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TTT 20: I Need Help

Janahan Sivaraman
Janahan Sivaraman
3 min read
TTT 20: I Need Help
This is the best chicken sandwich in New York City. My signature Hot Chicken Sandwich. Pickled jalapeños from Amma's garden, Duke's Mayo, Extra hot Indian chili powder, smoked ghost pepper, on a Martin's Big Seeded Bun. 

Welcome to the 20th edition of the TTT Newsletter. I'll be sharing a 2 tweets I loved and a thought I had.

Hi friends,
இரவு வணக்கம் (iravu vaNakkam), Buenas Noches, and Good Evening from New York City!

Tweet I loved

Jaana Dogan blessing us with insight over 2 years ago!

I’ve been designing and operating distributed systems since 2016.

I’ve done it at 5 different companies. Some companies are better than others, but this tweet is 100% true.

This tweet by Jaana is from 2020. Fast forward 2 years and I am still struggling with this problem at my job.

Modern applications run on infrastructure that rely on platforms like NoSQL databases, message queues, and caches. Those platforms help with scaling. And modern scaling is usually horizontal. In laymen's terms, that means things are spread out across many computers.

But when applications start getting error messages from the platforms, it requires both sides to come together to solve it. This is because app developers do not have admin privileges to debug the platforms.

If a platform team is measured by anything other than the success of their customers, application teams must become infrastructure engineers.

Otherwise, app developers will be violating their SLAs (Service Level Agreements) to the product team.

By violating those agreements, app developers will be transitively breaking customer promises. Customers that usually pay real life money.

And if the product team isn’t meeting the business’s needs, the app team will be blamed for fucking with the money.

Fucking with the money is a huge no-no if you want to grow your career.

Thought I had

I want to adapt this game plan for short-form video on platforms like Tiktok/Instagram.

I learned how to speak Tamil in my 30s.

It is the language of my parents, but my 3rd language. I learned entirely while living in New York City. I’ve never even been to Sri Lanka.

I want to compile everything I’ve learned so anyone who wants it can find it.

One way to make the resources findable is growing a following on TikTok/Instagram. I know this is a Twitter game plan, but I want to adapt it for short form videos. I’ve grown a food following before - it requires consistency and uniqueness.

It will take months to become findable. If I want to teach Tamil to others, I have to teach daily. That means smaller lessons.

I already review the “500 Most Common Words In Tamil” to build my vocabulary every morning.

That’s between 5-20 words a day to teach. Making a video of each word and editing it could be done in 25 minutes. Hopefully faster with more repetition.

Sometimes when it feels like too much, go smaller.

Let me know if you want a copy of that Anki Deck, I’ll send it right over.

Thought I had

I have a tough time asking for what I need.

I notice that I isolate myself. This is so I don’t have to ask for what I need. I, alone, work on my hobbies - writing, language learning, or creating content.

I feel like I am disappointing others when I am near them and not focused on them. But I can’t live a life where I am always alone just so I can tend to my needs.

I need to unlearn this unhelpful belief.

Luckily, I am surrounded by patient people who seem to be okay reiterating themselves.

Sometimes I get tired for them.

I'd love to hear any feelings you felt while reading this and until next time - be easy.


P.S. If you enjoyed this newsletter, feel free to forward this email to your people or share this link. It'll encourage me to keep writing!


Janahan Sivaraman Twitter

Currently learning 2 languages "by ear". Secrets to growing your career in Tech. Food pics and tricks