My Plans for 2022

Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

Looking back at my post from the start of 2021 I’ve achieved three of the six things I set out to do:

  • Launch JiffyCV — We launched the app on both iOS and Android in January but I ended up pulling the plug on the project after a couple of months after burning out, realising my interests weren’t in resume writing and wanted to try something else
  • Complete my Pokedex in Pokemon Home — With the launch of the final Pokemon Sword and Shield DLC this became a lot easier and I was able to complete the Pokedex with admittedly some help to get a Manaphy
  • Launch my other app idea — This ‘other app’ was Reciprocal.dev and we launched that in October. Since launch we’ve had 30 sign ups (as of time of writing) with very little marketing so things are looking promising

There were three items on the 2021 list that I didn’t do:

  • Launch 766Todo — I started this while recovering from the JiffyCV burn out but the more I progressed with it the more I started to realise I didn’t care that much about the problem I was trying to solve so I ditched it
  • Buy my first house — This didn’t happen because I’m still questioning if I want to invest my savings into a house in the UK as I really don’t like the direction the government is going and there are opportunities abroad I’m chasing so that money would be better used as safety net while I upheave my life
  • Get fitter — Since lockdown I’ve put on 2 stone (about 12kg) due to not being able to exercise as I would normally (I’d often walk 10km a day playing Pokemon Go in the before times). I have bought an under-desk treadmill to get my steps back but this has proved difficult to achieve due to meetings at work so I’ve only averaged around 2–3km a day

I have quite a lot of things planned for 2022 but some of these might not be achievable due to circumstances out of my control (i.e. Covid, work & Brexit related shenanigans) but I’ll list them as a way to capture my intentions.

Move to self-hosted tech stack

I’ve already made a start on this by serving a NextCloud instance from my frontroom but there are still a few apps that I use that I need to set-up/find self-hosting friendly alternatives for.

There are also a few services that I won’t move away from such as Medium, as these provide my with some form of income and while I’d love to move to daily driving a Linux smartphone I have certain apps I require that means I’ll have to settle for an iCloud-less iOS.

My main intention is to take back control over my data and build up a more resiliant tech stack so I’m not affected too badly should one of the platforms I use decide to change how it processes my data so I can be a little subjective.

Achievability: High

Decide if I’m buying a house in the UK or moving abroad

As mentioned in why I didn’t buy a house this year I’m not happy with the way the government is running the UK as it feels like our rights are being stripped away more & more every week and that’s before I even approach the coronavirus response.

Feeling this way makes it hard for me to justify taking the money I’ve saved over the last five years and putting down a deposit on a house in the UK so I’ve been looking at my options to move abroad.

My employer has a number of offices across the globe and they’ve announced a new one that ticks many of the boxes for me so I’ve put my name on the list of people who would be interested in exploring a move.

Moving country is a big change though and there a few things that need to be resolved before my girlfriend and I can make a decision but I think everything will be clearer around March time and then we can decide on what to do.

Achievability: High (If I don’t move abroad I’ll be looking to pick up house hunting in the UK again)

Lose 3 stone

Now I have the treadmill I’m hoping I can create a schedule that enables me to hit my 10km a day goal and I can start losing some of the weight I’ve put on over the last two years.

Walking alone won’t do everything so I’ll also be looking to educate myself a little in nutrition and start making some positive changes to my diet as I’ve only really eaten for sustenance instead of thinking about what that means for my body.

Achievability: Medium (requires consistent schedule)

Read all the Pokemon Adventures Manga

In 2021 I started reading the Pokemon Adventures Manga and really loved how it was a completely different story to the games & anime and while out shopping one day there was a sale on in my local comic shop and I ended up buying a couple of boxsets.

Having completed the 41 Discworld books the year prior I figured attempting to read all the Pokemon Adventures Manga might be a good goal to strive for however, unlike with Discworld where I read them on Kindle I will be reading the Pokemon Adventures Manga in physical book form which means there’s a space requirement involved too.

Achievability: Medium (current estimate would be finishing in November if read one boxset a month)

Take a sabbatical at work

In 2022 I’ll have worked for my employer for six years and after five years of continual service you’re able to take a sabbatical.

As I’ve got some savings I can live off and would like to invest time in Reciprocal.dev as well as my other hobbies I’m looking to take three months off in order to relax, work on my own stuff and hopefully return back to work energised having scratched the various itches these create.

The potential move abroad will also have an impact on when the sabbatical happens as I had originally planned it for the end of the year so I could down tools in October, go to Japan in November before returning to work in the new year but if we move abroad then this may need to move forward to ensure that I get over there for the early stages of the office.

Achievability: Medium (has some dependencies)

Screenprint five pieces of art

During a week off I had in September of 2021 I bought a screenprinting kit in the hopes of reliving the fun I had doing a screenprinting course in January 2020.

Unfortunately that kit sat laying around unused until this week and it turns out that half of the solutions needed for screenprinting have dried out so the screen didn’t come out very well.

Setbacks aside though I really want to do something creative and non-computer related so I’ll be looking to pick this up again in the new year when I’ll hopefully be taking a sabbatical.

Achievability: Medium (dependent on sabbatical and equipment I need to do things properly)

Get our first paying customer for Reciprocal.dev

Since launching the alpha of Reciprocal.dev in October this year we’ve expanded the roadmap for our beta a little to explore the idea and implementation a little more.

The main goal of this exploration is to better understand the problem that others have in the shared understanding space as we built the alpha mostly around our understanding of the problem in order to define a clear scope.

In 2022 I’m hoping we can turn the information we learn from the exploration into meaningful changes to the product and can launch a beta with a paid tier so we can start understanding what people like about the idea enough for them to pay for it.

Achievability: Medium (very much dependent on someone else willing to part ways with their cash)

Go to Japan

Our trip to to Japan was originally meant to happen in 2020 but due to Covid it was delayed and even when the rest of the world opened up Japan still required those entering the country to quarantine in a hotel for ten days.

We still intend to visit Japan and I’m hoping that we might be able to attempt it in 2022 if by some miracle the omicron and subsequent variants prove to be less severe and we get more vaccines to protect us against it.

I’m also eager to go Japan (or anywhere really) due to the fact that British Airways gave me a voucher instead of a refund on the flights which means they’ve got over £2000 of my money and while the life of that voucher keeps getting extended there’s still a deadline looming to redeem it.

Achievability: Low (let’s face it we’re going nowhere anytime soon)

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Currently building reciprocal.dev. Interested in building shared understanding, Automated Testing, Dev practises, Metal, Chiptune. All views my own.

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Colin Wren

Colin Wren

Currently building reciprocal.dev. Interested in building shared understanding, Automated Testing, Dev practises, Metal, Chiptune. All views my own.

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