Angular GDE Todd Motto encourages developers to care for their bodies and minds

Posted by Janelle Kuhlman, Developer Relations Program Manager

Photo of a man in a wetsuit swimming in the water. He is mid stroke and is taking a breath of air

The second of two interviews with GDEs about mental health, during Mental Health Awareness Month

Angular GDE Todd Motto would love to see people talk about mental health more freely–in tech and in other areas of life.

“Everyone struggles inside,” he says. “I see talking about it a good thing. Our brains are highly complex and need maintenance and good fuel.”

Todd says he silently struggled through most of his life with depression and anxiety, so it has become increasingly important to him to be forthright about it. He says ignoring feelings often makes things worse.

“The thing is, you can go through life just thinking it’s normal to feel this way, and you assume everyone else has bad days like that, as well, but things can slowly progress to become worse, without you realizing,” he says. “It took me a very long time to realize I had mental health issues–some issues were from my past, and I had adapted unhealthy lifestyle patterns to deal with those. I was pouring fuel on my own fire and not realizing it. That’s why it is important to me to raise awareness.”

He sees mental health as a balancing act and believes it’s important to take care of your body and mind every day. He recommends choosing your work projects and responsibilities carefully, if possible, to avoid taking on too much, and to pay attention to your internal thoughts.

“It’s important to be in tune with your body and also how your mind feels,” he says. “We all feel stress, but sometimes we just sit on autopilot and ignore it. This is when it’s time to protect your mental health. Keep an eye on your stress levels, as, at least for me, this played a huge role in the rest of my mental health.”

Todd copes with stress by carefully managing his workload, learning new things away from the keyboard, taking breaks from work throughout the day, and taking down time.

“To cope, I don’t overwhelm myself, and I take regular breaks, even if it’s just 1-2 minutes to walk into the kitchen and grab water,” he says. “Maybe I’ll walk into the garden and research a personal topic I’m interested in for a few moments.”

He also incorporates daily exercise, like running, swimming, and weight training, which he says helps his concentration, sleep, and mood.

“I have been running and swimming for years now, and swimming gives you time out from reality,” he says. “When you get physically stronger, you will unlock new levels of mental strength. That is my guarantee.”

Todd’s version of physical and mental challenges might be running up mountains and swimming in lakes, but your version might be going on a walk around the block, picking up a new instrument, or learning how to cook a new meal. Whatever it is, Todd feels it’s important to make time for these challenges, in order to achieve that balancing act he mentioned. He reminds other developers to keep work, life, body, and mind in balance as much as possible.

“I aim to have regular breaks and not overwhelm myself,” he says. “It’s easy to get stressed and have a bad work/life balance. Take breaks, and keep your stress levels low by doing so. You are more than worth it!”

Learn more about Todd on Twitter @toddmotto

Amazon Connect high-volume outbound communications capabilities are now available in public preview in the Asia Pacific (Sydney) AWS Region

Amazon Connect now supports high-volume outbound communications in the Asia Pacific (Sydney) AWS region, making it easy to contact from hundreds to millions of customers daily for communications like delivery notifications, marketing promotions, appointment reminders, or debt collection. Amazon Connect’s high-volume outbound communications for calls, text and emails gives organizations a simple, embedded, cost-effective way to proactively contact customers without having to integrate third-party tools. An optional integrated list management capability provided by Amazon Pinpoint can also be used to build customer journeys and multi-channel user experiences. With this launch, high-volume outbound calls can now be made to customers in Australia and New Zealand. This feature is available out-of-the box and can be enabled within the AWS Console.

Amazon ECS simplifica la integración de los proveedores de capacidad con grupos de escalado automático

Amazon Elastic Container Services (Amazon ECS) brinda una capacidad de autoescalado de clústeres (CAS) para administrar de manera dinámica el escalado de sus grupos de escalado automático (ASG) de Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) en su nombre, de modo que usted pueda centrarse en ejecutar sus contenedores. Los proveedores de capacidad son la interfaz de computación que vincula su clúster de Amazon ECS con sus ASG. Con los proveedores de capacidad, puede definir reglas flexibles sobre cómo se ejecutan las cargas de trabajo en contenedores en diferentes tipos de capacidad de cómputo, y administrar la escala de la capacidad. Los proveedores de capacidad mejoran la disponibilidad, la escalabilidad y el costo de ejecutar tareas y servicios en ECS. A partir de hoy, simplificamos el mecanismo de integración entre los proveedores de capacidad y los ASG al realizar la integración de manera directa con una política de escalado de seguimiento de destino en lugar de depender del plan de escalado de AWS Auto Scaling.

La versión 1.5.0 de la CLI de Amazon Genomics agrega compatibilidad con el lenguaje común del flujo de trabajo (CWL) mediante Toil

Hoy, nos complace anunciar que la versión 1.5.0 de la CLI de Amazon Genomics ha agregado compatibilidad para flujos de trabajo escritos en el lenguaje común del flujo de trabajo (CWL) mediante el motor de flujos de trabajo Toil. Además de con el CWL, la CLI de Amazon Genomics es compatible con flujos de trabajo escritos en el lenguaje de definición de flujos de trabajo (WDL), Nextflow, y Snakemake, lo que permite a los clientes ejecutar una amplia variedad de análisis de datos genómicos, como una llamada conjunta de variaciones genómicas y RNA-seq de una sola célula.

