Friday, 7 April 2006

Brooding conception - incubating a new blog

Writing to help
Many years ago, I took up writing but mainly to help people solve problems with Microsoft Systems Management Server and advise people on studying and preparing for the Microsoft MSCE vendor certification.
I found the experience quite interesting during the year of 1999.
Apart from that, I have been involved in some in-house technical writing, guides and processes such that I find that my thoughts and ideas are all over the place but not accessible from a repository that archives and develops those things for more general consumption.
Recently, I found that I do have a body of knowledge that is getting improved upon through my Masters programme, which involves a lot of writing too, amongst other experiences.
My approach to the discussion questions has involved technical and business perspectives such that I would not laud technical advancements that businesses and CIOs are not getting excited about.
Solutions not fancy toys
We as technical people have to recognise that businesses do not require toys but solutions that streamline business practice, improve efficiency, offer competitive advantage, cost very little and offer great benefits.
That is what my technical affirmation is all about that sometimes my technical colleagues think I have gone native when I do not ham on the feature but the politics that loosen the purse strings.
To that end, I would be launching a new blog that offers content radically different from the fare you get from here.
It would revolve mainly around my professional ideas and views, encouraging debate on support, administration, mentoring, certification and the architect’s dilemma.
Breaking it down
Borrowing from methodologies and frameworks about service, management and administration, I hope to break them down into bite-size commonsense views that would help people do better and realise how technique and process are one and the same for remaining relevant to your organisation and any career path you choose.
Incubating a new blog
Now that I have decided to start up a new blog I am caught on the horns of a dilemma about getting a good name and using a good blog provider to host my material.
Blog-City does a fantastic job, I am a premium subscriber for this blog till 2010, however, I have not convinced of the service being adequate for a more professional outing.
I suppose it is down to how I run it than how it is hosted except for ensuring that features abound and are kept up to date, more bandwidth is definitely required and more file space too.
That search would continue through another week of research.
Meanwhile …
A piece of vintage Akin found on the web begins to indicate where we might be going soon. I wrote this just under 6 years ago and it still finds true today.
However, some of the links which were alive years ago, might now be dead – Alas!
It was strange when a colleague dug up a few of my write-ups in the then Dejanews now Google Groups which some jobs-worthy security guy thought was a porn site until I gave a spirited fight to show how it is more useful for helping us solve problems than for seeking temporary relief. Sometimes!
The write up was in response to comment about self-studying for the MCSE and seeking help towards the effort.
Here goes …
It is high time people realised that career development is a personal thing, not something offered on a plate as a work of kindness.
If you are in permanent employment, you career progressions is subject to the whims and caprices of the organisations you work for, if contracting, you have to take time off from earning money either to study, attend courses or take tests.
I think it is a valid point that your organisation wants to send your staff on practical "In wild training" rather than fill them with exam theory, which has no lien with real life. They should be glad for that option.
As for getting the MCSE, they should for the want of another phrase, 'get off their arses' get the syllabuses off the Microsoft sites, surf the Net and get information from :-
You do them a disservice if you are assuming they do not have the aptitude to study, read up, set aside some time to practice, and at £75 a go, pay for the tests to complete the MCSE in a reasonable 6 to 9 months. Even if it is an exam a month. They obviously cannot completely lack initiative to chart their own career progress.
This thing is no rocket science.
I did my CNE over 5 years ago, after working with the products for a while, did not have the luxury for any training or any of the resources we now have on the Net - got books worth a quarter of my monthly salary, and scrounged and scrimped to get it all done in 3 weeks. As for my MCSE, that was bliss.
Why? (Regarding my CNE)
Determination,
The need to progress

The realisation that I am not brain-dead

My employer could not eventually hold me to ransom, I paid my way.
Why? (Regarding my MCSE)
Getting bored with the mundane
Needed a challenge, which was over in 3 weeks :)

Validate my knowledge (personally), not for employment purposes - been working with NT for over 4 years
As for CBTs
Try the CBTs from CBT Systems now Smartforce, they can be customised for your requirements.
Regards,
Akin Akintayo CNE MCSE

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