Open Mic Spotlight: Christopher Armstrong

This post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. me-bw

Christopher works for Rackspace on the OpenStack Heat project, focusing on autoscaling. I’ve been contributing to open source software for over ten years now, and I love working in Python. I spent a bit of time in the game industry, and while it can be fun, I’m happy to be back working on system/framework-level software, especially open source!

 He lives near Dallas, TX. He loves Greenville Ave Pizza, Revolver beer, and RPG video games 🙂 You can follow him on Twitter @radix.

1. What is your go-to beverage or snack while coding?

Usually a gallon jug of water is sitting on my desk. I also run to my local indie cafe at least once a day to have a break and drink a cortado.

2. What is your favorite project that you’ve contributed code to?

That’d have to be Twisted — it’s where I cut my teeth on open source hacking, and also where I have developed many friendships in the community. I don’t get as much time as I’d like to contribute to it these days, but when I do I’m in my happy place 🙂

3. How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you learn in college? On-the-job?

Self-taught, with casual mentorship from people in the Twisted community (especially Glyph Lefkowitz, Jean-Paul Calderone, and Allen Short).

4. How did you first get involved in OpenStack?

I became a contributor to OpenStack recently when Rackspace hired me to work on Heat. It’s been a pleasure getting involved with the Heat community and learning a lot of stuff about orchestration that I didn’t previously know. I can’t wait for everyone to start orchestrating their deployments with Heat!

5. What are your tips or tricks for surviving jet lag or long conferences?

5mg of Melatonin at 11:00pm (unless I’m out until 1am at the pub…). Definitely helps me get a good 7-8 hours of sleep even while jetlagged!


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