Los contenedores de Amazon Lightsail ahora admiten la implementación de imágenes desde los repositorios privados de Amazon ECR

Amazon Lightsail ahora admite la creación de implementaciones para los servicios de contenedores de Lightsail mediante las imágenes de contenedores en los repositorios privados de Amazon ECR. Gracias a este lanzamiento, será posible ejecutar contenedores a través de la experiencia simplificada de Lightsail, mientras se utilizan las imágenes que posiblemente ya existan en los repositorios privados de ECR, lo cual permitirá una mayor portabilidad.

AWS Launch Wizard ahora es compatible con las implementaciones de SQL Server mediante Amazon FSx para NetApp ONTAP

AWS Launch Wizard anuncia la compatibilidad con las instancias de clúster de conmutación por error (FCI) de SQL Server de funcionamiento continuo con Amazon FSx para NetApp ONTAP. Ahora puede utilizar un sencillo asistente de consola para implementar las FCI de SQL Server en Amazon EC2 con FSx para NetApp ONTAP como almacenamiento compartido. Gracias a esta característica, ahorrará tiempo y esfuerzo al sustituir un complejo proceso de implementación manual por un asistente guiado y sencillo que acelera la migración de las cargas de trabajo de SQL Server locales que dependen del almacenamiento compartido.

Presentamos las instancias C6id de Amazon EC2

Amazon Web Services (AWS) anuncia la disponibilidad general de las nuevas instancias C6id de Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) optimizadas para la computación. Las instancias C6id se basan en procesadores Intel Xeon Scalable de tercera generación (nombre en código Ice Lake) con una frecuencia turbo para todos los núcleos de 3,5 GHz, equipados con hasta 7,6 TB de almacenamiento local a nivel de bloque en unidades de estado sólido (SSD) basadas en NVMe, y ofrecen hasta un 15 % más de rendimiento de precio en comparación con las instancias C5d. En comparación con las instancias de la generación anterior, las instancias C6id ofrecen hasta un 138 % más de almacenamiento en TB por vCPU y un 56 % menos de costo por TB. Las instancias C6id también vienen con cifrado de memoria de funcionamiento continuo mediante el uso de Intel Total Memory Encryption (TME). Al igual que todas las instancias de EC2 modernas, las instancias C6id se basan en AWS Nitro System, una combinación de hardware dedicado e hipervisor ligero, que entrega la mayor parte de los recursos de computación y de memoria del hardware host a las instancias. Las instancias C6id son ideales para las cargas de trabajo que requieren un uso intensivo de la computación, incluidas las que necesitan acceso a un almacenamiento local de alta velocidad y baja latencia, como la codificación de video, la manipulación de imágenes y otras formas de procesamiento de contenido multimedia. Las instancias de C6id también favorecerán a las aplicaciones que necesiten un almacenamiento temporal de datos, como el procesamiento de lotes y registros, y a las aplicaciones que necesitan memorias caché y archivos temporales.

Presentamos las instancias M6id de Amazon EC2

Amazon Web Services (AWS) anuncia la disponibilidad general de las nuevas instancias de uso general M6id de Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). Las instancias M6id se basan en procesadores Intel Xeon Scalable de tercera generación (nombre en código Ice Lake) con una frecuencia turbo de 3,5 GHz para todos los núcleos, equipados con hasta 7,6 TB de almacenamiento en bloque de disco de estado sólido (SSD) local basado en NVMe, y ofrecen hasta un 15 % más de rendimiento de precio en comparación con las instancias M5d. En comparación con las instancias de la generación anterior, las instancias M6id ofrecen hasta un 58 % más de almacenamiento en TB por vCPU y un 34 % menos de costo por TB. Las instancias M6id también vienen con cifrado de memoria de funcionamiento continuo mediante el uso de Intel Total Memory Encryption (TME). Al igual que todas las instancias de EC2 modernas, las instancias M6id se basan en AWS Nitro System, una combinación de hardware dedicado e hipervisor ligero, que entrega la mayor parte de los recursos de computación y de memoria del hardware host a las instancias. Las instancias M6id son ideales para cargas de trabajo que requieren un equilibrio entre recursos informáticos y de memoria junto con almacenamiento local en bloque de alta velocidad y baja latencia, incluido el registro de datos y el procesamiento de medios. Las instancias de M6id también favorecerán a las aplicaciones que necesiten un almacenamiento temporal de datos, como el procesamiento de lotes y registros, y a las aplicaciones que necesitan memorias caché y archivos temporales.

Google Workplace GDE Alice Keeler on balancing responsibilities and using coding as self-care

Posted by Janelle Kuhlman, Developer Relations Program Manager

Photo of GDE Alice Keeler smiling. She has blonde hair and is wearing a violet top. Her image is next to the GDE logo

The first of two interviews with GDEs about mental health, during Mental Health Awareness Month

“I don’t think I have work-life balance,” says Google Workplace GDE Alice Keeler. “I could use some. I’m not very good at self-care, either…my idea of a good time is coding.”

