• December 19, 2018

Rocket.Build: the soul of who we are

It was past 1:00am on Wednesday night (technically Thursday). The Rocket.Build Lab was full of people–at least 30 engineers were in the room with me. Some on their bean bags chairs, some sunk into couches. Others were sitting on tables and chairs. All were glued to their laptops. There was a lot of chatter; someone yelled out “Hey, do you know how to do this?”

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This was Rocket.Build on its last night.

On that night, Kiruthi, one of our software engineers in the lab, turned to me and said ‘This is the happiest I have been since I started here at Rocket. I have the same feeling that I did when I first started.” It was not just Kiruthi. The passion of every engineer in that room was palpable, and the energy in the room was off the charts!

Later that day another participant, Pavel, walked up to me and said “I’m 52 years old. But I stayed up every night until 1 am and then went up to my hotel room and worked till 3 am.”

I kept hearing stories like Kiruthi’s and Pavel’s throughout the four days the Rocket.Build lab was open.  Every engineer in that room had a story to tell. Everyone in that room after midnight was driven and determined to finish his or her own project. And not just their own projects; everyone in that room was making sure that their comrades were able to cross the finish line with them. It didn’t matter if you were part of a team or not. Engineers were walking up to each other and helping out.

Alex, one of our engineers, was stuck on an issue with Angular.JS. He just yelled out “Does someone know Angular.JS?” Ivan, one of our Russian engineers, walked over and helped out. And just like that, Alex’s issue was resolved. It didn’t matter if you were part of a team or even if you knew the language. Something greater connected all the engineers in that room: the drive and the passion to build. Engineering was our common language, and we spoke it with great clarity.

I share these stories with you because it positively demonstrates that Rocket, at its core, is an engineering company. And we, the Rocketeers, love to build.  There is nothing that demonstrates this more than something another engineer, Dave, said to me on one of the late nights: “This is what we do on a daily basis, man!”

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Yes, Rocketeers build every day, at every chance we get. Rocket.Build just allowed us to connect with our soul and share this experience with our comrades.

A job well done to the Rocket.Build 2014 team! Rocket.Build 2015 will be even better. I can’t wait!

Azeem Ahmed 13 Posts

Azeem Ahmed joined Rocket Software in 2003 as a Software Engineer after having graduated from UT Austin. Over the course of past fifteen years, he has held many engineering and management roles. In his current role as Chief Technologist for Cloud, Azeem helps lead Rocket R&D around Hybrid & Public Cloud, is responsible for Rocket’s Cloud strategy, and leads Emerging Tech Research Group focused on Big Data Analytics & Cloud. In addition to this role, Azeem was instrumental in conceiving the Rocket.Build program – an internal hackathon for Rocket Engineers. He continues to direct that program every year for our engineers.

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