Staying on the leading edge of Cloud computing: Azure Developer Influencer Peter Smulovics

When Rick McGuire asked me whether I’d be interested to be interviewed by Matthew Calder, I was jumping up and down. Of course, I am! And so many topics we got missed to cover below 🙂

You might ask what – like career advice, wearable tech, and more. Who knows, I might get the opportunity to be interviewed again later 😀 And – Star Trek rulez!

Embracing the Madness: How the ‘Crazy’ Change the World

“The ones who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” This quote, often attributed to Steve Jobs, encapsulates a powerful and transformative idea. It suggests that those who dare to dream beyond the conventional boundaries, who embrace what others call madness, are the very individuals who shape our reality. This article delves into the essence of this thought, exploring how unorthodox thinking and a willingness to challenge the status quo have been the driving forces behind some of the most significant changes in our world.

The Power of Unconventional Thinking

At the heart of this statement is the celebration of unconventional thinking. History is replete with examples of individuals who, at their time, were considered outlandish or eccentric, yet they went on to achieve extraordinary feats. Think of Galileo Galilei, whose heliocentric model of the universe was once deemed heretical, or Marie Curie, whose research on radioactivity propelled science into a new era. These figures were seen as ‘crazy’ by the standards of their time, but their ‘madness’ was the catalyst for change.

Embracing Risk and Failure

Changing the world often means taking risks and facing potential failure. Those labeled as ‘crazy’ are usually the ones willing to take these risks. They are not deterred by the possibility of failure but are driven by the potential of what might be achieved. For instance, the Wright brothers faced skepticism and ridicule before their first successful flight, which eventually revolutionized transportation.

The Role of Vision and Persistence

Vision and persistence are crucial components in this equation. The ‘crazy’ ones are often visionaries who see possibilities where others see impossibilities. Their persistence in the face of adversity is what transforms their ‘crazy’ ideas into reality. Thomas Edison’s invention of the light bulb is a classic example, born out of relentless experimentation and an unwavering belief in his vision.

Impact on Society and Culture

The impact of these trailblazers extends beyond their immediate innovations. They inspire a cultural shift, encouraging others to question, explore, and innovate. They foster an environment where challenging the status quo becomes the norm, leading to continuous progress and development in various fields.


In conclusion, the thought that those crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do, is not just a motivational quote but a fundamental truth observed throughout history. It is a reminder that progress often requires us to think outside the box, to embrace what might initially seem absurd, and to persist in the face of skepticism. As we continue to confront new challenges and seek solutions, let us remember the value of the ‘crazy’ ones among us – for they are the harbingers of change and progress.

Community Engagement Day: Celebrating and Strengthening Local Bonds

Community Engagement Day, observed annually, is a special occasion dedicated to fostering and celebrating the bonds within local communities. This day serves as a reminder of the importance of active participation in local affairs, encouraging residents to contribute to the betterment of their neighborhoods. It’s a day when people come together to volunteer, engage in dialogues, celebrate local culture, and work towards common goals, thereby strengthening the fabric of the community.

The Essence of Community Engagement

Community engagement is the process of working collaboratively with and through groups of people affiliated by geographic proximity, special interest, or similar situations to address issues affecting their well-being. It involves the active participation of people in the issues that affect their lives, emphasizing the importance of a strong, vibrant community. Community Engagement Day symbolizes this spirit, bringing to light the power of collective action and shared responsibility.

Activities and Events

Volunteer Projects

Community Engagement Day often includes various volunteer opportunities. These may range from cleaning local parks, planting trees, to assisting in local shelters. Such activities not only improve the local environment but also instill a sense of pride and ownership among residents.

Educational Workshops

Workshops and seminars are organized to educate community members on various topics like public safety, health awareness, and environmental conservation. These sessions provide valuable information and skills, empowering residents to take proactive roles in their community.

Cultural Celebrations

This day also witnesses the celebration of local culture and heritage. Events showcasing local art, music, and cuisine play a crucial role in fostering a sense of community identity and pride.


