8 Bits with Kalii DeLaRosa

8 Bits with Kalii DeLaRosa

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Chloe Condon  2:01
Hey, it's Wednesday friends, which means we're back, Brandon, I are back. How you doing, Brandon?

Brandon Minnick  2:08
That's right. It is time for eight bits. I'm great. I'm great. It's been a, it's been a really, really fun week for me, I've been getting to play around with something, some some new stuff that I haven't gotten to play with before. I'm sure you've used it. But if you ever tried to create your own Power BI dashboard, Chloe,

Chloe Condon  2:31
you know what, I have watched someone. But tell me more. Because I feel like this is something that could be very powerful for me.

Brandon Minnick  2:40
Goodness. So for anybody who hasn't heard of Power BI, it's it's this charting tool that Microsoft has. And it's really cool, because it's really powerful. You don't really have to know much about data science and analytics, you can kind of just point it at a data source. So whether maybe that's an Excel spreadsheet, maybe it's a database, maybe it's something in the cloud, you just pointed out this data set, and then it gives you all these drag and drop tools. So it's like, give me a bar chart, give me a line chart, give me a filter, and it'll give you all the pretty colors, and it does so much stuff for you. And, you know, I've used dashboards that other folks have created before. And, you know, because we

Chloe Condon  3:26
use a lot internally, especially on our team, we're constantly constantly looking at Power BI can confirm.

Brandon Minnick  3:33
Oh, yeah, Microsoft's a very data driven company, if you couldn't guess yeah, a bunch of engineers. We love looking at data. And, yeah, I've so we've been, I've been using it for years. But this is my first stab at trying to actually create one. And it's, it's been pretty cool. I I first thought that I could build an API. And I could just kind of tell Power BI to like, hey, go get the data from this API. But it didn't want to do that. But once I found like, instead of feeding that data through the API could go to the database and then Power BI, I'll just fetch data from the database. Right? And so yeah, I've been building a dashboard today to try and look at some internal metrics and now I have just such a whole new Oh say praise respect admiration for folks who have been building these dashboards for our team because I you just start with this like blank canvas and just go I can look at it like I can organize this any way I want. I can all overwhelming until I start like dragging and dropping and like the data starts coming to life and then I'm just like, ooh, but then I could also do this and I could do this and like, I think I just need to circle up with Maxime. Team and just kind of pause myself like Hey, man, what do you think? So far does this make any sense to you? This is just like my brainchild crazy creation. But it's been fun. I didn't, didn't realize how I don't say hard because it's not hard. It's literally just dragging and dropping and kind of clicking some checkboxes and says, this data shows up on this chart. But the big picture like how do you look at this organization of data and at a glance, be able to digest all this information, colors and lines, it's it's fun, overwhelming, good fun.

Chloe Condon  5:34
I need to get you one of my database stickers, I actually have my mouse pad right here, you've become officially a database random

Brandon Minnick  5:44
data science expert now.

Chloe Condon  5:48
Um, yeah, I mean, I've actually been spending a lot of time in Power BI as well, because it's Connect season, um, which I believe we talked about on our last show connects are something that we do at Microsoft pretty frequently to, to kind of check in on what we're doing and what we want to be doing and how things are going. And I feel like Brandon, the only way that I can describe the vibes at Microsoft lately, because it's Connect season, and it's build build is coming up very, very soon, is almost like a Santas workshop type situation. Like imagine all of the workers at Microsoft right now, just to give you a little little sneak peek behind the scenes here, every one of Microsoft just like little samples, workshop, toy elves, like getting ready for build, getting their content together, you know, getting everything ready, shining up the, I guess not the physical space, but the camera, and the lights. And it's just a very exciting buzzing time over here, but it's equally exciting as it is stressful. So if you see or meet with a Microsoft employee, over the next couple of weeks, give them a virtual hug, just hang in there. Um, but yeah, I'm super excited for build. And I've been spending a lot of time in Power BI as well as I get ready for my Connect, looking at a lot of data lately. But super excited for the students out at build, like I think there's gonna be well, I know, there's gonna be some really, really cool stuff going on the student zone. I know, you're probably really excited about some dotnet announcements. I'm gonna guess I did.

Brandon Minnick  7:19
I mean, full disclosure. I know what the announcements are gonna be. Okay, are exciting. Yeah, dotnet, developers, Xamarin. Developers, C sharp developers, stay tuned because burrs updates coming for dotnet. Six, there's updates coming for dotnet Maui, which is the next evolution of Xamarin Forms, there's C sharp 10 will be rolled out. So all this all these goodies that, you know, next time we hang out in the show we can actually talk about but yeah, tune in for building it, if you've never heard of build, and he keeps it here to say just build, build, build. It's Microsoft's yearly developer conference. So if you are a developer, and you use any Microsoft tools, anything from Visual Studio VS code, I mean, I do dotnet C sharp code is a lot of stuff with Python, Azure Functions, all

Chloe Condon  8:16
that fun stuff.

Brandon Minnick  8:18
How do we not say it? Yeah, if you do anything with Azure code

Chloe Condon  8:24
vs. Code stuffs gonna probably be happening. I have a short link, if people want to go register and sign up. It's totally free. You can go to aka.ms slash eight builds. Do you like what I did there? Brandon, eight bill, like. And yeah, you can go and sign up and register we'll be announcing some really cool stuff about the student zone very soon. And I'm just you know, every every build, this is my third is my third third build now I think. And every night before build on the 24th. I say a little prayer, and I go, please announce that Clippy is coming back to Microsoft Word. It is yet to happen. But a girl can dream so that's what I'm going to be looking out for. But I will be hosting and maybe doing a little bit of recap stuff as well. I'm sure we're gonna be recapping on here. Cuz, you know, build is a big day. We're getting ready. It's like getting ready for Christmas. I guess that makes sense. Yeah, Santa Claus. That's kind of weird.

