical mass of books (120,000, to begin with). It was also expensive to develop, and that increased the risk. In this case, Bezos trusted his instincts and took a flier. And the feature did prove popular when introduced.

The right people.

Analytical firms hire analytical people—and like all companies that compete on talent, they pursue the best. When Amazon needed a new head for its global supply chain, for example, it recruited Gang Yu, a professor of management science and software entrepreneur who is one of the world’s leading authorities on optimization analytics. Amazon’s business model requires the company to manage a constant flow of new products, suppliers, customers, and promotions, as well as deliver orders by promised dates. Since his arrival, Yu and his team have been designing and building sophisticated supply chain systems to optimize those processes. And while he tosses around phrases like “nonstationary stochastic processes,” he’s also good at explaining the new approaches to Amazon’s executives in clear business terms.

Established analytics competitors such as Capital One employ squadrons of analysts to conduct quantitative experiments and, with the results in hand, design credit card and other financial offers. These efforts call for a specialized skill set, as you can see from this job description (typical for a Capital One analyst):

High conceptual problem-solving and quantitative analytical aptitudes…Engineering, financial, consulting, and/or other analytical quantitative educational/work background. Ability to quickly learn how to use software applications. Experience with Excel models. Some graduate work preferred but not required (e.g., MBA). Some experience with project management methodology, process improvement tools (Lean, Six Sigma), or statistics preferred.

Other firms hire similar kinds of people, but analytics competitors have them in much greater numbers. Capital One is currently seeking three times as many analysts as operations people—hardly the common practice for a bank. “We are really a company of analysts,” one executive there noted. “It’s the primary job in this place.”

Good analysts must also have the ability to express complex ideas in simple terms and have the relationship skills to interact well with decision-makers. One consumer products company with a 30-person analytics group looks for what it calls “PhDs with personality”—people with expertise in math, statistics, and data analysis who can also speak the language of business and help market their work internally and sometimes externally. The head of a customer analytics group at Wachovia Bank describes the rapport with others his group seeks: “We are trying to build our people as part of the business team,” he explains. “We want them sitting at the business table, participating in a discussion of what the key issues are, determining what information needs the businesspeople have, and recommending actions to the business partners. We want this [analytics group] to be not just a general utility, but rather an active and critical part of the business unit’s success.”

Of course, a combination of analytical, business, and relationship skills may be difficult to find. When the software company SAS (a sponsor of this research, along with Intel) knows it will need an expert in state-of-the-art business applications such as predictive modeling or recursive partitioning (a form of decision tree analysis applied to very complex data sets), it begins recruiting up to 18 months before it expects to fill the position.

In fact, analytical talent may be to the early 2000s what programming talent was to the late 1990s. Unfortunately, the U.S. and European labor markets aren’t exactly teeming with analytically sophisticated job candidates. Some organizations cope by contracting work to countries such as India, home to many statistical experts. That strategy may succeed when offshore analysts work on stand-alone problems. But if an iterative discussion with business decision-makers is required, the distance can become a major barrier.

The right technology.

Competing on analytics means competing on technology. And while the most-serious competitors investigate the latest statistical algorithms and decision science approaches, they also constantly monitor and push the IT frontier. The analytics group at one consumer products company went so far as to build its own supercomputer because it felt that commercially available models were inadequate for its demands. Such heroic feats usually aren’t necessary, but serious analytics does require the following:

A data strategy. Companies have invested many millions of dollars in systems that snatch data from every conceivable source. Enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, point-of-sale, and other systems ensure that no transaction or other significant exchange occurs without leaving a mark. But to compete on that information, companies must present it in standard formats, integrate it, store it in a data warehouse, and make it easily accessible to anyone and everyone. And they will need a lot of it. For example, a company may spend several years accumulating data on different marketing approaches before it has gathered enough to reliably analyze the effectiveness of an advertising campaign. Dell employed DDB Matrix, a unit of the advertising agency DDB Worldwide, to create (over a period of seven years) a database that includes 1.5 million records on all the computer maker’s print, radio, network TV, and cable ads, coupled with data on Dell sales for each region in which the ads appeared (before and after their appearance). That information allows Dell to fine-tune its promotions for every medium in every region.

Business intelligence software. The term “business intelligence,” which first popped up in the late 1980s, encompasses a wide array of processes and software used to collect, analyze, and disseminate data, all in the interests of better decision-making. Business intelligence tools allow employees to extract, transform, and load (or ETL, as people in the industry would say) data for analysis and then make those analyses available in reports, alerts, and scorecards. The popularity of analytics competition is partly a response to the emergence of integrated packages of these tools.

Computing hardware. The volumes of data required for analytics applications may strain the capacity of low-end computers and servers. Many analytics competitors are converting their hardware to 64-bit processors that churn large amounts of data quickly.

The Long Road Ahead

Most companies in most industries have excellent reasons to pursue strategies shaped by analytics. Virtually all the organizations we identified as aggressive analytics competitors are clear leaders in their fields, and they attribute much of their success to the masterful exploitation of data. Rising global competition intensifies the need for this sort of proficiency. Western companies unable to beat their Indian or Chinese competitors on product cost, for example, can seek the upper hand through optimized business processes.

This article also appears in:

Companies just now embracing such strategies, however, will find that they take several years to come to fruition. The organizations in our study described a long, sometimes arduous journey. The UK Consumer Cards and Loans business within Barclays Bank, for example, spent five years executing its plan to apply analytics to the marketing of credit cards and other financial products. The company had to make process changes in virtually every aspect of its consumer business: underwriting risk, setting credit limits, servicing accounts, controlling fraud, cross-selling, and so on. On the technical side, it had to integrate data on 10 million Barclaycard customers, Excellerate the quality of the data, and build systems to step up data collection and analysis. In addition, the company embarked on a long series of small tests to begin learning how to attract and retain the best customers at the lowest price. And it had to hire new people with top-drawer quantitative skills.

Much of the time—and corresponding expense—that any company takes to become an analytics competitor will be devoted to technological tasks: refining the systems that produce transaction data, making data available in warehouses, selecting and implementing analytic software, and assembling the hardware and communications environment. And because those who don’t record history are doomed not to learn from it, companies that have collected little information—or the wrong kind—will need to amass a sufficient body of data to support reliable forecasting. “We’ve been collecting data for six or seven years, but it’s only become usable in the last two or three, because we needed time and experience to validate conclusions based on the data,” remarked a manager of customer data analytics at UPS.

And, of course, new analytics competitors will have to stock their personnel larders with fresh people. (When Gary Loveman became COO, and then CEO, of Harrah’s, he brought in a group of statistical experts who could design and implement quantitatively based marketing campaigns and loyalty programs.) Existing employees, meanwhile, will require extensive training. They need to know what data are available and all the ways the information can be analyzed; and they must learn to recognize such peculiarities and shortcomings as missing data, duplication, and quality problems. An analytics-minded executive at Procter & Gamble suggested to me that firms should begin to keep managers in their jobs for longer periods because of the time required to master quantitative approaches to their businesses.

The German pathologist Rudolph Virchow famously called the task of science “to stake out the limits of the knowable.” Analytics competitors pursue a similar goal, although the universe they seek to know is a more circumscribed one of customer behavior, product movement, employee performance, and financial reactions. Every day, advances in technology and techniques provide companies a better and better handle on the critical minutiae of their operations.

The Oakland A’s aren’t the only ones playing moneyball. Companies of every stripe want to be part of the game.

A version of this article appeared in the January 2006 issue of Harvard Business Review.
Tue, 12 Jul 2022 23:53:00 -0500 text/html https://hbr.org/2006/01/competing-on-analytics
Killexams : 5 Best Cloud Certifications 2019

Over the past several years, no other area of IT has generated as much hype, interest and investment as cloud computing. Though the term may have differing meanings for different users, there’s no doubt that the cloud is now a permanent fixture for end users and service providers, as well as global companies and organizations of all sizes. As a result, cloud computing attracts considerable coverage and attention from certification providers and companies that offer cloud-related products, such as Amazon Web Services, Google, Microsoft and VMware.

