Captain’s Blog

My 2023 in review

Another year, another retrospective, and also another excuse to discuss the past, the present, and the future.

Collage of 2023’s article header images
2023, wrapped

If we simply go by the number of blog posts, this year has been my most productive year to date. I have published well over 70 posts on this website, averaging about 1.5 posts per week. Now, , that’s 280 hours that could have been spent on something more fun, like LEGO, side projects, a vacation, or meeting up with friends. My hope is therefore that 2023 will remain my most productive year for the foreseeable future.

Speaking of side projects, I managed to complete only two of them this year: Inter-CTE and Jirleader. I have worked on a few other ideas, but sadly, most projects didn’t make it this year. What’s more, I intend to shut down the Stonecoal translator, which has been costing me money for well over two years now. On the upside, this should free up resources for new projects!

Power project(ion)s


Speaking of new projects, I’m planning on building a few data-intensive side projects in . I haven’t yet decided what I want to build, but it is likely to include at least one project from my side project graveyard, an experimental software engineering application, and a simulation game (my original motivation to become a programmer).

Something I have decided, however, is that I will spend less time writing blogs next year. Not because I’m automating the process, but because there will be fewer blogs.

It takes tools


Confucius reportedly said something along the lines of “A craftsman must sharpen his tools to do his job”. I use a variety of tools (Visual Studio Code, Next.js with MDX, Microsoft PowerPoint) to maintain this website. I’m inclined to believe that, considering the circumstances, I’ve done a pretty good job of sharpening my tools. However, none of that matters if many of those tools are utter shit.

Visual Studio Code is fine as a code editor, but not great for writing prose. Next.js and MDX are all right on their own, but make for a somewhat awful editing experience when combined (poorly). And Microsoft PowerPoint is very good for creating business presentations, but pretty bad for making pretty illustrations.

I think the time has finally come to splurge a bit on better tooling. At the very least I intend to find (or build) new content management system and static site generator. And who knows, maybe even a subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud if I have a well-paid job next year.