The Leo Yockey Show

Aisha Blake - The Intersection of Art and Technology

June 15, 2021 Leo Yockey / Aisha Blake Season 1 Episode 7
The Leo Yockey Show
Aisha Blake - The Intersection of Art and Technology
Chapters
The Leo Yockey Show
Aisha Blake - The Intersection of Art and Technology
Jun 15, 2021 Season 1 Episode 7
Leo Yockey / Aisha Blake

Aisha Blake works in a little-known niche of the tech industry called Developer Relations. Her story is one of continuously learning new skills and cashing them in so that her career better aligns with her passions. Aisha and Leo discuss her unique career trajectory (and what we can all learn from it), the under-appreciated intersection of art and technology, and how to leverage the tech industry as the modern day gold rush.

Follow Leo!
instagram.com/leoyockey;
tiktok.com/@leoyockey;
twitter.com/leovolving

Receive a journal prompt from a book quote every Friday morning!
leoyockey.com

Follow Aisha!
twitter.com/AishaBlake;
twitch.tv/aishacodes;
https://aisha.codes

By: Leo Yockey

Show Notes Transcript

Aisha Blake works in a little-known niche of the tech industry called Developer Relations. Her story is one of continuously learning new skills and cashing them in so that her career better aligns with her passions. Aisha and Leo discuss her unique career trajectory (and what we can all learn from it), the under-appreciated intersection of art and technology, and how to leverage the tech industry as the modern day gold rush.

Follow Leo!
instagram.com/leoyockey;
tiktok.com/@leoyockey;
twitter.com/leovolving

Receive a journal prompt from a book quote every Friday morning!
leoyockey.com

Follow Aisha!
twitter.com/AishaBlake;
twitch.tv/aishacodes;
https://aisha.codes

By: Leo Yockey

Hello, and welcome to another episode of the Leo Yockey show. I am Leo Yockey. How are you doing today? How are we feeling how summer going so far? I guess it's not technically summer, but to me, it's after Memorial Day. So that means it's summer. Listen, I love working on this podcast. I love doing this podcast, getting to have these interviews. Every week is such a treat for me. I'm basically living my dream. I love having deep conversations with people about their story, their life, where they've come from and where they're going. It's so cool to me. If you've been enjoying this podcast, if something that you've heard in either this episode upcoming, or in any of the previous episodes has spoken to you, I could use a huge favor from you. On the app that you're listening to this on, if you could leave me a five star rating review. That shit goes a really long way. I'm sure you hear it on every single podcast and there's a reason that shits like currency. Okay? I joke I joke a lot about being the doer of all the things because I host this show, I produce it edit, I get all this speech or not the speakers, I get all the guests, and I do all their social media and email correspondence. But the reality is that without you guys supporting the show, and leaving that Richard review is a very tangible way to support the show, there is zero chance that I get to do this long term. So I really appreciate y'all being on this journey with me. And that's exactly what it is. It's a journey. I don't know where we're going. I don't know that it matters. But I do enjoy the process. And I'm just glad that y'all are here with me. So all that being said, I love these conversations. I love these interviews so much that I'm gonna start diving into them with less ado, if you're part of my journal prompts, email journey. If you're getting those emails, you know, I'll start kind of sharing what I get out of them in the emails themselves. So that we're not taking up airspace here because I really want to focus on the conversations here. That being said, My guest today is Aisha Blake, a friend of mine that I met through the tech industry conferences that I used to attend, and she's great. Aisha has a theater background. And the cool thing is that she gets to use that theater background all the time in her tech job. She's able to combine art and technology in a way that makes her life really, really fulfilling. Here's the thing, people think that art and technology don't really mix, but they do they intersect a lot. Even Leonardo da Vinci was an engineer. Did you know that? Anyway, without further ado, here's I Isha. Alright, what's up, Aisha? How's it going? Hey, I'm pretty well, you know, we're we're chugging along. Yeah, yes, pull, pull behind the curtain a little bit as of day of filming our recording. You're about to go and get your second COVID vaccine. Very exciting. I'm so excited. Oh, my goodness. Congratulations. I just had my first shot on Thursday. It's so reliable. The light at the end of the tunnel is really here. It's amazing. Yes, I'm feeling I'm feeling good about it. And at least the site that I have gotten my vaccine at. It's pretty it's like pretty well run. It's, you're in and out. Not a lot of contacts. It's quick, big area space. I'm feeling. I'm feeling hopeful. That's great. Yeah, the place I went, it was at a public park. So it was like lots