Fundraisers for local causes are common on Community Engagement Day. Whether it’s for a community center, library, or a local charity, these events not only raise necessary funds but also bring people together for a common cause.

Dialogue and Discussion Forums

Open forums and discussion groups encourage residents to voice their opinions and concerns, facilitating a better understanding among neighbors and local authorities. These forums serve as a platform for brainstorming solutions to local issues.

Impact of Community Engagement

The benefits of community engagement are manifold. It fosters a sense of belonging and contributes to the emotional well-being of individuals. Communities that actively engage their residents tend to have lower crime rates, better educational outcomes, and improved public health. Moreover, it strengthens democracy by involving citizens in decision-making processes.


Community Engagement Day is more than just a day of activities; it’s a celebration of the strength and resilience of our local communities. It’s a day that reminds us that by working together, we can overcome challenges and create a better future for all community members. Let us embrace this day with enthusiasm and a commitment to make a lasting difference in our neighborhoods.

In essence, Community Engagement Day is a powerful reminder of how interconnected and interdependent we are. It’s a day to step back from our busy lives and dedicate time to the places and people around us, reinforcing the age-old adage that together, we are stronger.

Birthday is for you to sum up yourself

Birthdays are not just another day on the calendar; they are a personal milestone, a moment to pause and reflect on the year that has passed, and a time to set intentions for the year ahead. Your birthday is a day to sum up your experiences, achievements, and personal growth. It serves as an annual reminder of your journey through life and offers a unique opportunity to celebrate yourself. In this article, we will explore why your birthday is always a day to sum up.

Birthday cake png sticker, celebration

Reflecting on the Past

One of the most significant aspects of celebrating your birthday is the chance to look back and assess the year that has gone by. Think about all the experiences you’ve had, the challenges you’ve overcome, and the lessons you’ve learned. Your birthday provides a natural pause in the hectic pace of life to reflect on your personal growth, relationships, and accomplishments.

Many people find that setting aside time on their birthday for introspection helps them gain clarity about their life’s direction. It’s an opportunity to evaluate whether you are on the right path, whether you’ve achieved the goals you set for yourself, and what adjustments you might need to make moving forward.

Gratitude and Appreciation

Your birthday is a perfect day to express gratitude and appreciation for all the people who have been a part of your journey. Whether it’s your family, friends, mentors, or colleagues, take a moment to acknowledge and thank them for their support, love, and encouragement. These relationships play a crucial role in shaping your life, and recognizing their importance can strengthen your bonds and bring joy to both you and those around you.

Setting New Intentions

Just as birthdays allow you to reflect on the past year, they also provide an opportunity to set intentions for the year ahead. Think about your aspirations, dreams, and personal growth objectives. What do you want to accomplish in the coming year? Your birthday is a powerful moment to set clear goals and intentions for yourself.

Creating a Plan

Once you’ve established your goals and intentions, your birthday can be a great time to create a plan of action. Break down your objectives into smaller, manageable steps, and consider what resources or support you might need to achieve them. Having a well-thought-out plan can help you stay focused and motivated throughout the year.

Celebrating Yourself

Your birthday is also a day to celebrate yourself. It’s a day to do things that bring you joy, whether that means spending time with loved ones, enjoying your favorite activities, or simply pampering yourself. Self-care and self-appreciation are essential for overall well-being, and your birthday is a fantastic excuse to indulge a little.


In conclusion, your birthday is more than just a date on the calendar; it’s a day to sum up your past experiences, express gratitude, set intentions, and celebrate yourself. Use this annual milestone as an opportunity for reflection, growth, and self-appreciation. Make the most of your birthday by taking the time to look back on your journey, express gratitude, and set the course for the year ahead. It’s a day that’s all about you, and you deserve to make the most of it!

Strategic Agile Play

In the dynamic world of project management and software development, the Agile methodology stands out as a beacon of adaptability, collaboration, and efficient problem-solving. Interestingly, the principles of Agile can be vividly understood and appreciated through a seemingly unrelated avenue: board games. This article delves into the striking parallels between board games and Agile methodology, revealing how these games are not just sources of entertainment but also practical tools for understanding complex management principles.

