Our Featured Member series is a way for us to show appreciation and highlight active contributors in our community. Communities thrive on interaction and our Featured Series gives you some insight on some of our most engaged folks. DevCentral Member and 2022 MVP Rodolfo Nützmann is our Featured Member for May! Let's catch up with Rodolfo!
DevCentral: First, please explain to the DevCentral community a little about yourself, what you do and why it is important.
Rodolfo: Like many here, I’m a tech enthusiast since way back when tech wasn’t cool. 😉
I was born and grew up in São Paulo, Brazil, and started my journey with computers when I was 9 years old, much later than today’s kids – but this was in 1984 and the personal computer at the time (a “Microdigital TK82-C”) was sporting a cool 3,25 MHz with its Zilog Z80A microprocessor, with a whopping 2KB RAM and reading BASIC-language programs off cassette tapes at blazing fast 300bps.
To this day I still remember sitting countless nights in my room in my early teens, connected to some Bulletin Board System with my 9600bps modem to exchange some messages over FidoNet and, hopefully, download some new games. I guess all that waiting at the time, counting every Byte that came in, played a big influence in developing my endurance and perseverance which later helped me excel in discovering how to use new technologies and, especially, in my troubleshooting skills. You’ve gotta be persistent!
I first heard of F5 around 1997 while working as a Field Network Engineer for Cabletron Systems, a switching and routing vendor that later became Enterasys Networks and was then bought into Extreme Networks. Some of my colleagues at the time even flew to Seattle (a big feat for Brazilians at the time) to learn more about that groundbreaking “server load balancer” and came back speaking wonders, especially because there was a new “Global server load balancer” that would revolutionize the industry.
Cut to more than 20 years later and here I am, an F5 technologies enthusiast and still eager to learn new stuff almost daily! I have been working almost exclusively with F5 since 2015, spending 5 years as a Channel Systems Engineer in two distributors (Westcon and ScanSource) and since 2020 I have taken the career path I had long envisioned: being a full-time instructor.
DevCentral: You’ve been an active contributor in the DevCentral community. What keeps you involved?
Rodolfo: Communities are what make or break pretty much anything! And this is also true for technologies – the more a community embraces some tech and collaborates with each other, the more adoption and success that tech will see. The community involved with F5 solutions reunites some of the brightest and most creative people, so it is always a joy to learn and contribute as much as possible.
DevCentral: Tell us a little about the technical expertise you have.
Rodolfo: I come from a strong internetworking background, having worked over 20 years designing, installing and troubleshooting campus networks and metropolitan area networks. I also have a little service provider experience, but don’t really remember much regarding BGP attributes from the heart anymore at this point 😉 . Nowadays we have Google, so I wouldn’t have to carry a few heavy books under my arms into troubleshooting sessions anymore, like back in the days 😛
DevCentral: You are an F5 Authorized Instructor teaching for F5 ATCs “Red Education” globally and “InLearn” in Brazil. Can you describe your typical workday, how you manage work/life balance and the strong support of F5 solutions? How has the recent pandemic impacted your work?
Rodolfo: I always knew my tendencies to stay up all night would pay off one day! 😊
Presently I teach remote and in-presence classes to audiences in Brazil (in the same time zone I currently live in) and remote classes to audiences in Australia, Singapore and India, pretty much on the other side of the globe.
I love connecting with diverse audiences and am eagerly expecting opportunities to teach to more countries, and especially to get back on the road, travel and know different cultures – which has always been one of the aspects I most enjoyed as a Field Engineer.
During the pandemic I saw the consolidation of my desired career as a full-time instructor – teaching has previously always been “a part of the job” – and now I expect to grow and expand as the world gets back to in-presence training – although I do believe that online, real-time instructor-led training will be more prevalent than ever before.
As for work/life balance, I enjoy being outdoors in nature, or hanging out with my family and friends, but must confess that I need to take much better care of my physical activities.
DevCentral: Do you have any F5 Certifications? If so, why are these important to you and how have they helped with your career?
Rodolfo: I do have active F5 certifications, and as matter of fact I’m preparing to take the one exam yet to be conquered – 401 Security Solutions. Soon…
I´ve always thought very high of certifications, obtaining a CCNA in the year 2000 and several others in the following years, mainly from Juniper Networks, Extreme Networks and Palo Alto Networks.
Passed the 101 and 201 exams in 2015 and have obtained the 300-level certs in the following years, culminating with the 402 Cloud Solutions now in 2022. 401, here I come!
Much of my career advancement can be credited to my certifications, and especially to the knowledge and experience I had to obtain in order to get them! No, I don't believe in dumps (pero que las hay, las hay – Miguel de Cervantes)
DevCentral: Describe one of your biggest Customer challenges and how the community helped in that situation.
Rodolfo: There have been many challenges throughout my career, especially when troubleshooting intermittent problems, hard-to-find bugs, and getting some new tech up and running correctly. Thankfully I´ve always had support of the community – awesome teammates and great connections with product support and engineering, back to the e-mail lists days up to today with instant messenger groups and website-based forums. DevCentral is definitely one of the richest resources in the industry, exactly because of the community that makes it!
DevCentral: Lastly, if you weren’t doing what you’re doing – what would be your dream career? Or better, when you were a kid – what did you want to be when you grew up?
Rodolfo: As a kid I wanted to be a scientist, fascinated with astronomy, ecology, biology, particularly plants, insects and marine life. Later in my teens, apart from wanting to be a rock star (but no, I never learned to play an instrument) I envisioned founding and directing a university dedicated to studying natural sciences focused in useful widely accessible knowledge to the world. I have always been a dreamer… 😊 Thankfully some of them became reality, and hopefully many more still will!
---Thanks Rodolfo! We really appreciate your willingness to share with the DevCentral Community. Stay connected with Rodolfo on social media: