Baby Ian - Picture Copyright: Eli, 2011
Baby Ian

Another year done and another year to look forward to. Last year I focused on the long term, refining an amorphous long term picture into something with a bit more substance. Along the way I began some good habits and succeeded in a number of near term goals. This year the theme is continued development and new beginnings. With the birth of my son on January 14th, my focus will be less on big achievements and more on items I can work on in small chunks of time (possibly at 4AM with one arm otherwise occupied by baby).

2010 Goals

My original 2010 goals were light so I expanded the list fairly early. I did not end up achieving the whole list. There may be a lesson there.

Read 15-30 Articles/Week
According to Google Reader I read 2785 items (~53/week) last year. It’s not even worth estimating non-RSS articles, I reached this goal easily. Success.
Read 12 on-topic Books
My professional reading included 20 books this past year and there are several more I was in the process of reading when the year rolled over. Success.
Blog Weekly
I published 28 blog entries in 2010. Not a bad number, but also far short of my original goal. Being a generalist that only dives deeper into most of these topics on my own time, it can be hard to find material for blogging at times. I am happy with how much I completed and will use this as a baseline for my 2011 goals.
Attend 2 Events
As part of the 2010 goal setting process at work,  I had a goal of attending one process improvement and one technical event. I achieved the technical side (4 SQL Saturdays, 1 Code Camp) but did not attend a process improvement (agile, lean, etc) event.

Some additional achievements from the past year that were not part of my goals include:

I presented at SQL Saturday Baton Rouge on data modeling and the RDU Code Camp on unit testing
I created, sold, and lead an ongoing Technical Lunch and Learn program at work with goals to introduce new technologies and practices into the company, challenge and grow our standards, and kindle greater interest in continued learning

2011 Goals

I’m starting with a larger number of goals this year. The numbers are based on last year as a baseline. I’ve attempted to keep them from being too aggressive as my son will put a lot of new and interesting demands on my time.

Topics this year are similar to last year:

  • Technical Focus: SQL, .Net, one non-MS (TBD) language, HTML 5
  • Architecture Focus: Application and Integration (maybe some Enterprise as well)
  • Usability, Design
  • Business and Business Analysis
  • Process: Lean, Agile, Lean Startup, etc

And my goals for 2011:

  • 35 Blog Entries
  • Speak at 2 Events (.Net or SQL)
  • Read 30 articles/week in topics above
  • Read 12 books in the topics above
  • Setup a PHP/MySQL Dev environment again so I can assist with LTD development and maintenance
  • Finish one release of a personal project (which is amazingly relevant to this post)

I suspect the reading goals will be low again, even with a newborn in the house (counting pleasure reading, I purchased over 50 books last year and likely read twice that). Which brings me to my biggest goal for 2011:

Be a good first-time dad AND don’t fall of the internet at the same time.

Here we go.