2019 Year in Review

It is time to look over 2019 to see if or how I have grown, what or where I put my focus, and determine whether or not I need to re-align myself for the coming year.

Blog

I migrated from BitBucket Pages to GitLab Pages for various reasons.
There were a few hiccups along the way but overall it seems to have been a pretty smooth transition.

Part of my goal after the migration was to consistently produce content.
Perhaps I was too ambitious with my goals/expectations.
I was able to produce consistently throughout October but fell off in November due to numerous issues and frustrations with my Raspberry Pi-Hole project.

Over this next year, I would like to keep the goal of producing content regularly and personalize and/or create a blog theme.
At this time, I want to focus of the content to be more how-to’s, notes, and improving my communication.

Books

One of my goals for 2019 was to read 12 books.
I thought a book a month was reasonable and achievable.
And for the first quarter of the year, it seemed like it was going to be.
I was able to make my way through the following:

I am not sure what happened after that to cause me to get off track.
I started reading Getting Things Done in an effort to re-emphasize some of the techniques he provides.
The irony is not lost on me that this was the book to break my trend.

Although important, I am not sure I want to have a reading goal for 2020 - except for finishing Getting Things Done.

PluralSight Courses

PluralSight may be part of the reason I was unable to complete my reading goal for 2019.
Over the course of 2019, I completed the following PluralSight Courses and started several others:

I planned on creating posts reviewing each one containing my notes to keep them in a central location.
Unfortunately, I was not happy with the format/quality for the few courses that I did create reviews for.
While I still want to create those entries, I need to figure out how to communicate the review effectively.

I also took the C# Skill IQ Evaluation and scored in the 95th percentile with a 248.
I plan on improving this score over 2020, but also want to take courses to build other skills.

Programming Languages

I have worked with C# for a decade.
While I love the language, I have started to feel as though the problem space has become stagnant and repetitive.
It seems as though I am not the only one feeling this way either.

This is not to say that I think .NET is dying/dead.
I still very much enjoy it and have much left to learn about it - particularly with the quality of life changes .NET Core is providing.
I simply want to expand my thinking and skillset and learning a new programming language may be better suited to that.

Specifically, I am considering Go and Functional Programming.
Begrudingly Pragmatically, I am considering JavaScript/TypeScript and React/React Native.

Projects

I have no shortage of projects.
My problem is in finishing them and/or making them public.

One of those projects this year was my Raspberry Pi-Hole, but have not circled back to it yet.
Once that project is completed, I plan on making a Raspberry Pi Development Server.
The idea is for it to contain a dockerized Jenkins, RedMine, SonarQube, and/or other software used in my development lifecycle.
It is portable enough that it can be brought with me on the go or can be configured with a VPN and accessed remotely.

In December, I started JHache.Enums to experiment with BenchmarkDotNet and writing high-performance C# code.

Software Setup

On a day-to-day basis I use:

  • Visual Studio
    • CodeMaid
    • Editor Guidelines
    • File Icons
    • File Nesting
    • Power Commands
    • Productivity Power Tools
    • Roslynator
    • Shrink Empty Lines
    • SonarLint
    • StyleCop
    • VSColorOutput
  • Visual Studio Code
  • SourceTree
  • LINQPad

I started trying to learn Rider.

With the announcment that Google Chrome would be making it more difficult for ad-blockers I looked at alternatives.
I tried Brave and Vivaldi, but due to several issues I am switching back to Firefox.

I looked at Fork and GitKraken as SourceTree replacements.
GitKraken is my favorite, if I only had a single account it would probably be my daily driver.
Overall, Fork looks like a good replacement for SourceTree but I have not spent enough time with it.
I can say it’s merge tool is one of the best.

For productivity, I settled on TickTick for task management and Dynalist as my work journal.

I gave up on trying to get HyperJS to work the way I wanted.
Initially, I tried Windows Terminal but ended up returning to Cmder.

I am starting to use Docker for Windows but still need more exposure to using it.

Tech Setup

I upgraded my wife’s computer so she could do her design school work.
Given the programs she needs to run and that she does not game too much I opted for an AMD Ryzen 3700X and NVIDIA 2070 Super.
She also got a Secret Lab Omega

My computer (~10 years old) and desk are due for an upgrade this year.
Additionally, we are looking to sound-proof my office in order to get a streaming setup started.

Work

I accepted a new opportunity working on a WPF Prism application (as evidenced by blog posts and PluralSight history).

Lacking

Going over this year I realize there are three areas that are lacking: family, relaxation, and exercise.
These are areas I will need to make time to focus on in 2020.

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