A Forbes article on cloud computing forecasts summarizes key statistics regarding the current cloud computing landscape and also includes a look to the future. Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the dominant cloud computing player and achieved an incredible 43 percent year-over-year growth. According to Wikibon predictions, AWS revenue should top $43 billion by 2022. AWS is followed closely by Microsoft Azure and the Google Cloud Platform.

According to industry analyst the International Data Corporation (IDC), the cloud has grown much faster than previously predicted. New projections indicate that spending on public cloud services and infrastructure is expected to top $160 billion in 2018, which is an increase of 23.2 percent from 2017. IDC also predicts a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.9 percent by 2021 with spending for public cloud services to exceed $277 billion. Those are huge numbers, in an era when the U.S. economy is growing at less than 3 percent and global GDP is at 4.2 percent.

A close examination of what’s available to IT professionals by way of cloud-related certifications shows a large and growing number of credentials. For 2019, the best cloud certifications include both vendor-neutral and vendor-specific certification options from some top players in the market. However, certification providers watch technology areas carefully, and seldom jump into any of them until clear and strong interest has been indisputably established.

Cloud professionals should expect to earn a healthy income. SimplyHired reports average salaries for cloud administrators at just under $75,000, while cloud developers average nearly $118,000 annually. Cloud architects are the big winners, with average earnings coming in at $129,469 and some salaries shown as high as $179,115.

Before you peruse our list of the best cloud certifications for 2019, check out our overview of the relative frequency at which the top five picks show up in job postings. Keep in mind that these results are a snapshot in time and real demand for certifications could fluctuate.

Job Board Search Results (in alphabetical order, by certification)

Certification

SimplyHired

Indeed

LinkedIn Jobs

Linkup

Total

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional (Amazon Web Services)

1,770

2,639

895

2,199

7,503

CCNA Cloud (Cisco)

305

1,948

612

729

3,594

CCNP Cloud (Cisco)

216

1,098

528

554

2,396

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure (Microsoft)

1,200

1,718

563

778

4,259

VMware VCP7 – CMA

460

589

224

305

1,578

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional

Amazon Web Services launched its AWS certification program in May 2013. Currently, the program offers role-based credentials at the foundation, associate, and professional levels along with several specialty certifications. AWS certifications focus on preparing candidates for developer, operations and architect roles.   

Our featured cert is the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional certification, which targets networking professionals with two or more years of experience designing and deploying cloud environments on AWS. A person with this credential works with clients to assess needs, plan and design solutions that meet requirements; recommends an architecture for implementing and provisioning AWS applications; and provides guidance throughout the life of the projects.

A candidate for this certification should be highly familiar with courses such as high availability and business continuity, costing, deployment management, network design, data storage, security, scalability and elasticity, cloud migration, and hybrid architecture.

Other certifications in the AWS certification program include the following:

Architect

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate: Identifies and gathers requirements for solution plans and provides guidance on architectural best practices throughout AWS projects. Serves as the prerequisite credential for the professional-level certification.

Developer

AWS Certified Developer – Associate: Designs, develops and implements cloud-based solutions using AWS.

AWS Certified DevOps Engineer – Professional: Provisions, operates and manages distributed applications using AWS; implements and manages delivery systems, security controls, governance and compliance validation; defines and deploys monitoring, metrics and logging systems; maintains operational systems. This certification is a professional-level certification for both developer and operation-based roles. When we ran the job board numbers, we found an extremely strong showing among employers seeking AWS certified devops engineers. If your career path is following devops-related roles, this is definitely a certification worth exploring.

Operations

AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate: Provisions systems and services on AWS, automates deployments, follows and recommends best practices, and monitors metrics on AWS.

Cloud

The Certified Cloud AWS Practitioner is the sole foundation-level certification offered by AWS. While not required, it is a recommended prerequisite for associate, professional and specialty certs in the AWS certification family.

Specialty

AWS offers three specialty certs that focus on security, big data and networking:  the AWS Certified Big Data – Specialty, the AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Specialty, and the AWS Certified Security – Specialty.

With about 40 percent market share, Amazon continues to hold the top spot in the cloud computing services market. That makes the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional credential a feather in the cap of channel partners for whom AWS is a major part of their business. The credential also distinguishes partners from their competitors, perhaps giving them an advantage in the pursuit of new clients.

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional Facts & Figures

Certification Name

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional

Prerequisites & Required Courses

Required:

Hands-on experience with cloud architecture design and deployment on AWS (two or more years required)

Ability to evaluate cloud application requirements and make recommendations for provisioning, deployment and implementation on AWS

Skilled in best practices on architectural design at the enterprise, project and application level

Recommended: 

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate

Advanced Architecting on AWS training course

Number of Exams

One, AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional Level (multiple choice, 170 minutes)

Cost per Exam

$300; test administered by Webassessor
An AWS Certification Account is required to register for the exam.

URL

aws.amazon.com/certification/certification-levels/certified-solutions-architect-professional

Self-Study Materials

AWS provides links to an exam blueprint (PDF)sample questions (PDF), practice exams ($40 each), test workshops, self-paced labs, an test preparation resource guide, white papers and more on the certification homepage.

CCNA Cloud: Cisco Certified Network Administrator Cloud

Cisco Systems was founded in 1984 and has become a household name in the realm of IT. Cisco maintains a strong global presence, boasting more than 74,000 employees worldwide and annual revenue of $49.3 billion.

To support its products and customers, Cisco developed and maintains a strong training and certification program, offering credentials at entry, associate, professional, expert and architect levels. Cisco offers two cloud-based credentials: The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) Cloud and the Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) Cloud. The CCNA and CCNP enjoy a strong presence in the cloud and are featured in this year’s top five list.

An entry-level credential, the CCNA Cloud targets IT professionals working in roles such as network or cloud engineer and cloud administrator. The CCNA Cloud credential validates a candidate’s ability to support cloud-based Cisco solutions. Candidates should possess a basic knowledge of cloud infrastructure and deployment models, cloud networking and storage solutions, provisioning, preparation of reports, ongoing monitoring and other cloud administrative tasks.

Two exams are required to earn the CCNA Cloud. Training is highly recommended, but not required. The credential is valid for three years, after which the credential holder must recertify by passing one of the qualifying recertification exams. Credential holders should check Cisco’s certification webpage for the current list of qualifying exams.

In addition to cloud, the CCNA credential is available for numerous other solution tracks, including Cyber Ops, Routing and Switching, Wireless, Data Center, Security, Collaboration, Industrial, and Service Provider.

CCNA Cloud Facts and Figures

CCNP Cloud: Cisco Certified Network Professional Cloud

Cisco certifications are designed to prepare IT professionals working in specific job roles for common challenges they may encounter in the normal scope of their duties. The Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) Cloud credential is designed to validate the skills of administrators, designers, architects, engineers and data center professionals working in a cloud-based environment. In addition to Cloud, the CCNP is available in six other solution tracks: Collaboration, Routing and Switching, Service Provider, Data Center, Security and Wireless.

As the certification name implies, this is a professional-level credential for experienced cloud practitioners. Candidates should be well-versed in cloud-related technologies, such as Cisco Intercloud and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), and cloud models (hybrid, private, public). The CCNP Cloud isn’t all about theory. Successful candidates should also possess the skills necessary to design and implement network, storage and cloud infrastructure solutions and security policies, troubleshoot and resolve issues, automate design processes, design and manage virtual networks and virtualization, provision applications and IaaS, and perform life cycle management tasks. Candidates must also understand Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) architecture and related concepts.

The requirements to earn the CCNP Cloud credential are rigorous. Candidates must first obtain either the CCNA Cloud or any Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) certification. In addition, candidates must pass four additional exams covering cloud design, implementing and troubleshooting, automation, and building applications using ACI. Training is highly recommended as the best way to prepare for CCNP Cloud exams.

The CCNP Cloud is valid for three years. There are several paths to recertification; most involve passing either a written or practical exam. However, candidates may also recertify by passing the Cisco Certified Architect (CCAr) interview and board review.

