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Looking Ahead: My 2016 Projects

Almost every year since 2012, I’ve been publishing a list of projects/goals for the upcoming year (here’s the original list for 2012, then 2013, I skipped 2014, and here’s the list for 2015). In this post, I’m going to share with you the list of projects/goals for 2016.

Here’s the list for 2016. For some of the items below, I’m also going to include a stretch goal, something I’ll aim toward but won’t count against myself if I don’t actually attain it.

  1. Complete a new book (again). In addition to actually completing the new network automation book I’m writing with Jason Edelman and Matt Oswalt (it’s available now as an Early Access edition), I have another book project lined up that I intend to finish and get published in 2016.

  2. Make more open source contributions. I failed this one miserably last year (see last year’s report card), but I am intent on making this one happen. Over time, I expect that this will just be part of who I am, but until then I’m going to explicitly call it out. Since I’m not a programmer (not yet, may never be), these contributions will have to take the form of documentation or similar areas.

  3. Expand my knowledge and use of Python. I learned in 2012 that the synergy of the projects does make a difference. Given the role of Python in a number of open source projects (OpenStack, for example) and the increasing use of Python in network automation, I feel like expanding my knowlege and use of Python is a worthy application of my time. (Stretch goal: make a code contribution to a Python-based open source project.)

  4. Expand my knowledge, use, and focus on public cloud services. It’s pretty clear that the use of public cloud services—whether from Amazon, Google, Microsoft, or others—isn’t going to go away or decrease. This year, I will spend time, energy, and focus becoming more familiar with using (and architecting designs for) public cloud services. (Stretch goal: attain a certification in public cloud services, like AWS Certified Solutions Architect.)

  5. Complete a “wildcard project.” As I said in the 2015 project list, the purpose of including this item here is because I don’t know what lies ahead. Having this project gives me freedom to explore as new projects, new technologies, and new ideas emerge over the course of 2016.

What I’ve not included in this list are things like continuing to blog (which I will most certainly do), continue with my new podcast, the Full Stack Journey (which I will most certainly do), and continue to give back wherever possible (through sharing materials on GitHub, by speaking at conferences and events, or by participating in mentorship programs like vSensei—all of which I will most certainly do).

Anyway, there you have it. Feel free to contact me on Twitter if you have any feedback (positive or negative) or questions.

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