Who Is Zac
Hi, I'm Zac Ranck, a full-time software engineer. First off, thank you for reading my blog. It's great to have you here! Now a little bit more about me. I was born and raised in the Salt Lake City area in what nowadays is known as the "silicon slopes ." It's an apt name for what I call home; I was involved with computer technology from an early age, whether it was creating websites on Geocities or developing games for my PSP (Playstation Portable) or other devices.
Today I proudly look back on a professional development career that's still growing strong over a decade later. Over that span, I've had the opportunity to explore various roles such as UX, Fullstack Development, mobile applications, Business Analysis, DevOps, and Quality Assurance. My career path did take an odd turn in that I went from development to QA. Working at a small company, I wore many hats and took over QA responsibilities. I loved it and haven't looked back.
Development to QA, it's rare that you see that. So why did it happen? Well, I love strategy and problem-solving, and it so happens that QA is all about that. It takes work to figure out how to spot pain points coming down the line. The other side is that QA has plenty of room to grow and innovate. Coming from a development background gives me a unique skill set that I can use to do just that. It also means I'm often pushing the boundary and exploring how QA can fit into DevOps.
I enjoy mentoring; there's nothing more rewarding than sharing what you know and seeing people take off and grow. That enjoyment fits in perfectly with the Atlassian QA model called Quality Assistance. It involves the QE taking a more hands-on approach to the code base, almost pair-programming with the developers. I subscribe to this model and highly recommend giving it a read. You can do that here.
Don't let the QE title dissuade you from thinking I don't enjoy programming; I love it. I work on various personal and open-source projects outside the QA and DevOps World. My side projects allow me to scratch that coding itch and deep-dive down new tech stacks.
Currently, I'm working with Web3 and Blockchain technologies which overlap with my QA work. It's gratifying knowing that what you're figuring out how to automate and implement doesn't exist or is very niche. There isn't a stack overflow solution for much of it, meaning I must thoroughly understand how things work and refer to the official documentation.
I also take on freelance or consulting projects. Sometimes lending a hand to non-profits or even just helping with coding questions. If you need help or want to learn more about my previous work and the services I provide, please look at my services page or send me a message.
My Favorite Tech
Here is a list of some languages and frameworks I enjoy working with:
- Firebase / Firestore
- Google Cloud Platform
- E2E Testing Frameworks
- Lucid Charts
My Favorite Books
These are some of my favorite books that have left a lasting impact on me:
- The Anatomy of Peace
- Leadership and Self Deception
- The Go-Giver
- The Outward Mindset
- Meditations (Marcus Aurelius)
- Thinking Fast & Slow
- Atomic Habits
Sampling of fiction books I've enjoyed:
- The Dark Tower series
- The Divide series
- The Dune series
When I'm not coding, I enjoy college football; that's only partially accurate since I've managed to turn that passion into a couple of coding projects. I also enjoy basketball and soccer. I'm fond of the outdoors and feel spoiled living where I do. I can drive a half hour in one direction and be in the mountains or an hour in the other and be in the desert with amazing canyons.