Brandon Minnick  9:27
So true. But also Yeah, at the same time, just like you said, it's it's a busy time, this time of year at Microsoft because we all do our connects, which is our yearly reviews. So we have to do all that get that in before typically before the end of the month. But then also this month is also our biggest Developer Conference of the year. So no pressure, we're all doing fine.

Chloe Condon  9:50
Send some like if you know Microsoft employees, send a little e card to them and be like, hang in there. But no, it's really fun. I feel like it's it's it's like putting Putting on an event is is such a experience. Of course. You know, doing a stream every day is one thing but doing something that is so many different people and technologies and announcements and Gosh, I I'm so excited. I'm excited and scared. As Little Red Riding would from into the woods says, I'm sure is the time should we introduce our guest Brandon isn't about that time.

Brandon Minnick  10:25
Yes, we have such a such an amazing guest. We get to chat with her a bit on Monday. We usually do like a pre show chat, and so excited to share her background. She's friend of the show. So maybe you've seen her around sooner in the comments. But let's welcome Kelly Dela Rosa, welcome to the show. Hi, guys.

Chloe Condon  10:51
Welcome to the show, it feels like we've known you for much longer because we've seen you. Yeah, the chat.

Kalii DeLaRosa  10:58
I do think Jeff was talking both of you. So

Chloe Condon  11:02
for folks who've listened to the podcast, or watched the show before, you may know our guests from different comments and stuff that we've brought up before. So it's so nice to have you be face to face.

Kalii DeLaRosa  11:15
Great to meet the two of you finally face to face, I guess.

Chloe Condon  11:19
So tell us a little bit about yourself. I mean, we're going to go into all the details of how you got into tech and everything like that. But tell the folks at home who you are and what you do.

Kalii DeLaRosa  11:30
Yeah, so my background is in design and development. So I couldn't pick a side. So I just had to do both. But I have basically been kind of in code and in Photoshop. And ever since I could remember. And I started in my teens doing that. I don't know if anybody knows live journal or Zynga. But that was my crowd. And that was my scene. And I would make stuff for forums and make stuff for fan sites I have, I have a love for film and TV. And so I was obsessed. And with all that that went with it. So it's a show that I created stuff to promote that kind of love and obsession. And so I then got an associates in digital communications, because that was the very broad stroke back in the early Oh, nine 2010 era. And it worked. And it led me to kind of the first of my career multimedia specialist gigs where I could use the design, the development and the kind of love for editing and film there. And then I kind of dropped one out of the three because it was too much to manage. And then I stuck with design and development. And I stuck in private tech companies to small, you know, agencies that would create WordPress based websites to promote anything and everything on a marketing side. And then I realized that I was reaching burnout too often. And so now I actually work for the government. I am working for a city based in Washington State. So that's where I am now. And I am managing and maintaining the website content there. But I'm not touching any code, which is really interesting.

Chloe Condon  13:16
Okay, so I have to rewind and ask a very important question that I am upset Brandon, we have never asked our previous guests before live journal. What kind of theme were you rocking on live journal?

Like do you remember? Like, if you had like a, like a template that you use, because I really remember mine? No, well, I

Kalii DeLaRosa  13:37
I was I've been like simple designer. So I use like the very simple template his team that you could or theme that you could find. But what I cared more about were the avatars that you could use for your icons. And that is what I needed to change on a regular basis and stay up to date with if I didn't, I would be very disappointed in myself. I'm just obsessed with movies and film. Like if there was a new movie and a new character that I loved. And this is still the 30 year old version of cleans isn't just 1415 year old version of Glee. I would need to make that avatar an icon to be like this is me saying I love this character. By the way.

Chloe Condon  14:11
I feel like there must be such an interesting case study. If we were to look at present day designers in our age demographic and how simple and easy their life journal like UI was to use because mine was some chaotic energy. I remember I had a grease the musical template on my life that had a dance from them doing the hand drive, and it was Olivia Newton john. Yeah, john travolta. And it was a lot of chaotic energy. And I think that says a lot about how I ended up being as an engineer. Brenda, did you have a live journal?

Brandon Minnick  14:50
No, I did it. I had. I had friends in high school that had Um, and I won't share the story and the details are who it is, but some friends got in trouble for some things they wrote on live turtle. Oh, yeah, I mean, it's silly looking back

Chloe Condon  15:09
at my school. Oh, really?

Brandon Minnick  15:13
It was one of those things where, you know, looking back on it what they did wasn't anything bad but you know, like schools. I'm sure they still do well overreact and like, suspend you for whatever reason they want to right? It's like, Oh, your shirt doesn't have sleeves suspended. her skirt

Chloe Condon  15:28
isn't fingertip.

Kalii DeLaRosa  15:32
Where's your?

Chloe Condon  15:34
Where's your knee?

Brandon Minnick  15:35
Yeah, something like that, that the school didn't know about, but I guess somebody read it on their live journal. And that was a very, I guess Rude Awakening into the early days of social media that's like, hey, thanks, you put on the internet. Those have real world consequences. screenshots

Chloe Condon  15:54
are forever, you can delete a tweet, and you can delete a live journal post. But screenshots are forever children.

