Secrets to an Awesome Tech Career | Jason Wood | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

13 Lessons (1h 40m)
    • 1. Welcome to the course!

    • 2. What is your awesome career?

    • 3. What do employers, customers and peers want?

    • 4. Pick an area of expertise

    • 5. Education

    • 6. Important character traits

    • 7. Engage in social media

    • 8. Get involved in your area

    • 9. Write apps and tools

    • 10. Blog about the stuff you are learning

    • 11. Find a local conference and present

    • 12. Start a podcast

    • 13. Putting it all together

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About This Class

How would you like to build a career that has incredible opportunities that you only dream of right now? Does having this type of career sound far fetched to you?

It shouldn’t!

The "secrets" to creating a killer career in technology are not that arcane or difficult. In fact, they aren't really secrets at all. They are what some of the most successful people in our fields do and they do it right in front of us! You can do the same things and start seeing the incredible things happen in your career.

Getting there takes some solid skills, a plan, a bit of stretching and the willingness to make things happen. The Secrets to an Awesome Tech Career will teach you the high impact ways to take control of your career, steer it in the direction you desire and provide the security and stability you want!

Meet Your Teacher

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Jason Wood

Security and IT professional, Speaker, & Mentor


Jason Wood is security consultant with over 15 years of systems administration and security experience with the Windows and UNIX/Linux operating systems. He has spent most of his career in security, application and infrastructure roles.

Jason enjoys presenting on security topics at conferences and in classes. He has presented at Derbycon, MIRcon, OpenWest, SAINTCON and several Security BSides conferences. He has taught classes on penetration testing, security operations and vulnerability assessments.

In his free time, Jason enjoys giving back to his community by working with teenagers as a CyberPatriot mentor and a member of the Civil Air Patrol. The enthusiasm of these young men and women keeps him fired up as they learn about computer security, service and leadership.See full profile

