Certification: AWS Certified Developer – Associate

I have obtained my 3rd AWS certification – AWS Certified Developer.

Score: 927 out of 1000

Total preparation time – 4 weeks. From 30 minutes to 1 hour every day.

Materials used:

Next and last step for 2020 is AWS Cloud Practitioner exam.

Book Review: Think Smarter: Critical Thinking to Improve Problem-Solving and Decision-Making Skills by Michael Kallet

“If I am paid for my thinking and problem solving skills, how I can become better in this?” – this is a question that I ask myself from time to time.

A book “Think Smarter” provides clear definition of key stages of critical thinking process (clarity, conclusions and decisions) and gives step by step instructions what to do on each of the stages.

Some ideas and instruments can look pretty obvious and well-known but a value of the book in systematic process that author created.

Among multiple things taht I liked in the book are:

  • Visual representation of decision making process – how expiriences, observations, facts and assumptions form our conclusions and how to distinguish fact from observation
  • Definition of “outside the box” thinking. “What is “the box” in thinking?” is a first question to ask to understand
  • Explanation what is premise and why it can be weak or strong. This is important knowledge to measure confidence of the conclusion
  • Abductive thinking – how my conclusions will change if some of my assumptions are wrong? Or how would I think about it if I had not some of my expiriences?

My next step for the topic “Critical Thinking” is to write an article that will apply critical thinking to customer’s requests prioritization.

So, a lot of interesting ideas written in easy to read language. Totally recommend to read.

Check out series of my articles how critical thinking framework applies to prioritization.

Overall rating – 5 out of 5.

KVM Virtualization 101

This is a translation of my article in Russian which was written in September 2019.

Virtualization is so deep and broad subject, that it is not possible to cover all details of hypervisor (and not needed, actually). I will concentrate on “minimal valuable pack” of knowledge that is required to understand any KVM virtualized solution, not necessarily Telco.


Overview and brief history of virtualization technology

The story of virtualization began in 1999 when young company VMWare has released product VMWare Workstation. This was a first commercial product that provided virtualization for desktop/client applications. Virtualization of the server part started a little bit later in the form of ESX Server product that evolved in ESXi (i stands for integrated). This product is being used widely in IT and Telco private clouds as hypervisor for server-side applications.

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Book review: Speed Reading: Learn to Read a 200+ Page Book in 1 Hour by Kim Knight

Excellent book with a lot of practice drills to improve spead of reading. Most of the advices are easy and straightforward to understand, but it will require commiment and time investment to master speed reading skill.

I’m gonna practice following skills:

  • Setting a purpose before starting to read
  • Preview reading materials
  • Space reading
  • Remove subvocalization
  • Reduce fixation and regression
  • Practice peripheral vision
  • Look for key sentences and meanings in text
  • Do recall and review after every 30 minutes of reading
  • Eye exercises at the end of the day

Overall rating – 5 out of 5.

Certification: AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate

I got my second AWS certification – AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate!

Score: 874 out of 1000

Total preparation time: 5 weeks, from 30 minutes to 1 hour per day.

Materials used:

Overall, exam questions are quite difficult and I don’t think it is possible to pass it without solid preparation.

Next target is AWS Certified Developer Associate.

Cloud Native as a disruptive innovation for Telco market


This article is a summary of my personal views and opinions. It does not pretend to be 100% correct as far I’m a human and have my own biases and tend to make mistakes.


The pace of innovation is high and continue to increase. There are very limited amount of industries that were not impacted by Cloud Computing technologies stack. And Telco industry is not one of them. I was witnessing for last 5-7 years how several waves of innovation gone through telecommunications vendors and service providers changing not only products and solutions but organizational structures, processes and ways of working.

The most recent innovation that came to Telco market was Cloud Native technologies. The purpose of this article is to summarize how Cloud Native innovation is different from other multiple changes and improvements happened in industry and explain why it is “disruptive”.

What is “disruptive innovation”?

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Book review: Influence without Authority by David L. Bradford; Allan R. Cohen

Every person in any organization has a need to influence people – peers, boss, other department. This is just a part of human nature. We prefer to participate in reciprocity process rather than to follow marching orders. Even with direct reports it is much easier to achieve better performance with influence than authority.

This book provides guidance into how to create influence using pretty straightforward process. In the context of the book, influence is an ability to establish trustful relationships and make “win-win” exchanges to achieve the one’s goals.

One of the key ideas of the book – everybody is your potential ally. This idea is very simple, but in practice we tend to mark individuals or groups of people as “bad persons”, if they don’t cooperate or help us right after the first request. Thus, we remove them from list of potential allies and killing the possibility for influence.

The book explains how to avoid this bias, how to understand other side values and goals (currencies in the book’s language) and how to build mutually benefitial reciprocity process in professional environment. The process how to do that explained early in the book and the rest of it concenrates on various situations where and how this process applies – with your boss, cross-functional team or other departmernt.

The key weakness of the book from my point of view – too much speculation and hypothetical thinking in some of examples.

Overall rating – 4 out of 5.