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Interview with Adi Wijaya – Author of Data Engineering with Google Cloud Platform

Adi Wijaya is the author of Data Engineering with Google Cloud Platform, we got the chance to sit down with him and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.

Q: What are your specialty areas?

Adi: Data Engineering.

Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?

Adi: I am a Strategic Cloud Data Engineer in Google Cloud. My primary responsibility is to help big organizations understand how to run a data environment at Google Cloud Platform and the best practices. I believe in the power of scale. When more organizations benefit from the Google Cloud Platform, the more value they can bring to the end-users, which will be back to our society. When Packt offered the chance to author the book, my sense of responsibility and belief was still the same. 

I believe, writing this book for public consumption will bring even more adoption to data engineering and the cloud. I hope all the effort can provide immense value to our society.

Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?

Adi: The book is based on my eight years working in the data space. In those years, I worked with dozens of companies worldwide as an advisor, architect, and engineer. A big part of writing the book is my experience of working with Google Cloud in the last two years.

Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?

Adi: One of the major challenges is deciding the best approach to explaining a topic as chapters in a book. Knowing that readers may come from different backgrounds and levels of knowledge, it’s always challenging to find the best fit for all content.

I overcome them by constantly asking for feedback from potential readers. I shared the drafts with people who may be a reader, and I got a lot of feedback and perspective on how to decide the best approach.

Q. What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?

Adi: The technologies in the book are Google Cloud Platform, BigQuery, Hadoop, Airflow, and many other GCP technologies. These technologies so far are the best in the market. When an organization implements these new technologies, they called it “modernization”. The reason is that they represent modern architecture and are believed as part of the current and the future.

Q. Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?

Adi: The book is focused on the practice compared to the product features. When looking for product features, documentation from the internet is always the best source of information. But when readers want to start learning and implementing the product, the practice is not always clear.

Too much information is as problematic as too little information. This book is focused on giving a clear path, practice, and example code for the readers. This approach will be the best for anyone who wants to start learning both Data Engineering practice and Google Cloud Platform.

Q. What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away with from the book?

Adi: The key takeaways:
1. The key role of Data Engineers
2. Clear GCP products mapping to Data Engineering
3. The confidence in implementing Data Pipeline on GCP by exercising the provided code

Q. What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?

Adi: Top tips:
– There are many technologies to be learned, not all have a good future. Choose the right one.
– The best way to learn tech is by practice. Always find a way to get the best environment with the best practice. Learn from them and if possible, be a part of them.

Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?

Adi: Writing with Packt is my first experience of authoring a book. There were many up and down moments along the process. Starting with excitement during the first chapter, down when knowing how many chapters are left, and at the end of the day finalizing the whole book. In the whole process, the Packt team was of great support in all possible ways.

Writing is not always the best thing for technical people, but being able to start one and with the help of the Packt team, the process will become easier.

Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?

Adi: Data Science Indonesia (https://datascience.or.id)

Q. What are your favorite tech journals? How do you keep yourself up to date on tech?

Adi: Google White papers.

Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?

Adi: I followed Packt’s template to start planning the book. It’s super important to have a clear vision for each chapter. With a clear vision, the planning is straightforward, for example by deciding in a chapter what are the headers, key points, how many pages, when it should be done.

I always wrote each chapter in the following order:
1. Write title and headings
2. Draft very rough content on each heading. Ignore all concerns about the format, grammar, typos. Ideas and imagination are the most important here.
3. Write example codes
4. Back to the draft to be aligned with the codes
5. Fix all the writing practice (format, grammar, typos, image, etc)

Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?

Adi: Don’t fall into the trap of perfection. As long as we consistently follow the process, the book will be finished. Anytime a chapter or the book is finished, you can always ask for feedback for improvement. One thing to be avoided is to give up.

You can find Adi’s book on Amazon by following this link.

Data Engineering with Google Cloud Platform on Amazon.com