2021: A Year in Review

Things that either set as goals or were placed as bets.

Going deep on Nix/NixOS

You don’t have to spend too much time on Hackernews to come across a post on Nix. Most of the work that I’m interested in revolves around infra and automation so I was always interested in what Nix could offer but worried if the investment was worth it. I started with Nix a little bit before the start of 2021 and after a full year + a bit I can say that it has fundamentally shifted the way I think about software.

It’s not for everyone, but it’s perfect for me. I previously used Arch Linux on all my machines and have subsequently replaced it with NixOS. I now run NixOS on my:

  • Homelab Server
  • Desktop
  • Digital Ocean Droplet
  • Macbook as a separate partition
  • Macbook as a brew replacement.

I even managed to add mani to nixpkgs. Some of the highlights for me are:

  • The ability to pick and choose packages from stable and unstable branches regardless of dependancies. If upddates break a package, pin to stable, try again later.
  • No more learning langauge specific version managers. Not only that but all languages are managed through the same interfaces which allows me to pick up and run new stacks with ease.
  • NixOS comes with automated setup of many popular services. Makes self hosting a breeze but also great for experimentation.
  • Rollbacks are a breeze and hardly ever needed.

There’s something to be said about taking reproducible builds to such an extreme.

Write More

2020 Blog Posts: 2 2021 Blog Posts: 5

Great success. The thing that is not visible publicly is that at my new job we also blog very regularly. My yearly stats there for 2021 are 17 posts with 11,002 words. I started at the beginning of September and as you can see been a much more prolific writer than ever before. For 2021 I want to continue this trend but aim for more posts on this blog.

Read More

My original goal was 1 book a month and I did not hit it. A list of books that I was able to complete were:

  • Turn the Ship Around
  • Coders at Work: Reflections on the Craft of Programming
  • Indistractable

I have a handful of books that are in progress so more reading has occurred but the books will be finished in 2022. One thing that shifted fairly dramatically is that I’ve tried to reduce to amount of online articles I read and instead consume books. Thanks to Indistractable, I’ve been able to take my X amount of reading time and distribute it more evenly. Articles are great but their consumption needs to be moderated.

New Job

After 3 years with Blendable I took a new job at Parse.ly.


I was very hesitant at first about getting the bike but I can say it was the absolutely worth it. Working from home and working out from home pair well together.

Overall a good year for what it was. Let’s bring on 2022.