On Being Generally Anxious

I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder, or GAD as it's often known. I can learn to cope better with it. I can take medication to help with the symptoms. It's part of who I am. I'm no different now that I've written this, than I was before. Though now I'm able to put a label on it. Being able to label myself in that manner, is both a relief, and itself a source of anxiety.

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My Puppet VimRC

Those who know me, know that I'm a Vim user. I've been using Vim exclusively for over ten years. I've tried different editors, and this isn't the place to start the editor-holy-war-debate, but I've always found myself drawn back to Vim for its extensibility, flexibility and power. When I started at FanDuel, I left behind configuration management with Chef and began my journey to understanding Puppet. The excerpt below comes from my ~/.vimrc Vim configuration file, and defines the settings applied to Puppet .pp files.

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Security, Passwords and Password Managers

In this post, I want to talk about staying secure online. This is a less technical post that those I often write. It's aimed at my family and non-technical friends, who perhaps don't appreciate why security online is so important; why choosing unique, strong passwords is important; and why password managers are for everyone, and not just socially-awkward sysadmin code monkeys like me. If you think "…nobody's going to be trying to hack my Gmail account…" then read on!

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2015 - A Year In Review

With 2015 behind me, and 2016 ahead, it's that time of the year where I reflect on the past year. This is really a retrospective, and in the same way that my team conducts agile retrospectives as part of our workflow, I thought I'd approach the past year in that stop/start/continue fashion.

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CloudFormation Gotcha With RDS Read Replicas

I've spent more time than I'd like this week being perplexed by spurious behaviour in creating a replicated MySQL environment in RDS, with CloudFormation. RDS supports creating up to five MySQL read-replicas to slave off of a running MySQL master. Configuring this using the web console involves selecting a master RDS instance and selecting the option to create a read-replica. Before the read-replica is created, a configuration page allows various parameters to be reviewed and updated. By default, key parameters such as the size and storage class of the attached EBS volumes are inherited from the master.

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Contact

If you want to get in touch, you can send an email to my-first-name [at] this domain.