of plenty of outdoor space, plenty of space. So like the waiting area where they were monitoring everybody here just in like a softball field. Nice was great. Yeah. So Aisha, we know each other from the tech world. But you've kind of left us engineers behind a little bit. You do something called Developer Relations now or dev REL for short, Deborah's the lingo. And listen, a lot of the people who listen to this podcast are not in the tech industry. And if they hear Developer Relations, it doesn't really mean anything. I actually I asked my Instagram followers what they thought it meant. And it was a lot of stuff around just big like, Oh, you relate to the developers, right? You're some sort of liaison between management and developers. Right? And No one really seemed to know what what it was. If someone wanted to know more about what you do, and they have no familiarity with the tech industry, what would you tell them? Oh, so I think up front, I would admit that even within the tech industry, there is some there's some disagreement about what exactly developer relations is or should be in different companies, actually. Really differently. So right now, I work at a company called New Relic. And we have even we have two different Developer Relations teams. Yeah, yeah. So one team works largely with existing customers, and they're straight up teaching the products. And that's one really important aspect of Developer Relations, you are making it easier for people to use the thing that your company makes, and or sells now the strategy that my team takes my, my team is a little different. It's a little weird, and and fun. We're called the relevance. For one thing, the relevance like pelicans with an AR Yes. And fact, we have a mascot. Pelican, it's a pelican. La, the Pelican is our mascot. And our job is really building community, like we are we are there as teachers and builders. And we are in the same way that most developer advocates are a sort of bridge between engineering and developers, other developers outside of the company. We are reaching out to people in different communities. So we've we're focusing right now on JavaScript, Ruby, and Python. And so each of those programming languages has their own community. And we're basically saying, Hey, we're fun people, you're fun people, let's hang out. And in the process that makes folks aware of New Relic, and some of the things that it can do, because we're also, we're also talking about New Relic where, you know, participating in New Relic events, like feature stack, and we're even streaming from the New Relic twitch channel. Oh, cool. Yeah. So this community that you're building is a community of other developers and engineers. Exactly. Okay. And it kind of if it ends up circling back to New Relic, because New Relic is making all of that possible. But it is less focused on selling you a product and more focused on showing you some of the really cool things that you can do with tech in general. Yeah. And so for, again, actually, I don't even know this. What, what is New Relic? What? What? What is the product? What are developers, the customers in this? In this case? Yeah, so New Relic is an observability. platform. New Relic, one is the product that most people are going to be familiar with. And so it's, it's a way of accessing and analyzing information about your applications. So what that means is that you are able to see how your systems work, as well as determine why things might be going wrong when they do go wrong. Okay, listeners, y'all are probably wondering why the hell I have a shell I'm here talking a bunch of jargon that most people probably don't know, care about isn't relevant to them, we'll say it's not relevant to them. So what what makes I used to story so interesting? Well, you started out as a developer, you started out as a software engineer, and that's something that most people outside of the tech industry can understand, at least to some degree that there's, you know, coding involves and, and all that stuff. And so you initially got into the tech industry with the intention of being a developer. Is that correct? So sort of, yes, I actually got started as a teacher. Interesting. Boy, a JavaScript teacher. Oh, interesting. Yeah. So I did intend to be a developer. That is correct. But that is not actually how I started my career. I sort of fell into a teaching position at A company that was in the process of becoming a coding boot camp at the time. So when I came on to this team, I was coordinating a web development course for high school students. And that turned into writing curriculum for a Java boot camp. Mind you, for those listening, Java and JavaScript are two different languages. I know JavaScript and I, to this day do not know Java. Yeah, just to make an analogy for the listeners this, this would basically be like if you're a biologist and studied biology, and now you're all of a sudden expected to make some chemistry textbooks, technically science. It's all science, but um, I did not have the, I didn't have the background. So I had to learn a lot very quickly and do the best