First, the epiphany -- despite all the fires, and multiple top priorities, and projects, and all the other fireballs of stress that scream over my desk -- there is nothing I can do for Dakim that's more important than hiring. Over the next two years, I'm probably going to add significant headcount to my department -- and nothing is more important than making sure I have the right people when I need them. (With strong emphasis on RIGHT. We're looking for rockstars.)
I need to start going to conventions, user group meetings, etc. -- immediately I'm going to start attending the Los Angeles Linux User Group meetings and the local Python SIG. I'm not sure what else I'm going to do, but it's becoming obvious that I don't scale -- that the long-term solution is NOT for me to increase my skills, as I've been doing, but to hire people who have the skills.
That said, in the short term, it's clear that there's three technical areas where I must improve my skills:
- I need to be a world-class guru in apt-based package management.
- I need to greatly improve my skills at low-level TCP/IP issues -- packet captures, diagnosis of networking problems, etc.
- I need to greatly improve my skills at dealing the Linux kernel, on all levels -- compiling, kernel options, loadable modules & drivers, etc.
I guess it's good to have a clear vision of where I need to go. Now I need to get there.