2014: A Retrospective

As per tradition, I wanted to take some time to reflect on the year that passed and share publicly about my year. I’ve found that it’s an easy way to keep myself accountable to myself.

Year in Summary

2014 was a year of some pretty big changes both personally and professionally. From a professional perspective, I left WordJack for another adventure namely Kinetic Cafe. WordJack was an awesome experience  and a company that’s run by some pretty fantastic people. I’m proud of the time that I was able to spend at WordJack and also the things the company was able to accomplish during my stint there. I’m honoured to be a contributor to their success. Kinetic Cafe is a very different adventure altogether that deserves a focused entry by itself.
One of the oddities of 2014 was that traffic on my blog jumped massively. I typically got at best 1500 views a year on any pages. Traffic would typically be sourced from posts to my various social media profiles. This year, I average about 1500 views per month. I think most of the traffic stems from a handful of blogs about installing Plex, resolving some Rails issues on OS X and setting up Sublime for OS X. While the traffic numbers are flattering, the thing I’m probably most proud about is that my blogs are providing some value to the community that I draw a lot from. Numbers wise, I did write more in 2014 then in 2013 but still not quite a blog every 2 weeks. I also primarily focused on thekunit.com from a blog perspective. I’m still mixed about the various web properties that I have.
As part of the change of work, I’m now travelling to work by subway. My commute has increased about 2.5 hours a day. On the plus side, as my commute starts and ends at terminal stations, I’m usually able to get a seat so that commute time has given me some additional personal time which I never got while working from home. In that time, I get to read, write, code and sometimes sleep if I’m especially exhausted. I write some code every week now and check in to my personal repositories. I’ve spun up a few pet projects but none of them are ever at the point where they generate direct business value. I’ve even created a base Rails template of features that are common in most of the ideas I have.

Keep Doing

  • Keep coding – I enjoy coding and I’d like to continue to do that. It’s a good break from my day-to-day job and it allows me to invoke my creative side
  • Keep writing – writing is a good way for me to reflect on the things that I’m doing and observing. It also continues to force me to think through some of my ideas and opinions

Stop Doing

  • Stop working on too many ideas – I’ve started on a number of projects by myself as well as with others. None of them are far enough for it to actually be useful. While they’ve been gratifying personally as they’ve allowed me to spend some time writing code but they haven’t been useful beyond that
  • Stop allowing work to be consuming – work will always be crazy; I know that. While I’ve actively capped the amount of hours I work, I haven’t done as good a job of not let it consume my mind as well. I find myself being mentally exhausted and towards the end of the year, there was this dull fog floating over me where I was working lots but not necessarily focused or productive

Start Doing

  • Start reading more – I read a lot of blog entries to keep up with my work but I haven’t taken the time to do any leisure reading. My goal is to read 2 books for pleasure this year and 4 books for work.
  • Start focusing on 2 projects at any given time – I want to work only on two projects at any given point in time; one as a personal pet project and the other will be with whichever friends who want to work through an idea together
  • Start being more healthy – I need to work out more often. My goal is to work out at least 3 times a week
Happy 2015!