that I could. And thankfully, we found someone more knowledgeable to actually teach Java. That's good. Yes. But that was my introduction to the industry, I was getting involved in my local tech community through first working for a nonprofit as a teacher, and then as a local chapter leader of that nonprofit. And then getting into this boot camp setting where I'm writing curriculum, and I'm teaching students full time. And it was through that experience that I started both teaching on a contract basis outside of my full time job, but also speaking at conferences. And that was one sort of, yeah, that's what started to expand my, my networks and my like, circle of professional friends, too. Yeah, definitely. I mean, that's how we met. Sorry, actually, I don't think you were speaking at the thing that we met at, but I did, in fact, okay. Well, I didn't see you speak. I'm sorry. I'm sure it was great. See how it works. Anyway, next topic. So before so I guess we're gonna work backwards a little bit. So you, so I'm starting to see how it's kind of formulated. So you, you get an attack, you learn JavaScript, and you start to teach and build some community and you start to speak. So how did you like, how did? How did you come into teaching? Exactly? Like Did you already have teaching experience? Or was that just one of those? Like, here's just a way to make some money really quick? Well, I, you know, figure out what's next. Great question. So, I, we're gonna, we're gonna take a real far back, I came to Detroit as a Jesuit volunteer in 2013. As a what, volunteer, a Jesuit volunteer, what's that? So the Jesuits are an order of Catholic priests. And there are a number of Jesuit universities throughout the country. And that was, I went to Fordham University, which is a Jesuit university in New York City. And it was through that association that I found out about the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. And I honestly do not recall, recognizing that I had even matched with any, any placements in Detroit. But I wound up working at cristo rey High School and teaching a group of girls web development and robotics. Oh, cool. Yeah. So I was given that assignment because my degree is in Information Science. And I was told that I would not have to actually teach anything that I would just sort of be a facilitator, which turned out not to be true. And at this point, you don't know how to code yet. Right? You have information. You have your information degree, but how do you know JavaScript? And at this point, Yeah, a little bit, a little bit, a little bit. Okay. But I had just graduated, I knew very little, like, dabbled on the side a little bit, took a class here and there on coding and college. Yeah, I think I had a single JavaScript course throughout my degree. And I remember the final exam involved drawing flags, like national flags with JavaScript. Wow. And that was it. That was the extent of my knowledge. I could do math and paint with JavaScript, and that was about it. So I came into this feeling woefully unprepared and like I was going to fail these children who have I had been tasked with teaching to build websites and to program robots as if I knew how to do any of that. Anything involved. Yeah, what a daunting task to start at. And this is like fresh out of college. You're like 2122 years old. Yep. Yeah. Exactly. And so that was that was the point where I reached out to this nonprofit. And I was like, Hey, I don't know what I'm doing. I don't know how to teach. I don't really know how to build websites, even like, please help me, I will do whatever, I'll do whatever you want me to do. I just I don't have any money. Because I was a volunteer full time, right. Oh, wow. And so yeah, so thankfully, thankfully, they offered to let me come and audit a class. And pretty soon I started volunteering for them as well. So I was getting started as a TA while I was still a full time volunteer. And when my year of service was over, they asked me to come on and be a chapter leader. So I'm starting to lead this local meetup, which is teaching women to code. And at the same time, someone who worked at the school started working at this startup, which became the coding boot camp. And so a few days after my year of service ends, I get a call from her. And she's like, Hey, we're starting this, this course for high school students, and we're looking for somebody to run that program. Would you be interested, basically, right place at the right time? Exactly, exactly. And so because she knew that I had been doing this, this program with the high school students already, it was like, Oh, this feels like a pretty natural fit. Now, instead of teaching this small group, after after school, who like may or may not be there, you get to Tom, and there's a curriculum, and there are instructors, and there's a whole classroom with computers, that's great. And you can, you know, you can work on that and build that out. And so that was my first job. That's my first paid job, full time was coordinating this high school program. It sounds like you've kind of been on this path for a