Before outlining my goals for the coming year, I want to rate how well I executed on resolutions made last year.
Focus – A – definitely did really well with this one. Instead of working on lots of little projects, I concentrated on Bitly and Venmo.
Delete the adjectives – D – something I still need to improve.
Devote more time to girls – B – spent more time talking with girls over coffee or cocktails than chatting tech with dudes over scotch.
Visit Argentina – F – it is never a good time to travel, so I still just need to make this happen.
Help move bit.ly towards ubiquity – A – Bitly is rockin it!
Start practicing guitar again – F – retrieved the guitar from Philly, but still not back in the habit.
Experience more live music – D – Akron/Family was the best performance I saw, but did not do enough of this.
Consume less – B – I ate and drank less, but could still improve each of these and still need to make a more concerted effort to use fewer plastic bottles and waste less electricity.
Now, resolutions for 2010!
Write More (Non-Technical) I really had my head down focusing on product stuff this past year (and expect more of the same next year), but will force myself to write more on non-technical topics to explore other areas of interest in greater depth. Some things I want to think and write more about: nutrition, fitness, transportation, entrepreneurship, education, literature, political philosophy, customer service, relationship with public/living/working space.
Supper Club Supper club is another initiative intended to explore new ideas and just learn by engaging in conversation with smart people. Jenny and I will start hosting a monthly event at the apt, with a few rules designed to stimulate discussion. I am still figuring out the details, but the idea is to have each guest bring a topic of discussion on an index card, and choose topics out of a hat as necessary. The catch is we’ll have a blacklist of taboo topics conversation too often and too easily regresses toward: popular film / tv, work (in my case internet technology, but no one will be allowed to discuss their job), sports, etc. We tend to land upon these topics because there is a high probability of connecting on a movie or game due to mass distribution and timeliness of these events. By excluding them, I think we will engage in topics that are new (rather than common) to most people around the table, and, hence, we will all learn a lot more.
Delete the Negatives Last year a language goal was to delete the adjectives, this year it will be to delete the negatives. Phrases employing the verb “sucks” or beginning “I hate” don’t require a solution, and personally I cringe when I hear them because they seem to carry a negative energy that literally just depresses me a little bit each time someone utters them. So, in an effort to not invoke this depression / negative energy on others, I’ll be cleaning up my own language and removing them. I’m so serious about this effort that I am putting a $1 Venmo bounty on my uttering them: if you hear me use negative language, send a text “Charge kortina $1 for negative language” to 646.863.9557 to collect your bounty.
Grow Venmo For the past year, Iqram and I have been refining the Venmo payment flow. We are quite happy with the feel of the SMS payments product and close to happy with some of the richer interfaces we’re now developing. 2010 will be more focused on getting Venmo accepted by more people, shops, and services (that includes getting friends accepting/using Venmo!).
Another related Venmo mission is: hire AWESOME people. Email me if you are interested in working with us. Current open positions are (1) Lead Architect and (2) Product Engineer. Include something interesting about highly scalable, non-relational data stores or page speed improvement in your note.
Run 5k, Timed Just want to benchmark this and start recording it as an annual data point.
Be a Gentleman I heard the following for the first time this year, and it is truth. “This is the first test of a gentleman: his respect for those who can be of no possible value to him.” – William Lyons Phelps.
What are your resolutions?