3 ways to introduce yourself to Google Cloud (for free!)

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Photo courtesy of Thomas Leuthard(CC Attribution)

“The name is Cloud. Google Cloud.”

Getting to know a new technology can be intimidating. Maybe not as intimidating as meeting the world’s top secret agent, but still. And with 52% of enterprise companies in this Forbes contributor survey identifying themselves as “cloud first”, the pressure is on.

So what’s the best way for you to introduce yourself to the cloud? Here are three easy ways to start familiarizing yourself with Google Cloud. Even better, these resources are free of charge.

Are you ready for your Google Cloud introduction?

1. Google Cloud’s free trial

The fastest way to get started with GCP: new users are eligible for a $300 free trial. You can test-drive GCP with a new project, or try completing a Codelab or two.

2. Deep-dive webinars

Spend time with the experts! This webinar series offers five sessions, and you have two remaining opportunities to attend: 3/23 and 3/29.

You can make a whole day of it. Start at 10:00 PDT and learn how to take advantage of Google-grade security and industry-leading pricing and performance. Then at 1:00, see how to store petabytes of data with no upfront payment, no administrative costs, and no licensing fees. Finish the day with building several machine learning solutions. Or register for all of them!

Here’s the full course list:

Sessions are available today and 3/29, so claim your seat now! Click here to register.

3. Google Next ‘17 TFDA (too far, didn’t attend)

Help yourself to hours of product demos and announcements that happened at Next, whether or not you made it to San Francisco earlier this month. Here at Qwiklabs we are psyched to investigate how we can use Google Cloud Spanner, the first and only relational database service that is both strongly consistent and horizontally scalable. Click here for a demo.

Catch up on the latest with each day’s keynotes and breakout sessions. Start here with the highlights of day 1.

Google Labs just released!

Qwiklabs has big news – Google labs are available now! Just in time for Next ’17. Even better news: all Google Cloud labs are available free of charge (for a limited time).

Click here to see all Google Cloud labs.

If you are already a Qwiklabs user, you can use your Qwiklabs credentials to log in (even though the URL is slightly different than what you’re used to seeing). You will find Google Cloud labs for all experience levels. Want to learn the basics? Try one of these introductory labs:

Or, expand your skillset with a more advanced lab:

Questers, we’ve got something for you too! Be one of the first to add a Google Cloud badge to your resume. Enroll now, and complete your quest while all the labs are available free!

Google Cloud Qwiklabs badges

Got questions I didn’t answer? I’m here to help. Just post a comment here and we’ll get back to you right away.

Happy lab-taking!

Power-up your resume with a certification

Google cloud is making waves in the enterprise space by increasing speed and efficiency for companies like Evernote, solving complex problems for a fraction of the cost in medical research, and working with industry leaders like Snap to enable the latest mobile video technologies. As companies move to the cloud, demand for technical professionals continues to grow.

According to Glassdoor.com, the average Cloud Architect salary in the US is over $140,000. Are you strategizing your next career move? How do you prove you have what it takes to be a cloud architect, and set yourself (and your resume) apart?

Earning a certification is a smart way to fast-track your cloud career. Certifications help people and companies connect. And a Google Cloud certification puts you at the forefront of an accelerating industry.

Browse certifications & register.

Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect

The Google Certified Professional – Cloud Architect exam is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your skills. The certification proves your ability to design, develop and manage dynamic solutions that are robust, scalable and highly available.

Are you going to Next ‘17? Get certified while you’re there and grow your network (pass the exam and you’ll get exclusive access to the certification lounge, too!).

Next ’17: The Cloud Event of the Year

Next ‘17 is the most influential cloud event of the year, and it’s only 21 days away. Get up close and personal with Google cloud. Qwiklabs will be there – hope you can make it too!

Click here to register.

What do you want to get out of Next ‘17?

Next-ers will see keynotes from industry leaders, including Diane Greene and Sundar Pichai of Google.

Next '17 Keynote Speakers

In addition to the keynotes, you’ll get access to over 200 technical, strategic, and hands-on sessions on topics such as breakthrough machine learning, advanced analytics, modern application development, and every-level privacy and security. Review the full agenda and  customize your schedule.

Looking for insights on security, infrastructure, and enterprise migration? Get expert insights during sessions on topics such as:

Looking for something more developer-focused? You’ll find that too:

Next ’17 is a unique opportunity to network with your peers and thought leaders. This singular event brings experts and enthusiasts together to build the future of cloud.

Register now. See you there!