Kalii DeLaRosa  16:03
Live journal still exists if you can't remember your password to get back into the deleted so

Chloe Condon  16:11
I need to go find my I know that mine was private or protected. I should say. That is so funny. Yeah. I mean, like, I'm really upset that I can't log into my MySpace anymore. But that's a whole other conversation. I would just love to have that aesthetic and a little time capsule. Kind of your first introduction then to programming was live Journal.

Kalii DeLaRosa  16:38
Well, not ledger, it'll templating it was fansites for like anime shows like I basically there would be these websites that would create like a div layout or a table based layout. And it was essentially something that you could download to the upload didn't know how, of course, but you could download that to then upload your own content. And what really intrigued me about it is because I would essentially kind of break like a open div tag and then see what that happened. Like what see what what would come out of that. And it would totally move an image this way or, you know, delete something. And I was just like, hey, that's actually really cool. And it was that connection from being able to look at the code to look at the live preview of the website, and then seeing what the braking and those action reactions were happening, that really sparked this love for Okay, let's say, What can I do for this? Or what can I create? or How can I create this. And so I would then learn how to, you know, view page source and then break it that way and see what that would do around. I didn't have I mean, because back then, you know, HTML editor was this bootleg version of like a notepad that had some syntax coloring for the HTML, and the CSS that would go into it. And it was enough to be able to, for me to be able to understand and read it. So that when I went into college, and even into high school, and I kind of expanded my knowledge in that field, I still had this understanding that could kind of carry me through into it. And the design part of it only came because I have this really I have a frustrating eye for stuff that if things look or are like legible, or aesthetically pleasing, it bothers me too. And like even, you can see the orange thing behind me that's bothering I'm now spending like my time like making sure my head is like blocking that orange thing. Because I noticed I noticed that like aesthetically pleasing. And normally people might not be able to notice that or care about that. But I really carried that into kind of like my my deaf work. And I'm going to school for visual communications that was so broad it it that also fed into the ability to kind of say, I can run a photoshoot with my design eye and the know the limitations of what this needs to be on a website. And so I had carried that into the rest of my career and carrying.

Chloe Condon  19:05
Yeah, I love that. So your degree was technically

Kalii DeLaRosa  19:09
in Visual Communications,

Chloe Condon  19:11
digital communications. And for folks who don't know what that degree is, or what it's like, what was kind of the, the idea that you had when you decided to major in that.

Kalii DeLaRosa  19:22
Um, the idea was to have a plan B, honestly, because I want to go into editing, I want to go into film, but I'm based in Washington State, and I didn't want to leave Washington State. So it was tricky of like, Okay, I know that there's some 3d modeling, there's some editing courses in here I had gone to a vo tech school in high school that kind of was the same thing where we're gonna kind of put you in, we're gonna put you in this space and kind of throw things that you that might stick. And so that was the plan with the associates. I was just like, you know, I'm gonna do two years of this and then maybe try something in relation to editing or anything like that. And Like I said, That's why those first initial jobs right outside of college, either contract or full time, we're very, like multimedia centered in the idea of saying, okay, you know, all these random things, let's kind of put you in this role that would allow you to touch those random things on a regular basis.

Chloe Condon  20:18
Truly a Jill of all trades. I mean, you were doing so many different things. That's so awesome.

Brandon Minnick  20:25
Even in the comments below on earth says, gotta love playing beats. Yeah. It's always Yeah, it's always good to have multiple paths. That's something I definitely strive for in my life is, you know, there's, there's a plan, but, you know, if this plan doesn't work out, then we can fall back to this plan. And hey,

Chloe Condon  20:48
you know what? Totally great. I mean, Microsoft is not a bad plan B and I don't like I love that, that you kind of you never know truly where you're gonna land like, like, he can actually end up being your plan eight in disguise, which is a is a really, you know, I think we talked about this on the last show, maybe like, how do you know what you want till you get what you want? And you see if you like it, it's like, how do you maybe you get to your plan A and you're like, Oh, I hate this. out of here. I love that. Like, I if I have if there's any advice I can give out there for you know, students or folks who are just like starting in their careers. You don't have to commit to one thing your entire life, like you can always find other things that you're interested in, or other technologies, specifically, if you're in tech, so it's really cool to hear that you started in tech such a different way. And you've you've moved into what you enjoy about it. It sounds like yeah,

Kalii DeLaRosa  21:50
I mean, thankfully. I honestly I think having those I guess a plan B and Plan C definitely helped me navigate kind of like how life would would take me and and then also just technology in general. I mean, like, like I said, when I was when I was on live journal and uploading videos that I was making for, you know, like, I don't know if you guys are anime fan fans, but I was I used to make anime music videos, which was shorthand and Bs. Oh, I had two forums around them. But that was the only way that you could upload your videos was through these forums. There was no YouTube and then I don't even know when the video came out. But so for

Chloe Condon  22:30
our younger viewers, yes. Because I feel like for people who were not around in this age of the internet, where AOL was huge and the bandwidth was poor. Could you describe what these videos are? Like? I really need to know like, like, could you aesthetically describe like were you showing Pokemon like what like I feel like we need to paint this picture.