while, then we're building community, and teaching others and kind of learning in public in a way is has kind of just always been part of your, of your journey in tech from the very beginning. Yeah, you've had to kind of learn as you went by auditing some classes, and you were volunteering and helping your children and helping girls learn how to code and and from there just from showing up and doing that that work, even though you weren't getting paid. You know, I say right place the right time. But it's, you know, right place plus right time plus preparation, right? Yeah, exactly. You were you were prepared for that job. At that point. You know, if you had just started out trying to get paid to teach coding straight out of high school, probably no one would have wanted to pay you. Most likely. So that's so that's really cool. How that all like, kind of came together. So so so let's go back into dev ramen. So what was kind of your journey in building like, in in getting your devrel job? Like? Is it one of those things where so I know that you have a pretty extensive like online community that you've built up for yourself? And you're not like for yourself? But you know what? I mean? Like, there's, there's a community around you, and I was there, like, any point where you said, Hey, I could probably do something more with community in my career and kind of getting papers community, or is it something where someone approached you and said, Hey, have you considered beverello developer relations? Yeah, that's a good question. So you mentioned you mentioned earlier, I think maybe even before we started recording, you mentioned that, you know, if you're not in the industry, you probably probably don't know what developer relations is. And that was true for me too. Even after I'd been in the industry for a few years. It wasn't until I started going to conferences and speaking more frequently, where people started to assume that I was in Developer Relations, because they see me at conferences. Yeah. And, and so it was like, Oh, is it your job to be here and talking all the time and just sort of make good friends? And the answer was, no, no, I have a job. As you know, a developer, I have a product that's supposed to be working. My project manager is pester. My project manager did not endorse this conference. There, that that job was really really wonderful and supportive of me. Going off and speaking like probably probably honestly, a little too much. That's good. It was better than the opposite. Yes, yes, they were so good. And like, not only did I get the time, but they actually paid for a lot of my travel. Nice. Yeah, I was really, really lucky that I got the chance to kind of explore that part of my interests. Yeah. And, and that was how I discovered that developer relations is even a thing. So I would go to these conferences. And I would meet folks whose job it was to create presentations about not even necessarily directly about their company's products, but that, you know, involved the technologies that their company supports, or was supported by. And I just had so many wonderful connections with people through those through those conference experiences. And I wanted more of that, and I was trying to sort of fit the speaking and organizing meetups and mentoring people. And I started working with Global Diversity CFP day, which is a as the name implies a global events, where we teach workshops for folks who want to get into conference speaking, especially if they're underrepresented in tech, again, there's that that constant theme of helping, you know, help helping people. Yeah, and, and I was sort of trying to fit this into my role as a developer. So I'd be doing this, you know, in my free time, or, you know, taking off work to go and travel and talk to people. And it really wasn't until I got my current role, that that became my literal job. And I think so to answer your question. To answer your question, I think that it sort of dawned on me over time that this could be a thing that people paid me to do. And it wasn't until it wasn't until my most recent job search, though, that I actively sought that out. I knew at that point that I wanted this to be my job. I really didn't like I enjoy being on a delivery team. And what do you mean by a delivery team? So a product team, like I enjoy coding, as, you know, part of a team building an application? Right? Okay, so you still enjoy being a software engineer, this wasn't a pivot because you weren't enjoying what you were doing. You just wanted more of the other things that you also enjoyed. Exactly. I was looking for a balance of coding and teaching. Okay. Yeah, this has been the closest that I've gotten to that balance. So in my role, now, a big part of my like, day to day is streaming on Twitch. And I get to decide what that looks like, I get to decide what the programming for that channel is. And so I it gives me this really amazing opportunity to explore all kinds of things that I would never have had the opportunity to just try. So like I'm learning rust, right now. And that's, that's part of my job, I get to learn