CCNP Cloud Facts and Figures

Certification Name

Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) Cloud

Prerequisites & Required Courses

CCNA Cloud or any CCIE certification Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) certification
Recommended training:

Implementing and Troubleshooting the Cisco Cloud Infrastructure (CLDINF)

Designing the Cisco Cloud (CLDDES)

Automating the Cisco Enterprise Cloud (CLDAUT)

Building the Cisco Cloud with Application Centric Infrastructure (CLDACI)

Number of Exams

Four:

Implementing and Troubleshooting the Cisco Cloud Infrastructure (300-460, )

Designing the Cisco Cloud (300-465, CLDDES)

Automating the Cisco Enterprise Cloud (300-470, CLDAUT)

Building the Cisco Cloud with Application Centric Infrastructure (300-475, CLDACI)

All exams have 55-65 questions and are 90 minutes in length.
Exams administered by Pearson VUE.

Cost per Exam

$300 each ($1,200 total)

URL

https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/training-events/training-certifications/certifications/professional/ccnp-cloud.html

Self-Study Materials

Cisco maintains numerous resources for credential seekers, including test topics, blogs, study and discussion groups, training videos, seminars, self-assessment tools, Cisco Learning Network games and practice exams. Visit the certification webpage and each test webpage for more information. Books and other training materials are available from the Cisco Marketplace Bookstore.

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure

The MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure cert (replaced the MCSE: Private Cloud cert in 2017) recognizes a candidate’s ability to manage data centers and validates skills in networking virtualization, systems and identity management, storage and related cloud technologies.

The MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure credential requires candidates to first obtain one of the following Microsoft Certified Solution Associate (MCSA) certifications:

Each MCSA requires two or three exams depending on the path chosen. The MCSA: Linux on Azure credential requires both a Microsoft test and the Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS) exam.

Candidates must also pass an MCSE exam. These exams include courses such as developing, implementing and architecting Azure-related solutions; configuring and operating hybrid cloud using Azure stack designing and implementing solutions for cloud data platforms; designing and implementing big data analytics solutions; and implementing server infrastructures.

Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) offers free courses and training materials on many courses relevant to the cloud development. Microsoft Learning occasionally offers Exam Replay, a program that allows candidates to purchase a discounted test with a retake (and a practice exam, for a small added cost).

As more and more Microsoft technologies are delivered and consumed in the cloud rather than on premises, Microsoft continues to beef up its cloud-related certifications. It does so by offering new credentials or sprinkling cloud courses into existing credentials. If you click the Cloud tab, you can see all the cloud-related certifications on the Microsoft Certification webpage.

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure Facts and Figures

Certification Name

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure

Prerequisites & Required Courses

One of the following MCSA credentials:

MCSA: Windows Server 2016 (three exams) or

MCSA: Cloud Platform (two exams) or

MCSA: Linux on Azure (two exams, one Microsoft and the Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator – LFCS) or

MCSA: Windows Server 2012 (three exams)

One required test from the following:
Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions, test 70-532
Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions, test 70-533
Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions, test 70-535 Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions, test 70-473
Designing and Implementing Big Data Analytics Solutions, test 70-475
Securing Windows Server 2016, test 70-744
Implementing a Software-Defined Datacenter, test 70-745, test in beta
Designing and Implementing a Server Infrastructure, test 70-413
Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure, test 70-414
Configuring and Operating a Hybrid Cloud with Microsoft Azure Stack, test 70-537

Number of Exams

One MCSE, plus two or three prerequisite exams

Cost per Exam

MCSE exam: $165

Prerequisite exams: $165 each (MCSA), $300 (LFCS)

Exams administered by Pearson VUE.

URL

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/mcse-cloud-platform-infrastructure.aspx

Self-Study Materials

The Microsoft Learning page includes links to online and in-person training options, study groups, forums, blogs, the Microsoft Evaluation Center and more. Microsoft Press offers free downloadable e-books and test prep books for purchase. The MVA offers free training courses on a variety of topics.
Each test page typically includes links to recommended training, test prep videos, practice tests, community resources and books.

VCP7-CMA: VMware Certified Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation

If there’s a contributing technology that enables the cloud, it must be virtualization, and nobody has done virtualization longer or from as many angles as VMware. The company’s newest cloud credential is the VCP7 – Cloud Management and Automation (VCP7-CMA) certification, based on vSphere 6.5 and vRealize, which recognizes IT professionals who can extend data virtualization throughout the cloud.

To earn the VCP7-CMA, candidates need to follow one of these paths:

VMware offers additional credentials with strong cloud connections, such as these:

VMware regularly updates and replaces certifications in its program to reflect new technologies, so check the  VMware Cloud Management and Automation webpage and the certification roadmap for the latest information.

VCP7-CMA Facts & Figures

Certification Name

VMware Certified Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation (VCP7-CMA)

Prerequisites & Required Courses

Possess a minimum of six months’ experience on vSphere 6 and vRealize
Complete one of the following training courses:

Cloud Orchestration and Extensibility [V7.1]

zRealize Automation: Orchestration and Extensibility [V7.x]

vRealize Automation: Install, Configure, Manage [V7.0], [v7.0] On Demand, [V7.3], or [V7.3] On Demand

Those already possessing a valid VCP credential are not required to take the recommended training. 

(Training course requirements may change from time to time, so candidates should check back frequently for the current course list.)

Number of Exams

One to three, depending on current VCP certifications held:2V0-620: vSphere 6 Foundations (65 questions, 110 minutes, passing score 300)

2V0-602: VSphere 6.5 Foundations (70 questions, 105 minutes, passing score 300)

2V0-731: VMware Certified Professional Management and Automation (VCP7-CMA) (85 questions, 110 minutes, passing score of 300)

Cost per Exam

$125 2V0-620 and 2V0-602
$250 for 2VO-731

VMware exams administered by Pearson VUE. VMware Candidate ID required to register.

URL

https://mylearn.vmware.com/mgrReg/plan.cfm?plan=98713&ui=www_cert

Self-Study Materials

Links to courses, communities, test blueprint, instructional videos, study guides and more are available on the certification page.

Beyond the Top 5: More Cloud Certifications

There’s no overall shortage of cloud-related certifications (nor certificate programs that also attest to cloud competencies).

Although it didn’t make the top five list this year, the CompTIA Cloud+ is still an excellent entry-level credential for those looking for a foundation-level credential. More experienced practitioners should check out Dell’s EMC’s Proven Professional Cloud Architect Specialist (DECE-CA).

You’ll find vendor-specific cloud certifications from companies such as Google, IBM (search for “cloud”), Oracle, Red Hat, Rackspace (CloudU), CA AppLogic and Salesforce. On the vendor-neutral side, the Cloud Certified Professional (CCP) is a comprehensive program aimed at those who aren’t tied to any specific platform. Mirantis offers performed-based OpenStack and Kubernetes certifications at the associate and professional levels. And while it’s a relative newcomer, the vendor-neutral National Cloud Technologists Association (NCTA) CloudMASTER certification is also worth your attention. Candidates must achieve three prerequisite certifications or pass a challenge test to earn the CloudMASTER.

  • MCSA: Windows Server 2016
  • MCSA: Cloud Platform
  • MCSA: Linux on Azure
  • MCSA: Windows Server 2012

Path 1 (for current VCP-Cloud or VCP6-CMA credential holders): Candidates who already possess a valid VCP-Cloud or VCP6-CMA certification need to obtain experience working with vSphere 6.x and vRealize and complete the VMware Certified Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation (VCP7-CMA) test 2V0-731 to earn the certification.

Path 2 (for current VCP6, 6.5, or 7 credential holders in a different track): Candidates who already possess a valid VCP6, 6.5 or 7 credential in a different track should gain experience working with vSphere 6.x and vRealize and then pass test 2V0-731: VMware Certified Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation.

Path 3 (for expired VCP-CMA credential holders): Candidates who hold an expired VCP-CMA certifications must obtain six months of experience on vSphere 6 and vRealize, take a training course and pass test 2V0-620: vSphere 6 Foundations test or test 2V0-602 vSphere 6.5 Foundations Exam, plus complete test 2V0-731: VMware Certified Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation.

Path 4 (for non-VCP credential holders): Candidates who are just starting with VCP7-CMA must gain six months of experience with vSphere 6.x and vRealize, take one of the required training courses, and pass the required exams mentioned in Path 3 above.