Embracing Flexibility and Adaptability

Agile is known for its emphasis on adaptability and responsiveness to change. Similarly, board games often require players to adapt their strategies in response to unpredictable game dynamics and the actions of other players. For instance, in a game like Settlers of Catan, players must constantly adjust their strategies based on resource availability and opponents’ moves. This mirrors Agile’s iterative process, where teams adapt to evolving project requirements and feedback loops.

Cross-functional Collaboration

Agile methodology thrives on cross-functional teams where members bring diverse skills and collaborate closely. Board games like Pandemic model this aspect brilliantly. In Pandemic, players assume different roles with unique abilities and must work together to stop global outbreaks. This cooperative aspect highlights the Agile principle of collective problem-solving and the importance of leveraging individual strengths for a common goal.

Iterative Learning and Continuous Improvement

Board games often involve learning from past moves and improving strategies as the game progresses. This iterative process is a cornerstone of Agile, where teams reflect on each phase of a project and continuously improve their processes. Games like Chess and Go, with their emphasis on learning from each game, embody this principle of ongoing refinement and mastery.

Incremental Progress and Short-term Goals

In Agile, projects are broken down into smaller, manageable segments, allowing teams to focus on short-term goals while keeping an eye on the overall objective. Many board games follow a similar structure, where players achieve small victories or complete mini-objectives leading up to the final win. This approach is evident in games like Ticket to Ride, where players build individual train routes that contribute to their larger strategy.

Embracing Uncertainty and Risk Management

Agile teams learn to manage risks and embrace uncertainty as a part of the process. This is a skill also sharpened by board games. In games like Risk, players must constantly assess and mitigate risks, deciding when to play it safe and when to take bold moves. This mirrors Agile’s balance between risk and opportunity, encouraging strategic risk-taking for greater rewards.

Feedback Loops and Player Engagement

The Agile methodology values regular feedback to guide future actions. Board games inherently operate on feedback loops, where players’ decisions are immediately reflected in the game’s state, influencing their next move. This immediate cause-and-effect relationship keeps players engaged and continuously learning, much like Agile teams who adjust their strategies based on ongoing feedback.


The intriguing parallels between board games and Agile methodology extend beyond mere coincidence. Both realms emphasize adaptability, collaboration, incremental progress, and continuous learning. By engaging with board games, individuals can unwittingly hone skills that are vital for Agile project management. Whether it’s adapting to change in Settlers of Catan or managing risks in Risk, these games offer more than just entertainment; they provide a playful yet profound perspective on the principles of Agile methodology.

GitHub Copilot and GenAI: Revolutionizing Software Development

In the ever-evolving landscape of software development, tools that enhance productivity and streamline workflows are always welcome. GitHub Copilot has been making waves in the developer community for its remarkable code completions and, in some cases, even chat-based assistance. However, beneath the surface of this powerful tool lies a transformative force known as GenAI, which is reshaping the entire Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). In this article, we will explore how GitHub Copilot, in tandem with GenAI, is revolutionizing software development by improving developer satisfaction, implementation velocity, and the overall quality of software.

GitHub Copilot: A Brief Overview

GitHub Copilot is a development companion powered by artificial intelligence. It offers smart code completions that help developers write code faster and with fewer errors. It is like having an intelligent pair programmer by your side, suggesting code snippets and completing entire lines of code based on context and your coding style. This feature alone has made GitHub Copilot a go-to tool for developers looking to boost their productivity.

GitHub Copilot’s Chat Feature

One of the unique features of GitHub Copilot is its chat-based assistance. It allows developers to have conversations with the tool, asking questions and receiving code-related suggestions. This chat feature makes GitHub Copilot more interactive and engaging, and it can provide insights and explanations, making it an excellent learning tool for developers of all levels.

The Role of GenAI in the SDLC

While GitHub Copilot is celebrated for its code completions and chat-based features, it is important to recognize the broader impact of GenAI within the SDLC. GenAI goes beyond code suggestions; it is permeating the entire software development process in meaningful ways.