Alice may be humble, but she juggles numerous responsibilities successfully. In addition to her freelance programming work and the books she has published, she has five children, all of whom have various mental health challenges. An educator known for publishing add-ons, schedulers, and Google Classroom tips, Alice teaches math to high school seniors. She says they also struggle with mental health, often due to poverty and family issues.

“I see firsthand as an employer, mom, and teacher how mental health challenges affect people, yet we expect everyone to suck it up and go to work, attend school, and respond to family events,” she says. “I’ve really been thinking about this a lot, as I see the challenges my family and students are going through. I try to offer lots of grace and flexibility to others.”

She points out that mental health is very personal. “Of the 20 people I feel closest to in my life, no one solution would work for all of them,” she says.

Coding as self-care

In Alice’s experience, tech has provided a means of self-care, professional opportunity, and academic support. “I think one of the benefits of coding is that it doesn’t necessarily have to be done at a certain time and can offer some flexible creative options for people,” she says. “I can code at 3am, and no one cares. It’s not very social, which is helpful for people who struggle with social expectations.”

And during those coding sessions, Keeler builds creative solutions.

“You can make really cool things,” she says. “When I solve a problem with ten lines of code, it’s a nice way for me to feel valued.”

Alice has found the GDE community to be tremendously supportive, even though at first, she worried no one would want to hear from her.

“I post in the GDE chat, and people respond with, ‘Alice!’,” she says. “I teach math; I’m not a full-time coder. I’m self taught; everything I do, I figure out myself. I don’t feel like an imposter anymore. I’ve gotten 14 add-ons approved.”

She has realized over time that even “experts” are still learning.

“You think everyone knows everything, but they don’t, and people may be considered experts, but you can put something out there they hadn’t even thought of,” she says. “You realize quickly that it’s not like a tower, and you’ve reached the top, it’s more like scattered LEGOs: I know some of this, and some of that, and you know this, and it’s scattered.”

Alice’s coding expertise grew out of her desire to create technological solutions for herself and other teachers that simplified their processes and reduced stress. She’s enthusiastic about the educational technology tools that help both teachers and students decrease stress and improve well-being.

Educational technology for improved well-being

Alice appreciates classroom technology that makes life easier for teachers and students. For example, she cites the tablet as “one of the best things that ever happened to special education,” because it provides students with learning challenges an alternative way to share their thoughts and demonstrate their understanding of academic material. Alice explains that tablets and Chromebooks make it easy to give students extra time on assignments and assessments when needed.

“It brought in an enormous amount of inclusivity that had been impossible,” she says. “It literally gives some kids a voice; they can submit questions and responses digitally, without raising their hands.”

Alice’s focus, as an educator, developer, and parent, is on using technology to streamline tasks and balance responsibility, which reduces stress, improves well-being, and benefits her mental health. During the pandemic, she appreciated how technology allowed her to teach online, write code, and also be present for her family. She had more time to go to her kids’ events and was able to dial down her stress. Like all of us, she’s still figuring out what comes next, but she’s committed to supporting her loved ones and students.

Learn more about Alice on her website or on Twitter @alicekeeler

Amazon ECS simplifies Capacity Provider integration with Auto Scaling groups

Amazon Elastic Container Services (Amazon ECS) provides a Cluster Auto Scaling (CAS) capability to dynamically manage the scaling of your Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) Auto Scaling groups (ASG) on your behalf, so that you can focus on running your containers. Capacity Providers is the compute interface that links your Amazon ECS cluster with your ASG. With Capacity Providers, you can define flexible rules for how containerized workloads run on different types of compute capacity, and manage the scaling of the capacity. Capacity Providers improve the availability, scalability, and cost of running tasks and services on ECS. Starting today, we are simplifying the integration mechanism between Capacity Providers and ASGs by directly integrating with target-tracking scaling policy instead of relying on AWS Auto Scaling scaling plan.

AWS Config ahora es compatible con las métricas de Amazon CloudWatch

Hoy, anunciamos que las métricas de Amazon CloudWatch se encuentran disponibles para el monitoreo del uso en AWS Config. AWS Config lleva a cabo un seguimiento de los cambios realizados en los recursos compatibles y los registra como elementos de configuración (CI), que luego se entregan a un bucket de Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). Las métricas de Amazon CloudWatch brindan un servicio de monitoreo que ofrece datos sobre el uso de sus sistemas, incluida la posibilidad de buscar, graficar y crear alarmas sobre las métricas de los recursos de AWS. Con este lanzamiento, ahora puede utilizar las métricas de Amazon CloudWatch para verificar su configuración y entender su uso de AWS Config.

Anunciamos nuevas zonas de AWS Wavelength en Nashville y Tampa

Hoy anunciamos la disponibilidad de dos nuevas zonas de AWS Wavelength en la red 5G de banda ultraancha de Verizon en Nashville, TN, y Tampa, FL. Las zonas de Wavelength ahora están disponibles en 19 ciudades principales de EE. UU., incluidas las ciudades previamente anunciadas de Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Minéapolis, Nueva York, Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle y Washington D. C.