Kalii DeLaRosa  22:54
So picture me I'm I'm turning on my gateway PC because I was my first PC and packaging had cows how literally the only thing I remember about it and all I had to my name were was windy Windows Movie Maker. And bootleg copies of cardcaptor Sakura, and and spirited away and a couple of other higher music How

Chloe Condon  23:20
did you obtain these

Kalii DeLaRosa  23:23
meaningful go down?

Chloe Condon  23:26
Probably the same way that I got my Broadway bootlegs back in the day before

Kalii DeLaRosa  23:32
I didn't trust torrents I didn't do I didn't do that route. I just I found really low quality clips that people would, you know, again, these forums like, people were just like, Hey, you want to do this? Try that. And so essentially, I would use my cap cardcaptor sucker episode. And let's say it's about I don't know she's, do you guys know the show? No. Okay.

Chloe Condon  23:57
I'm sure people are screaming listening. Jeremy Sinclair, if you're watching, we apologize.

Kalii DeLaRosa  24:04
Well, cardcaptor Sakura is I think she was like 11 or 12. And she was saving the world, essentially, by collecting these cards that had been released. And that was essentially like Pandora's box was opened. And these cards had all these different like monster not monsters, they're really pretty beautifully animated things back in what like when Viper my 12 year old so and she would essentially capture them with a wand. Anyways, that's the backstory of that show. So I would find a song that would fit an episode or fit a movie to either extend on the story or add a story or add an alternative universe. And essentially, I would take the clips in two windows movie maker and the audio. And I would overlay any pertaining clips and essentially kind of make a trailer or just like a surface miniature movie that flowed with the song.

Chloe Condon  24:56
This is so artistic like if you were just doing like a mash up a fall 150 Pokemon, but this is this.

Kalii DeLaRosa  25:03
This is their I it's funny, I look back on these videos because I was making about one video a month back then and I their

Chloe Condon  25:14

Kalii DeLaRosa  25:20
I started at 14, I first video is dated 40 I have the proof because I still have it on my PC,

Chloe Condon  25:26
it should be on your resume.

Kalii DeLaRosa  25:32
And so I will it's funny, I do actually still have a couple videos on YouTube, if we want to share it at the end if people want to watch it for the show the 100 but

Chloe Condon  25:39
drop us a link in the private chat, not only to share it.

Kalii DeLaRosa  25:44
But no, that's where I learned like Thai biography and color color correction and blending. And it was this weird synchronization of all of this stuff that that Yeah, I I was like, Well, how can I showcase this? or How can I add to the conversation because everyone else seemed to be doing it. And it was so interesting. Because Yeah, back then, as you were saying, you know, it's AOL, it's banned. It's low bandwidth dial up and all that so you feel very isolated. So it was one of the things where if I could find more people that were doing it that I would try to contribute and so then those people were making websites and then those people were making graphics and I was using Photoshop Elements to create the banners like, my my videos as as I got better with designing my videos, I created like little banners for my videos that were like posters, essentially. So you're doing all

Chloe Condon  26:32
of like marketing for it. Yeah.

Oh my gosh, this is so I love that this totally informed like what you ended up going into as a job as well. Yeah, no, it's pretty crazy. When

Kalii DeLaRosa  26:45
What do you think about it too, cuz I didn't drop the love for movies. I didn't drop the love protector design. I definitely didn't drop the love for like the collaboration and like getting people hyped up. And that was one of the reasons why that I was doing what I was doing. Because I wanted, I wanted to share my crazy obsession with others, regardless of where it was.

Chloe Condon  27:05
I think you made a really great point too, about that era of the internet and the AOL days we'll call them finding and building community on the internet was not as easy as it was today. Like I remember my only source of connection with other people outside of my maybe Guardian protected. Well account was AOL chat rooms, and I was constantly in the Pokemon chat rooms at a Pokemon newsletter that I may be sent to like 100 people. But that was really it. Like there were we didn't have YouTube, we didn't have like forums were really the only thing that existed but there wasn't really a standardization. I know I spent a lot of time on the broadwayworld forums, shout out to anybody who was on there. But it was so much harder to find people with like interests. I feel like today, you could just go on tik tok and find like 2000 videos are very, you know, struggle that you're having. And today it's like, That's so cool. You're able to find a community through creating art, essentially. Yeah, I

Kalii DeLaRosa  28:07
mean, it's it's actually how I almost landed my first job in high school because I created a video as like my interview piece and almost got hired but it was too far away. They didn't have a car. And then I and yeah, and then in college, my my graduation piece was another video that again was like had marketing attached to it and design and then a website attached to it. It's so crazy when you kind of think about it. It was that gateway PC is what started it literally the cows.

Chloe Condon  28:34
Brandon, what what were you doing on the internet in this era? I was not making. I was trading sheet music to get bootlegs of Broadway videos in like AOL chat rooms.

Brandon Minnick  28:47
Yeah, definitely was not up to that caliber either. I mean, yeah, we had AOL. My first PC was also from gateway so very familiar with the cow print and remember ever unboxing that PC that had had an eight gigabyte hard drive? And I remember thinking like there's no way that will ever fill this up. This computer is so powerful. But uh, yeah, I mean, I was I was online, but it was more just play video games, chatting with friends. I really nothing impressive about teenage me to show for other than maybe some like, hours spent playing RollerCoaster Tycoon.