VMware Certified Advanced Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation Design (VCAP7-CMA Design)

VMware Certified Advanced Professional 7 – Cloud Management and Automation Deployment (VCAP7-CMA Deploy)

VMware Certified Design Expert 7 — Cloud Management and Automation (VCDX7-CMA)

Tue, 28 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/10748-top-5-cloud-certifications.html
Killexams : The ‘Shamanification’ of the Tech CEO

Charismatic performance has only grown more important in tech. “As a CEO, your job is to sell to all sorts of different people,” said a founder-CEO in Boston. “First and foremost, you need to convince people to join the company and buy into the mission. You also need to sell to customers.”

Especially important are investors. Many tech companies subsist on investment capital for years, making investors’ perceptions critical. “To do the role well, you do have to build a bit of a persona,” said a founder-CEO in San Francisco. “Investors are often attracted to founders that have some sort of unique charisma or personality—special, I think, is the word they would use.”

Although neither of them do restrictive diets, these founders understand the social pressures that compel such performances.

Intensifying the need to be special is the uncertainty and gigaton magnitude of potential rewards. Founders have to convince investors that, with time and dollars, their companies will metamorphose into fat, pearly unicorns. But they have little that sets them apart, especially early on. “There’s no revenue. There are no profits. There’s an idea, which I don’t want to discount,” said Khurana. “But that leaves you very little to evaluate, other than what school did the person go to, who do they know, where did they work.” Like shamans then, founders fall back on personal qualities to convince investors that they can do something near-miraculous.

While CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey talked about intermittent fasting on podcasts, in Twitter posts, and during an online Q&A hosted by WIRED. “Non-intuitive,” he tweeted, “but I find I have a lot more energy and focus, feel healthier and happier, and my sleep is much deeper.”

Perhaps. But if the scientific literature is any indication, his self-denial isn’t all laser-focus and cozy nights. Intermittent fasting seems promising for people with obesity or diabetes, but studies testing the short-term effects of fasting on sleep and cognitive function typically show either no change or deficits.

So are CEO-shamans putting on a show? People everywhere intuit that self-denial and other shamanic practices cultivate power. Being human, tech executives presumably draw the same inferences. At least part of their decision to engage in shamanic practices, then, might stem from a sincere desire to be special.

But humans are also skillful performers. We pay close attention to which identities are esteemed and then craft ourselves to conform. We are guided by automatic, often selfish psychological processes and then delude ourselves with noble justifications. “All the world is not, of course, a stage,” wrote the sociologist Erving Goffman, “but the crucial ways in which it isn’t are not easy to specify.” If CEOs are anything like the rest of us, their personas (including the shamanic elements) are tweaked for acclaim and then rationalized afterward.

Whatever the motivation, the outcome is the same. Look past buzzwords like biohack and transhumanism and many tech executives look a lot like the trance-dancers and witch doctors of past societies. As long as people search for miracles, others will compete to look like miracle-workers, forever resurrecting ancient and time-tested techniques. Shamanism is neither lost wisdom nor superstition. Rather, it’s a reflection of human nature, a captivating tradition that develops everywhere as humans turn to each other to produce the extraordinary.

Updated 7/15/2022 9:15 am ET: This story has been updated to correct that Daniel Gross is a former partner at Y Combinator, not a current partner as previously stated.

Thu, 14 Jul 2022 00:00:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.wired.com/story/health-business-deprivation-technology/
Killexams : ‘Undone’ Co-Creator And Writer Kate Purdy On Exploring Generational Trauma And The “Empowerment In Self-Realization”

After dealing with her own mental health, Kate Purdy decided to channel her experiences through animation for Amazon Prime’s Undone. Along with fellow co-creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg, Purdy created a story of generational trauma and redemption.

Undone follows Alma (Rosa Salazar), a woman who survives a near-fatal car crash and discovers she has the ability to manipulate time and reality. Season 1 focuses on Alma trying to find the truth behind her father Jacob’s (Bob Odenkirk) death and save him. Season 2 takes place in a new timeline after she succeeds, and now finds that her sister Becca (Angelique Cabral) has a similar ability. Together they try to help their mother Camila (Constance Marie) who is hiding something from them.

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DEADLINE: Where did the idea for Undone come from?

KATE PURDY: I had a mental breakdown in 2012. I was in a really difficult marriage and was trying to figure out my way through it and did a lot of soul searching and self-realization to come to understand myself better and how I was contributing to the difficulties in the marriage. A lot of that happened because I actually had physical manifestations and I saw many different doctors, but it was a woman in the Palisades who was an Ayurvedic practitioner that helped. I found that the treatments were healing me physically, but also emotionally and spiritually. I kind of felt like I was receiving guidance from an unseen world, from an ancestry, from a grandmother coming through and saying like, “The greatest gift we can provide you is to break you down in this way and set you on a better path in this lifetime, and we’re here to help even though it feels like suffering.”

I had been a TV writer for many years before that happened and I took time off from writing and decided to not go back. I spent a year actually practicing Ayurveda in the clinic, treating people, learning about herbs and medicine, and then traveling around the world to India to further study and practice Ayurveda. I also went to other places with like Mexico, Hawaii, Central America, where I met other kinds of shamans and healers who used ancient wisdom and traditions, along with different medicinal herbs and meditation practices and prayer, and found all of it really helpful and insightful. Then, of course, even in memorizing Carl Jung since he references his meditative states and what he realized from the unseen world and how he kind of reformed where psychology was in terms of his perception and his experiences. And I also read about physics and just started finding all kinds of lenses of understanding and all modalities.

I eventually went back into television and worked on BoJack Horseman with Raphael [Bob-Waksberg]. Raphael and I started talking about our life experiences and we would take walks and discuss our philosophies, where our ideas overlapped and where they were very different, and that became the central tension of Undone. Like, is this A Beautiful Mind or is this The Matrix? What is really real? And so those were some of the central themes that we explore in the show about reality; perceptions of different perspectives of what might be happening and how those play off of each other.

DEADLINE: How do you toe the line between giving a mystical explanation for something like schizophrenia without dismissing it? 

PURDY: We are very careful to make sure that we’re not being didactic and saying, “This is what reality is.” We want to make sure that every scene in the show, and the show in it’s totality, presents questions and presents the ideas, because we don’t know. My grandmother was schizophrenic, so there is schizophrenia in the family and I have had the fear of losing my mind, and then I did. In that moment, it was a gift and I was able to find my way through it and end up better for it. But I don’t know, was that a schizophrenic break or was I actually experiencing an unseen world that was reaching through to me? I think we don’t know exactly what’s happening and there are lots of theories and lots of experiences. Ultimately, the show wants to explore that without dismissing any kind of idea or lens of what might be happening, but presenting all of them.

DEADLINE: The first season focuses mostly on Alma, with her goal of getting her father back. What was the reasoning behind branching out into different family members, like Becca and Camila, for season 2?

PURDY: Well, I think we have such great actors and we wanted to explore them and get deeper into their stories. We also wanted to explore the idea of generational trauma and this kind of mystery in the family. And that definitely comes from, I think, both Raphael and I having some mysteries in our families. For me with my grandmother, the schizophrenia is very much a mystery because she died before I was born. I’ve heard little details, but there’s not a lot of information forthcoming because people don’t really wanna talk about it. So, we have these sisters working together to uncover the past and realize that both their lineages are at play in terms of defining who they are. They have a choice in how they shape themselves by having those realizations of where they come from, and the pain and suffering that’s come through both lineages.

There’s an empowerment in self-realization, and that became what we wanted to explore in the second season. I wanted to show that it can exist within everyone and for Alma to not feel alone. I wanted Alma to feel like she’s in a universe where other people understand her and work together with her. The important messaging of it is that each of us has a little piece of wisdom and it takes all of us working together to create something better.

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Thu, 16 Jun 2022 04:15:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.yahoo.com/video/undone-co-creator-writer-kate-161531423.html
Killexams : Engineering with Empathy

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Transcript

Shane Hastie: Good day folks. This is Shane Hastie with the InfoQ Engineering Culture Podcast. Today, I have the privilege of sitting down across the miles with Kelsey Hightower. Kelsey is a principal engineer with Google Cloud and will be doing one of the keynotes at the upcoming Agile 2022 Conference. Kelsey, welcome. Thanks so much for taking the time to talk to us today.

