A new year has started, and I still haven’t blogged anything… until now. Oh well, better late than never ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
New year’s resolutions aren’t usually my thing (because they usually last a few weeks anyway), but I think some stuff I currently do or use needs to change. In particular:
- Stop smoking/vaping: After a little more than two years of vaping, I think it’s finally time to call it quits, especially after the Austrian government finally banned smoking in bars and restaurants on November 1st last year. During the last few months of 2019 I already cut down on how much I vape, but I still have some liquid left (at the time of writing it’s 20ml) that I slowly but surely need to get rid of. I’m sure there will be another habit to pick up instead (maybe it’s actually writing some posts? ).
Use fewer streaming services: While Spotify is great and everything, it still does not have all the music I used to listen to a few years back (especially releases I bought on Bandcamp), and its suggestions kinda suck nowadays. And if it suddenly does feature something I want to listen to, something else I have listened to a while ago just disappears without any notice. Well, those songs do not really disappear, they just get greyed out in my playlists without any way to listen to them ever again from the Spotify player.
Same goes for Netflix and Prime Video – the available library here in Austria sucks if you don’t want to watch their exclusive titles. And let’s not forget the other streaming platforms which have their own set of exclusive titles. Over time it’s just becoming an expensive nightmare with everyone going their own way. And similar to Spotify, there is no guarantee that titles will be there for all eternity.
I think it goes without saying that all of these mentioned services do some extensive tracking on you, which I rather want to avoid.
Obviously, the solution to that is to build up my own media library again. This happens to be a lot easier with music, so it’s most likely the first thing I’ll be working on. I already started to collect some CDs, which have yet to be ripped; that happens once I have decided what hardware I’ll be using for that. I have a few spare SATA HDDs laying around, so it would be nice if I can just use them with some low-power single-board computer (preferably not a Raspberry Pi). Eventually, I’d like to stream the songs from my library to my devices similar to how Spotify works (sans DRM). Which means that I’ll have to not only write a desktop client (or maybe just some integration for an already existing player), but also work around the hell that is mobile app development. Fun.
- Produce some music: Yeah, that will probably be a hard one. Maybe. I don’t know. But dabbling around in Renoise and with my reface DX is a whole lot of fun. Let’s see (or rather hear) if something good comes out of that. Hopefully I also figure out a way to make JACK behave nicely with PulseAudio… yes yes, I know, audio on Linux… at least we’ve arrived in the Year of the Linux Desktop™, right?
- Release more software: Most likely these will be some tools to assist me with certain services or tasks. It’s unlikely that the things I’ll work on are web applications. We’ll see how that will go.
- Lose some weight: I would love to see my scale to display a digit starting with 7 or even 6 instead of an 8. Probably should work out some more and/or eat less (junk) food at unholy times.
Not a lot of things listed here, most of them should be pretty easy to achieve, but yeah. New year’s resolutions and all that. You all know how well these turn out.
Now, what have I achieved in 2019 of which I did not even plan some things to happen? Well, here’s a small selection:
- I went to my first furry convention: NordicFuzzCon. It was a real blast, had a really great time with all the people I already have known online. Can’t wait for this year’s edition which happens in the centre of Malmö, which opens up more opportunities of fun craziness.
- I released my first song to an unsuspecting world.
- I stopped using Twitter in favour of Mastodon. It was no real fun anymore when they turned the timeline into a “feed” full of ads and other things I’m not interested in, but the final straw for me was them killing off the streaming APIs. Which turned Tweetbot (the iOS Twitter client I was using) from super-awesome to a more bearable Twitter experience (it still got the timelines, after all).
- I switched my job role from software engineering to infrastructure engineering.
- I finally deleted my Instagram account, freeing up the last personal part Facebook had about me. (I highly doubt that they actually deleted my user data).
- I finally finished the rework of this site.
- And last but definitely not least, I’m in a relationship with Karina! I could not be happier about that.
With all the new year’s resolution-y stuff and some retrospective out of the way, there are a few events I will definitely attend this year. Feel free to say “Hi” to me if you spot me!
- February: NordicFuzzCon
- April: Revision
- July/August: Evoke
In other news, I managed to get a post tagging system working. It’s kinda hacky, but pretty neat. It even has its own pagination going, but that won’t kick in until I have more than ten posts per tag. And as of now there’s only one tag anyway.