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1. Welcome to the course!: Hey there. My name's Jason would. And welcome to the secrets to an awesome tech career. This course was born really out of the questions that I get all the time from folks I run into. They asked me, Hey, how did you get your first job? How did you get into a position? Uh, doing what you dio? How is it that you work from home and have worked from home for a number of years? The way that we get to that and actually where you can get to that are really based on some common ideas that one applied together. It can make for just on awesome career and really allow you to create the type of work environment or we're getting to the type of work that you want to dio. So that's what this course is about. We're going to start off with some foundational things. I like to call him things that we need to have in place, regardless of what we do. We need to do things like picking area of expertise that we want to focus on. We want to make sure that we're engaging in social media properly, um, and using that to its most, uh, potential that weaken weaken Dio. We want to also make sure that we're addressing things like ongoing learning and training and education. You know, what role does that play inside of our career? So then when we wrap up with these foundational ideas, this is where we're going to get into the secrets of oven. Awesome career. And they're really not all that secret. When you see what we're gonna dio, we're gonna discuss things like getting involved in your local community, tech community, whatever it is that you you do meet with other folks to do similar kinds of things and become friends with them. We're gonna discuss ah, things like writing and releasing software and how we can go about that. What are some of the opportunities there to build a purport portfolio of work as well as build our reputation up by? You know, folks using tools that we've created, we'll discuss blogging, you know, we're gonna be learning all the time. We probably ought to write about it and help other people through what we've learned. And blogging is a great way to do that. You can also get out there and find opportunities to speak at conferences or tech groups and inside of organizations, whatever. This doesn't have to be big or huge deal. But getting up their own stage is a huge credibility booster, and we want to take a look and make sure that we are taking advantage of that. That's something that we can dio. We'll talk also about podcasting. Podcasting is an awesome way to build up a community. Have people feel like they know you and be, You know they want to hire you, so we'll take a look at that and what's involved with doing a podcast. They were to take all of these different ideas, and we're going to combine them together into a strategy that you can use for your own career. And it's something that I have used myself, and I can tell you that it doesn't happen overnight, but it happens much quicker than you might think that all of a sudden you go from somebody with some solid text skills, Um, somebody that isn't really known for having some expertise on somebody that folks want to hire. So let's put all these things into play and you'll find that your building, the career that you want and getting results really much quicker than you would expect. Thank you again for signing up for the course. I really look forward to this. Doing this with you and I will see you in the next lecture. Thanks. 2. What is your awesome career?: Hey there. And welcome back to the secrets when awesome tech career in this lecture, what we're focusing on is really what is a killer career to you. Everything else we're gonna be doing throughout this course really is based on the idea that we have an idea. Ah, in mind what we think a great career for would be for you. So as we go through this, you know, it starts to make sense. Hey, we got to start here and define just what is an awesome career. We're not talking about money here on how much will make that. We certainly want to have compensation that we like. Really? This is about what are we and what do you enjoy? What is it that if you were doing this, would get you fired up and excited to go in tow work in the morning? So let's stop and think about, Really, what is it that makes you get excited? Is that the type of organization you work for? So are you working in? Let's say some kind of start up where you want to get into start ups. You I want to get into a specific type of role within an organisation may be some kind of architect or senior designer. Regardless, we need you need to decide. Hey, you know what is it? Is it? It's gonna get me excited. Is it a particular technology that you're interested in becoming a really good dot net programmer, a PHP programmer? Ruby on rails, python years interface, user experience, project management, all of these things. I mean, what is it in that area that get you excited? What you want to focus on and you don't want to spend too much time worrying about what other people think. You're gonna get lots of opinions about what you should or shouldn't do. Uh, this is really, though, about what starts the fire inside of yourself and get you ready to go. We do want to have course, pay attention to the idea of Hey, what is this skill or this area mean in the marketplace? And as long as there's some way for it to to allow us to somehow differentiate ourselves and be known as somebody with some expertise and something that's useful toe organizations to individuals, what have you Uh, that's really what we're focused on. So I've attached a worksheet to this lecture. Just have some questions in here to ask yourself, You know, what is it that I want to focus on? What is it that's enjoyable to me? What do I not like about certain things? Um on. And you know what would be really cool if I was allowed to do this, Uh, and allow that to to start to get you pumped up and get going, and you want to make sure one You write this down because we need to focus on this for a little while and to, uh, lots of things happen in technology. Things were changing all the time. And quite frankly, we're changing all the time. As we get more experience, we get exposed to more things. We learn new things. So don't worry about making this perfect or something you have to stick to for the rest of your career. That's not the point. We're just looking out. Where are you right now and what's going to motivate you to, uh, to do all of the other in that motivate you to work and will be fun for you to go and do all of the other things that we're gonna talk about during this course. So use this is your starting place. Break out that worksheet, Answer some of these questions. Think about it for a little bit. Define what is it to you that would make your career just awesome and a ton of fun, exciting and hopefully lucrative for yourself and for your family. All right, so with that in mind, we'll go ahead and see you in the next lecture. 3. What do employers, customers and peers want?: Hello. Welcome back to secrets to an awesome tech career. So this lecture, we're gonna actually talk a little bit about our audience in mind, as we were going through and doing the activities they're outlining this course. One of the things we need to keep in mind is that all careers, good or bad, have the same thing in common. And that is that some point somebody needs to hire us, whether that is a company that is bringing us on for a full time position or we're talking with a potential client who has some project that they need us to complete form. Regardless, both of these folks have the same idea in mind. They they want somebody who will be able to come in and solve the problem that they're dealing with. Do the job that's necessary. Minimum fuss, professional and, you know, really able to get things done. That's that's one of the main things in technology that folks are concerned about. I've got these problems that have got to be taken care of. And can you fix him? Can you make this happen? Build that out? Can you run this project? Whatever. So the types of folks that we're gonna be dealing, You know, we need to keep this in mind because the types that we're gonna be interacting with a couple of different types of folks like I said, we're gonna have some more more are managers. Maybe some more business focused vote at people such as an owner of a company may not be extremely technical, but they want some level of comfort that you're the right person for their project. We also want to keep in mind that, you know, in I t we work on teams with technology, we work on teams and those team members need to be convinced as well that you're the right person for the job and not only the right person for the job and have the skill sets. But you're somebody that they want to work with that they think will be a good fit with the team. So these are all things that we need to keep in mind. And really, our goal with all of these activities that we're gonna be doing is that we want to come into this meeting with a potential client or an interview with a team that we would be working with and walk into the room with them already. Hopefully having some idea that Ah, you know, some evidence they you're the person that they want to hire, that they want on this job. So what does that mean? Well, as we do things like, let's say, writing some software and building a little bit of portfolio that allows the client to realize it's a C and get some comfort that hey, I see what they've been able to dio. I've heard about what they were doing, And, uh, it looks like they'll be able to complete the project that I have for them with our team members. You know, what we want to do is come across as really technically confident and, uh, somebody who is able to communicate pretty well. But, ah, you know, somebody that they're looking at, they can Hey, this this person, this guy, this gal, they are a solid player, and they've got some skills that we need and we want to hire them. And so, as they're looking at, say, blawg posts we've done or videos of presentations we've completed, Perhaps we've written, they're looking at that and they're thinking You know, this looks great. Let's get this person on the team. And that's really important. Because, you know, typically, when we go in for a job interview, we've always have to submit a resume. People are looking at the you know, this 123 page document, right? How lining the different things that we've done and the skills that we have. Different accomplishments, right? And to be honest, having been somebody who has reviewed a lot of resumes for somebody it was hiring, um, or the company I'm working for was hiring. He's resume start to blur together, and they start to sound the same. And you're just digging through me like, Oh, my goodness. You know, okay, blob about right? And so it doesn't you We want to stand out. You want to stand out and have something on that resume that's gonna make me as the interviewer? Stop and go. Oh, wow. Let me check this out. He's got a YouTube video up here that he's done on, Um oh, some technology. Ah, let's say a new update to dot net framework or they're looking through and they say, you know, they see Hey, we've got on example that she's written this application. It's actually really close to what we need and, um, looks like a great app. Looks like it shows a lot of expertise. So let's let's bring her in here and so that allows you to stand out from this life set is blurring stack of resumes. Not only that, we always have to go through the job interview, and it's kind of an artificial conversation, right? You're nervous you're coming in here. You want to be able to make a good impression and show that you can do the job at the same time you're trying to figure out. Is this a place I want to work at our these the folks that I want to work with? Um, so you're you've got a lot of things on your mind as you're sitting here in the room. And to be honest, when we're getting asked questions about different topics relevant to the position, it's not terribly unusual to totally blank on something, and you need to just call it out and say, Oh, wow, I should know this, but it's just not coming to me right now or whatever you decide to say, but the they already we want them to already have such a strong opinion about us. A positive opinion about us before we came in the room that we can get through those things . Not only that is the interviewer, to be honest. Ah, there's a number of times where you're just looking through. Okay, I've got an interview today. Start to prepare for that. You know, an hour or so half hour, five minutes before whatever the interview starts and so is the interviewer. Their minds may not really be into this yet, either. And so if you can have something interesting that pops up off that page, that could be a fabulous benefit for you in your corner. So that is really our goal with this course one we want to keep in mind who's hiring us and think about how we want to appear to them. And we want to walk into that room. Were having that conversation with the folks who were looking at hiring us and have them already rooting for us already looking at what we've done and thinking, I think this is the person that we should have on our team and they're hoping that will succeed in the interview. So if you walk in at that point, I mean you're already way out there ahead of your competition, essentially for that position, and that allows you to have a much more positive interview and be more comfortable with what's going on. And to be quite frank as you build your expertise and we do the things that we'll be talking about in this course, you will be much more comfortable going into that interview because you've got these things in your head and you know you have this experience and that is incredibly powerful, and that's where we want to be. That's where I want you to be as you walk in the room and the interviewer looks up. So this should be really cool or I'm hoping this person it does well because what I'm seeing, I want them here working with me. So keep this in mind as we go through the course. That is one of our main goals is so that that that artificial conversation that we call the job interview, uh, the person interviewing us has already started to make a decision in their mind and uh, is pulling for us to make it onto the team. All right. And with that, I will see you in the next lecture. Thanks. 