Twelve Months Past, Twelve Months Ahead

Yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of this blog. If you weren’t around in the beginning, you probably missed some cool posts. And if you were around in the beginning, you’ve probably forgetting about some cool posts. So here’s a recap of the past year’s highlights and my plans for the next twelve months:

The Highlights.

Did invites for Google Wave cause a slew of phishing attacks?

This was one of the first posts I wrote for the blog. It was based on the true story of how I fell for a (thankfully harmless) phishing scam, and some thoughts on phishing in general. It’s probably my favourite post from 2009.

Opera vs Reality

This post, from January 2010, is what I often describe as my favourite post. I’m a total browser-geek, so it was nice to let out a bunch of thoughts about what makes some browsers more successful than others. This was also the first post after I decided to commit to a weekly posting schedule.

Improving Performance in Flex and Scaling BlazeDS

This is my most popular post. It’s the first post I wrote for this blog that pulls in a consistent amount of Google traffic, and it’s easily the most niche piece I’ve ever written. Let that be a lesson to you other techie blog-newbs: specs sells.

The Breakfast Experiment

This was the first “experiment” post I wrote, where I tried to cook a full breakfast for myself every morning for a month. I’m planning on running more posts like this next year, because it was fun and I learned a lot from doing it. Stay tuned!

Make Every Day New Year’s Eve

This was the first post I wrote on the subject of motivation, and it’s right up there with that piece on Opera for the title of my favourite post all year. I really like my “voice” in the post, I came up with a great title, and hopefully a few people found it useful.

How to Promote a Mall in the year 2010

This is the first post I wrote that went some (extremely minor) degree of viral. It’s about a mall near my house, and how their marketing team is way, way better than the marketing team at every other mall in Ottawa. It was neat seeing my post shared on a couple of social networks, and this is another one that gets a bit of search traffic.

The Vegas Photo

This “post” triggered the highest single-day traffic burst in this blog’s short life. If you haven’t seen it already, you might want to check it out.

Find Yourself a Canary

It’s difficult to include such a recent post, because I haven’t had a whole lot of time to reflect on it. But it appears this story about my passive interactions with a coworker has resonated with a lot of people, so I thought it warranted inclusion. This post has made the most people tell me in person that they really liked it, which always makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

The Next Twelve Months.

I ended up being a bit busier than I expected in 2010 (most notably, I’m now married) so there were a few things I meant to do that got pushed back a bit. Here’s what I’m going to try to do before October 2011:

Write a short ebook.

I feel like I’ve picked up a lot of knowledge about blogging over the past year, and I thought it might be fun to wrap that up in a quick ebook and share it with the world. In particular, I’m thinking that other small-time bloggers that are just starting out might find something like that useful. And if they don’t, well, that’s ok too.

Run more “experiments”.

I thought the breakfast experiment was a lot of fun, and that I could turn it into an infrequent series where I commit to doing something a bit unusual for a while and let you know how it goes. Look for the second installment in a month or two.

Share more “hacks”.

The canary post was listed as a productivity hack, which it is. I have a bunch more of these that I can share (apparently I do a lot of little quirky things to get myself through the day). I might start doing them on the occasional Friday as quick half-posts — we’ll see how it goes.

Re-design the blog.

A confession: I’m not a horrible designer, and I’m a veritable wizard with html/css. When this blog launched, the theme I chose was just a placeholder until I got around to designing my own theme (which I am entirely capable of doing). I’ve been taking notes about ideas for months, but due to various other commitments, I never found time to put any of them into action. So, (officially) sometime in 2011, this blog is going to get a whole new look and feel.

Any feedback?

If I didn’t mention your favourite post in my summary, I would absolutely love to know what it is (and why). Please leave a comment. Similarly, if you would like to see more of something or have some other suggestion for the future, a comment would be a great way for you to share that with me.

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