Monday, 1 January 2018

Happy 2018!

Hello friends!  I hope you've all had a fun festive season, but now that's all behind us and it's time to start looking to the new year ahead.

2017 was a fairly momentous year for myself - in January I was living in Smethwick and working for Walsall libraries, and by December I was living back in East Kilbride, working for both a public library service and now also a university library too.  I bought my first home, and have settled in very well.  We had two election campaigns in the early summer, which occupied quite a lot of my first few months back in Scotland.  It was generally a very fun and exciting year, but there's a few things I'm now really setting as a focus for this new year.

I expect most of my readers here know that I've been running election results sites for some time now, although they've been falling further and further behind lately.  Well, thanks to some new scripting skills I've picked up, I've managed to automate quite a lot of the content generation process, and I can now get a page of results processed in about a fifth of the time it used to take, so expect all those sites to finally get caught up to date.  Just between Christmas and the New Year, I've almost completed all of the 2017 English county council election results - now up here.

In web content terms, I'm also still hoping to do more stuff this year on various fronts, if I can make myself actually sit down and write things.  Very often I think to myself I will write a post on a subject, only to find someone else has already written about it, or I don't quite know how to put down what I want to say, and the result is I'm hardly ever blogging these days, but I'm going to make myself change that!  Expect more especially on the birdwatching and baking fronts, these are taking up more and more of my time recently.

Okay, I didn't really score the lines deeply enough, but you can just about make out "2018" on this granary bloomer I baked earlier today...

Once we get out of winter, I plan to really get a tour of Scotland going in earnest.  I've barely been anywhere since I came back, having had a lot of last summer taken up with elections and house moves.  This year I aim to get out to all the major Scottish cities again, and to lots of places I haven't seen in years, or ever at all.

In the flat, I continue to spend most of my time scripting.  I really want to try and get a little mobile app developed some time this year.  Probably just a little straightforward game thing, but it's more a proof of concept for myself because I'm sure I can do it, it's just one of those things I've been putting off for years, but really need to sit down and do.  Copy that for all manner of other things, coming to think of it, I had planned to do NaNoWriMo last November for instance, and it just never got going.  I'm also eager to carry on with learning a foreign language and losing weight - both things I made good progress in during the autumn, but both lapsed in the lead up to the festive period.

I expect I'll also try and get another trip down to Birmingham in at some point during the year.  I'm also eager to get some travelling abroad done, time and money permitting as always...

Ah well, we'll see in twelve months time how much of this I actually manage to get done!

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