rust and talk about it from the perspective of a JavaScript developer. Because see, I didn't even know that rust was a programming language that existed until I stumbled upon one of your rust Twitch streams. I love it. And that's part of it, like part of developer relations is like helping other people discover things that you think are cool. Yeah. And it's, it's, that's just such a fun thing to have as part of your job. I love that. Let me see if I can summarize your career trajectory in a way that will be universally appealing to my non technical listeners. So you go to college to learn something kind of technology or like in in the realm of it, but not really. Yeah, software development. It's similar to computer science. Yeah. Okay. So you got so you got this degree, you then start volunteering through, you know, through through a charitable organization. And at that point, it seems like perhaps a seed is planted where you're kind of getting into this place where you enjoy both the tech and lead that intersection you talked about, like teaching and and building and being technical. And from there from volunteering, you got a job as a teacher. And then from there, you know, you got jobs in engineering you got into the community, we started speaking or people are already assuming that you're in Developer Relations, when you're not, and you know, you eventually apply for this job with New Relic become irrelevant. But it seems like there's this like pattern of like doing the job. And then like, the, like, do kind of hold on to this. They say you want to dress for the job that you want, and not the job that you have. And it seems that that's what your actions have always been doing. Your your actions have been? Well, if I have this job today, what would I be doing, and you're doing it and those opportunities come. And I think that that is something that you know, no matter what field we're in, that tends to be how things work. Like, sometimes we want like, the job before, we've proven that we can do it, or whatever the case may be. You know, that's I mean, there's all kinds of discrimination and all that kind of stuff that goes into hiring decisions. But also like, I don't know, it just seems like you were always just kind of in the right place at the right time and putting one foot in front of the other for these opportunities. And now you're at this place where you've been in tech for I don't know exactly how long the definitely less than a decade, right. And now you're in a place where like you said, you're doing what you love, you get to experiment around, you can do whatever you want on your page, and it's part of your job, like you don't have to schedule. Okay, well, I got to do it at six, because we're building this thing, and I can't you know, this is a side project. It's, it's part of your career. So now you get to, again, you're going to probably I would guess, continue on this path of like trying something out. And then after trying it out a job follows, you know, and just kind of continuously kind of built building on that. You know what I mean? I think that's great. Yeah, yeah. And it's something that it didn't, it didn't always feel like, I had a direction. But I do agree that I, I have, in a lot of ways been in the right place at the right time. And that combined with that preparation, and actively pursuing things that interested me, yeah, like that, that makes it so much easier than to jump in and say, Yeah, I'd love to try this thing. Like, my manager jonin came to me with this role. And the way he described this team that he wanted to build. It's, it was exciting, but it also really scary because it's, it's something it's something different and new. And we're we're approaching developer relations in this deeply community centered way, which is very much in line with how I like to live my life. But also, there's risk involved, like we're trying something as a team. Yeah. But it felt so much like what I had been trying to create for myself for a while, eventually, you know, I go through the process, I get a job offer, and I'm like, Okay, well, this, this is what I want, you know, yeah, let's, let's go for it and try it. Let's try it and see what happens. That's amazing. It's like that you're building you were on a collision course towards each other. you're managing one of this team, you wanted this job and, and you know, you found each other. And one thing that I don't actually think we've touched on at all amazingly, is you know, you've been doing all this speaking and speaking is a big part of your, of your whole experience in tech. And you have a theater background. We're literally staring. podcasting is a visual medium, but I'm looking at you on the zoom and you've got posters for a bunch of musicals behind you and I know you've done some, some theater and you kind of combine those two worlds, but you know, what, what is it like for you to be a theater kid who essentially gets paid to perform every day or however, however often you do your twit shows? Yeah, that is, oh my god, hands down. It's so cool. I love it and it it goes back to