Kristian Glass - Do I Smell Burning?

Mostly technical things

My 2020

Previously I wrote “My 2019”, inspired by Always Improve, Never Stop, Never Pause, Never Appreciate: things I did; not necessarily “achievements”, but happy and/or notable things.

2020 was a pretty terrible year. Though I am fortunate enough to have been less negatively affected by the pandemic than many, being “Clinically Extremely Vulnerable” has made it challenging for me to offer much help to others. I have been giving money to various charitable efforts, including Save the Children and The Felix Project, and would encourage others who can to do the same.

Meanwhile, in no particular order:

My wife and I made plant stands for the garden - our first real DIY creation together. Fortunately this was in January, when we could make repeated trips back and forth to the shop to pick up tools and supplies as we needed!

We put up roller blinds around the house, and I became more comfortable drilling into our walls (we own a stud-finder, and despite evidence to the contrary, it claims our house is entirely made of water pipes and live wires…).

I started playing Dungeons and Dragons in a campaign run by my brother-in-law over Teams. I’ve owned a whole bunch of early D&D books for many years now thanks to my older cousins having a clear-out when they left home, but I never actually got to be a regular player in someone else’s game until now, and it’s good fun.

I got back into playing Minecraft on a weekly basis with a few friends. We all work in tech, so naturally we’re coordinating complex builds through the medium of GitHub Issues…

I joined Optile, part of the Payoneer family, as VP of Engineering, which has been incredibly exciting.

I became the Conference Director for PyCon UK 2020, and announced its cancellation in April, on the basis that even if predictions about “business as usual by October” turned out to be correct, it still wouldn’t be advisable to go ahead. I hoped that I might just turn out to appear overcautious.

I wrote about Distributed vs Remote, how Explicit is better than Implicit, and Lightweight OKRs.

I wrote up my FlightAware ADS-B aircraft tracker, my various Raspberry Pis and what I use them for, and my GitHub Repository Configuration Checklist.

I read some great books.

I saw some fantastic theatre before March:


I don’t remember my 2020 goals but I’m not sure it mattered much.

It’s not clear what 2021 will be like, but I think continuing my 2019 goal - to be more conscientious about where and how I spend my time - will serve me well.

I wish you all the very best.