The Times, They Are A Changing

Wow, it’s been almost three years since I blogged about anything here. I feel just a little bit bad about that, but honestly, it’s been a pretty busy time for me. My last post was about Alternatives to Relational Databases … yep, I’ve definitely been in that world for a while now. Back then, I was just starting to scratch the surface on what NoSQL even was. Looking at that post, now I realize I didn’t know nearly enough on the subject. Today, I can say I have a firm grasp of it. The last three years has had me building out Cassandra nodes in Amazon’s AWS on a daily basis.

But as the blog title implies, the times, they are a changing. I’ve finally made the decision to leave all my comfortableness at Expedia and leap into a new position at a new place. Today, I’m a Staff Database Architect for American National. It’s an insurance company that’s been around for almost 110 years, so it’s got LOTS of data. Which I love, because a huge volume of data is what really gets me interested. The other thing that gets me interested is how that data is being used. They have a really forward thinking CIO in place that is putting a heavy emphasis on leveraging that data in new ways. So it sounded like a pretty exciting place to make my next career chapter.

But what’s really in a title? I kinda wondered the same thing. I know what a Database Architect means, but “Staff”? I’ve heard of Associate/Junior/Senior/Principal as job prefixes, but Staff is a new one for me. I did some google-ing on the subject and didn’t really find anything. Turns out, Staff is just American National’s top prefix in a job stack. So, that has me feeling pretty good about myself and my ability to network/interview/negotiate a career change. But, of course, now I have to fill those shoes. Look for more blog posts later as I get into the bowels of new projects.