About me and my career so far...

devops Nov 08, 2020

Today, I am a DevOps Engineer. I work with the cloud and take care of projects from multinational companies, fintech, and banks. But everything began with an old and offline computer.

My childhood (2005-2008)

I was born in 1993 in São Paulo state in Brazil, five years before Google exists. I was a child that enjoyed biking with my few friends, play videogames, break my computer, and set fire to papers and wood. My sister gave me my first computer in 2005, an Acer Aspire (Intel MMX, 64 MB RAM, Windows 98), an old machine for the time.
I had a friend called Paulinho. We always broke things trying to improve them. One of those "improvements" was installing Linux Kurumin, a Brazillian Linux distribution based on Debian, and using KDE as the desktop environment. We had no idea of what we were doing, with no sound, no internet, and no idea of how to install the drivers, soon we rollback to Windows 98 with Chinese drivers for the dial-up internet cards.
Breaking and fixing my computer many times per month was my first experience with the area that would become my career in the future.
Oh, I loved my Super Nintendo.

My high school (2009-2011)

I studied at Colégio Embraer Juarez Wanderley, one of the best high schools in Brazil at the time. I needed to do an entrance exam and must be among the 200 first candidates.
I went to school at 7 AM and went back home at 7 PM every day. I had books, clothes, bus transport, and food paid for by the school. Those things are significant for me to mention because my family never had money, and I never asked for expensive gifts. I had a simple bike, an old and used computer, and an old game console with pirate games, and was perfect.
During high school, I had some friends that created many projects with me. I've bought the "TheNets.org" domain name (using my mom name and credit card), and I put many of those projects inside that domain. We've created OpenTibia servers, anime fansub, torrent trackers (to distribute the anime files), download portals for software and animes, blogs about games, and other subjects, and many, many other things.
That was my first experience with a programming language, like Lua for OpenTibia and RPG Maker scripts and PHP and JS for the websites.
The first two years were the best period of my life.

I'm in this picture :)

My university (2012-2018)

I studied at the Federal University of Itajubá (UNIFEI). I had some bad memories of classrooms and teachers, but I met many incredible people there too.
During my degree, my teacher and researcher Melise accepted me to work in her lab, with a focus on OpenData. I started to research OpenData at the time to suggest a recreation of the Brazilian Open Data Portal (dados.gov.br). I never was an academic person, and soon I left the research program and started my intern program to recreate and rewrite the dados.gov.br.
Me and another guy called Alerson, who would become a friend of mine, start to learn how to install and manage the CKAN platform, used by dados.gov.br and many other data portals around the world. Our job was to understand the requirements to have CKAN up running and how to customize the platform to add the features the government requested. One relevant information was the few documentation and troubleshooting information about the CKAN platform. I needed to talk to people around the world from different governments to understand, fix, and improve the CKAN platform. That was an incredible opportunity to met people from Canada, USA, UK, France, Japan, and China.
Later on, Jonas and Flavio joined the team, and we worked not only with dados.gov.br but with other projects from Rio of Janeiro startups with a focus on solutions for cities and public policies.
I worked in my laboratory at UNIFEI for two and a half years. Over time, my job becomes more related to create tools, servers, and pipelines. My role moved from writing code to guarantee that my team had everything they need to work and never lose time thinking about how to deploy, how to set up a dev environment, and things like that.
That period was pretty awesome. I've learned how containers work, how to code in Python, how to create more advanced solutions in JS, and, the most important thing, I've learned how to work in group and respect people.

UNIFEI - 2018

I become a consultant (2018 - 2019)

A few months before I get my bachelor's degree, I started to give a consultant for some startups in my city (Itajubá - MG). One of them was the B2ML, the bigger software house in the region. I didn't have a specific task. The CEO Bernardo trusted in me to help the teams and do whatever I want to improve the quality and performance of the people that were working there.
I created a centralized Git repository for the company, recreated the entire infrastructure on the cloud, migrate over 90 applications to Linux container, create backup solutions, create tools to manage the infrastructure, create metrics monitor and alerts, add firewall and WAF, give training...
Later on, I helped to architect an environment on AWS using IaC (Hashicorp Terraform) for a financial application. Another challenging task that teaches me a lot.
Maybe that was the best experience that I could have. I've learned a lot, and I'm grateful for the opportunity that soon opened other paths for me to follow.

Itajubá - MG, Brazil

During that period, at begging of 2019, I started to work remotely at ROI Hunter, a Czech startup that created a performance marketing platform for Facebook, Instagram, and Google ads. That was my first experience working in English. It was very different them my previous jobs, and I was excited about the idea of moving to a European country.
I received feedback that I was very well during the interview process, and a few weeks later, I started my job there. But a few more weeks later, everything went wrong too fast. For the moment, the company needed someone who knew Google Cloud Platform, Logstash, Ansible, integration with some custom vault made by the team, and I couldn't learn those many things in less than ten weeks.
As a result, they decide to fire me. I had a good performance during the interview, but I hadn't that many experiences required for the role. In general, I can only be grateful for everyone there. They were always busy but always tried to help me and guide me. I've learned a lot, and I was excited to continue as a consultant a little more.
Ah, now I know that "bunda" means jacket in Czech.

Big companies, big challenges (2019 - 2020)

At the end of 2019, I joined Locaweb Corp Cluster2Go, a company that would be renamed to Nextios a few months later. The company creates and maintains cloud solutions for other companies. At this point, I think it's important to talk a little more about the hiring process.
One of the company's managers visited the small city that I lived in, and someone recommended me. I met him, we talked for 20 minutes, and he asked me to met the specialist of the company that worked with a cloud solution. His name was Valter.
That was the unforgettable and most exciting interview that I ever had. We talked about everything related to the software lifecycle, from weird errors during the compilation process to kernel limitation for some applications. It wasn't just about the role, was about engineering, about computer history, about the challenges of creating and maintaining an environment for everyone's work. But one last thing stays in my mind even today: Valter was better than me in every subject that we started to discuss.
After the interview, I was eager to know if I would join the team or not. I joined.

During my first month, I started creating small projects for a bank. Soon I got the respect of my manager, and I got a much complex project. For that time, I needed to create an entire workload for a dozen microservices on AWS. My first experience with something at that scale.
Everything started to grow fast, and I got more respect from my team. I created some PoCs, wrote tools for my entire team, and much more.
At the end of 2020, I was participating in many projects and training other members of my team.
My team becomes my family. I care about them. I help and protect them.

Here I am (2020)

Today is September 08, 2020. I hope to keep this post up to date while my career continues.

Thank you if you still here.


Luiz Felipe F M Costa

I am a problem solver who loves automation tools, networking, games, and coffee. I am also an active contributor to opensource projects on GitHub.

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