Amazon's Star Engineer Has A Sweet Life, Lives On A Boat And Works From Hawaii

Amazon James HamiltonAmazon’s James Hamilton

Photo: YouTube/AMD SeaMicro

Meet James Hamilton, a distinguished engineer who is responsible for keeping Amazon’s $4.5 billion tech infrastructure business running while inventing new ways to make its data centres more efficient.He’s responsible for keeping a giant portion of the Internet up and running. Sites like Netflix, Pinterest, Reddit and Airbnb all rely on Amazon’s web services.

Hamilton is one of only a handful of people allowed to talk and blog about Amazon’s Web Services publicly, reports Wired’s Robert McMillan. He’s been at Amazon for just over four years and came to fame at Microsoft where he led a secretive group called the “Data centre Futures” team. Microsoft poached him from IBM.

But the coolest thing about Hamilton may be that he lives on a boat, the Dirona.

We’re not talking a stationary Seattle houseboat, either. He often sails the Dirona to Hawaii and works remotely from there. (View the pictures of his 52-foot, custom-built yacht.)

McMillan describes Hamilton’s unique lifestyle:

About four years ago, James and Jennifer Hamilton sold their house and their car and most of their worldly possessions, and they moved onto the Dirona. Now, when he’s berthed in Seattle, Hamilton bikes to Amazon headquarters, does his shopping via Amazon Prime, and picks up his mail at the local UPS store. But he’s untethered. Sometimes, he takes the boat to Hawaii — and works from there.

In short, he hacked his life. He rethought it and turned it into something new. He’s the sort of person who’s willing to hack anything, and that’s why Amazon wants him.

Now Watch: How To Get The Amazon Appstore on Your Phone

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.