4. Pick an area of expertise: alright. In this lecture, we're going to start talking about the need to pick a specific area of expertise. The goal here is to have something to focus on as we go through this course. And as you start to build the reputation that you enjoy working with that is funds that you don't mind spending time with. Hopefully something you really passionate about, that you know, where you find you become passionate about it. And what does allows you to dio is create a way for you to stand out from. The other folks are applying for the same positions for making proposals to the same clients that you are. So what is the value of having this area of expertise beyond just ah differentiator in paper? Well, let me give you an example of a friend of mine. Hey, was a number of years back a systems administrator, much like I used to be. And he got interested in security. And so he had picked his area that he was gonna choose as his area of expertise. Great. What do you as he was doing? This is he was looking around. He was looking for some tools to it further his employer to do some security of honor. And he wasn't happy with the tool sets that he was finding. However, he did find a dead open source project that hadn't been active in several years, and that would at least be a starting place for him to do the do what he wanted. So he ended up forking that project on and creating or re animating this dead project under a new name and carrying that port because of Hey, did that. Uh, this tool became rather popular. There weren't many tools around at that time to to do this kind of analysis very well. And this tool wasn't necessarily perfect at it by any stretch, but it was better than the other things that were out there. Because of that. He started get some attention, and as a result of that, he was offered the chance to become a security consultant. So he left his job as a systems administrator at one organization and became a security consultant focusing on security testing. He did that for a while before, Ah, you know, year to whatever and his employer was asked to create a course on Web application, security testing. And so the assignment was actually given to my friend. So he went ahead and he wrote this course and he ended up teaching this course of a number of different places for several years. Because of that, he became known as somebody with some strong experience and expertise in the security of Web application. And how do you test that? And what impact those weaknesses inside of wet naps can have on the organization that's running the site? So from that he from establishing that reputation, he's now in a position that people come to him regularly, asking him for to do work and the reason why they. 5. Education: Hey there. So in this section, we're gonna talk about education, and this is something that, as folks are evaluating their career path on starting out especially, and I can get to be a little contentious. There's a lot of debate about the correct or best course to take for your education. Some folks are huge proponents of college, and you gotta have a college degree. Others really, uh, think that certifications are very valuable. And that's what you should go after us. Faras bang for your buck, the there yet others who look at, say, and neither one of those is necessary. What you need to do is be so you can do this self taught. So what is it? Uh, you know that you may have is you consider that there are questions, which should you pick what's important to you. I'll be honest. I see the value in all three. I have a college degree. I've got a certification that's active and several in my background that I've let expire. Um, I also do a lot where I am teaching myself new skills, and I will go into interviews. Sometimes we'll be talking to people and be very affront that, Hey, my expertise. And this is based on what I've learned by working on this in the lab and trying things out . So I am a proponent of all three of them. I will say that in your career, it is absolutely critical to keep learning throughout your entire career. So developing the skills that allow you to be self time are something that you absolutely want tohave now going. The route of being purely self taught can be a difficult task, particularly when you're starting out. Why? Well, because you have to convince the person who is hiring you for this job or this engagement that you actually have the skills to do what needs to be done. So if you're this is harder when you're starting out because you don't have previous work experience that you can point to war portfolio or what have you. So you know, you you have a little bit of a hill to climb here in the beginning, However, once you get that work experience behind you and start to build your resume and show that have is that this job and here on my responsibilities that self taught route becomes easier . There are still some limitations with it, though. There are jobs out there that you may not be able to, uh, to gain access to simply because you don't have a college degree. That's just the way some of this stuff works. Some companies put high emphasis on, so you'll have some limitations there. But that doesn't mean that you can't have just a great awesome time working and have a highly successful career. So self taught is definitely important. You have certifications. Certifications make it a little bit easier to get over that initial hump when we're starting out. Because, no, now you have 1/3 party saying, Hey, this person has studied this curriculum has taken this test, and because of that, we're testing to there a certain level of proficiency or knowledge with this particular technology or methodology, so that could be very useful to you. And sometimes certifications are required for a job, so you may find, for example, if you're going into a uh well, let's say Olynyk shop, the or company that uses Red Hat Linux that they require you to have red hats certification for linen. If so, you gotta help But there are other jobs out there, and that is not something you find at all positions by any stretch. So that's some of the things that you have to consider with certifications. College is another area that it is, particularly between college and certifications of the debate gets. Rather, Heat College has some significant benefits and some significant downsides as well. Ah, in going that route, the first real issue that college education has is it typically lags behind current technologies and what's being done in in the in practice. So what will be learning is gonna be a few years back. That said, you can still pick up principles and ideas and ways of doing things that will help you learn the new technologies. And there are jobs that require you have to have a college degree. In fact, some companies go as far, so you have to have a college degree in specific specific disciplines, such as computer science or mathematics or electoral engineering. What have you So that's a little bit more rare, but it still happens, so you know you have the by getting a college degree. You have that that benefit. You certainly have the benefit of knowing. Hey, I went to college and I finished. I got my degree. I got my degree late. I didn't go to college right out of high school, and as a result, I had seven years of work experience by the time I finished my college degree in computer science. But it's been a great source of satisfaction to me to have got that done. But that's personal, and that doesn't really plan to me getting higher. The goal that are things you need to keep in mind kind of go back to lecture number two, where we talked about what is an awesome career for you. So you know, if you want to get into education, for example, in teaching and you want to be a professor of computer science than a college degree in advanced degrees, they're just gonna be required. If that's not the case. And it's not something that you know, you're looking at things that require that course of study. Then you don't necessarily have to do that. You may find that that's just not your thing, and that's not what you enjoy. And that's fine. You can have an awesome, uh career that last decades. Without that degree, um, again, it goes back to like we said before, Can you solve the problems that your employer or the person who's looking at hiring you for a A client really potential client is looking at hiring you, for If you can solve those problems and get the job done then and have them feel confident of that, you can get that work. So in the end, what you need to do is just evaluate hate, which, what, your path, Where do you want to be? Is college gonna become important to you personally? There were is college important to you personally and will become important to those who are hiring you in the future. If so, head down that round. If not, you can go down the path of getting some certifications. If that's you know what you want to dio, or you can stay purely self tied and I'll be honest. If you do a number of the things we're gonna talk about in a couple of lectures than, um, you'll be able to demonstrate your knowledge by being through being self taught and writing about it and getting involved in local groups. And so that initial hurdle of getting that getting in because you don't have some kind of third party testing to your huh? Level of knowledge. And something isn't really an issue because they can see that they can go read it and see what you've done. All right, so hopefully that answers some of the questions you have. I'm sure you have others that haven't you know, that I haven't thought of right now. So if so, please let me know, and I will do my best. Answer those and get back to you on that. With that, we'll go ahead and move on. Thank you very much. 6. Important character traits: Hello and welcome back. So in this lecture, we're gonna talk a little bit about some of the character trades that are really important . I think in pretty much any person, um, who is working and has a career, is trying to take it to high level of performance. And, um but they are particularly important in i t or technology. Like I said before, we get paid to get things done. And so there are some things we need to make sure that we have that that some of our coworkers won't and don't. So what do I mean by that? Well, for example, one of the major traits I think in a successful person working in technology is a can do attitude. They look at it and I say, Well, this is new to me. This is I'm not entirely sure how this is gonna work out, but I'm gonna tackle this and make it happen. Really? What they're doing is they're able to Teoh break it down and solve problems. They see. OK, we've got this issue we want to use. This technique is technology. This new method of doing things, whatever that is. And they say Let's let's go for it and let's figure out how to make it work. Um, too often what you'll see is folks will say, Well, I've never done that before and I don't know what to do. Um, can you show me how to do this? Will you do that? Or how about we do with this other way the old way that we've been doing things or whatever it is they're comfortable with and you know that that doesn't really work, Aziz. Things take change in technology all the time. We've got to have that. Yeah, I can do that. I think we can figure out how to make that happen. Our job is to come up with solutions, not point out problems. I mean, we can point out problems. We should point out problems. But when we point out a problem, you want to do so with a solution in mind. Hey, if we go down this course in the design of this application, we're gonna find