I am Rob Jefferson, a Philadelphia-based engineer (of sorts), programmer (of sorts), data geek, policy researcher, punk rocker, and flâneur.


These days, I am a cloud engineer for Cisco. While I work primarily in the private cloud space (especially OpenStack), my work is at the interface of OpenStack and Kubernetes on the one hand, and public and private clouds on the other. I also have a penchant for monitoring and observability, to help make the systems easier to understand and troubleshoot.

Previously, I was a Site Reliability Engineer for Comcast. Much of my work involved supporting private cloud infrastructure, especially OpenStack. I helped design and build supoort tools to make the private cloud easier to use. I've planned, deployed, and operateed OpenStack clusters distributed across multiple data centers..

In a previous capacity, I worked for Solutions for Progress, where I was in the systems group. My work focused primarily on back-end tools for other developers, as well as for The Benefit Bank. Later in the position, I focused on web application development with JavaScript and Django, as well as improving application deployment strategies.

In the more distant past, I was a research associate for the same firm, specializing in the development and analysis of innovative social enterprises. My work covered a variety of areas, from devising new models of urban farming to methods of improving the affordability of health care, from education to taxation. Some of this involved the construction and management of large spreadsheets.

I received my undergraduate degree in economics from Carnegie Mellon in 2008 (with some courses in computer science, urban history, and philosophy of measurement in there for good measure), and spent time from 2008 to 2010 as a graduate student at Northwestern University's economics department, where I subsisted on a steady diet of sandwich estimators (biased and otherwise), Pareto equilibria, and Wiener processes.

In my past, I have worked in several fields and industries, from business analysis for retail, to system administration for cancer research, neuroscience, and finance.

For work in DevOps/SRE and/or data science, I have a résumé (LaTeX source).


I have a variety of interests, including photography, fountain pens, music, mathematics, sports, and programming.

From 1998 to 2008, I had a radio show on WRCT. (At one point, I had multiple shows, including hosting a long-running metal show.) It was a great deal of fun, and I do miss being on the air -- if anyone has suggestions on doing radio (either in Philly or on the Internet), please let me know!

I can be found at a number of other places, including but not limited to:

Should you want to get in touch with me, send email to "rob at techstep dot tychonoff dot org". (Remove, of course, one of the "dot"s and the reference to the esteemed Russian topologist.)