Chloe Condon  29:35
I remember being so thrilled than my parents. So we were a Mac family and I wanted to play games like all the games were on PC and not Mac and I had to like have all the you know, Mac version of Barbie fashion designer and things that I wanted. So for years after my parents finally got me a Dell every day I'd be like, dude, you get moved out because I was so excited. Very thankful um, Miss Miss that era miss that aesthetic and era of cow print computers. Let's

bring it back. Yeah, yeah petition to bring it back please.

Brandon Minnick  30:12
Round still I feel like I haven't heard about them in a long time.

Chloe Condon  30:18
I'm going to Fry's picking out my different rip fries, picking out all the different things that I wanted for my Dell make it a custom setup, getting my monitor. Those are the days

Kalii DeLaRosa  30:31
and now they're closed except for one location, which is very sad. I was I was like, Oh, the end of an era. Great. Yeah. Ah,

Chloe Condon  30:38
so tell us a little bit about we mentioned a little bit at the top of the show about how you've made this transition from working at private tech companies to working in government work. So tell us a little bit about that journey. That sounds like a very up and down journey.

Kalii DeLaRosa  30:57
Yeah, you know, it's, it's a, I, we're all the same age on the show of what I can gather, and I didn't know anybody that works in government. And if you did, it was never tech related. It was never, it was like permits or licensing or something a little bit, you know, I guess more more citizen based, but last year due to COVID. Unfortunately, I are the Panini, as we like to say in here multiple times. I was laid off from a marketing role. And my husband, you know, he just kind of recommended, what are you looking government? We had known that, the benefits, pretty awesome. But it was never on my radar because I being in Washington State. You know, I bought Microsoft in my backyard. I've got famous on Facebook, Nintendo, Expedia, all these different companies that I was just like, Well, why can't those be the next step. But I had seen a job for web systems analyst working for one of the cities nearby. And it required a Bachelor's again, I only hold it in associates up until next month, which is exciting, but go into that later. But it required a bachelor's and I was just like, Well, you know, let's just kind of let's let's shoot the shot and see what happens. A thing about government too, is that it takes forever if you think that tech companies and their interview processes that are four or five rounds that that takes forever. You. Hi, I applied in August, and I didn't hear back until January. So like to set up interviews and see so I applied and I heard the In the meantime, though, I applied in August, and I landed a role at a software company in September. Long story short for that company. It didn't work out. In January, the government job got back to me. And they're just like, Hey, we're doing interviews, are you interested? And I hemmed and hawed because again, I thought the next step was just another private tech company. And, but I still went through the interview process, it was just I talked to a couple people has been included, and they were just like, you know, let's just see what happens. You never know. Fast forward two months later of the interview process and the decision making, I decided to take the roll in March. And so I started not too long ago, actually, about three weeks ago. So there I am, but why did I take it? Why did I do the switch? Why did I think it was okay. Mostly because I I think the crazy plan a plan B Plan C pass of my career, made it way too chaotic that I was constantly getting burnout. And at that one year when I like year and a half mark, I was unhappy with certain things that majority of the company as I was landing, um, real quick pause.

Chloe Condon  33:57
When you define burnout for people that don't know what it is, I probably not the best person to define my experience it often. How would you describe burnout for you? Personally, I guess I can describe it for me personally, as well. I feel like it's sort of getting to a point in which you are very kind of well burnt out. Yeah, but but you get you kind of over tax yourself. And it just becomes way too much. And it's overwhelming. And it becomes very difficult to focus and complete your job, I would imagine is kind of a very basic way to describe it.

Kalii DeLaRosa  34:35
I think I think that's a basic understanding. And I think that's a good way to kind of start the explanation for me personally, I it was actually a point to where what I was doing at the role wasn't fulfilling enough. It was becoming either too toxic or I wasn't really it because again, I hit varying points of burnout at all these different companies. And it was like at this most recent one, it was a toxic environment. But at another one, it was a lack of quality of work that was fulfilling me and my creativity, you know, so I, I don't think there is a true definition of burnout because I think it hits people differently. I think it's people at certain times differently. And I think it can hit you often. What I realized, though, is that I was getting hit too much for like, my stress level, my health. And that was when I was just kind of like, well, life is way too short. So we need to re evaluate. So So yeah, that's my take on on burnout.

Chloe Condon  35:35
I know in our line of work that Brandon and I are in, in the advocacy early in my career when I was a young, the junior developer evangelist, a lovely developer evangelist named Jerome told me to be very, very careful of travel burnout. This was back in the pre Panini days where we were traveling quite a bit anywhere from like three to four times a month. And when he first told me that as someone new to this industry, who had never traveled for work, so new and young and innocent to the world, I acknowledged what he said, but I was like this gonna take me a lot because I love to travel and burn travel burnout is very real. I have come to discover in in my career that like, you know, Jerome was absolutely right, that there's so many different sizes and shapes of burnout out there.

Kalii DeLaRosa  36:21

Brandon Minnick  36:22
it's actually really interesting. So we're getting a lot of comments coming in about burnout. So I think it's pronounced hell. Oh, how burnouts totally rough. ADHD people will crash into burnout walls very easily. friend of the show, PJ Max is hanging out with us. He's actually scared of it, because he's not sure if he's experienced it. And

Kalii DeLaRosa  36:51
it's a fair assessment.

Brandon Minnick  36:53
Yeah, cuz it is, it is definitely it's something that's different for every person. Like, I know, for me, it's when I when I wake up, and I don't want to do the work anymore. Like when I'm no longer excited about what I'm doing, or just feel like I'm grinding because I have to do something. That's, that's how I identify the burnout for me. And yeah, that usually comes in with either I'm taking on too much work, or clearly, like you said, too much travel, or travel for work. I was traveling vacation.

