Mert Yeter resides in Istanbul, Turkey. He is an MVP (Microsoft Most Valued Professional) and software engineer with over 15 years of experience in .NET and Microsoft Technologies.
Mert Yeter does not require an introduction as most of you will know him and find that he is very active on Twitter, always tweeting and retweeting with the aim of sharing knowledge. He is a massive believer in sharing knowledge and believes that when one is looking for a fix to an issue you will come across someone who has shared his/her knowledge, so why not share your knowledge in return. Mert was very keen to share his experiences and as you’ll find out from his interview below, he has vast experience, especially around development. Mert is an easy to approach person, so please do follow him and reach out if you have any questions.
Let’s move onto Mert’s interview
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Mert Yeter Interview
Tell us about yourself?
My name is Mert Yeter, I am from Turkey and living in Istanbul. I am a software engineer with 15 years of experience in .NET and Microsoft technologies. I completed my Bachelor of Engineering in 2005 and have a master’s degree focused on Linux. I’ve also 3 years of experience in Cisco Contact Centre products and implementations.
I am one of the community leads of msHOWTO, the largest tech community in Turkey, responsible for software development and DevOps stuff. I enjoy organising and speaking at tech events as well. I host a webcast series called “msHOWTO Live!”, with the aim of sharing (and learning) knowledge about Azure and other Microsoft Technologies.
I have been recognized as a Traefik Ambassador for the contributions to the Traefik Community.
When I am not busy with work and community stuff, I like reading theoretical physics and science-related books, watching science-fiction movies, and playing computer games.
What is your greatest achievement whilst working in the world of Tech?
I think my greatest achievement is not related to my job or certification; it’s people who read my blogposts, watch my webcasts, learn new technologies and say “thank you, I learned something new”. I believe in “sharing is the best way of learning”. As most of us read blogposts, watch webcasts to learn something new or search error messages on Stack Overflow for a quick fix; we are all consuming someone else’s knowledge. In return, why don’t we share our knowledge with others?
How did you get into IT? Did you start out as a developer?
I started coding with QBasic in my 1st year at university, but my computer adventure started with MS-DOS when I was at primary school. The trigger was computer games 😊
What would you recommend for someone wanting to start a career in IT?
My first advice is to be patient. There is a long way to go, so much to learn and the most important one is “You cannot learn everything at the same time”.
How did you get into the world of Microsoft Azure?
I got into the world of Microsoft with the release of .NET 1.0, and my Azure journey started with Windows Azure 😊 I started with Virtual Machine’s, but then moved to App Service, Application Insights, Redis Cache, APIM, ACR, AKS and any other development related service. I also completed a chatbot project with Cognitive services.
What are your areas of expertise? Are you still working with other Microsoft products apart from Microsoft Azure?
I tend to specialise in development; I use C# and VB.NET (apart from Azure) in my current role. My current role is not DevOps, but I am working on DevOps stuff like Docker and Kubernetes now. There is no harm in learning.
What certifications have you achieved, or the certifications you are working towards?
I have achieved MCP and multiple MCTS certifications once. But after they expired, I did not renew or continue with further certification. I am thinking of going for my Azure certifications with the plan of studying for Kubernetes certifications at later in my certification journey.
What would you recommend for those who want to start a career in coding? Where should they start? What programming language should they learn? Do they need to learn multiple programming languages?
Again, my first piece of advice is to be patient. There are lots of programming languages to choose from. The first step is to start with thinking about the industry where you would like to work. For example, do you want to implement low level programming such as coding drivers or kernel? Gaming? Mobile? After that you can choose a language. Programming language is not the purpose, it is just a tool.
Yes, you may need to learn multiple languages, but after you have learned one, others are easy to learn as you have already learned basic programming concepts and algorithms. It is like learning a foreign language, if you can speak German, you can learn Dutch easier.
What is DevOps? What is the difference between DevOps and Azure Devops? What is your experience of both?
To be honest, I do not like to start with “DevOps is a culture” stuff. I think the best definition of DevOps is Donovan Brown’s: “DevOps is the union of people, process, and products to enable continuous delivery of value to our end users.”