ourselves boxed in and pain ourselves into a corner instead. Let's take this other path over here, and that will avoid that issue. And so, you know, we've pointed out a problem, but then also provided the solution or a recommendation to deal with it. Another thing you want to keep in mind with this can do attitude is the willingness to take on new responsibilities. There are a lot of folks that look at and say, Well, you know, that's not my job. I don't do that and you have to be a little bit careful with this because there is a time where we have to push back a bit and say, No, I'm sorry. This is your stepping a little far out of my my area that I should be working in But, um, successful folks, they take on responsibilities. They look at its. OK, well, all bend a little bit here. I don't take on some some new You know this task over here. It's not entirely related to what I do or it's not my day to day responsibility. But let's get this thing done and so that willingness to step up is really critical trait that we need to have. Above all, our job is to get out there and make it happen. You know, we look at things, we find a problem and we go out and we fix it. We need something built, we go out and we do it. That's what technology is about. That's that's our our goal to become exceptional. We also want to go ahead and develop our curiosity. Yeah, there's nothing worse than hitting a point where you just feel like stopping uh, quitting on learning. All right. Give you create your curiosity, some license to explore and mess around, for example, myself. You know, I think you guys have probably figured it out by now, but, um, I work in computer security, but I like to tinker with other things. So actually, I take courses like this one to develop new skills. So I've been learning things like IOS Development, and I've been learning how to sketch and I enjoy modeling. And I enjoy, um, you know, a variety of different things, and sometimes it's just necessary to is a way of relaxing and stepping back, a little bit recharging and other ways to get you fired up even more because, for example, with mobile developments is something I'm tinkering around with is you know, I don't do development, but it's fun. I like learning new things And to be honest, as I learned the skills in developing a mobile application that helps me pick up things on the security side. What do I need to be worried about, uh, protecting inside of my APS. How do I go about doing that and help me build recommendations for my clients. So, you know, give you curiosity, some room to run, uh, play, you know, make learning. Ah, hobby. And you'll have a good time. And keep yourself fresh and upstate and, you know, with new things coming down the pipe. I mean, let's face it, the new technology that people start talking about is gonna be something that we're gonna be supporting working with in the future very often. So, um, you know, get ahead of that. Let's go ahead and take her around with it. Even if it's new, it sounds a little off, you know, unusual to you. Another thing that we need to really deal with is time management. And this can be a real issue for those of you, for if you are in ah, operations and technology, for example, as a systems administrator, things get very interrupt driven. Somebody walks by your desk and says, Hey, can you help me with this problem? But I've seen it happen with developers I've worked with as well. Q. A folks they working on your project over here, and somebody comes walking in with the new hot thing that needs to be taken care of being a bug, a new project that has to be rolled out. What have you, um, we need to be able to manage these changing priorities and stay on top of things, manage our tests will get pulled off of things that we're working on. And it's not that we don't need to finish that, Um, but we need to be able to get back to it and still get it done in a timely manner. So be prepared. Developed your skills to manage your time. Don't let the pressure get to you on this. Particularly procrastinate. You know, these things just build up and they build up and it becomes overwhelming as you're looking at all of the things you've got to do. So manage your time, manage your task and ah, and stay focused. Uh, you know, whatever it is you're working on, stay focused on it until you have to pull off, go to something else and focus on that, get things done and then get back to what you needed to dio and get finished. Okay, so these are just a couple of traits or a few traits can do attitude, uh, willing to take on responsibilities, make things happen, playing with your curiosity and managing your time and house. But they're really critical to be successful in any career and definitely in technology. So you want to spend some time focusing on that and, uh, and make sure that these air some skills that you're developing in yourself and strengthening All right, Any questions hit me up with email or in the chat channel, and I will do my best to answer him there, See in the next lecture. 7. Engage in social media: play there and welcome back. This section will be talking about social media and how we use that effectively. One of the things that, of course we have to do in working with others as part of a career is engaged with people. And if we want people to know that we've got some skills and the ability to solve problems that they're dealing with, that we're doing interesting things that they may want to hire us for is we have to somehow let them know that we're doing this. And social Media is a great platform for that. If used correctly. I am a big proponent of using social media, and I'll confess when I first got started into it, when I created my first Twitter, my Twitter account, I looked at it and I thought, Whoa, I'm hearing this is useful but I'm not seeing it, Um, but I went ahead and and set up an account and started interacting with other folks out there. And what I decided to Dio, particularly with Twitter, was to focus my usage of Twitter aimed at my career. And so I tend to keep Facebook more personal. This is more for friends and family and folks from my you know, that I have known in the past is, ah, a way of keeping in touch with them. Um, that I'm starting to extend that out now. Mawr to people I know in technology, but yeah, my Twitter usage I mean, that is really aimed at career. And so when I started doing initially because I didn't really have anything much to say or do, I started following folks with similar interests as me and that were doing interesting things, and a couple of benefits came out of it right away. One. I started learning about things as they were happening much faster than I would have had a dependent on things like, um, news articles or blog's or or other things. The ability to drop a message and really short, quick burst 140 characters send it off and and start spreading things round. It was really pretty cool, and it while it's a little bit constraining. It allows us to have this rapid fire exchange. And so I started following these folks that were out there, particularly in technology and security, and I started learning from them and I would start to reply back to them. And when we use social media, particularly with for work or whatnot, we don't want to get too self promoting here. We don't get all hyper about. Hey, look at me. Look what I'm doing and or anything like that. Um, my interactions were genuine, you know, on. And that's what I recommend the folks when they're talking with other people, you know? Hey, I'm asking questions. I have no problem with asking a question about what they meant and going back and forth with them a little bit toe learn from them on and as well as sharing ideas that I have her . Hey, I've run into this before and here's what I did. Here's a block post that I wrote about it. Here's a video that was useful. And so with this interaction back and forth, you actually started to get to know people toe in extent. I mean, this is kind of shallow get to know people, But still, when I ran into some of these folks later at conferences or other meet ups, um, we already had common ground. They knew who I waas and I knew who they were. And the experience that allowed me to get really passionate about the use of social media and making it effective is actually got a job off of Twitter. Um, out of the blue company. Out there was was beta testing, some new online training and the CEO of the company who was one of the folks I was following because he was in my area of interest of expertise. And he said, Hey, we're looking for folks to take this training and give us some feedback and how we can make it better. I happen to use their products. And so for me, this was an opportunity. Get free training. So I sent him a message, got hooked up, took their their online classes, and when I was done, I gave you know because I was getting this for free. I made a point of giving good feedback. I had notes pretty much on every lecture. Things I like specifics, things there were issues or whatnot, and I sent it in. And lo and behold, I got a message back, you know, or I sent a message rather to the CEO saying, Hey, finish the training. Simply comments, really appreciate it, thank you very much. And he replied back to me and he said, Hey, thank you for all of your help. Would you be interested in doing training with us? And at the time I was working as a security engineer and I was uncomfortable getting up in speaking in front of others. I knew that I should be. I knew that going out and speaking at conferences was something that could be done that would help me in my career. But I was scared to do it. And so I looked at this as an opportunity to try out something new. And so I went ahead and replied back and through that interaction ended up getting a job as a trainer. And I use that experience than to further develop my career and my willingness and comfort to do things like this were speaking conferences or teach live multi day classes. So, you know, that came out of just some interaction on Twitter, this silly, microblogging 140 character limits platform that we use. So, you know, I really recommend looking at how you use social media and going into with a purpose. Now I'm sure most of you. Where That you already have a Twitter account. Facebook account, LinkedIn profile, things like that. Um, think about how you're using it. Look at how you're using it. And can there be improvements made? So what I started to do, you know, like I said with Twitter, was I focused My efforts on people who were in similar interests is me, ah, linked in Not necessarily the same interest, but it has a way of doing that because it was people I was working with that I was connecting to. And then as I blogged, or as I was going out to do a presentation somewhere or whatnot, I would drop, Ah, you know, information onto Twitter, make a quick tweet and say, Hey, I'm gonna be at, um, besides, Salt Lake City, for example, is a conference I spoke out earlier this year, and here's when I will be speaking. Here's what I'm talking about Here is the link, and, you know, that was just a way of letting people know what I was doing. And other folks were, you know, make sure that they message me, backs a great I'm looking forward to being there, so our use of social media is a huge tool in our arsenal on getting out there and, um, getting out the word on what we're doing to others now. There is a little bit of a caution with this. One of the things you'll see on social media and it's really tempting to get involved in sometimes are these debates that go back and forth, and sometimes they get very emotional and polarized. And so you want to be careful about how you use or how you handle these situations, and I will confess, I I engage in some of these debates out there. I'm more cautious on Twitter than I am Facebook. Facebook is people who know me personally. Generally Twitter less so. So I'm a little a little more cautious about that. But I still living, you know, you get going back and forth about things that you're passionate about. You care about that aren't necessarily related to your career or techno, uh, technology related interests. But what you don't want to do is start making really incendiary comments that cause you to basically people, too, decide that they don't like you. They don't like anything you have to say and they start to disassociate with you. So you know, I don't mean to not saying Don't share your opinions on things. Just think before you hit post or tweet or whatever. Um, if it's too hot of a comment, maybe you need to step back away a little bit and give yourself some time to cool off and or tone it down. But you're absolutely get out there and engage with people share ideas. But you know you want to be polite, you want toe be engaging. You wanna have fun. I mean, that's you really can have a lot of fun. There's some crazy, hilarious things that that you'll find, And so you know I like toe to share. Make comments and jokes back with friends of mine is we go back and forth on Twitter or Facebook, and that's fine. Go out there and have a blast with it, but go in with a plan and, you know, look at and say OK, everything that we do in this course I've made a blawg post. I'm going to make a tweet about it. I'm doing a presentation somewhere. I'm gonna make a post on length in about it, uh, or Facebook. I'm going to, you know, you're sharing that information. And so that's what you want to do. Get out there, share that information, Be genuine. I mean, really be genuine comment. Engage, um, and have a good time getting to know people a little bit. And then as you get out into other places where you can meet these folks face to face, you've already built common ground. They know who you are to like, set to an extent, and they start to feel comfortable with you. And that allows you to have open conversations that can lead to some really neat things. Um, so with that, I think if you have any questions about social media, please let me know and I will see you next time. Thanks. 