Open Mic Spotlight: Flavio Percoco

Screen Shot 2013-09-12 at 8.40.46 AMThis 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. 

Flavio spends most of his time hacking on storage (Glance [core member], Cinder, Swift) and messaging (Marconi [core member]) modules. He has both Italian and Venezuelan roots, and is currently based in Italy where he works remotely for Red Hat. Flavio is also an actively open-source contributor and part of Mongodb Masters group.

Prior to Red Hat, Flavio worked on Big Data oriented applications, search engines and message systems. He was also an active member of Gnome’s a11y team where he contributed to Orca and created MouseTrap, a head-tracker application. Outside Red Hat, he likes to take pictures, swim, travel, hang around with family and friends and whatever seems interesting. You can follow him on Twitter at @flaper87.

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

Coffee and Gummy Bears. Here’s proof:

2. What behavior has helped you get the furthest as a developer? 

“Be humble about the things you know and fearless about the things you don’t know… And keep going.” I always remind myself this.

Computer Science is one of those careers where people never stop learning. It keeps evolving every second, there are always new things to learn, share or do.

I consider myself a very passioned developer and I’m always looking for new things to learn and share. Whenever I get the chance, I dig deeper on the things I like the most and I’m always looking forward to share everything I know with other people.

This way of thinking has taught me that knowledge is worthless if you don’t know how share it.

3. Why did you get into computer engineering?

I’m not one of those who started playing with computers since he was 3 years old. I spent my childhood playing outside my house rather than inside it. I started playing with computers – and I mean programming – when I was almost out of high school – or was I out already? mmh – and I completely fell in love with it. My first distro was RHEL and after it I jumped through a whole bunch of different distros.

My other options besides computer engineering were: Physics, Medicine or Psychology but I’m programmatically lazy so, here I am. I still want to study Physics, though.

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

Trust your clock, it’s always right (unless you forget to change it to the local time).

Don’t think about how tired or hungry you are because you’re not. If your clock says 12:00 then it is time for lunch, if it says 20:00 it’s time to have dinner and if it says 2:00 then you can be tired and go to bed.

I call that: “Biology by approximation”

5. Not counting the obvious (your colleagues or close former colleagues), who have you worked with closely, built a relationship with or learned the most from in the community? Why? 

Without any specific order:

Doug Hellman: No matter how or with regard to what, I always learn something new from him. Email threads, reviews or code, it doesn’t matter, he’s always teaching me something.

Devananda van der Veen: When we met at the last Europython, we not just talked about technology but also about Philosophy and Buddhism. I really enjoyed our conversations and learned at lot from them.

The whole Marconi team: Those guys rock. We’ve been working very closely since the project started. We’ve made calls, meetings and hung around on IRC. All this time, we’ve shared and learned from each other. Also, I’d dare to say that Marconi’s irc channel is the funniest throughout OpenStack.



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