Kelsey Hightower: Yeah, thanks for having me.

Shane Hastie: Probably a good starting point is who's Kelsey? Do you want to provide us a bit of your background and experience?

Introductions [00:32]

Kelsey Hightower: Yeah, I'm this self-proclaimed minimalist. I try to be very intentional about everything that I own, about everything that I do. Not only question everything, but try to figure out why. If I go back to like my humble beginnings, I think as a self-taught engineer, which is someone who has learned from teachers they've never met, one of those people who decided to get into tech around 1999, year 2000, right out of high school. I decided college wasn't for me and I took that certification path: A+ certification, Network+ certification, and just found my way into tech and been honing my craft ever since.

Shane Hastie: What does it mean for an engineer to hone the craft?

Fundamentals of software engineering [01:09]

Kelsey Hightower: Honestly, I think it's really understanding your tools well, their pros, their cons, all tools have limitations, and I think the fundamentals. Like the fundamentals of software, I think sometimes we get caught up in various frameworks, whether they're web frameworks or mobile frameworks, but the fundamental is we are basically trying to manipulate data to allow people to interact with the world. Right? If you're buying something you put in your shipping information, maybe a payment info, and we try to provide you this experience so you can explore our catalog, and ideally that thing should be in stock and then we ship it to the right address. So I think the fundamentals of writing software is applying the right algorithms over the right set of data and making sure people have a great experience with the real world. So for me, I don't put software ahead of the experience, it's just a tool to get us to the experience.

Kelsey Hightower: That's where a lot of my fundamentals arrive. So if I'm going to learn about networking, I'm going to go back 30, 40 years and try to review what the discussion was when people thought about connecting the world. I'm going to go figure out who is Vincent Cerf. I'm going to go figure out why was the internet necessary? What were the naysayers saying? How did it turn out? What were the pros and cons? So I kind of look at everything through that lens. There's a lot you can learn from history and I think as a fundamentalist, you can always find the right tool to get you the best experience that you're after.

Shane Hastie: Ooh, some opportunities for some deep conversations of that one; self-taught engineer versus the university pathways. One of the challenges that we've seen in the industry that we look at is there's not enough people. We've got a massive, massive shortage in technology skillsets and in roles. How do we bring more people on board?

Tackling the skills shortage – hire your customers [02:48]

Kelsey Hightower: Yeah, I have to say, I've been an executive for a while and one thing I used to tell other executives, a lot of tech companies are afraid to hire their customers. We kind of believe that the person necessary to build these experiences, these products and services have to be these classically trained engineers. So maybe you're looking for people with a computer science degree or someone who can sort a red, black tree in the best sorting time ever. Honestly, that's not the type of experience that we're putting out. We have the benefit of standard libraries where someone has already figured out the best way to sort of list. These things are necessary, but they're not necessary for every developer to go down into the weeds of. What we need a lot more now are people who understand real-life, real-life interactions, and we need those people to help craft these experiences.

Just from my own personal experience and the people around me, I've seen people go from being a flight attendant to being a software developer because they're learning the frameworks. Maybe they can't tell you the differences between the various algorithms that are out there, but they know how to build an experience because they have experienced themselves interacting with sites, they have lived experiences. And so I think the classical, maybe the computer science degree, what you learned in school is a fantastic journey for a lot of people, but that doesn't certain that you can actually go out and build the very best experience possible because it takes experience in order to reflect it in the outcomes. I think the way we close this gap is we have to understand the experience comes first, and so you're better off making sure that if you're going to be building... You know, sticking with the airline analogy, if you're going to be building tools for people to buy tickets, you want someone who's flown before.

So who better than a flight attendant or someone that used to work behind the Delta ticketing counter, to be able to say, "Wait a minute, if we're going to build software to make it fast for people to get their tickets and their reservations together, here's what I need for my workflow." That's usually the magical piece between an okay experience and a fantastic experience is that real world workflow. And I think I've seen more of that happening where there's companies like The Home Depot who have programs that take people out of their stores into a training facility that then go on to work in the IT department, improving the experience, not just for customers, but for their fellow colleagues that are still working in those stores. So I think we're starting to understand what it takes to build software for other human beings.

Shane Hastie: The title of your keynote is Engineering with Empathy. I heard some empathy in that conversation, but I'd really like to go deeper on that one.

Engineering with empathy [05:19]

Kelsey Hightower: up skills as a software engineer and all I was worried about at that point in my career was just acquiring more skills in order to increase my pay, right? Like that was what most people were doing at that time. I remember working at that financial institution and maybe it's like the second month in, and apparently we were having lots of outages. Every month or so there's two outages where the payment system is down. On this particular outage, one of our payment systems, this is the EBT card. So for people on food assistance in the US, they don't have a visa or a MasterCard, this is government assistance, and to provide them dignity, it comes on the same type of plastic card that other forms of payment come on.

So this system is down, the CTO walks in a room and he lets everyone know, because there wasn't a sense of urgency. People were just mucking around, check the logs, restart this, restart that. Now time is going on and he reminded us this system that we're working on, on the other end of all of these nauseous alerts turning red on our projected screen, there's a woman or someone with their family checking out at the grocery line with their children, basket full of groceries,aAnd unlike our other customers, they don't have another form of payment. So every time that they swipe that card, they're going to get a decline and they're going to have to go home empty handed.

So he asked that if we could just take this a little bit more serious, if we can figure out a way to prevent these type of outages from happening over and over again, because there are people who really count on this system being up. And that was kind of my first experience of really realizing what I was actually doing. I wasn't just a Linux system administrator, I was someone who was responsible for keeping this payment network going so that people can buy their groceries.

Shane Hastie: That deep story there of starting to think about who is the person at the end of the product we are building. Sometimes I jokingly use the term, the victims of our product, as opposed to the users. User as a horrible, horrible term. The only other domain where we talk about users is drug addiction. These are our clients, these are our customers, our phase on the art clients, the people whose lives we change. How many engineers get it and how do we help them get it?

Rethink the interview process [07:39]

Kelsey Hightower: You know, I think just the way we measure results. Think about the interview process. We don't ask people to tell stories in interview processes, we ask them to get on the whiteboard, and maybe write some code. Can you remember rise the right flag to find the right log statement that you're looking for? We ask a lot of this low level technical trivia as if the machine is the most important part of this equation. I do believe that it's still important. You can't be a technologist without tech skills, this is a given, but hardly do you ever see someone really try to figure out where do you stand as a human being? I know how to evaluate a senior engineer, but do you know how to evaluate a senior human being? There are traits to becoming a great human being, to just have this connection of when is it like to make a tough decision? What goes into that calculus? Right?

Well, like when you're designing an on call program, having people with insomnia get off of work, go home and then sleep with one eye open because they don't know when the pager going to ring, you develop a culture that it's okay if the pager goes off at 1:00 AM every night, because the same system keeps falling over and no one treats it as an important thing to fix because they know someone's on call. That is not a good way to treat a fellow human being. That's no way to treat yourself, let alone anyone else, but hardly do we ever talk about that as a standard course of defining what a great engineer is. I think a great engineer is also going to be working on their other skills that make them a better human being as well.

Shane Hastie: Great engineers work in great environments. What is a great engineering culture look like and feel like?

Building great culture is fluid and changing [09:12]

Kelsey Hightower: You know, different parts of my career I needed different things. When I first started my career, great engineering culture was you let me use the tools I needed to get my job done. If I prefer to work on a Linux machine, then you made sure I had the right tools in order for me to execute well. You know, these days after 20 years of being in this business, I want clarity. I want to understand what is the business actually trying to do here? Because when things are very vague, no one knows why they're working on what they're working on. We have no idea if this project successor fail is going to impact the business, and if so, by how much. And so it's that lack of clarity, so there's a huge disconnect between what the executive teams think. You know, you listen to your company's earning calls and you're like, I" didn't know that's what we were doing."