Notice something different about us?

We hope so! Over the last few months we’ve made a few changes to our website, and with the New Year we released the new Qwiklabs.com main page. 

Here are the new features you get:

  • Find what you’re looking for quickly and easily with the search tool at the top of the page. Simply type the AWS topic you’re interested in, and you’ll see all of the available AWS training resources in Qwiklabs. 

For example, are you curious about the new Amazon Aurora service announced at re:Invent? There’s a lab for that! 

  • Browse the catalog to see the full list of Quests and labs. 

  • Blocked account? Bummer, but it happens if you lose access to your email account. You can use the self-service unblock tool to recover your account. You can get to the unblock tool from the sign-in page (alternatively you can always shoot us an email at Support@qwiklabs.com and we’ll be happy to assist). 

Any credits you have purchased are unchanged. You can still use your credits in the Qwiklabs catalog. If you are a subscriber, your subscription has not changed. 

Check it out today – hope you like it!

An AWS challenge

How do you learn new skills? Do you read manuals? Watch videos? Listen to experts? Do you learn best by spending time in a “sandbox”? Or do you prefer getting tossed into the deep end with no floats? 

At Qwiklabs, we are passionate about hands-on learning. And we have something new for those of you who learn best jumping into the deep water of AWS environment setup and troubleshooting: the Challenge Lab.

Let

Photo courtesy of peasap(CC Attribution)

Finishing strong at re:Invent

re:Inventors, you have been AWS-ome this week! You have earned a total of 292 Quest badges. The most popular Quest so far? Solutions Architect-Associate Exam Prep, closely followed by Serverless Web Apps with Amazon DynamoDB

Total number of labs served? 10,502 and counting! 

The Hands-On Labs room is open today until noon. That means last call is around 11 am. Are you close to finishing a Quest? Complete the Quest, earn your badge, and claim your free Qwiklabs t-shirt. They are going fast, so the sooner the better. 

Learn AWS with hands on labs

re:Invent Your Resume

re:Invent 2016 is going strong – new services and expanded capabilities are being announced almost hourly. Whether you are in Las Vegas or keeping an eye on new developments at home, it’s the perfect time to start reinventing your career. AWS experts are in demand, and Qwiklabs is a great tool to expand your Cloud and AWS smarts.

One way to maximize your resume is to add a Qwiklabs Quest badge (click here to see all available Quests). Did you know that Quest badges are AWS-authorized? When you complete a Quest and earn a badge, do yourself a favor and add a qwik line to your resume.

What’s a Quest? It’s a collection of hands-on labs, usually between 6 and 8 labs total, geared towards learning a specific area of AWS. For example, the Lambda Quest is an 8-labber. It starts with the Intro to AWS Lambda lab, and progresses through more advanced use cases, including building an Alexa skill with Lambda, and finishes with a lab exploring how to access RDS and ElastiCache behind a VPC with Lambda. (It also happens to be one of the most popular Quests. Interested? Enroll here.) Pick from 20+ Quests, including certification prep Quests – something for everyone! 

Click here to pick your Quest (enrolling is free).

Spotlight Labs at re:Invent

Have you taken a Spotlight Lab session at re:Invent yet? Spotlight labs are a totally new type of event this year. You can register online – but in case the session does not fit your schedule, or in the event that the session is full and you’re at the end of the waitlist, you can always take any of the four labs at your own pace. If you’re at re:Invent, all AWS labs are available in the Hands-On Labs room. 200 workstations, experts throughout the room to help answer your questions, and snacks!

This year’s Spotlight Labs:

Fear and Lab-Taking in Las Vegas

Big day in the Hands-On Labs room – we are open, labs are hopping, and there’s a seat for you! 3808… 9… 10 labs served so far. We’re open today from 8 am till 4 pm. We’re closed for a couple of hours (for a Spotlight Lab session – did you sign up?) then we open our doors at 8:30 pm till midnight. Come be night owls with us! We’ll have snacks, beverages, prizes, and all the labs you can handle. Details here: http://reinvent.qwiklabs.com/.

Qwiklabs at re:Invent

What you should know:

  • Labs take 20 – 90 minutes to complete. 
  • Labs span many different services. Check out our catalog here. Something for everyone!
  • Enroll in a Quest and earn a t-shirt! A Quest is 6-8 labs focused on a particular subject area. Finish the Quest and earn a badge – looks great on a resume!
  • Try out the totally new Challenge Lab – finish with 100% completion and claim your prize.

Elsewhere at re:Invent….