Who Am I? I’m Andrew Connell, a web developer from St Johns, Florida who loves to learn new things in tech and help others learn them too. Microsoft has recognized me every year since 2005 with their annual MVP Award. I’ve been teaching for 10 years in just about every way you can. During most of that time I’ve focused on enterprise platforms such as Microsoft’s .NET Framework, Office platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Azure. Lately, this has translated to emerging technologies such as Node.js, Angular, and Docker.
I share this knowledge in the various classes I’ve taught (both in-person and online), sessions at international conferences, on my blog and in the podcast I co-host (the Microsoft Cloud Show). Today the best vehicle for me to help people is with video, and that is why I’ve started Voitanos.
I started my technology-focused blog in 2003 as my own personal tech journal but over the years it became my publishing platform. Over time, my blog became a trusted resource in the industry and continues through today.
The natural progression from writing blog posts is to work on a bigger and more structured project. This means writing a book! After contributing to numerous books as a co-author and many technical articles (which you can find in this list of publications and books on my Amazon author page), I wrote my first book, Professional SharePoint 2007 Web Content Management Development.
In 2009 I co-founded an in-person classroom training company, Critical Path Training, that focused on Microsoft Office and SharePoint related courses. During this time I learned a lot about the training business, what worked and what didn’t work so well. Classroom training is a great resource, but in today’s world of frequently improving products and rapid releases, a one-time classroom experience doesn’t work in favor of a video based offering that can be easily updated. I owned and operated Critical Path Training with my business partner until early 2013 when I sold my interest to seek new challenges.
“Andrew was great. The best experience I've had with Critical Path Training so far, and one of the best instructors I've had in similar courses.”
“Andrew Connell was the best instructor I have had from Critical Path Training. He was able to quickly and easily provide answers to the real world questions and relate them to the course.”
“This course exceeded my expectations! The depth of the material was fantastic and the labs reinforced the concepts with real world examples.”
I spent a lot of time authoring courseware while involved with Critical Path Training. These were big courses too!
After CPT I continued writing courses for customers, including Microsoft. Microsoft hired me numerous times to write courses on Office 365 Development and their Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) Program to name just two.
Delivering the Partner Center SDK Developer Training course I authored and produced for Microsoft.
During all this time I was working my way up through the ranks of presenting at user groups, regional conferences ultimately moving up to major international conferences. Throughout the years I have been fortunate enough to share what I’ve learned at conferences like Microsoft’s TechEd, Build, Ignite & SharePoint conferences, Angular’s ngConf & AngularU, SPTechCon, SP Live360 among many others all around the world in North America, Europe, Asia & Australia. I get a rush in sharing knowledge and making sure the people who attend have fun learning too!
That's me delivering a full-day pre-conference workshop at Microsoft Ignite 2015.
I love presenting to huge rooms like this!
“Much of the information offered was not available in any clearly understandable form elsewhere. Andrew Connell is the best! He's one of the best instructors and speakers anywhere, on any topic, and it's always a privilege to listen and learn from him.”
“AC is one of those trainers who I try to never miss at conferences. Even if I have seen the session several times already, I always learn something essential each time, and I enjoy myself doing it.”
“Andrew is a renown speaker and instructor who can explain the most complex matters in a comprehensible manner. I would highly recommend his courses to all developers who want to improve their skills and learn about the developer opportunities on the Microsoft platform.”
Another education vehicle I’ve used is video. I’ve published numerous on-demand video courses through Pluralsight, a popular platform… you can the list of nearly 20 courses I’ve published on my bio page on Pluralsight.
This experience of publishing my own courses on another platform for me thinking about the ideal educational experience. On-demand video nailed it, but I wanted more flexibility in how my content was delivered and how people could consume it.
I believe that on-demand video-based training is one of the most effective ways to learn. You not only get to see how someone does something but as an instructor, you can convey excitement and passion that you simply can’t do in print.
So why did I start Voitanos? Voitanos is where you will find my courses going forward. This way I can control the learning experience and delivery to consumers in the way that works best for them, free from the limitations of existing platforms.
While Voitanos will initially have traditional video-based courses that have a similar delivery format to what you see in other places, this is just the tip of the iceberg. I have some big & very different ideas on how to best deliver the perfect online learning experience.
But you have to start somewhere… so just stay tuned.
Until then, I invite you to join in on this journey with me!