Then you try to map your everyday work. You're trying to map your output to that vision and the more blurry it is, the more confusing it is. I don't think people understand what they're working on and it's hard to bring you a very best to a job, it's hard to bring you a very best to a problem when you're not clear if you're even working on the right thing. And I think this is how people tend to get burned out. It's always weird, right? I think we've all been there. You can put in countless nights and as long as the thing that you build and you complete is used and people seem happy and it feels like you're making progress, you almost feel energized to keep going even though it's unhealthy.

You can take the same situation, put in all of that work and then the thing you produce people say, "Yeah, we don't really need it." That makes you feel tired, burnout, and you just don't want to go through that again so you become apprehensive to the next task because you don't want to go through that feeling again. So to me, the best environment has been one with a lot of clarity. The reason why I leave with the clarity is because once you have clarity, then I think individuals know what they can bring to the table, right? And say, "If that's the problem, maybe I need a new set of skills because I don't have the skills necessary to solve that problem." Instead of pretending, instead of guessing, I can kind of raise my hand and say, "look, I don't have skills in that area. I think I know how to go acquire them." Maybe it's a bit of training, maybe I can do some self study on my own and look, we're in a connected world in year 2022. You can just reach out on social media, go to a meetup and ask questions and start to close that knowledge gap for yourself in pretty short order.

Shane Hastie: As a leader of technical people; is it model, is it inspire my teams to have that learning mindset? And even what is teamwork?

Leaders must model the behaviours they want in their teams [11:36<]

Kelsey Hightower: The last time I was a director of engineering that I took over a team that was kind of in an unhealthy state, and I was always patient. The first act was moving out of my office with the window onto the floor in the same cubicles with everyone else. And then it was what are we doing as a team? And how can I help? I remember one of the problems we had at this particular company, we used to screen scrape amazon.com for pricing information on their products and services, because our core product helped you manage your inventory and gave you a recommendation on how to price that inventory to move on third party marketplaces. It turns out scraping is not an official API. Amazon can just change a header or div and your whole tooling falls apart and then your tool stops working. The team needs to run around in circles, trying to put out the fire, trying to figure out what the scraper needs to be adjusted so we can get pricing information again.

One day I was like, "How long have you all been doing this?" And they were like, "Look, Kelsey, our product people assume that information's going to be there." And so what I asked the team to do is commission a study. How many customers rely on that particular feature? Is there another way to get that data? If so, we need to wind down this scraping and alleviate these emergencies and fires because they're reoccurring and this isn't healthy. I promised them and I went to the CEO, "We have to change this." I went to the product team, "We have to change this." And it went from "we have to change this" to "we are going to change this" and "we changed it," and the team just saw that we can do whatever we want to do, but I need you to bring your very best self.

Know your people and what inspires them [13:10]

Kelsey Hightower: To do that, I had to just study how individuals was working. And I remember there were two people, one person working in a Unix-Linux team writing Java, and one person working on Windows on C#. Neither of them liked their respective areas. One person just wanted to go back on the Unix side to writing in C# and working on Windows, the other person wanted to go from working on Windows back to the Linux world. I was like, "This is too easy. Starting tomorrow, you all just swap and there you go." And their managers are like, "Kelsey, why are we doing this?"

It's like right now, you're dealing with people that are working at half speed, unmotivated, and they're wishing to be somewhere else. We're going to erase that line and let's just see what happens. And of course, as soon as they move their desks, they're like I am where I'm supposed to be and now they're focused on being the very best version of themselves. So I think as any leader, individual humans need individual things and you have to understand them as a whole person, and then you try to make small adjustments to let them be the best version of themselves. I think that's always worked for me.

Shane Hastie: We don't teach leaders how to do this.

Kelsey Hightower: Which is unfortunate because a lot of times we... And sometimes it's the right move, but often it's a mistake. We take the best engineer on the team and we try to make them the leader. That best engineer may have never worked on their human skills, right? They may be so used to just working solo, "Give me the problem, I'll solve it by myself." And that is not necessarily the best outcome for a team because they may not understand what's required for someone who doesn't have as much skill as them. They may have the wrong level of expectations, they may not understand value in others because they may only value the traits that they have and so they tend to hire for people that are just like them. And so you come up with these kind of monotone teams, and then you just kind of get this singular culture.

No one's really thinking outside of the box, you almost like this one person; you know, hive mind over everything else. And so that's not necessarily the best thing that you want for a leader and sometimes to those people, you have to explain to them. A 10X engineer is not someone who just working 10X better than everyone else. I think a 10X engineer is the type of person who can come in and make 10 other people better than they were before, and that's usually the ultimate challenge for someone who could just say, "Give me the problem, I'll do it myself." And if I say, "Well, what if you couldn't do that this time? What if you had to provide the problem to another group of people and you had to help them along the way until they did the problem themselves, all in hopes of next month, next week, the next day, they would be better versions of themselves?" And I think that's a challenge that is a good sign of leadership and the potential to grow into that role.

Shane Hastie: At higher levels in the organization, how do we create this culture that is a learning environment where it's safe and easy to do this?

Changing the incentives to enable a learning culture [15:56]

Kelsey Hightower: Now the truth is it won't be safe nor easy and I think that's the hard part of it. When you are spending time on these human things and your team, your role definition, doesn't know how to even evaluate, then it's going to be hard at promotion time because you may say, "Hey, look, I've leveled up these five other people, but I didn't do a bunch of things myself." You may be penalized and so I think it's a bit challenging if the organization doesn't realize how valuable it is to have someone like that. So I think what we have to do is, we have to change the conversation around what we expect from a leader, like what does leadership look like? I mean, you literally have to sit down and say, "Hey, maybe, we got this all wrong."

When a leader shows up, how do we know how to recognize it if we're probably bad leaders ourselves? So you kind of have this kind of self-fulfilling prophecy around we want better leaders, but we're the ones judging them, and maybe you don't have the right rubric that you're applying to that leadership. So I think what we have to do is for each team, each team may be different, is to really reward those situations and narratives where someone says, "I started to think and I recruited co-founders who now own the thing, and the thing is now better than when I was doing it by myself." And that goes back to the saying, "Some people have ideas and some ideas have people." And we need to do a better job of recognizing when something becomes bigger than just one person and then reward that person for having the courage to hand it off and let the whole team take part in this execution.

Shane Hastie: These are big shifts for many organizations. I'm thinking of our audience who are technical influences, many of them first time leaders, very often that's highly skilled technologists thrown into a people leadership role. What advice have you got for them to really make the shift for themselves?

Advice for new leaders [17:46]

Kelsey Hightower: You know, I think it's hard because I have a certain style and my style is really to understand the person, I mean, really understand the person and it's awkward. I remember giving an underpaid engineer a raise. This woman came from the support organization and learned how to write code. I think she was making half of what everyone was making, but she was definitely in the top three of our engineers. As a people manager, I got to go look at all of the salaries proactively. I don't need to wait until this person threatens to quit. I don't need to wait until this person finds out from someone else at lunch how much they make versus what they make. I have to proactively be looking and thinking about these things. I remember identifying that and said, "This isn't right." Then you go to HR and say, "Listen, instead of hiring someone new, I have to make things right by this person, because right now, things are not right by this person." That's literally part of my job.

Then when you sit down with this person and they're wondering if they're in trouble, you go into the office, you close the door for privacy and you sit there and tell them, "You've been doing a fantastic job and here's how, in detail, that there's a problem though." They don't know what you're going to say, "And you're underpaid. You're dramatically underpaid. I want to fix that today." You slide them a piece of paper and you look at their eyes just widen at the fact that their salary has literally doubled between the time they came in, had a coffee and you asked them to jump into this meeting. All kind of things start swirling in their head about, "Maybe I'm better than I thought I was."

They just go back to their desks, smile cannot be hidden from their colleagues and they start hacking away. And I think there's this sense of I belong on this team and they understand my value and that's part of the deal. But it's these small nuanced things: that awkward silence when you have to tell people good news, that awkward silence when you have to tell people bad news. All of that is part of leadership and as long as that person knows, "I am literally trying to make you better. You're great at some things, you need to Excellerate in some other areas, but no one is perfect. But if I find an opportunity to make the things you're good at great, my job, and I promise this to you, is that I'm going to invest heavily in making sure we don't miss that opportunity. And the things you're bad at, I'm just going to let you know you're aware of them and then you can decide how much help you want improving them, so they don't wash out the things that you're good at."

