My Year's Retrospective: 2018

Seeing most of the developers I follow publishing their year's review made me think about doing one for myself. I hope this exercise will also help me to value good things and achievements. I'll leave a list of other developer's reviews at the bottom of the post. If you're missing one, you can add it yourself. Let's write something positive!


We moved to a new flat back in November 2017 but this is the first whole year we spent in there, far from all our friends but close to work and college. We know it's a temporary place to stay but it's amazing. As double as big as our previous apartment and with a swimming pool to spent the summer afternoons.


Things at work are getting better day after day, with both the code and coworkers friends.


As a side projects, I discovered the world of ChatBots and Botman helped me a lot with it. I built three chatbots in total and I'm using all of them on my daily basis. The one I built for the city bike system here in Girona is used by a few more users and the feel of doing something useful for someone else outside the browser is amazing.

I decided to change the code holding this blog in June. My solution was over-engineered and I found Dieter's code to be simpler, quicker and expandable. I forked it and made the required modifications to match my needs.

I wanted to maintain Onesignal's Laravel Notification Channel package, but it was too overwhelming. Lucky me, Lukas Kammerling also wanted to maintain it and he's the real hero here. I can only help with my opinion about some code.

Last year (2017) I built a small code to deploy a project into a server using Bitbucket's websockets. In 2018 I decided to refactor it and allow websockets from GitHub too. I was about to delete the repository but after the refactor I found out I like building my own stuff, even if I have to re-invent the wheel.


After summer I went to a psychologist and started to fight my anxiety issues and improve my mental health. It's something I should have done many years ago. This is, by far, the most important achievement I made in 2018.

As a resulting of this I changed three things outside my normal routine to force myself to improve:

  • I joined a local meeting group about Python, they talk about almost everything tech-related once per month. First I did it to go outside my comfort area, but now I enjoy learning new stuff I have no idea and socializing with them.

  • I also applied to do volunteering at my local library about restoring very old books. I'll start in 2019 but did the big step in 2018.

  • I joined a gym and went almost every day before work, weekends included. This implied I had to wake up one hour and a half earlier than I was used to. That was the thing that most bothered me. After a few days I already started to feel better with myself. More confident. I'm still not seeing any visual results but I'm okay with that. Next year I'll have a harder routine. In case programming doesn't goes well, I'll take The Rock's job :)


For ending, a few small achievements I'm proud of:

  • Joined Hacktoberfest, focusing most of my Pull Requests on Botman's repositories.

  • Bought NES Mini, SNES Mini, and a few retro games that I'm enjoying very much.

  • Start collecting old stuff I found about Spider-Man. It has to be old and it has to be cheap!

  • Discovered Advent Of Code and solved a few puzzles.

  • Applying RetroWave style whenever I can (This blog style, Twitter, IDE & Desktop wallpaper)


As a summary, I'd say that from january to september I was more focused on side projects and learning skills, but now I'm trying to focus more on the hobbies side, getting some points of my list done as they continue growing. I'm still in the mood for side projects, but not spending the whole afternoon after work like before. Live is too short to be worried coding all the time.


As for the next year, I'd like to:

  • Finish all the remaining Advent Of Code puzzles from pasts years including 2018.
  • Give a small talk to people I know, like coworkers or the local meetup.
  • Keep going to gym almost every day.
  • Keep fighting my anxiety.
  • Get my driving license once and for all, it's something I keep procrastinating.


You may also like: My Year's Retrospective: 2019

Found a typo? Edit this post.
Special thanks to Dieter for the amazing code of this blog.

Got any hints?
No, I'm afraid not.
However if you search within yourself, then...
Cut it out, ok?
I asked for a hint not the crazy philosophies of a Father Christmas look-a-like.
Heed my words, bold adventurer, and your path will lead to wisdom and..
There's just no reasoning with him...
I'm totally stuck as what to do.
I really wish I could help you but I'm just a clueless old fool.
Never a truer word was spoken.
Still clueless?
I'm afraid so.
Still look like a Father Christmas?
I'm afraid so.
Calypso from Fleur de Lys Simon The Sorcerer