In this episode, Nabeel Mahmood and Phillip Koblence chat with Rob Coyle, Community Technical Program Manager at Open Compute Project Foundation, who has a rich background in digital infrastructure. Starting in the aviation sector, Rob worked on updating aircraft systems, giving him a strong understanding of electronic and mechanical systems. However, it was the data center industry that truly captured his interest. Over the years, he’s taken on various roles, from hands-on engineering to business development. Rob’s involvement with the Open Compute Community stands out, especially his work on the OCP Modular Data Center project and the OCP-Ready program. Today, Rob is focused on promoting open-source solutions and sustainability in data centers. He’s passionate about sharing his knowledge and helping others in the industry. With a background in hands-on learning, Rob is all about practical solutions and collaboration in the world of digital infrastructure.
Nabeel and Phil begin their journey with Rob by going back in time to learn more about his start. As Rob shares that he comes from a family of carpenters Phil is interested to learn if Rob thought he would become a carpenter as well:
“I think I always had the inkling that I was going to build something. I’m not a skilled carpenter. I would say, maybe it’s good I didn’t.”
Phil digs a little deeper to find out how aviation came into the picture and Rob shares a story about his family’s first computer:
“So, I had some old work machine that was a Commodore 64… and they said give it to the kid, let him figure it out. And I had the knack and from there, I’ve been playing with computers ever since. So then being in the aviation industry, eventually, these kinds of systems and passion for technology and this, I guess, born with the desire to build something pulled me into the data center industry.”
Nabeel points out that Rob has had a very interesting career, and he is just starting out. He wants to know what is next for Rob:
“It’s about learning more and being more resourceful to help people within our industry and take the advantages that I’ve been given over the last 10 years and this opportunity to participate and find an industry that I truly passionately love is what it’s all about for me.”
Rob Coyle’s episode provides a unique perspective on transitioning from the aviation sector to the dynamic world of data centers. His journey, marked by adaptability and a genuine passion for technology, offers listeners a glimpse into the challenges and rewards of embracing change. For those navigating their own career paths or seeking inspiration in the tech industry, Rob’s reflections serve as a testament to the power of perseverance and continuous learning.