Auto Fix: Enhancing Security and Code Quality

GenAI can automatically detect vulnerabilities in your code and suggest commits to patch them in a Pull Request. This ‘Auto Fix’ feature is a game-changer for security-conscious developers, as it helps address potential issues proactively. With GenAI’s assistance, software vulnerabilities can be fixed promptly, ensuring the highest standards of security and code quality.

Knowledge Base: A Conversational Repository

GenAI enables developers to have conversations with their organization’s corpus of knowledge. This ‘Knowledge Base’ feature is invaluable for maintaining software standards and consistency across projects. Developers can easily access information on best practices, coding guidelines, and past decisions, ensuring that every team member is on the same page and following established conventions.

GenAI: A Ubiquitous Layer in the SDLC

As we look to the future, GenAI’s role in software development is set to expand further. It is not just a helpful assistant but a ubiquitous layer within your SDLC, seamlessly integrated into your workflow. GenAI’s continuous evolution will significantly improve the developer experience, implementation velocity, and the overall quality of software.


GitHub Copilot has gained a reputation for its remarkable code completions and chat-based assistance, but its impact goes far beyond these surface features. With GenAI at its core, GitHub Copilot is revolutionizing the entire Software Development Life Cycle. From automatically fixing vulnerabilities to providing access to a conversational repository of knowledge, GenAI is enhancing developer satisfaction, implementation velocity, and software quality. As we move forward, we can expect GenAI to become an indispensable companion for developers, driving innovation and excellence in the world of software development.

Open Source Readiness at FINOS – why should I care?

Open email on Open Source Readiness at the Financial Open Source Foundation:


You are getting from this email because we, at the FINOS Open Source Readiness Special Interest Group, do think, you should be aware of the Open Source Readiness SIG’s work. We are trying to convert ourselves to be fully community driven group – but we do need more members for that.

In case you never heard about us – do check out . We are providing documentation, training, certification, etc., as part of FINOS, the Financial Open Source Foundation, part of The Linux Foundation, to introduce open source into your company; both to consume and the contribute.

In case you heard about us from some other colleague – we do need more members from each member firm, as we have still tons of work to do! We have documentation to write, innersource tooling to fix, and more; looking for people either being from their companies OSPO, interested in creating their companies OSPO, interested in open source, and more.

In case you were earlier involved – please do consider re-involving yourself, we put significant effort into updating our resources, there would definitely be something on our new website you would find useful!

In case you are involved already with another FINOS group(s) – no problem, no rules say you cannot be involved with just one more of them.

If you are not aware of our mailing group – it’s , which you can join by dropping an empty mail to If you are not aware of our meetings – do check out which contains the OSR and non OSR meetings.

In a nutshell – looking forward for your deeper involvement with open source, and hopefully you would find that with us 🙂

OSR SIG Chairs

Cara Delia – Red Hat

Brittany Istenes – Fannie Mae

Thomas Cooper – RBC

Peter Smulovics – Morgan Stanley

Room-temperature quantum coherence

There has been a breakthrough in achieving quantum coherence of entangled multiexcitons at room temperature, which is crucial for quantum computing and sensing technologies. The researchers used a chromophore, a dye molecule that can excite electrons with desirable spins and embedded it in a metal-organic framework (MOF), a nanoporous crystalline material that can suppress molecular motion and preserve quantum coherence. The researchers observed the quantum coherence of a quintet state, a state of four entangled electrons, for over 100 nanoseconds at room temperature by photoexciting the electrons with microwave pulses. This is the first time such a state has been achieved at room temperature. The findings open doors to room-temperature molecular quantum computing based on multiple quantum gate control and quantum sensing of various target compounds. The researchers plan to search for more suitable guest molecules and MOF structures to generate quintet multiexciton state qubits more efficiently.