that this concept of like combining all of these things that I'm really interested in and passionate about, like, I i've I feel like I don't talk about this maybe as often as I should. But I, it's not coding itself that I enjoy, like, I don't feel deeply about a particular technology, it's the things that that technology enables us to do it is the the creative capacity that it gives us. That is exciting to me. And having the ability to take that technical knowledge that I have. And my love of building communities, and also employ my like, theater background. That is just incredible. Like, it gives me so much joy. Yeah, I'll turn on my, I'll start my stream. And you know, somebody irregular will come in and we'll start chatting, and someone will redeem a channel, channel point reward, which is, channel points for anyone not familiar with twitch are points that you accumulate by watching an individual streamer. So yeah, okay, thank you. I also didn't know what that was. I'm still very green when it comes to twitch. Yeah, it's all good. So the longer that you watch this streamer, while they're live, the more points you accumulate. Cool, and the streamer has the option to customize rewards that you can redeem these points for. Yeah. And so one of mine, really, the only custom really custom one I have right now is called serenade. And so they're an age like serenades, and lemonade combined. Like, just just to serenade. So you can renew, you can redeem serenade, and I will sing a little bit of a song for you. I love that you touched on a word, or two words, I guess, technically, that I think is so important. You said creative capacity, you talks about the creative capacity of coding. And I think, God, I'm so glad you brought that up. Because I feel like we fall into this trap sometimes of thinking about things in like black and white terms, these binary terms, it's like some things either left brain or right brain. And people always talk about, Oh, I can't code because I don't know math or smarter or whatever. And it's like, it's just like anything else, like, you know, if you're a dancer dancing is is an art form, it's right brain, but you have to learn the techniques first, and then you can kind of improvise with it. Same with music. Same with painting, same with anything creative. And this is kind of that same thing. And so, to me, I usually I think that you're the embodiment of the advice that people give out to a lot of like aspiring entrepreneurs, especially where they say, find what you're passionate about, and find where it what you're passionate about where those what your skills are, and where there's like a market for it. And finding that intersection, you know, for you in tech and being endeavor out, seems to be perfect, because you're getting this creative outlet, in multiple ways. You're getting the creative outlet of solving problems, and you're getting the creative outlet of expression, because those are two very different types of creativity, I think. Yeah. And it's I think, you know, so many people think that like, oh, coding is this one thing, and or any job is this one thing, and I have to be like this to have this job. It's like, you really don't at all? Absolutely, absolutely. And that's that exact sentiment is what drove me to create title of cons, which is the musical tech conference. I'm organizing. So this was meant to this was meant to happen for the first time in 2020. So like, Oh, I remember. I was I was looking forward to that one. Yeah, me too. Me too. And it's still happening. I promise it is still happening. That that exact thing that combination that intersection of these these different loves is what is what got me really excited about the idea of creating a conference, an entire conference where all of the all of the presentations Are musical indoor theatrical and teach technical concepts like concepts. This was I I've been thinking about this for a long time, but I didn't really know how to bring it together until I saw on Genova, keel and Natalia Margolis perform tail call optimization, the musical at bamyan con in 2019, a tail called optimization, the musical that is great for those of you who don't know, optimization is definitely a buzzword jargon word in the tech industry. So that is great. Yeah, this was, this was a series of Disney song parodies that taught you what tail call optimization is. And so it's it was this incredible, like, one really familiar melody is you could have provided the lyrics you could sing along if you knew the original songs. But I love it also has this like narrative. And so as you are as you're singing along with this, like, absolutely hilarious duo, who have each taken like parts enrolls you are, you're learning something that you can that like, makes, if you're a web developer, that might make your job easier. Like you get that you get that education now, which is it's lodged in your brain. I taught I say all the time, like, if you teach me a song, I will remember the content of that song like I still conjugate a single French verb, a single French verb, because I was taught a song for it in like ninth grade. I love it. My parents, when I was growing up, I had it had this CD for my brother and I, each song was about the multiplication tables. So there's like a song for each one for the ones, the twos, the threes, all the way down, up to like 12. And I still to this day, sometimes do like multiplication in my head based off those songs. Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. I mean, as you're saying, even as I said it, I could hear the for the bar song. Yeah, I know. I'm over here going to that did see, that's so cool. Okay, so I was joking, before we recorded about how I'm doing this, like, la thing of, like, I don't know what I want to do with my life. So I'm gonna make content but like, Oh, no, it's more la that are like, making a musical about tech stuff. I love it. I mean, it's, you're not in LA, but still, it's, it's, I love that so much. Because people think that, like, they have to give up their dreams to be able to, like, make money, and you're literally making musicals about tech. And like, this is your job. People give you money for this, it is in demand, like, you know, and this is just the beginning for you. Like, again, you know, you're less than a decade in and I know you have other stuff going on on the side, too, you know, you have a board game business and stuff. But, man, it's just really, it's really incredible how this life that you've built for yourself. And you know, going back into the, you know, your, your career path, it's it's very clear, at least to me, that even though you have this great position now, like this is something that you've been building towards, since before you even knew this was a thing. So I think it's, I think it's really cool, how you, at each point got to kind of level up into something that better and better and better aligned with what you enjoy it. Yeah, I feel really, really just privileged and lucky and blessed and all of those things, to, to have that and to be able to really, like build the life that I want. And, you know, like you said, like, all of this, all of this stuff. in tech. That means that I can afford to just try things like opening a board game store. Yeah, like I have the freedom in the in the creative license and the money, also the money, the freedom, the division and the money. Yeah. To go off and build the things that I want to exist. I know that and it's things that the world clearly wants or needs, because it's like, the more you do, the bigger your community gets, the bigger your opportunities get. Because, you know, like, what you're doing has value like, this isn't just you just being like, Oh, just make a musical for fine. You're like, no, let's, let's make a musical. But let's make it like valuable for people. Let's help people, you know, let's let's show people that like, Hey, you can be artistic and be intact and not feel like you're getting a part of who you are. And it's so gratifying to talk to people about it. And to see that reaction of like, Oh, my God, I didn't even know that this was a thing that I needed in my life. But I really needed in my life. Yeah, like so many so many people. I've, I've just discovered so many new tech theater friends through talking about this by folks, in some cases, folks who who thought that they were going to have to give up that part of their lives. And it's just really cool to see some of the some of the ways that people are already thought like folding, that those different creative backgrounds into their work in tech. Like it goes beyond it goes beyond title of conflict, people are writing songs, people writing whole shows, people are writing, you know, skits to show different approaches to like code review. It's a whole there's just so much I've seen, I've seen people create, like multimedia multimedia events, which involve like video and dance, and music and all kinds of things. Yeah, there's, there's so much stuff. It's amazing. And I think it's a whole and there's a whole community around creative coding. So like actually producing music and art and all of these things with code. Yeah, I had a, I had a co worker at my first job that learn how to make music with JavaScript, saying we're running out of time here. But I think that that's the main the main lesson here, the main takeaway here, you know, whether you're in tech, and you know, not quite sure what direction you want your path to go, because there's so many different options, or you don't want to be in tech at all, but you're not sure you know, if you're at this crossroads between your passion and a paycheck, you know, start instead of saying, Well, I guess I got to put this passion on a shelf start asking, you know, the how questions like How can I? How can I combine these things? What can I do to like, keep this part of me still alive. And to your point to like, just you said, You met all these other people in theater, and it's because, you know, you're attracting them because you're talking about it. You know, I before I was, like, more open with, like, my spirituality and stuff. If I saw someone posting about like, astrology or Tarot or