2021 Summary: A Rebrand To “Open Up The Cloud” & The Start Of Video Content

It’s now become a tradition for me to sit down and do an end of year review, if you want to see the previous years, here is 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. But wow, what a crazy year 2021 has been! Sitting down to look at the numbers, I’m even a little blown away myself. It’s been a year of really pushing myself, personally to get out there, join the community more, engage in video content.

Looking back, it’s hard to recognise where things were at the start of the year. I started the year with no real YouTube videos or subscribers, no real Instagram account, no real Twitter following, etc. In just a year, things already look incredibly different. But more on that later.

Income Report – Dec 2021

This is the first in a series of monthly income reports. In these reports, I will share where Open Up The Cloud generates it’s revenue, and where every penny is spent. Open Up The Cloud is a community-led social enterprise (read the mission). Publishing income reports [1][2] feel like a logical next step.

Open Up The Cloud Income Report

How I Gained Consistent Traffic To My Website Using SEO (And How You Can, Too)

Are you growing a website of your own? Are you looking to generate traffic to view your work? I want to take a slight step away from the usual proceedings of cloud content to talk about a somewhat different topic, website growth.

SEO Cover

Some of you reading will have your own websites or blogs—and like me—you want to reach the widest audience possible. Today I’m going to give you a behind the scenes look at exactly what I did over the last year to gain consistent, repeatable traffic growth to my own website through SEO.

By the end of this article you’ll know the two big changes that increased my traffic by 6X in less than 9 months. You’ll also understand three techniques I use to find winning article topics. 

2019 Summary: Up & Running With Serverless and Regaining Blogging Motivation

At the end of the year it’s now become somewhat of a tradition that I partake in the whole year in summary thing. I do find it interesting to read these posts, and I like doing my own since it’s a good way to reflect.

After a year of how-to type blog posts it feels odd, yet fun to be back talking in first person again. Today we’ll cover quite a lot of (varied) ground in a way I wouldn’t typically be comfortable with. But I’m hoping the informality works out. The following are some of the key things I learned in 2019 that I’ll go into more detail on very soon:

  • Serverless technologies require a lot of knowledge, skill and patience
  • Terraform is an amazing technology (and why)
  • Single event logging is an amazing monitoring method (and why)
  • Motivation for blogging is difficult (and how I regained mine)
  • Why I changed the way I run my newsletter (yet it’s still hard)

It seems it’s going to be a pretty detailed post so let’s get to it…

2018: A Year In Review

A look back over 2018, and a look forward to 2019.

Last year when I put out content around the new year about my plans I got a spike in traffic. I guess something about the personal nature of the post was attractive. Based on how much people seemed to like those posts, I thought I’d do another.

A round up of 2018 — and a goal set for 2019.


The one and only thing I’ll be focusing on in 2018

Sometimes it's what we don't-do, rather than what we do-do that can be infinitely more important.

“You seem Zen. Do you meditate?”. We were in a bar having a catch up drink before Christmas. We hadn’t spoken for a year, but we’ve been friends for a long time. I didn’t think much of the comment at the time. But since I’ve had the chance to think about it some more. It has been a while since I’ve last meditated (even though I should do it more…). But the “zen” part has been a deliberate practice. Well, I wouldn’t call it Zen. I’d call it focus and it’s something that I spent most of 2017 trying to cultivate. There’s a Hemingway quote that’s stuck with throughout this year.