8. Get involved in your area: All right, this is it. This is the the section where we start now to transposition from things that we're doing. Um, just focus really kind of inward on ourselves and trying to get prepared. Now we're gonna start getting involved and making things happen, uh, in interacting, really? Putting some things out there to let people know what we're doing and honestly toe learn to get more opportunities to learn and grow. So the first thing we're going to start talking about is one of the easiest to do, and that's just get out and get involved in your local groups, community groups, tech groups. This could be very informal or very form. I've you know, for example, signed up for some groups that you have to be a member and pay dues every year. And other groups that hate just show up over here and we'll go have some fun. So, really, this is we're getting away from the keyboard and we're gonna go out and meet some people. Now, there are all kinds of groups out there. I hit a site called new Tech, meet up dot com and ah, nutec. Don't meet up dot com. Um anyhow, search for your area. And lo and behold, there were number groups that I had never heard of within a pretty close proximity to me that had registered there. Google search, you know, for example Hey, technology groups in California, in Los Angeles for Utah or New York. Whatever. All of those things start bringing up results. You start finding out about communities that you probably didn't even know existed and that are nearby and free to go to end the front. They're doing the things that you will find that are interesting for yourself. These could be oriented around things like programming languages. So I've seen groups for PHP Ruby on rails dot net the go programming language. Ah, folks focused on operating systems Lennix user groups, especially or popular. Um, whatever your interest is there groups out there and some of them are rather generalists. So this is just a technology group over here. Uh, that's focused on, you know, anything tax? Maybe start ups either way. Ah, you go to him and you have a good time. There is a start up group actually near me that ah has a lunch hour every week on on Wednesdays. And so everybody that's in this start up space goes down to the conference room and they have this. Bring your own lunch and they have a lunch and learn. It's a fantastic opportunity. Free education, essentially, and what's really fun about it is three chance to get to know other people. Um, so that's really what your goal here is. You get out here, you start meeting other folks, you start talking and sharing what you're working with, asking questions about what they're doing and learning from them. I learned a ton of stuff from other folks that are out there. And don't be afraid to say, Hey, I don't know much about this. What you're doing. Can you explain to me what's going on? What do you know? I got this question that question Honestly, when folks come up to me and ask me questions about what I'm doing, it's fun. It's flattering. I don't think bad of anybody for asking me a question. It's just a chance to sit down or stand there and talk shop. So as you get out into these groups, you get this huge opportunity to learn. But also people is they get to know you. They start asking you questions. Well, you're working in the dot net programming language, and you've been talking an awful lot about this new method of doing things. How does that work? I've got some questions, and you sit here and you just have a good time talking with him. Also, one of the things that you're seeing is is becoming more and more common now for local groups to get together and put together a conference. Uh, usually, they're pretty small. A few 100 people maybe come to him. Uh, but even a small conferences take a lot of work. I've been involved with one conference that I've helped on the backside. Try to make things happen and and run the, you know, run that make a conference happen. And we did. And it was rough because it was for all of us. It was the first time doing it. But, you know, there were folks I met who I got to know who I didn't know. Uh, previously. And they've been a fabulous one. They've been great friends and to have been a great source of, you know, people referring them over me and said, Hey, talk to Jason over here. He knows something about that. So, you know, you get out there, you volunteer. Um, you can volunteer to speak to some of these groups. There's a hacker space near me in Salt Lake City that they hit me up one day and said, Hey, we have a presentation going on every Thursday night. Uh, would you be willing to come out and talk about Web application security? Sure, no problem. Went out there, sat down there prob about six people in the room, and I sat there with my laptop up on the screen and we just talked shop and I did some demonstrations, and we had a really good time. Everybody's sitting around eating and doing what, not way talked after work. Um, so as you go out to these places, you meet folks, you collaborate, get ideas. I have. You know, when I started asking around about some of the some folks, you know Hey, what's help you out in your career? One of the top things that people cited was getting out into my community has been incredible, has been a huge benefit to developing their career, taking it in the direction that they want. So I can't stress this one enough to go out. Get to these groups. Uh, go do some searches and spend some time. You don't have to be there every night. You don't have to make this your lifestyle, But if you show up and you get to meet people, you can have a lot of fun. And as you help other people out, they help you out and you get access to opportunities that would have never come your way. Otherwise, because I didn't know who you were. They know to talk to you because you've got some expertise and what they're they're interested in, so take advantage of that. It's free or very inexpensive. And honestly, if something's not happening in your area, started up. I mean, it's really simple. You start to hunt around for folks in your area and you say, Hey, let's have a geek lunch at ah, whatever. The local restaurant is on Thursday in two weeks and people start to gather together. Um, so it can start out really informally, and then you can grow it from there, so I can I can't recommend this enough. You've got to get out there and meet people. I just said, with Twitter, we start to get to know people through social media to an extent. Ah, you know, we can We can only go so far with that. This allows us to go further and developed really good friends and create opportunities that, you know we didn't even know existed. So get out there. Look around. I've included some resource is in, um, for you to take a look out links to go check out some ideas. Um, get out for away from your keyboard and go have a good time. All right? With that, we'll move on now to the next Ah, next topic. See an event. Thanks. 9. Write apps and tools: All right, let's go ahead and talk about writing applications and tools and what benefit that can have . Let's look at this way As you look around through your career, you can probably think of several tools or applications that you've used that you think highly of that have helped you solve some kind of problem or something you're dealing with . Do some job and you know, some of the really useful tools out there. We look at the folks who have written them as kind of like rock stars. These are folks who have really gone above and beyond. And so, you know, we think highly of them. And somebody walks into the room and says, Hey, I was the guy. You meet him and you find out Hey, I'm the guy who wrote, um, this particular application over here, it's like, Oh, man, I use that all the time. Thank you so much. And so you immediately, You know, I think, uh, very highly of this person so you can have that work to your advantage as well. Now I'm splitting this up into APS and tools, APS or what? I consider things that are more fully developed they're more complex. Maybe Web application. A mobile application. You know, somebody has written something. Teoh, uh, be some kind of client. Let's say for social media and we something you're running on your phone, that's more full fledged tools, I think in terms of scripts or add ons, Um, they are programs. There are small little lapse, but, you know, they're very narrow in their focus and what they dio. So you can go either direction with this if you're a developer. Writing an application is a fantastic way to go because you provide a whole host of solutions at that point to a problem or problems that that folks were dealing with. For those of us who aren't coders who aren't developers, we can do some scripting. That's kind of where I fall into the to the end of the scheme of things. And let me tell you about my own experience with this, um, a number of years back, I got into a little bit of a debate with some developers about something, and I was a little frustrated, and so I decided to write a tool that would allow me to help prove my point and my scripting generally is I need to go do something. So let me figure out how to make this happen. And I hadn't done much with Python, so I figured, Hey, this is a good opportunity opportunity for me to write this script and, um, learn some python. So, you know, I went into this not knowing very much, and, um, I went through and I wrote it, and it was a tool. Teoh approach a certain issue and security, how to gather up some information. And ah, something similar to what an attacker would use. And so I wrote this thing and I went ahead, and I sent it out to a mailing list that I was going for a podcast and I said, Hey, guys, I don't know if this is useful to you or not, but I found it useful. Here you go. And some folks picked it up and started running with it, and they said, Hey, this is really this is really cool stuff. I had a guy in in the UK who picked it up and he did some troubleshooting with me. It was ah, did some website html scraping and where he was at in the UK Different HTML was presented to him, then was presented to me, so I hadn't written my tool to handle that. And so he he held me out with that. And I got some other enhancements from other folks. And so that was really awesome, but it didn't stop there. What ended up happening is one of the guys who who made some changes to the tool, introduced it to a friend of mine who I now work for and said, Hey, you know, we're talking about this aspect of Web application security. Have you heard of this tool name? Recon Waiter. And here's what it does. And Kevin, my boss is Well, yeah, of course you would do Wait. I don't have a tool that does that. And so he contacted me. He was writing a class or excuse. It was teaching a class and maintaining it in web application security. So he sent me a message saying, Hey, would you mind if I use this in my course? And would you mind if I included in this other tool set that I'm using over here? And I was giddy. I mean, his is somebody I looked up to and I said, Oh, absolutely. Please go ahead and ended up becoming friends with Kevin and another a number of other folks. And because of that, that later opened up opportunities to me And folks you know would be talking to me And, you know, I'd say who I was and oh, you wrote recon waiter. Yeah. I didn't think it was a very big deal. I thought it wasn't a no, no great shakes tool. But it was useful, and folks liked it. And just the fact that I was throwing something back out there and contributing, Um, folks were really like that aspect of it. We're not just taking what other people have done, but we're paying it back. So you can do this a couple of different ways. I mean, you can release something free under an open source license, you can go for a for profit type of application. You're releasing it in absent to the APP store, for example. That builds a portfolio for you. So if you go into interview for an android developer job that you can point back and say, yeah, here, all the apse on you know, the