Remember lab manuals? Those nicely bound notebooks you used in college to document lab experiments? If you were born in the 70’s and went to a technical college like me, then you probably do. For years I’ve used a plain text file as my “lab manual” in which I documented pretty much anything I learned while building stuff with computers. I called my text file “WORKHISTORY” and I made its contents searchable with keywords that summarized each entry. When I started working for MapR in 2015, I knew I would be learning a lot of new stuff and I figured this would be a good opportunity to publish a curated version of WORKHISTORY.

I blog for a variety of reasons:

  • To teach and to learn. There’s no better way to learn something than when your intention is to teach it. For that reason, blogging helps me learn things faster and more thoroughly.
  • It helps me showcase my work. For the same reasons that artists use portfolios to showcase their style and best work, my blog helps me show potential employers what I know and how I communicate.

Are you thinking about keeping a research blog? Do it!

national_brand_computation_notebook.jpg (Image from