Azure DevOps is a platform that you can find all your DevOps needs altogether. You can create your CI/CD pipeline, create test plans, use boards to track your agile development stuff, store your code and track code changes with source control, and create your own package feeds. Azure DevOps is both on-premises and in the cloud.
I have been using Azure DevOps for over 2 years, and I am happy with it. I can locate everything together and connected to each other. For example, pick a task from the board and check in your changes. Tasks are automatically closed with the related changeset. You can click on a changeset to go to the repos and find your changes or search code base to find other parts of your application online. Azure DevOps can also be integrated with your IDE, Teams and Outlook.
What is Azure Kubernetes Service and why is it useful? What would you recommend for someone who wants to learn (AKS)? And does one need to cover off other areas before starting a journey into learning AKS?
Basically, Kubernetes consists of 2 main parts: Control Plane and Nodes. Kubernetes Control Plane is the main component that contains controller managers and data store (etcd). Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) is a managed Kubernetes cluster that handles all the operations on Control Plane for you, so you do not need to worry about control plane, allowing you to focus on your Nodes.
It would be better to know how Kubernetes works, what components does it have and what are their roles before starting AKS. You will use the Kubernetes command-line tool, kubectl a lot, so you must learn what it is and how to use it as well. I can recommend Visual Studio Code with Microsoft’s Azure Kubernetes Service and Kubernetes extensions installed. Docker Desktop has a single node Kubernetes cluster, so you can practice on your computer without installing an entire Kubernetes cluster.
Can you give us some information on containers in Azure? Why are containers important? and what does one need to do to add containers to their skill set?
Containers are important because it is the solution of the biggest problem in development history: “It works on my machine”. You can image that containers are small, isolated environments that you can run your apps inside (not like VMs), and it is the same environment working both on your machine and production server (or cloud).
There are other benefits using containers, reducing the costs of maintaining VMs, microservices, architecture etc. Regarding containers in Azure, you can host your containerized app on App Service, create a private container registry (ACR) to store your container images like Docker Hub, scale globally and use other features as security scanning, testing etc.
Is .NET still an important skill to learn today? And why? How would a beginner start learning .NET?
.NET has changed a lot since 1.0. It became cross-platform with the release of .NET Core. So, the answer is yes, it is still an important skill to learn. With .NET, you can write web apps, desktop apps, games, and mobile apps. I believe it will be possible to write desktop apps for non-Windows platforms with further releases.
Microsoft docs is the best way of learning Microsoft products. You can find lots of videos on YouTube and live sessions on Twitch. I also recommend GitHub, pick a project, and start working on it.
Someone who has worked in IT for a long time, including working in Azure but does not know how to code. He/She now wants to start a journey into DevOps and Automation. What would you recommend?
PowerShell! PowerShell is cross platform and easy to learn. Again, Microsoft docs is a great place to start learning.
What’s your advice for someone who wants to become a public speaker but not confident, or not sure where to start?
Speaking in front of lots of people is not easy. You may think that if someone asks a question that you cannot answer or what if you forget what you need to say? Don’t worry, it’s not the end of the world, you cannot never know everything. You cannot know a specific issue that you have not experienced before. The main goal of public speaking is sharing your knowledge, and knowledge only increases in time, with experience. Do not look at how many followers you have or how many people are watching/attending your sessions, just focus on your talk. Your purpose must be learning and sharing knowledge, not gaining followers. After the first 5 mins, you will build up your confidence, and after a couple of events you will not look back.
I do not prepare a script about what I will talk about or perform any rehearsing. I just prepare the slides and the demo and start talking. Being yourself is the best thing for you and the audience.
What’s next in your Microsoft Azure journey?
Achieving Azure certifications and gaining knowledge on Azure architectures that I have never used before.
Do you have any final words of wisdom?
“It is not a shame not to know, it is a shame not to learn.”
The most important question of all 😊
From a scale from 1 – 10 how crazy are you about Microsoft Azure? (10 being the highest)
End of interview