Google play store. Um, again, Boom. Your credibility is right up there because they can see now. Hey, this person, this guy, this gal, they're actually doing it and I can mess around with their app and see what I think. So you could go down that route, you could do a mix of the two, Some open source, some not or free. Um, the cool thing about this is ah, you know, because we're doing something that's useful. Other folks get really excited about it, and all of a sudden they get start approaching you. Like I said with these folks, like these folks that we look up to and saying, Hey, you're the one who did this That's awesome. I really thought that was cool. It's a way of giving back, you know, we get so much from these folks who write software and maintain it, and they get a lot of grief. There are people out there who will look at a free tool in our open source app and, you know, literally go. Another way to give the author garbage because they didn't have some function or feature that they want wasn't updated in the timetable that this person wanted. Whatever. You know, there are some rude folks out there, no doubt about it. But most people, they're appreciative. They think this is really cool that you've done this. And so we give it back and and let other people's run with it. On top of that, we've talked about getting involved with local groups. We're gonna talk about other areas where we get involved. We talk about presenting toe local groups. Um, this all provides materials, right that you can blogged about. You can create videos on Hey, here's how I use this tool. I wrote it. And here's how you use it and you publish that you can give presentations on it. You can even teach classes on it and becoming a really big useful. So, um, you know, lots of things can be done here, and it could start out very small and grow very fast. All you have to do as you're doing this is you're just looking around. You find a problem and you make do something to help solve it. Um, you want to consider doing things like putting your projects out on places like Get Hub. I've actually seen job requirements, descriptions and stuff like that, saying as part of your applications and instilling to your get hub profile. So that might be really useful and helpful for you to have that established and have a history there. Before you go in for one of these jobs, some alternatives, you may look at it and sit there and say, Well, I really don't It's great that I said the idea of coming up with a new application that suddenly useful in the home it is great. But that's I'm not coming up with something. Well, what you can dio as well is go out and look for dead open source projects. Um, and find that Hey, this is this This app has been idled and has been updated in two years. And so you email the person who's maintaining it, ask for permission to fork it. Technically, you can do it anyway. But, um, you know, it's better to be polite most of the time that these folks have just moved on and they've left this thing and they're like, Yeah, go ahead. How about it? So you fork this project, reanimate it and, you know, start maintaining it guess what. You didn't have to do a lot of heavy lifting here, but now you've got something going again that people are used, you know, want to use and your breathed new life into it. You can also look at other tools that are out there that have the ability to do plug ins and write your own plug ins or at Elin's to it. One of my co workers is constantly releasing add ons to a Web testing proxy called Burps Weak. And so is he's doing security tests. And you find something that he keeps running into hell automated in his app and published that out. And guess what folks know Jason killed him is the person who, as the person who was writing CO two and these other add ons to perps week all these air huge reputation visitors and they can have a reach far beyond where you live. Um, people around the world start using your stuff and start referencing it. So I highly recommend this. Um, it's a great way to learn. I mean, that's why I approach it. Hey, I need to learn some python and need to learn some ruby. Let me write some scripts, and so you go out there and you start doing that. Uses we have learned toe learn, use it a way to give back. And, um so, you know, try and solve some kind of problem where person performs some useful function and be shocked at the results you can get and how quickly you get known around somebody who is doing something, and that is a huge boost. When it comes time to look for a new job, go out there and been on the job of an engagement for a client, you can point back to these APS and tools and say, Hey, look, here's some of the things that I've done already. You've built that portfolio up, and it's just a huge game for you. Uh, is you go in and and as honestly as people contact you about opportunities that folks will reach out to you for it. So consider this thinks spent some time thinking about it and see if you can come up with some tools or APs that you can write and ah, and release out to the public. All right with that, we'll see in the next skill or ah, secret, if you will, which is blogging and the impact that that can have already will see that Thanks. 10. Blog about the stuff you are learning: Hey there. All right, so we've covered a fair bit of ground in the last few sections here. We've talked about social media, in particular as our first engagement with people outside outside of ourselves. We have discussed getting involved with local groups and writing absent tools. Now let's talk about blogging and blogging has been popular for quite a while. But it's taken a bit of a back seat to Social Media in some ways because I think that's because it's just easier to blurt something on Twitter really fast than it is to write up us an article or how to, or something like that on a block. Nevertheless, I think this is a fantastic stool toe having your in your, ah, here Arsenal again, Um, they were looking at with This is one you know, you're gonna be learning an awful lot, a czar working on your area of expertise. You're gonna be picking up new things. You're gonna be trying out new ah, ways of doing things and or technologies. And so the idea behind that is okay, you're working with something. Instead of trying to sit here and think, What am I going to write about staring at your keyboard, work with some stuff for a while. You have finished something, and you turn around and you're right. It up a za blogged post. When we give you an example of a little how to that I did, um, that became really popular. I had a block that we'll still have it up. Um, that I wrote Or did it work? I figured out a way to get Ah, we did a lot of website development and we were signing a lot of SSL certs certificates. And as part of that, it wasn't recognized by the the browsers that are development Q A. Folks and everybody were using as a valid Sirte. So I found out how to get our certificate authority ourself, you know, generated certificate authority into the trusted repository of certificates on all of our our windows systems and and did that automatically. And here's how you manage that process. And I wrote the whole thing up, very not tied toe work. I anonymized all of that and made up, you know, just reproduce the steps in my lab. And then I did a block post on it. And that post still gets a fair bit of traffic, and it's been a number of years since I've done it. People love how to. So even if they're old and they seem kind of minor and you know not worth bringing up, go ahead and write it up because you never know somebody else will be running into the same problem. And when they find your write up on how to deal with it, they're just thrilled because somebody has helped them fix this problem. So and then when we go into a job interview, you want to make sure that you have your blogging noted on your resume. So again folks can go and look and see what it is that you're doing now We got a couple of things. Consider. Do you create your own blawg, or do you go somewhere and become toe apart, more popular blawg and become a guest blogger? Well, that depends. I've done it both ways. Ah, the nice thing about going to a block that's already established as popular as you get kind of ride along on their coattails. But at the end of the day, that blawg is tied to somebody else, not you so I'm more of a fan for creating your own block, and you don't have to be super professional about this. You go to Blawg spots for blogger and create your own block there, and you don't have to worry about custom domain name. Um, I have seen some highly effective blog's by very notable people who just use it off a blogger and let it go without, But they're constantly writing things, and they're pretty consistent about it. Um, So as you're going through and you're learning this stuff, you know, you want a place that okay, I've completed something. Let's turn around and just write it up. And folks concentrate on the content and who created it, and I don't worry too much about a lot of other things associated with it. It doesn't have to be looked for Perfect. It doesn't have to be like I said, your own custom domain name. It's really the content that matters. And you don't have to spend a ton of time and search engine optimization. Yes, you want to do that, you know, maybe pay little attention to it, but don't get caught up in it. You could get bogged down on those details, and what I found is good content bubbles up. So, you know, focus on the good content primarily and then worry about search engine optimization after that, after the fact, Um, you can use that to get a bit of a boost. And then every time that you do something where, you know, maybe you do a video and you publish it to YouTube or vimeo right to a block post linking to that video. We're embedding that video in your sight so that hold that content is there. And if somebody wants to go see what you're doing, they go to your blog's first, where they go, check out your social media and then because you're linking there, they go to your block. Um, speaking of social need media, I mean again, if you've written something up, you need to turn around and let people know about it. And this isn't a self aggrandizing way of doing things. This is just simply saying, Hey, I wrote a post on how to do blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And here's this link. There you go. Didn't take very much effort, and you've let people know and as you're following people and they were following you back and you're engaging with folks. They go check it out and see. Hey, what What are you up to now? A little bit of a warning here. This can be. This is something you see happen out on on the internet. Um, too much. And that's plagiarizing. Somebody goes out, they decide that they want to short cut all of this work. They they want to get notoriety and reputation and credibility, but they don't want to do the work to get it. And so what they do is they go out here to other blog's and they just literally copy all of the content, all of the images, put it into their blawg and say who? Look at me and look at what I did. So you never want to do that? Don't don't get fall into the trap of needing to short cut things. Things will happen fast enough on the room. Um, do the work yourself, build the skills, and then if you're using work that other people have done scripts, tools referring to blawg post, somebody else has done that. You've built your work off of just refer back to give them credit for it. Hey, Jane Smith over here wrote up this great article on this and I took that, and I started here and and I built on it. And here's what I did. But give them credit for it and be a source of traffic for them. Never, ever plagiarize. Because once you get busted for that, all of your credibility and everything you've been working for just washes down the drain. And, um, yeah, it's just too hard to get rid of. That reputation is somebody who is stealing copy, uh, stealing materials from somebody else and trying to claim it as their own now. And you also want to make sure that it's not just well, I rephrased what they were doing. Now you didn't rephrase it. You copied it and changed some words. So, you know, write it up yourself. Do your do your own work with this and have fun. Writing is hard, and I, you know, I enjoy writing to an extent. I had some good teachers that broke down some of my fears about that in school, but it takes some practice. But as you get into it. You don't have to worry about being, you know, the next. Um, I don't know. Big name author, best selling author. All you're doing is writing up what you're doing, providing some useful content and putting it out there. So do the work. Have fun with it. Share it. Be consistent of you can. I was talking to a friend of mine who runs a podcast and, uh, in blawg and all kinds of stuff Associated room. And he's built a really huge community, um, around the security weekly podcast. And so I was talking to Paul about this and he said the idea