something, I'd be like, dming them like, Oh, hey, like, let's talk about this. He goes, uh, you, you attract all the people who aren't quite ready to like, have it be part of their public platform. And then from you saying, like, this is who I am. This is what I do. You know? I don't know. It's just it creates a whole other like, layer of opportunity. Absolutely. Absolutely. So yeah, I feel like I could talk to you for two more hours about this. But uh, you know, I, I will make the listeners listen to more tech jargon, I think but I think like I said, I think that this is a great idea is a great story. I think that your your path is a great example, that I hope people can take lessons from, you know, regardless of what what industry they're in. Hmm, me too. And, you know, I am always happy to like chat about how different I'm always happy to chat about how different skill sets might lend themselves to different careers in tech. It's not all about it's not all about being a developer and engineer like, there are so many different ways that you can apply what you already know and care about. Yeah, I mean, this is a topic for a different conversation, probably different guests. I mean, you can get into tech without knowing how to code at all. Completely non technical jobs in tech companies that also pay absorbent salaries. It's, it's like the gold rush of our day, it feels like the tech industry. Come get your cash and then go figure out what you actually want to do. That's fair, that's fair. Do you have anything you want to promote for this episode that's coming out on either the second week of May or the third week. June, anybody is welcome to reach out to me either through Twitter. I am Aisha Blake on Twitter, and I am Aisha codes on Twitch. And I'm always happy to have folks in the chat. Nice. And I'll be sure to put links to both of those in the show notes. Awesome. All right. Thank you for joining me, I Aisha, this was this was great. I actually learned a lot about your story that I didn't already know. And I was just I'm so happy for you. I'm so happy for you that you're in this position. I'm so happy for what this means for the community at large that people like you are out there and that we don't have this, you know, another conversation that could be a whole other hour, we don't have this homogenous representation of what it means to be a person in tech. It's not a million people who look like Mark Zuckerberg and act like Mark Zuckerberg. Oh, yes. Absolutely. Thank you so much. I have a wonderful time with this conversation. And I am just excited to share of the different possible paths. Yeah. Awesome. Well, until next time, Alicia. Bye. All right, once again, that was Aida Blake. I Isha. Not Alicia. I have no idea why I called her Alicia at the end there. Anyway, isn't it cool how Isha was able to kind of get to where she is now just by taking whatever little baby steps she could all along her journey. And if you've been following along with my book quotes and journal prompts, you'll see that what she did is exactly what a lot of successful people have done. You know, Cal Newport talks about it in his book so good, they can't ignore you. It's not big sweeping moves that we take to practically teleport from one phase of our life to another, it's baby steps all along the way, that help us figure out whether or not we're on the right track, you know, we take one step, kind of take the temperature, see what opportunities are available. And then we take the next step forward, and so on and so on. It's really cool to be able to see that in action through someone's life. So I Isha again, just thank you for coming on the show and sharing your story with us. If you want to be part of this book club or not book club, maybe someday, book, quote, journey, you can sign up for it on my website, Leo Yockey. Calm that's leoyocky.com. Every Friday morning, I send out an email with one of my favorite book quotes, as well as a journal prompt to go with it. So if you've been wanting to get into journaling more, if you're just wanting to get a little bit more out of this podcast, this is a great way to do it. And what's really exciting is that this Friday's email is actually going to be a book quote from the guest of next week's show. I'm interviewing an author for the first time ever. Addie woolridge. She's great. Her book, the checklist is already out already a bestseller. And we're pulling a quote from that book. And then we're going to talk a little bit about the book, but mostly about her journey, because she's got a really cool story too. So again, if you want to sign up for that, that's leoyocky.com. You can find me on all the socials at LEOVOL v i n g. That's Leo evolving. Thank you again for listening. And again, if you enjoyed the show, a five star rating, a written review, a screenshot on your Instagram story. All of it goes a really long way. So thank you again so much for being a part of this. And I will see you next week. Stay well, I guess I won't see you because it's a podcast. And podcasting is an audio medium, but you know what I mean? Anyway, stay evolving.