But yeah, when I or Yeah, if I'm clear, like we were saying earlier, like just working on projects that don't fulfill you anymore, where it's just like, Okay, well, I gotta do this again. And, yeah, it's so important to be able to recognize that and, and usually, it's, once you can recognize the symptoms, then you can know what to do next, whether it's just like, well, I've been traveling way too much for work, I just need to take December off no more travel in December, or whether it's, I don't believe in the mission of the product, or the team I'm working with anymore. Let's look at working for new teams or different products is, yeah, it'll hit everybody differently. And then the ways you work around it are going to be different for everybody. So yeah, it's tough to, to, I guess, diagnose it or even prescribe a resolution for it. But it happens.

Say, hit everybody.

Chloe Condon  38:39
And if you have a good relationship with your manager, talking to your manager about it, to figure out ways to help kind of circumvent your burnout is good. But I'm so glad that we're talking. This is actually I think maybe one of the first times we've talked about burnout on the show. So I'm, I'm so happy that you're sharing your burnout tail with the course.

Kalii DeLaRosa  38:59
Yeah, so. And then that was actually one thing to where I when I was talking to the managers and my boss, he was just like, you know, because he he came from the private tech sector as well. He used to prefer software companies working in PHP. And he was just like, you know, there's a lot of, there's a lot of demand, there's a lot of stress, and that just doesn't exist here. And so I think a part of it, too, is just out of curiosity. You know, like I, I had, I had done kind of what I wanted to do in the private tech sector. And so let's just see what public is and how that fits. So,

Chloe Condon  39:33
so far, so good. So far,

Kalii DeLaRosa  39:35
so good. Yeah, like I said, I'm not really touching code. I'm not pushing up, I'm not yelling at Terminal or like biting my nails every single time I go to run git push, or having to like wrestle why a UI should be fixed versus not fixing it. And that in itself is one of those things where I was just like, wow, I really needed a breather, and I really needed to You kind of step back and reevaluate. And, and but again, I needed I needed the workplace to allow me to do that because you know you're there 40 plus hours depending when one government doesn't really support OTS so in the sense of like, you just do 40 hours and please leave type of thing, you know, like you can get the work that you need to get done tomorrow. And I realized that there, I was suffering from PTSD. And I still kind of, from everything that I had gone through in the companies that I was at, because I've been like, Well, what about this deadline? What about that deliverable? When, when? When are my deliverables do or you know, do we work in sprints? Do we work? You know, just all these different questions, and everyone is just like, it's okay. It's going to ramp up slowly. And you'll get there when you get there. And it was one of those things where, like I said, I needed to hear that, and I needed the workplace to tell me, Hey, you can breeze just fine, you'll be fine.

Chloe Condon  40:59
Has that changed been so drastic? going? From what into government? Is it a completely different speed? Yeah,

Kalii DeLaRosa  41:07
it's a completely different speed. And I can totally, I can, I can relate to people who like dislike the speed. Because it is slower. I Chloe you had mentioned, you know, like, kind of your chaotic and energy that you that your live journal had, and that and probably, to an extent enjoy with your role. So if you like that, then I'm not saying you know, don't, don't leave that. I'm just saying that for me. I think I needed, I needed to see the other side of it. And I need to see the other side worked for me. And the pace has changed. Like it's a whole 180 I've only had three meetings this week.

Yeah, it's like, it's one of those things where it's like, well, should I be doing something, should I be doing something and they know I'm doing something, they trust me that I'm doing something. But I don't need to be on zoom to show that. And that, again, is just something that apparently, my brain and my stress levels and my emotional levels really just needed to be told and forced to do by switching.

Chloe Condon  42:16
Imagine all the focus time and work I can get things what a tree or a dream.

Brandon Minnick  42:26
I know you've you've only been doing the job for a couple of weeks or working in government for a couple of weeks. But since you are now officially the expert on eight bits as tech in government, what what are the tech roles that are out there in in government? What would you do if somebody watching or listening is thinking about also making that transition? What What work? Could they expect? Um,

Kalii DeLaRosa  42:57
that's a great question. The jobs read seem locally. So like I said, I'm a web systems analyst. And so I, I need a background in kind of website and content management systems and kind of how to use a dragon, a drag and drop builder. So those are still needed skills. Um, and then, of course, the design is just kind of like a cherry on top such type of situation. But my role is I maintain and upload any pertaining content that a citizen might need, or might benefit a citizen of the city that I work for. And the jobs that you might see, you know, the, when I was looking, I would just type in Weber or design and it would be like, an Associates web producer or an Associates. designer, it's funny, because when you I, when you type in engineering, and when you type in designer, in the government sector, you're gonna get like, plant land engineering, or you know, that type of thing where you're building these codes and stuff like that, that are for permit. So it's a little bit more a broader search in that field. But it's from what I'm seeing. And what I'm seeing the need is for is very much just like online portals or websites for the cities or marketing for the cities. And I think that was what the Panini taught everyone as well, like my role is now 100% remote, whereas like I knew the 20 circuit 2019 and prior would have very much not had been removed, but it can be because I all of my work is just on the website. That's my home. That's what I maintain. And then beyond that, I'm actually going to be working with SharePoint. And building an intranet, which I have also seen is also very popular in the government space, which is essentially kind of creating that online dashboard for like City Hall employees to manage and retrieve documentation that they need. So it's, it's a need. And there's a lot of resources out there. But it's, I think it's from what I can tell it's growing for that, because of the Panini. And what's

Chloe Condon  45:10
really fascinating about government work is your users are literally everyone like, yep, there's no age group, there's no gender, like, it's literally every human. And

Brandon Minnick  45:27
I say, yeah, there's no that none of that. Who's your target demographic? customer lifetime value and all that kind of profit, focus driven business? I think sounds really nice.