of doing something similar to what he's done And he said, One of the things you have to do is be consistent. If you're consistent, then it just keeps growing on its own. And I will confess if you go look at my blawg, I'm not great at consistency. I write things up from Is I'm doing things. Um, I need to do better on this myself. But as you do this, this is what's building your your Well, a couple of things is building your credibility. It's giving you a repository of information to go back to to refer to things. I can't tell you how many times I've gone back to my blog's because I have dealt with this problem before. Let me go look it up again. And by building useful content for other folks, you are helping other people out. You are paying back to the community that honestly, you're probably using yourself to get ideas. And resource is to solve some problems you're doing and how to, no matter how simple it is or appears, can be just incredibly useful. And they're popular, and traffic keeps coming back to them. So try and focus around that, um, you do that, you will definitely find that the traffic increases on your site and continues to grow. So with blogging as you're learning, write it up, post on Twitter about it, post on, lengthen about it, Facebook, whatever. Let people know what you're doing. People will leave comments, reply back, interact with folks, um, and have a good time. And you're flying that you get some great benefits out of it already. We will see you now in the next lecture. Thanks 11. Find a local conference and present: So in this section, we're gonna talk about, ah, public speaking specifically going out to local conferences and getting up there and giving a presentation. We've already talked about getting involved with some of these conferences as a volunteer, Um, but I think it's a great thing to do to get up there and share what you've been learning to the folks that are attending the conference and provide some of the content that folks were there for now, I know that public speaking is a major fear for most everybody. I know this because it's a fear of mine, I'm sure is you've watched. You can see where I'm nervous and I continue to be nervous and that's fine. I like to get out and do presentations, in part because it's a little bit of a rush. It's a bit a bit of fun, and I've just found that the benefits from it are greater than the negatives, the nervousness and some of the fears that you have to deal with in the process. There's a quote that's attributed to Mark Twain. This is there are two types of speaker in the world, one the nervous and to the liars Now I don't know if that's true or not exactly, but is still or that's exactly what he said. But, uh, there's a great deal of truth in that quote. Uh, pretty much everybody I talked to who gets up there and speaks is nervous. You're up there and you've got some You're prepared materials that you're going off of, and sometimes you're still just, you know, even with practicing and preparation, you don't know exactly what you're gonna say next. And there's always the fear that, um, you don't know enough about your topic particularly. You're talking about something technical to get up there and go through a a technical presentation can be a little nerve racking because you want to make sure you have everything right and you're being accurate and you're getting enough information to your audience. So what I tell people to do is one to keep in mind everybody who's in the room if you get up there giving a presentation, Everybody who has come in to listen to you speak, wants you to succeed. They're interested in what you have to say. That's why they came there and said are sitting in the track with you, so understand the audience is pulling for you. Don't be scared of them because they want to hear what you have to say. Nobody's there to call you out or give you grief, at least not at any conference I've been to. It's okay to go ahead and start small. I gave the example earlier about speaking at the local hacker space, and I've done some presentations for companies. Where for Security Awareness Month, for example, You come in, you share some ideas I put you in a room with, you know, anywhere from 6 to 20 people or so, and you just kind of have a good time getting up there talking and sharing some things that you've picked up. Um, I like to go the route of looking around and seeing What is it that I want to learn about? What's something that I am learning about and great. Let me do some presentations on that, Um, what can I do for that? And so we'll pick a couple of topics, and that's what we used during the course of a year for several different presentations. Typically, the way this goes with a conference, there's a call for prep presenters, or CFP, that goes out well in advance, usually of the conference, and you end up writing a quick abstract. So you give your name some by og biographical information and the title of your topic, your presentation and some information about what your topic is going to be. What are you going to talk about in convey to the audience? What goals do you have? Uh, in that in that presentation that you want to communicate and you send it off and, you know, sometimes you get a notice back that says, Well, you know, we really appreciate you doing this and offering to do the to speak of the conference, but and we decided to pick some other folks and typically these conferences do you have a number of presentations or proposals to go through, And so that happens. And that's fine. I don't like it down about it. Other conferences will will accept your presentation. The first time that I got up to give a presentation at a conference was actually a local conference here in Salt Lake City, and I Okay, they you know, well, let's let's just put together some things that I was interested in with computer security. I was a systems administrator at the time, and I was trying to break into security. And so I decided, Let's go this route to have doing some speaking and see what that happened. See what happens? What does that open up? And lo and behold, I found that it didn't open up doors and I was scared, and I was nervous, but the presentations went well and I met some good friends that way. Folks coming up to me later and saying Hey, hey, that was a great talk. Thanks for getting up there and giving that. Have you? I've got a question about this or that head. Did you know about this? And, you know, that was related to some of the tools you were talking about? Oh, no, I didn't know that. Well, And see, talk back and forth. There's nothing wrong with saying that. Yeah, I didn't know that. Tell me about it. Right. Um, you're learning from them and they're learning for you. I mean, so much of the time in technology, knowledge and information. That's kind of the coin we trade in. That's that's what we're interested in. And so as we traded back and forth and we're interested in what the people have to say to us when they know a little bit more about the top, the tool or topic, then we did or they know something else that we didn't know. Um, you know, that's that's fine. That's an opportunity to learn. That's great. But you get up there, you stand up in front of the group and you go through your materials and talk to him about what it is that you find interesting about this particular technology or way of doing things. I've seen great presentations on the difference methods of cryptography and have great examples that they did in the course of that to demonstrate, you know, some of the weaknesses that area president, some methods of cryptography and, um and why they're not present in others. One of the things you do want to be careful of with any technical presentation is you need to be prepared for the devil gods because they are mean and spiteful. You get up there, you plan on doing a live presentation and or demo rather, and you start going through it and something goes wrong. Your virtual machine that you're running on blue screens. The things you were doing in the lab that were working just fine suddenly aren't working on your BM even though it worked last time you ran this. So you do need to be prepared for that. You need to be able to roll with that. Um, some of the things that I've done in the past is I've had a video on hand so that if it failed, I could spool up the video real quick. Can play that instead, you know, you do what you need to do. Ah, you. There have been plenty of times with major speeches, tech conferences and stuff like that where we watched executives run into demo failures. It happens, joke about it. Move on. Um, as you go through in your learning and you're working on your area of expertise, make some notes and say, OK, here's something I could speak about. Here's a couple of other things I could speak about. Keep tinkering with it and then look around for opportunities to do this, to do a presentation. How you said go ahead and start small and go from there and, like, there are some really cool benefits to getting up and speaking. Um, some of the ones that I like is one just the people you get to meet. Um, it's fun. They come up and they talk to you afterwards. It really interested in talking to you. And I don't know about you, but I'm fairly shy. I don't like to walk up to somebody and say, Hey, how are you? I'm Jason. Um, I tend to be the guy who was just kind of walk around watching and listening in, Um, But through that, I've gotten to know folks and made some good friends. One of the other things that I like is you get free admission to the conference. So perhaps there's a conference you do like to really go to, and they do a call for presenters. You submit, you get accepted. Boom. You've got a free ticket to go to the conference. And, you know, I've used that to go to some of the conferences that I enjoy it I wouldn't normally be able to go to. And so there's nothing wrong with using it as a way to learn yourself. Um and for the purposes of your career again, when you get up on stage, there's something really kind of wild that takes place in the eyes of the audience. You go from another face in the crowd now toe when they see you walking around the conference, as somebody who has some skills has some expertise, it has something to say. You suddenly are considered an expert as expert as we ever get anything in technology. Anyways, um, you may not know everything about it, but you certainly have something to share, and you've been contributing, and that's what people get interested in. And again, this opens up that idea that, hey, opportunities for work start coming to you, jobs that you wouldn't have had access or even known about. Suddenly somebody send your message and says, Hey, this is a job positions coming up, how to check it out? Or you might find that somebody contact you later says, Hey, would you like to do some side work? We've got this app that we're developing, and that really liked your talk, and I think you could do a good job on this. And so boom, here you go, bed on this and run with it. All of these are some of the benefits you get from speaking. It's a lot of fun, and I highly recommend it. I know it's nerve racking, but you can do it. Practice, start off small and just get some experience and you start finding that you're able to go ahead and do this. You'll probably never conquer the nerves, but you'll know that you'll be able to get up there and succeed at it. My advice to you is just to get out there and give it a try. Don't sell yourself short, all right, if you have questions about getting into conferences and doing presentations. Pleased. Draw me a line. Send me an email hit me up in the chat channel. I would love to talk to you there. Thank you again and we'll see in the next one. 12. Start a podcast: Okay, Now let's talk about going for bonus points. Ah, Final secret, if you will hear that we're sharing is the idea of starting a podcast. Now, I consider doing a podcast optional. Um, but like I said, you get major bonus points for this one. There's a huge benefit to you in being able to do something like that, do a podcast, run it consistently and do so in a way that builds up a community that folks can come in interact with you on. And, um, you know, it's just something that really can be a major boost to you. I've got some friends who do podcasts, and my company does a podcast, and, uh, you know, I have participated in it. I've been part of you doing episodes for the PointCast, and it's a lot of fun, particularly if you have a friend t come along with you and and joke around with back and forth. But you need to keep in line. A podcast is not something that ah goes very quick. A lot of times it takes some effort, and it takes some dedication and commitment, so, you know you have to plan out ahead of time. Hey, here's what we're gonna do. We have to have all the materials set up. You do the podcast and then you have to go into you know you're recording it, and then you have to go into post production at it and do all of the other stuff you do and then publish this thing. So