Are you a tech dinosaur?

 

We all admire dinosaurs. They were strong. They thrived in their environments. They ruled the world.

But they also went extinct!

There are many theories about the extinction of dinosaurs. One popular theory is that, as the world around it changed, they could not quickly adapt to the changing environments. So, they were wiped out from the planet.

As Darwin rightly observed: It is not the strongest of the species nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.

One change that is happening around us in the world of computing technologies is containers. Containers are eating the world! For the past two years, its “docker, docker” everywhere. Beyond all the hype about container technologies, there is real action on the ground. Organisations small and large are in the process of adopting container technologies to get early-mover advantage, reduce time-to-market and gain market-share. Hundreds of thousands of developers are eager to learn about latest happening in the rapidly evolving world of containers.

We are exploiting this change in our own small way. We are introducing Bangalore Container Conference – India’s first conference on container technologies. You can get more details on the conference here: www.containerconf.in. As an IT professional, you can get adapted to change by attending this conference and get to know what’s happening around you.

Of course, I am not saying that attending our conference is the only way to keep yourself updated. I wanted to give a specific example and illustrate that we are walking the talk. In general, conferences are one of the best ways to keep updated because they (1) focus on emerging topics (2) provide access to quality speakers, and (3) provide a great place for networking with like-minded geeks. Look out for conferences that relate to your domain, technology or interests and make time to attend them. The cost and time you spend for the conference is well worth the return in growing in your career.

There are many other ways to keep you updated on changes happening that is more specific to your kind of work and domain. Some examples:

1) Regularly allocate time to go thorough updates from general tech websites like InfoQ and more specific ones like The New Stack.

2) Listen to high-quality talks from experts on emerging topics – they are available everywhere ranging from free ones in YouTube to search sites like video.google.com to paid ones like Pluralsight. I like curated ones. Especially https://www.parleys.com/ because it provides access to content from conferences such as Scala Days, JavaOne, Jfokus, Devoxx and Voxxed. You have to register to watch the free content. Of course, there is lots of paid content, but I go to Parleys for watching videos for free.

3) If you want to learn something new (e.g., data analytics, Hadoop, secure coding), then you can attend a course. Registering for a course gives you focus and completing it gives a sense of achievement. Coursera is a favourite for lots of techies: https://www.coursera.org/.

4) We (especially Bangaloreans) spend a lot of time on-road. You can listen to high-quality pod-casts to make best use of time. My all-time favourite is SE-Radio for core tech topics. As professionals, I strongly believe that we should have “all-rounded” skills and wider worldview; in that context, I recommend listening to free TED talks (audio version here). I have downloaded hundreds of talks into a single folder and listen to them when I drive.

5) We need to continuously hone our programming skills. For example, if you are a C/C++ programmer, you can try learning Go. There are many interactive tutorials available online, like Codecademy. These approaches can make learning fun.

I know that it is often frustrating to keep up with change, and change can threaten you. How you react to change around you tells a lot about you: “The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails” (William Arthur Ward).

However, if you are not committed to continuous learning, and if you do not continuously adapt to change, you may be eventually out of work or business. That’s much more riskier than adapting to change. On the other hand, when you exploit change, you can become a leader in your own way.

The essence: Every business is a business of change. Those who survive and thrive are those who exploit change!

Are you game for exploiting change?

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