Hi, my name is Sameera Shaakunthala. (You can also call me Shaaku 😊)
I’m a Sri Lankan information technology professional.
Currently I live and work in the Netherlands.
I grew up in Ambalangoda - a coastal city in Sri Lanka.
I hold a Bachelor’s Degree in Information and Communication Technology, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Information Security from University of Colombo School of Computing.
I work as a Customer Operations Manager I at HERE Technologies - the Open Location Platform company.
I built an exciting career from nothing, to the level of a subject matter expert of JIRA.
I have previously worked with teams in Sri Lanka, United States and India.
I have 8+ years of total work experience, most relating to Atlassian JIRA.
I am a Toastmaster, and the current Vice President Public Relations of HERE Netherlands Toastmasters Club.
My hobbies are watching science experiments on YouTube, reading, listening to music and motorcycling.
I have a passion for problem solving, debugging tech stuff as well as mentoring people while self-learning.
My wishlist may be found here. ☺️
I am not actively looking for new career opportunities at this moment.
However, if you have any nonprofit volunteering opportunities, or anything related to Toastmasters I may be interested in.
This is not for money, but for the sole purpose of socializing.
I have some time in the weekends.
Thanks for checking in.
Are you girl or boy? Uncle 😂😂! Just because of the spelling of my name people confuse the gender. In some personal names in Sinhala, gender of a personal name may be suggested by accent and which is why I have put a double-A to make it sound correct in English.
Can you hack? Sometimes — only when my mind is free. However, definition of hacking means “Playful Cleverness”; not just breaking into someone’s computer.
What are some of your passions?
Learning new stuff, mentoring a team with a ‘servant leader’ mindset, and making the ‘impossible’ happen. Other than professional desires, I’m a petrolhead biker.
As I am new in the Netherlands, one of my personal priorities is to integrate into European culture and to learn Dutch, entirely self-motivated.
What kind of expertise do you have?
I’m a self-learned JIRA administrator and more. I have experience with customizing JIRA in an out, serious troubleshooting, automating some of JIRA administration tasks (that involves a bit of hacking), and a bit of add-on (plugin) development.
I’m also experienced with other tools in Atlassian stack, but the main concentration is JIRA.
I also have experience with setting up MySQL and Oracle Databases, PL/SQL programming as well. I know a bit of database troubleshooting too.
I also have good presentation and coaching skills, thanks to my Toastmasters career.
Overall, I’m a balanced technology-aware and business process-aware person.
Where’s your portfolio? Upon request, I can share my résumé privately. It contains a summary of my project work. Also, you can check out the links up there to understand my work history and some of my open source contributions.
Are you a blogger?
Yes I am! Once I a very active blogger mostly writing my own learning adventures in technology and a bit of personal stuff. It was entirely non-profit and for fun. Unfortunately I don’t find a lot of time for blogging like I had during 2008 - 2010.
Links to my sites are up there.
What are some of your extra-curricular activities? I’ve contributed as a visiting lecturer at University of Colombo School of Computing (as subject matter expert of JIRA).
Windows or Linux? Linux. Ubuntu-only user since 2008.
iOS or Android? Android. I love diversity.
What languages do you speak? Native Sinhala, near-native English, elementary Dutch (A1), and very basic Tamil.
Spreek u Nederlands? Ik spreek wat Nederlands. Vanaf de eerste maand in Nederland volg ik Nederlands lessen. Binnen 5 - 6 maanden heb ik praten in het Nederlands gestart. Nu, na volgende 4 maanden kan ik een kleine conversatie blijven. Ik hoef geen Nederlands te leren, maar nu heeft dit mijn nieuwe hobby worden.
What are some miscellaneous but important things? I have some trouble with color vision - explains why this site is black and white. (Despite the fact I’ve got some graphic design skills with GIMP) I’m a teetotaler. I refrain from consuming alcohol, so please do not insist when I refuse a drink. Never done drugs, never done tobacco, I’m clean!
So, what do you think? If I can be of any help with something, just say Hello and I’ll get in touch.
If you wish to arrange a phone call please request mobile phone number by email. International calling is possible with IDD, WhatsApp or Signal Messenger.