And I think that is what's required. So there's a level of patience. You might as well throw the word scale out of the conversation because you can't scale human interaction when you're in charge of individual people. This is why it's hard to manage a hundred people with one person. You can't do it. This is why I think you need help as you kind of go down the stack, making sure that your people have real leadership and not just management.

Shane Hastie: Moving back to early in our conversation, you were talking about how in your growth path you have looked back. So you mentioned if you wanted to understand communications, you were looking at the history of the internet. What are the things that are happening today that people like you are going to be looking at in 20 years time and saying, "What was going on then?"

Reflecting on society today and how it will be looked back on in the future [21:01]

Kelsey Hightower: For me is just where I am in my career. I'm the type of person that's probably fortunate enough to be facing early retirement. The question I asked myself, is this the society we actually wanted? This process of buy and sell and trade, buy, sell, trade, honestly, is that what the whole universe was formed for? To buy, sell, and trade things? I don't know. I think the fact that we're just collective species of people that have a shared fate, regardless if we acknowledge it or not, we have to trust each other. You trust the pilot to land the plane safely. You trust a person preparing your food to prepare it safely. So we already have a web of trust amongst us, we're just not intentional about it.

I think as a society when you look back and say the fundamentals of life is that everything around you has the opportunity to help or hurt. Then as humans with the conscious, with the ability to understand and to remember, we get to make that choice every day, you can help a hurt. You can either say hello with a smile, or you can look at them crazy as I don't want you to talk to me, you get to decide, and it's not super easy, but I think we have to be very intentional about the world that we create. So when I look around, whether it's technology, whether it's just giving someone some encouragement, or being there to talk to someone, these are the decisions that I think are more important than the 24 hour news cycle. Everyone has to have something to say about everything, but where do we think? When do we take a pause to think? And that's the part where I look back and say, fundamentally, you need time to process information.

Even for the people that are super technical listening to this, even machines need time to process the information, right? They will even context switch so instead of receiving the data, they will process it and then they'll get back to the thread to receive more data. Well, humans also need time to process. That means when you have an interaction you ask yourself, "Was that the best interaction possible? Was I my very best person during that interaction? What can I learn from the interaction for the next time?" And so you have to process this stuff, you really need to think, need to think critically and it's okay to then share once you've had a bit of time to think and then make corrections as necessary. So to me, when I look back over, at least my time on earth is there has to be more than buying, selling, and trading things. And that's what I wish people would kind of get back to and just say, "What is your role in this overall web of life?"

Shane Hastie: Deep thinking there. Kelsey, thank you very much. If people want to continue the conversation, where do they find you?

Kelsey Hightower: Well, I spend most of my time on Twitter. My DMs are open. I make plenty of time for one-on-ones where I can learn things from you and I can share things that I've had time to critically think about. If you're going to be at Agile 22, I'll be there for a couple days and I'll be walking around the floor. But catch me on Twitter, DMs are open.

Shane Hastie: Thanks so much.

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Fri, 15 Jul 2022 20:03:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.infoq.com/podcasts/engineering-empathy/
Killexams : The 16 Most Life-Changing Health & Wellness Books of 2022, Say Therapists and Readers No result found, try new keyword!Transformation is exactly what we seek when we pick up a new book. These have all appeared on the leading bestseller lists in 2022—and the best part? Every pick on this list is available as an ... Thu, 07 Jul 2022 04:32:22 -0500 en-us text/html https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/wellness/the-16-most-life-changing-health-and-wellness-books-of-2022-say-therapists-and-readers/ar-AAVGbwY Killexams : Today’s Premium Stories

In March, when the inflation rate hit a 40-year high, Kim Massale didn’t fret about rising prices for food or other goods. She and her husband, John, had already cut back on unnecessary spending on Amazon.com and elsewhere. Instead, they socked away $30,000 into a retirement fund. 

The day before he quit his lucrative aerospace job last week, Ryan and his wife bought a new Subaru Ascent after years of making do with one vehicle. “That’s probably the only thing so far inflation-wise that’s really adjusted our lifestyle and decision making,” says Ryan, who declined to have his last name published for privacy reasons.

Rising prices and looming fears of a recession have caused legions of consumers to worry about the future and pull in their horns. Security is at stake even among Americans earning $100,000 or more, two-thirds of whom say they are “very concerned” about inflation, according to a Morning Consult/CNBC poll conducted last week. More than half of Americans believe the United States already is in a recession, according to an Economist/YouGov survey last month.

But for one group of Americans – practitioners of FIRE, or Financial Independence, Retire Early – clouds of economic doubt have not rained on their parade, at least not yet. Made up mostly of millennials and Gen Z, the movement emphasizes living below one’s means with disciplined savings, diversified income, and robust do-it-yourself investing to achieve financial independence long before retirement age.

The strategy worked in an era of low inflation and rising stock prices. Now that the economic scenario has flipped, the FIRE movement is about to get tested. On Wednesday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the U.S. inflation rate hit 9.1% in June, a new 41-year high. Practitioners say they’re ready.

Inflation “is hard for everyone,” says Julien Saunders, co-host of the Rich & Regular podcast with his wife, Kiersten. But “I do think it helps for people who have already done a lot of the work to dig deep and get scrappy and find ways to save even when we’re not in a hyperinflationary market.”

Courtesy of Julien Saunders

Inflation “is hard for everyone,” says Julien Saunders, co-host of the Rich & Regular podcast with his wife, Kiersten. But “I do think it helps for people who have already done a lot of the work to dig deep and get scrappy and find ways to save even when we're not in a hyperinflationary market.”

Some devotees go to great lengths to cut expenses. Jacob Lund Fisker, an early pioneer of financial independence and creator of the Early Retirement Extreme blog, became financially independent at 30. Now married, he and his wife each live on $7,000 a year in Chicago.

Others take a more relaxed approach. Ms. Saunders, for example, participates in a couple of Buy Nothing groups, local bands of people who provide away things they no longer need to neighbors, she says. “It’s just this idea of searching there first instead of going to a store or even a thrift store.” 

Also, a devotee might plow 25%, 50%, or even 75% of their income into savings, a financial cushion that typically goes into stocks or rental property, holdings that usually hold their own in inflationary times. And it’s hard to be scared about losing one’s job in a recession for people who work because they want to, not because they have to.

Many financial professionals frown on the idea of early retirement because it means drawing down reserves that otherwise would have years and decades to grow bigger. And for those starting out, the FIRE journey can be bumpy.

Ryan, the former aerospace engineer in the greater Boulder, Colorado, area, got his baptism by fire during the Great Recession. After buying his first house in 2007, he saw its value drop by half before he sold it at a $100,000 loss. It took him three or four years to dig out of that financial hole and buy another property. Now, having sold all his rental properties, Ryan is relying on his wife’s part-time income and their significantly more than $1 million stock portfolio to get them through. He’s stress-tested it against a number of historical scenarios, including the stagflation of the 1970s and the Great Depression, to make sure that his family can survive a downturn.

“On the Great Depression, I don’t think anybody was living a great life,” he says. “But from a financial perspective, the models say that our portfolio and our approach should be able to handle that kind of a situation.”

What’s required, FIRE practitioners say, is a change in mindset. 

Resetting priorities

“It was like a really difficult discipline to learn at first,” says Ms. Massale of Longmont, Colorado. “We were just sort of blindly living and spending a lot of money to create comfort in the present. When we stopped and made that change, we really were able to create both an experience in the present as well as a lifestyle for the future that’s way more free and way more aligned with our wish to be connected as a family.”

Instead of working full time at a job and on a graduate degree, Mr. Massale became a full-time dad to their two young children. Earlier this year, Ms. Massale pushed off much of her counseling and coaching to her 10 therapist employees, leaving her to run the business side of her company and spend more time with her children.

Courtesy of Jordan Grumet

FIRE podcaster Jordan Grumet speaks at The EconoMe Conference in Cincinnati, on March 7, 2020. He says a younger generation is seeking to integrate greater financial freedom into their lives before they retire, while also building a path toward full financial independence.