Chloe Condon  45:41
Yeah. That is a lot more on like, Can everyone use this?

Kalii DeLaRosa  45:46
Very much so and like, even with, like, marketing, like, my boss told me in the interview process, he was like, we've been a city for the last 800 years. You don't have to market this, right? Like, you're

Chloe Condon  45:58
not gonna see any developer relations folks working for government anytime soon, probably.

Kalii DeLaRosa  46:03
I mean, I, I like advocacy work. So I was pushing for like building how to videos and stuff like that. And my boss was like, yeah, just do that down the line. I was like, Alright, so I maybe I will be the step in the direction of advocacy and government, and then you guys can join me.

Chloe Condon  46:20
City advocacy.

Kalii DeLaRosa  46:22

Brandon Minnick  46:24
So much fun.

Chloe Condon  46:26
Well, if you ever need someone to test out your apps, I will give you full access to my dad, we are currently trying to learn how to use the Uber app. And I've been giving a lot of feedback to my boyfriend who works there. So it's but what I'm learning as an engineer and teaching my dad who you know, is new to this technology, like we got him. He had a flip phone up until a couple years ago. And it this is not super easy for him to use. So like there are things that you have to think about when your user is literally everyone in the world. You know, how accessible is this? Is this in different languages? I would imagine as well. Like, and I would imagine, from a skill perspective, when you're dealing with cities, and you're dealing with, you know, things that have to do with the government. Like, that's a lot of things to account for, even though you've removed that that customer element of it.

Kalii DeLaRosa  47:21
Definitely, yeah, you you have to make sure that you upload the right PDF, for example, that is housing the, you know, the 2021 budget for the city, like you can't upload the wrong one, or else you're going to be sending off the wrong bus. Because I mean, cuz then that was something to again, that PTSD of and we don't we don't have to go into this, because I'm not sure I can't remember. But like, like pay and salary that is all online. And that is not taboo. And that is something that is so openly discussed and advocated for in in the government sector. Because it's, it's, it's needed. And so I was just like, well, can't we just move that into private tech companies, please? Because I would love to just have that conversation more. But that was definitely one of the things again, where it's like, oh, wow, this is this is different. But the all the differences to me at least is exciting, because it's just another thing to learn about.

Chloe Condon  48:14
PJ had a suggestion in the chat for Pawnee style commercial, like, crack. And I'm kind of upset that there was not a character on Parks and Rec that was like their IT person, I would have loved storyline. Yeah. I guess this is a spin off show, we have to pitch to make sure.

Brandon Minnick  48:43
When we were chatting the other day, you mentioned something and I'd love to dive into this just a little bit because I don't know how many people have done it. Or how many people have thought or no, no, that it's even possible to do but you actually left tech and came back. Yeah, yeah. I was in a year hiatus.

Kalii DeLaRosa  49:04
Yeah, technically speaking to two years in total, but yeah.

Brandon Minnick  49:08
Incredible. So I'd love to know, how did that go? And then what was it like trying to get back into tech without having that or what we call like a gap on your resume?

Kalii DeLaRosa  49:18
Um, well, the resume part I lied. We're just gonna go straight to that. The resume part. I just said that Yeah, I was I was maintaining a website for this one company and, and then doing freelance. So that's

Chloe Condon  49:34
a tweet yesterday that resonated with me so deeply, but said, it was like, please explain the gap in your employment and it said, PST or my life. And I think that's gonna be my answer if I ever have a cabinet. But life is life, right. I mean, like, I feel like we're at a point now I hope in society. We're like a gap in employment. is not viewed as a death sentence to someone's career I have children and elderly to take care of and like life, things happen in life. So, but I love that. Thank you make it.

Kalii DeLaRosa  50:15
So yeah, that gap actually is made up of me going to construction and going into the construction field. My husband and I, we own a general contracting firm, I guess it's a firm of 30 people. So you know, but it was something that needed to happen in 2017, because I was reaching ultimate burnout burnout, because I was working about 80 hours a week, I was working 40 4040 to 45 hours, my tech job. And then after being in downtown Seattle, I would go to wherever city my husband was in and work on the job site. And I was making phone calls and like talking to vendors. And like at my lunch, I was going on a phone call with like a carpet guide and say, Hey, you there. And it was just all these different things that I the universe told me to slow down again, or one of the first times because I ended up unfortunately, getting into a really bad accident on the freeway because I fell asleep on the road. So I had that wake up call and was just like, okay, Can Can I do this? can I possibly take a step back from something that at the time I was a part of? And but like the tech industry, not even just personally, but outside of kind of my own life? Because I have family in it? Can I go away from that? and not be in it? And then come back to it? Like That was a solid question I asked myself, because the construction business was something that I had faith in and something that I knew that if I could fully commit to it 100% it could grow into something a bit more lucrative. And I made that decision on my own. And I was just like, you know, to my husband, I was like, honey, like let's just let's do this. And so yeah, I left tech. And I left it again without Plan B in mind to say, I know I can fall back into this I know it's a ever lasting field that out find some random, you know, job at Lowe's. Because Lowe's needs a web person. Like I knew that I could find a way back in did I know 100%? You know No, there was like some uncertainty and a lot of fear. But I decided to take the jump and I jumped in like I said unofficially for about a year and then officially for a full year 100% a completely away from Tech. on my resume. I'm not but completely away from it. I'm not networking I'm not. I'm not touching figma i'm not i'm not in code. Like I knew for a fact that I was putting on i was i was i was changing out of my really comfy leggings for construction Carhart here. And instead of a keyboard, I was trying to not hit my hand with the hammer. And I was just like, let's just see what happens and doing that. And then also owning your own business that taught me a whole, like just magnitude of knowledge because I was just like, Oh, this is people I'm talking to a customer face to face, I can't hide behind my screen, I can't yell at my email before zoom meeting starts because I'm going to just have to not you know, like I can't put on a facade I'm going into these people's homes, I'm changing their lives for duration of time all this innovation is happening. And it was such a wake up call to even that part of everything where I was just like Okay, so this this is different this I like, but how can I then do this?