Microsoft Mesh is Generally Available

Microsoft made Mesh generally available. Why this is an important milestone? Mesh is about the importance of deep human connections in the workplace and how they are crucial for increasing engagement, stimulating performance, and retaining talent. It helps in that remote and hybrid work arrangements no longer to pose challenges in building personal connections. According to Microsoft’s Work Trend Index report, 43 percent of leaders find relationship building to be a significant challenge in remote and hybrid work – so this problem needed to be addressed. To address this issue, Microsoft has introduced “Microsoft Mesh,” a technology that powers 3D immersive experiences to make virtual connections feel more like face-to-face interactions.

Mesh is available on PC and Meta Quest VR devices. Several organizations, including Takeda, Accenture, bp, and Mercy Ships, have already started benefiting from Mesh. Each organization have leveraged Microsoft Mesh to create engaging and productive virtual environments, reducing travel and real estate costs. Each organization has used Mesh for various purposes, from large company-wide events to onboarding and training. Inside Microsoft Teams, Mesh offers 3D immersive spaces for various purposes, such as team social gatherings, brainstorming sessions, and round-table discussions. Users can create avatars to represent themselves, engage in spatial audio-enabled small-group discussions, and utilize familiar Teams features like accessing shared content, chat, and live reactions. If you are an organization, you can also host larger events with custom immersive experiences – a no-code editor allows customization with visual elements like organization logos, videos, and presentation content. Unity integration with the Mesh toolkit enables the creation of custom interactive experiences.

Identify Innovation

Yesterday I met Maureen from UST, and we had a good discussion about innovations and how slowly generative AI is no longer considered an emerging bleeding edge, rather just an emerging cutting edge technology, and started to wonder what makes Innovation an Innovation. Innovation challenges are unique obstacles or difficulties that organizations face when trying to introduce new ideas, products, or processes. Identifying these challenges is crucial for successful innovation. Here’s a guide on how to recognize them:

Understanding the Innovation Landscape

  1. Market Dynamics: Understanding the market dynamics helps in identifying gaps and opportunities for innovation. Assess the market trends, consumer behavior, and competitor strategies.
  2. Technological Advancements: Stay abreast of the latest technological developments. Often, innovation challenges arise from a lack of awareness of new technologies or the inability to integrate them effectively.
  3. Regulatory Environment: Regulatory constraints can be a significant barrier to innovation. Be aware of the legal and compliance requirements in your industry.

Internal Assessment

  1. Organizational Culture: A culture resistant to change is a major barrier to innovation. Assess if your organization encourages creativity, risk-taking, and learning from failures.
  2. Resource Allocation: Insufficient resources, whether it’s funding, time, or human capital, can impede innovation. Evaluate if you have the necessary resources to support innovation initiatives.
  3. Skill Gaps: Identify if there are any skill gaps within your team that could hinder the development and implementation of innovative ideas.

External Factors

  1. Customer Feedback: Customer needs and feedback can highlight areas for improvement and innovation. Regular interaction with customers can provide valuable insights.
  2. Competitive Analysis: Understanding what your competitors are doing can help identify areas where you need to innovate to stay competitive.
  3. Supply Chain Dynamics: Issues in the supply chain can hinder the ability to innovate, especially if you rely on external partners for key components or services.

Tools for Identifying Innovation Challenges

  1. SWOT Analysis: Conducting a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis can help in identifying internal and external innovation challenges.
  2. Brainstorming Sessions: Regular brainstorming sessions with diverse teams can bring to light different perspectives and potential innovation barriers.
  3. Surveys and Feedback Loops: Implementing regular surveys and feedback mechanisms within and outside the organization can provide ongoing insights into potential innovation challenges.

Leveraging Data and Analytics

Utilize data and analytics to identify patterns, inefficiencies, and areas for improvement that might not be evident otherwise. Data-driven decision-making can reveal hidden innovation challenges.


Identifying innovation challenges is an ongoing process that requires a keen understanding of both the internal and external environment of an organization. It involves a combination of market analysis, organizational self-assessment, and continuous engagement with customers and stakeholders. By recognizing and addressing these challenges, organizations can create a conducive environment for innovation and maintain a competitive edge in their industry.