“Happiness researchers, they talk about things like life actualization or emotional well-being, but I think we’re talking about the same thing, which is having a purposeful life,” says Jordan Grumet, host of the Earn & Invest podcast and author of “Taking Stock,” a book on financial independence and personal fulfillment due out next month. “Those are the North stars that we tend to forget – or at least don’t ever do the hard work in figuring those things out, especially when we’re young.”

The modern FIRE movement has gone through a maturing process itself. 

“The first FIRE practitioners were people who didn’t like their jobs at all, felt like work was miserable and really grinded it out in the 9 to 5, made as much money as possible, and then got out,” says Mr. Grumet. “This idea was that things like purpose and meaning were things you could put off until you had enough money to get away from work. The younger generation of FIRE practitioners is smarter and they realize that, ‘I don’t want to have to wait 10 years, work through incredibly hard nights and weekends and only then integrate that freedom.’ They want to integrate that freedom now. And so they’re looking at less aggressive models that allow them to enjoy themselves, maybe even spend money, and yet still build a path toward financial independence that feels comfortable.”

By his estimate, some 5 million to 10 million people practice FIRE. A Reddit discussion thread on the subject boasts 1.3 million followers.

Can it work for all income levels?

One of the criticisms leveled at the FIRE movement is that it only works for upper-middle income people with the means to save large amounts of money.

“It’s certainly a whole lot easier when you have discretionary income that you can use to put toward saving and investing without it taking away from your needs,” says Mr. Saunders, who wrote with his wife their first book, “Cashing Out: Win the Wealth Game by Walking Away.” Their aim is to teach the relevant FIRE principles to people of color who suffer ongoing pay disparities with their white colleagues. 

“It’s very difficult to have a conversation with someone about retirement who doesn’t know how they’re going to put food on the table next month,” he says. “And so in those cases, conversations are much more centered around: ‘These are some of the newer ways that you should explore in terms of income generation and income creation,’ which I think given the growth of the internet is far easier for people to do today than ever before.”

Even many people with modest salaries can find ways to save, says Pete Adeney, author of the Mr. Money Mustache blog, which in 2011 began to popularize the idea of financial independence. He recalls helping a single mother living across town from her job at Walmart. She spent a third of her income on car expenses, given the car loan, insurance, maintenance, and gas. When Mr. Adeney convinced her to rent next door to her job, she ditched the car for an e-bike and saved $8,400 a year.

Five years ago, Chris Mamula quit his job as a physical therapist to spend more time with his wife, Kim, and their daughter, including this trip to Grand Canyon National Park in April 2022.

“More helpful to the world as well”

“The lower your income and tighter your living arrangement, the more important this becomes,” he writes in an email. “From my experience, work is better if you don’t need the money. So once you achieve early retirement (which simply means you are financially set for life), any work you decide to pursue after that point is likely to be very meaningful to you and probably more helpful to the world as well.”

In 2017, Chris Mamula of Ogden, Utah, ditched his 16-year career as a physical therapist, became a stay-to-home dad, and started writing part-time for a FIRE blog. Now, he’s getting a certified financial planner certificate. “I don’t know if I’ll ever practice,” he says, “but I kind of see myself offering a little bit of one-on-one counseling to people who need that kind of extra help beyond memorizing the blog.”

It’s a journey many successful FIRE devotees share. 

“I have more space to think about giving back,” says Ms. Massale. She is currently working on creating free or low-price services to empower women and guide them in creating a lifestyle of freedom themselves.

Tue, 12 Jul 2022 16:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.csmonitor.com/Daily/2022/20220713?icid=web:hpddp:toc:1146961
Killexams : ‘Undone’ Co-Creator And Writer Kate Purdy On Exploring Generational Trauma And The “Empowerment In Self-Realization”

After dealing with her own mental health, Kate Purdy decided to channel her experiences through animation for Amazon Prime’s Undone. Along with fellow co-creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg, Purdy created a story of generational trauma and redemption.

Undone follows Alma (Rosa Salazar), a woman who survives a near-fatal car crash and discovers she has the ability to manipulate time and reality. Season 1 focuses on Alma trying to find the truth behind her father Jacob’s (Bob Odenkirk) death and save him. Season 2 takes place in a new timeline after she succeeds, and now finds that her sister Becca (Angelique Cabral) has a similar ability. Together they try to help their mother Camila (Constance Marie) who is hiding something from them.

DEADLINE: Where did the idea for Undone come from?

KATE PURDY: I had a mental breakdown in 2012. I was in a really difficult marriage and was trying to figure out my way through it and did a lot of soul searching and self-realization to come to understand myself better and how I was contributing to the difficulties in the marriage. A lot of that happened because I actually had physical manifestations and I saw many different doctors, but it was a woman in the Palisades who was an Ayurvedic practitioner that helped. I found that the treatments were healing me physically, but also emotionally and spiritually. I kind of felt like I was receiving guidance from an unseen world, from an ancestry, from a grandmother coming through and saying like, “The greatest gift we can provide you is to break you down in this way and set you on a better path in this lifetime, and we’re here to help even though it feels like suffering.”

I had been a TV writer for many years before that happened and I took time off from writing and decided to not go back. I spent a year actually practicing Ayurveda in the clinic, treating people, learning about herbs and medicine, and then traveling around the world to India to further study and practice Ayurveda. I also went to other places with like Mexico, Hawaii, Central America, where I met other kinds of shamans and healers who used ancient wisdom and traditions, along with different medicinal herbs and meditation practices and prayer, and found all of it really helpful and insightful. Then, of course, even in memorizing Carl Jung since he references his meditative states and what he realized from the unseen world and how he kind of reformed where psychology was in terms of his perception and his experiences. And I also read about physics and just started finding all kinds of lenses of understanding and all modalities.

I eventually went back into television and worked on BoJack Horseman with Raphael [Bob-Waksberg]. Raphael and I started talking about our life experiences and we would take walks and discuss our philosophies, where our ideas overlapped and where they were very different, and that became the central tension of Undone. Like, is this A Beautiful Mind or is this The Matrix? What is really real? And so those were some of the central themes that we explore in the show about reality; perceptions of different perspectives of what might be happening and how those play off of each other.

DEADLINE: How do you toe the line between giving a mystical explanation for something like schizophrenia without dismissing it? 

PURDY: We are very careful to make sure that we’re not being didactic and saying, “This is what reality is.” We want to make sure that every scene in the show, and the show in it’s totality, presents questions and presents the ideas, because we don’t know. My grandmother was schizophrenic, so there is schizophrenia in the family and I have had the fear of losing my mind, and then I did. In that moment, it was a gift and I was able to find my way through it and end up better for it. But I don’t know, was that a schizophrenic break or was I actually experiencing an unseen world that was reaching through to me? I think we don’t know exactly what’s happening and there are lots of theories and lots of experiences. Ultimately, the show wants to explore that without dismissing any kind of idea or lens of what might be happening, but presenting all of them.

DEADLINE: The first season focuses mostly on Alma, with her goal of getting her father back. What was the reasoning behind branching out into different family members, like Becca and Camila, for season 2?

PURDY: Well, I think we have such great actors and we wanted to explore them and get deeper into their stories. We also wanted to explore the idea of generational trauma and this kind of mystery in the family. And that definitely comes from, I think, both Raphael and I having some mysteries in our families. For me with my grandmother, the schizophrenia is very much a mystery because she died before I was born. I’ve heard little details, but there’s not a lot of information forthcoming because people don’t really wanna talk about it. So, we have these sisters working together to uncover the past and realize that both their lineages are at play in terms of defining who they are. They have a choice in how they shape themselves by having those realizations of where they come from, and the pain and suffering that’s come through both lineages.

There’s an empowerment in self-realization, and that became what we wanted to explore in the second season. I wanted to show that it can exist within everyone and for Alma to not feel alone. I wanted Alma to feel like she’s in a universe where other people understand her and work together with her. The important messaging of it is that each of us has a little piece of wisdom and it takes all of us working together to create something better.

Wed, 15 Jun 2022 21:15:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://deadline.com/2022/06/kate-purdy-undone-co-creator-writer-animation-dialogue-1235046679/?_escaped_fragment_=
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