Dan Kim @dankimio

2015: Year in Review

The year of productivity: software development, traveling, photography. 2015 was the busiest year so far. In this post, I list my favorite movies, TV shows, podcasts and articles of the year.

Code

  • A lot of Ruby on Rails development
  • Web and iOS side projects, that I hope will be finished in 2016
  • 1700 commits on GitHub. If all my projects were open-source, I would be in top 200 of most active GitHub users.

1600 commits

Movies

I watched 70 movies in 2015. Too bad, because that’s 30 movies less than in 2014.

My personal favorites of 2015 are:

  • Youth
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
  • And I am about to watch Inside Out, The Bridge of Spies and other movies.

Youth Mad Max: Fury Road Me and Earl and the Dying Girl

TV Shows

The favorite ones of 2015:

  • Gravity Falls. The final episode is yet to be announced, but I can already tell how it broke all my expectations. Definitely 10/10.
  • Fargo (Season 1) – 10/10
  • Game of Thrones – 10/10 as usual
  • True Detective – 9/10
  • Rick and Morty – 9/10

Books

2015 was the busiest year I have ever had. At the beginning of the year, I set a goal on Goodreads to read 50 books in 2015; only managed to reach the half of the goal though. I mostly read classics this year and a lot of programming-related books. In 2016, however, I plan to add some variety: business, science fiction, fantasy, etc. The Martian by Andy Weir is the favorite book of 2015. Read it first if you plan to watch the movie.

Traveling

This year I visited the Netherlands; I realized that this is probably the place where I want to live and work.

Photography

I decided to learn photography before my trip the Netherlands. I got an old DSLR the day before the flight and I didn’t even know how to use one. I had little time to read the manuals during the flight. I struggled with the camera a lot: it was a real challenge to get the right focus or to set a proper focal length.

In the second half of the trip I switched to iPhone. The built-in camera was much smarter than my old DSLR. I took some great pictures with an iPhone camera, but it’s much worse in low light conditions. The other reason to switch was the weight: DSLR weighs 1.3kg whereas my iPhone is just 100g—a couple of hours of walking and the neck starts to hurt.

Once I got home I realized how terrible my pictures were: I shot most of the pictures at the widest focal length with the terrible barrel distortion. I didn’t set up my autofocus properly: it focused using the center AF-point and it took the camera a few seconds to focus which was very annoying. And the most terrible mistake—I didn’t shoot RAW. I was constrained when I was post-processing images—lesson learned.

Music

Top albums:

  • Blurryface by twenty one pilots. The discovery of the year. The music without genre. The music that makes you think. The variety of styles amazes. Actually, this is the first album that I liked completely (all songs of the album).
  • Art Angels by Grimes
  • Magnifique by Ratatat

Blurryface Art Angels Magnifique

I also picked up a ukulele this year—heavily inspired by twenty one pilots. So maybe I’ll record a few covers the next year.

Podcasts

  • Cortex. CGP Grey and Myke Hurley discuss productivity (and many other things as well). There’s nothing special in the podcast; it’s just so interesting to listen to, that it has become my favorite—definitely recommend.
  • Under the Radar. I stopped listening to Accidental Tech Podcast because the episodes were too long (up to 2 hours), very few development related topics and I just didn’t have time to listen. I was already listening to Developer Perspective by David Smith: I really liked the format of short 15-minute episodes. And then Under the Radar comes out: just 30 minutes of developer-related talks from David Smith and Marco Arment. Perfect.
  • If I could recommend just one episode it would be The Developer on Fire episode – The Pareto Principle and Stoic Philosophy with David Heinemeier Hansson.

Cortex Under the Radar

Articles