Then do this and then then apply it well and then use my own kind of skills. Thankfully, I'm a very I like to talk to people like to get to know people. So I kind of attached like project management to that on my resume actually. And then, yeah, a year into it, we I was able we were able to hire another person, we were able to create longer projects and create like bigger projects, and then they're just 100% transparency, the financial gain that you get out of owning a business isn't as big as being attacked. And so I was just like, Okay, well, I feel like this is at a good stopping point for me. I'm gonna step away from it and let's try to go back into tech. And that felt that like I was back in oh nine. I'm getting this job and marketing as multimedia specialist for a smaller outfit of a company nearby. So ever since then I'm kind of climbing back up that ladder. I also decided to go back to school. So again, I feel like I'm back going for my associates, but this is this time is for my bachelor's. And, and it's been a long two years, and it's been especially 2020, which is what's time, but I'm sorry, wait three years, going back into this? Yeah. So I've been back in tech officially for three years. It's been long, it's been hard. But it's, it's something that I'm very proud that I did. Because again, I learned about that customer piece that I didn't know really existed before that. And I learned that I really wanted to help people in a certain way. And I needed to do that through my work. And I needed to do that, if I could through tech, which, again, is also why full circle year, I think I landed in government because I'm in tech adjacently. But I'm also helping the citizens of the city. So

Brandon Minnick  56:02
yeah, in the comments. I can't say it any better myself. PJ says that. It sounds like a good gap year gap. Couple years where you had lots of learning, understanding about yourself, you kind of know you're in it sounds like yeah, you know yourself better now you know, your abilities better now and help you figure out what you want to do. Like, Raul just said, What? What do I want to do with my life, and this helped you at least take a step in that direction, which is always great. Now. We only have a couple minutes left. Yeah. Thank you for sharing. But um, speaking of awesome things you do I hear you have a twitch channel. Yeah. where folks can check you check out all the amazing things you do.

Kalii DeLaRosa  56:50
Yeah, so that is a channel between my friend and I Carlos. We met through mutual friends recently online actually got a lot of online friends. But Carlos is trying to get into tech himself or is halfway there. And I wanted to kind of keep my ear to the ground. So we, that is we call ourselves the code goes. Which means well, it's a play on words amigos and code. And because it's just two amigos that code, and we are currently building a game that will we call it penguin wars, but I don't know if you guys ever played the card game war, but it's essentially the highest number wins. But our characters in aperture penguins. So we're, we're building that we started in figma. And then we're going into react, and then we'll incorporate some Python with machine learning and then kind of push it out to the community and have some community outreach with it as well. But it's an honor

Chloe Condon  57:46
to check out the next generation of check out this stream.

Kalii DeLaRosa  57:51
Basically, yes, Club Penguin fans and even like, I guess to accent Neopets fans, come say hi, but we do that weekly. And I use I come from more of like a design side on that stream and then bringing my technical side if need be. And then Carlos brings in the text or engineering side. And for me, it's a way to kind of have that authenticity of live debugging that I really enjoy. And then again, the that community piece that really matters to me a lot. So I think we're really it's very, very, very new babies into the streaming so please be kind if you guys ever show up. But yeah, we'd love to have you.

Chloe Condon  58:31
I'm gonna follow right now the Cody code goes

Brandon Minnick  58:36
along, you can subscribe or follow them on Twitch. It's the th e co D goes co d i g o s, what what days you stream? What's the when should people tune in

Kalii DeLaRosa  58:50
Tuesdays around 530. Tuesday Oh, 530 PST

to put

Chloe Condon  58:59
Well, this has been such a fun episode. I feel like we've been having some really great chats just in the chat alone about burnout and like how people are affected by it, or maybe didn't know about it, and are learning more about it. So thank you for sharing your story and your expertise with us. And I'm so happy to hear that you're happy in this role.

Kalii DeLaRosa  59:18
Thank you. Thank you for having me. I really appreciate it. You guys are great, happy, happy

Chloe Condon  59:22
ending. Well, we'll have to check in with you on a future episode on how it's going further down the road and you're in your new job. Yes, please.

Brandon, we've come to the end of the show again. But we will see you all next week. Right? It's not build yet. We'll still be back next week. Is it do the math.

Brandon Minnick  59:47

Chloe Condon  59:51
Next week for not build but we will I'm sure have a lot of exciting things to announce. So until then, y'all