Deborah Digges A Technical blog

Remember the Intern

The word intern will perhaps conjure up a host of mental images–the figure perennially at the table-tennis table or camping out in the pantry, the one with the extravagant chrome theme which calls out to you from across the room, the one who likes everything with a side of cheese; to me, it’s what I’ve been for nearly eight months now at Intuit. With the end of my internship drawing nigh and my work dwindling low, I’ve decided to compile a compendium of the things I’ve learnt over this period, which I hope will help some intern-to-be.

Always Ask

What’s Jenkins?

How does that actually work?

How is that even possible!

BU? FU? TDD? BDD?!

I’ve learnt not to just nod and smile as the jargon eludes my grey cells–to make an effort to internalise at least most of those three letter acronyms that are thrown around with such abandon.

Build Bonds

Over this period, I’ve formed a network of people I know and can relate to; it is always comforting to see familiar faces in any setting and it’s comforting to think that the paths of the people you meet today may at some point down the road intertwine with yours again.The lifeblood of an organisation is it’s people and I’m glad to have met all the people I have.

Bask in the Presence of the More Experienced

I’ve found that an hour over lunch with a person can sometimes be more educating than a day spent scouring over the internet. In conversation with people who’ve spent some time in the industry, I’ve listened to their tales of war and learnt much–the time the JVM needed a daily restart because of GC pauses, the tales of outrageous resource reduction with node, the infamous outages of the past. I think that all of this has contributed to my view of the world and how it works.

Move Fast, Break Nothing

As important as it is to deliver fast, I’ve learnt that it is equally important to deliver awesome. Let not your feature be the accursed one that breaks five others.

With the intern memories dusted and framed, I can resign to the alarm free vacation that will ensue.

And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should -Max Ehrmann