there is more work involved with it. It's not as simple as a blawg post, which you do some stuff and then you write it up. It's cement posted on Twitter and truck on your good. Um, instead. Now there you just have all of this work. You got lead time going into doing the podcast and were coming out the other side. So But, you know, the friends I have who have done this and done it well, have seen some amazing things happen in their careers, and you know that some commitment from their family as well to share them for the podcast. But I remember one of them saying that there his wife had made the comment. She wasn't sure about this, but she was really glad that he has because it had made such a change in in their lives in his professional life. So if you decide to do it, podcast here. Some things to consider before you go into it. One you need to be consistent. Like I said, a couple of US codes ago from talking to Paul of the Security Weekly podcast. You you know, consistency is a big deal. You've got to stay on, you know, on track with go ahead and bring along a friend or two or three toe work. With this, they're a couple of reasons for that. One is it's just a whole lot more fun to do a podcast with a friend who you're talking with and you're going back and forth and you're joking around and giving each other hard time. And that makes the podcast more entertaining to the listeners. And with a podcast, you are not only sharing information, but you are doing some entertainment. You know, folks have to enjoy listening to it, so having some friends along definitely helps. And since consistency is a key, having some friends along helps you stay consistent because you may be out sick or traveling on vacation or doing something for work, and you wouldn't be able to participate in the podcast. So your friends who are your co hosts are carrying on with it. And so that's why you want to make sure or consider the idea bringing some friends along. Another thing to think about is don't stress over perfection. The guys I know who are successful of podcasting are anything but polished and perfect. They joke around a lot. They make mistakes on the air. I remember back to some of their early podcasts. They really make some mistakes on. You know what, they just roll with it. They had a good time and they keep moving. Um, so don't get caught up in that, um, again, your goal is to give good information to share some some things that folks will find interesting and be a bit entertaining, you know, have some fun with it and let the audience have fun with you. Let them interact with you. You can do things like health. Guess come in and do a presentation. Talk about something that they're doing. You could have listeners dialling envious sky to participate in the podcast. Um, all kinds of stuff. You release it on your website and say Hey, we're looking for some folks to be Ah, guest presenter this week. Let me know if you're interested and folks will say absolutely. I love to participate in that. I've had friends who are guys who have come up to me after I have given a presentation and say, Hey, we have this podcast and we would love to have you on the show. Do you have some availability? And so take the You know, I was flattered. So you calling out for volunteers for your podcast is flattering to those you're talking to . So go ahead and ask. We love to talk shop. You know, folks who are passionate about what they do, they love to get up there and talk about it and explain and share what they're doing. So go ahead and ask. And Lay said mistakes were gonna happen. Just roll with it, joke around, move on. A good example. In one of the best examples I have of guys I know who have done a podcast is security weekly. Um and these were folks that I know personally. There are other very successful podcasts out there, but ah, if you guys Paul Acid Dorian Larry Pesce E primarily started this podcast up. Hunt almost is probably nine years ago now, and they're still going strong. And they got up there and they just joked around they would do things like, Hey, let's have the stories for the week And so they would go through the news and pick out different topics that they thought were entertaining and interesting and talk about those They do a text segment and talk about something that they were doing or learning and have guest speakers come in and they just went crazy, had a good time with it. But they stayed consistent and they've built an incredible community. And those guys who were involved in the podcast had had great opportunities open up to them . So you know, this is something that I personally participate with a little bit more on the periphery because I don't have the time to do a podcast with all of the other commitments I have. But if you do have the time, I can't. You know this This is a great way to go, and one of the best ways I can think of to build a community and interact with people you don't need a terrible amount to get started. You're gonna need some Web hosting and bandwidth, right, and their services out there for, um for podcasts. Specifically, you're gonna need some software to record what you're saying and do a little bit of editing . Audacity, for example, isn't free application that you can use does a good job of recording and gives you some editing tools that are necessary to do the job? It's not perfect. It's not the most powerful thing in the world. But that's not our goal. We're starting small here and then a good USB microphone. Yes, there are better equipment out there, then just a USB mic. But, you know, you go down that route and, um, and get started. You still get a good sound out of it, and folks can understand you. Like I said, it doesn't have to be perfect. So just, you know, pick a decent mike that's budget within your budget and go for all right now. Some things also be prepared for, um, is it's going to be difficult at first. I can tell you from a some experience editing audio, uh, dealing with video and stuff like that is not a simple task, at least at first. And then you figure out how it works and you get it down to kind of a routine, and it gets easier. So be prepared for that. Be prepared for some frustration and give yourself some time. Um, start small and let this thing grow up to the point that you're ready, Teoh, that you want to take it to. You'd never have to turn this thing into a business. Your podcast into a business or revenue driver. Ah, if you don't want to, this could just be a way of getting up and talking shop and having a good time. So as you can see, as we've talked about doing podcast things, it is a lot of work. It is not something to be done casually and require some commitment. But major bonus points to you again. If you can do this. If you have the time and the interest, I highly recommend it. It's like the best way I know off to build a community. Folks get involved with these podcasts have become fans there listening to it, and they're joining chat rooms to talk to the people who were doing the podcast. They're going to their Web page and reading blogged post, wanting to make guest blogger posts, which is going back again to you know, your blog's. So they're making blog's on your site. Yes, you are sharing information, you know, letting them share your stage. But it's part of your it's your stage and this this helps you out and you will meet people . You'll be a conferences or meet ups or whatever, and people would come say, Hey, I listen to every week and they just jump in and want to start talking with you. So it's a great opportunity, and I highly recommend it. Just be prepared for the commitment that it's that's required for All right, so we've covered a lot of things. We're gonna move into the last section of this. Ah, this class next and this is gonna be kind of our wrap up. We're gonna talk about how we put everything together and put all of this into play because we have covered a lot of ground. So I'll see you in the the last lecture. Thanks again 13. Putting it all together: okay, you've made it gone through the entire course. We've covered a ton of ground over the last couple hours or so of content, and all of this stuff is a lot of work. I'm sure it's a little daunting. You may be sitting there saying You mean to tell me that I have to, you know, volunteer local conferences, get involved in local groups, right, open source software, or at least some kind of app for tool, blogged about it speaking conferences and do podcasting to be successful in my career, as well as chatter on social media and the answer that is, No, you don't have to do it all. These are some of the things that I have seen people put in play in their careers, these air things I've used in mine, and I found that they have a lot of success and they make major changes and how things go. I look back on the time when I decided to write my first tool and decided to start speaking in my first conference as turning points in my professional life. They were when I started going from solid sys admin who folks who worked with me knew that to somebody who had a little bit more reach out to people and that folks knew of In the in , I had a little bit higher profile than I did before, and opportunities have come because of that. And so that's why I decided to put all this together. So, like I said, you don't have to do all of this. What you do need to do, though, is decide on your own personal mix. What is it that you want to dio that you're comfortable with doing? And I say, comfortable here maybe in some quotes that you are willing to go ahead and tackle in spite of your discomfort. Some folks are perfectly content to release major projects in applications and things like that, but are never going to get up in front of an audience and speak terrifies them and and they would be unable to do it. And that's fine. That's not. You don't have to do all of that. These are just things that I have found that a combination of can really help you out. So I look at it and decide what is it that you were willing to dio Are you willing to get out there on social media and meet some folks in your area, blogged, keep learning and blogged about what you're doing and maybe volunteer behind the scenes to help some conferences go, Um, or do you want to go and crazy and go for, you know, being a ah technology rock star? And you know not only the engaged in social media, but be up there speaking and writing and doing podcasts, teaching classes or another way of building your career up, which we didn't cover in here. But if you know how to do a presentation and you can get up and, uh, do a podcast, you can definitely write a class, you know, or is that the way you want to go? It's up to you. What are you comfortable with doing? But if you do enough of these things, you will certainly find that your career changes an opportunity. Start coming your way. There are some pieces of this that I consider to be required, you know, having an area of expertise. Um, be constantly learning, engage on social media, be the type of person that makes for a good um, a coworker or somebody to go to Teoh to give a client a contract to complete a job. Ah, are all I think requirements to be having any kind of successful and great career. And then from there you add onto it and you pick and choose what it is you want to dio. You know, Do you want to place that? Do you want a blawg and write software? You know, what is it that we've talked about that makes sense? Or have you thought of something else while we've been going through this course? And you think, Well, maybe this one work Well, maybe it will hit me up, asked me. I'll refer you to folks who maybe have tried it, and, uh, you can learn from that regardless, you know, it's about you. It's about, you know, putting this together is about what you were comfortable with and then taking that and going out and helping other people. And I say it's about you. What I meant by that is, you know, this mixture is about what you're comfortable with, and then from there, when you get out there, you start putting other people's helping out other people and teaching and exchanging information and going through this. That's when you find things start happening, and it's how it like I said, It's how it's worked for me. And it's house work for a number of people I know and have worked with. And people have seen you have very successful professions, professional lives. I wish you the best of luck. I really am grateful that you took the time to listen to this course and listen to me and think about and act on some of the ideas that we've covered. If you have any questions, please reach out to me. I will help you out in any way I can. And so So drop me an email. Connect with me during the in the chat room or over social media. Whatever. I'd love to get up and talk shop that he had loved to help you out. It's one of the things that I enjoy. Thank you again and good luck. And I hope Tiu have been talking with you and I will see you. Ah, hopefully it with you up on a stage speaking somewhere. Thanks again. And, uh, good luck