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.