Year in Review 2017

2017 was quite an interesting and busy year for me. I flew to seven countries (three for work) and participated in nine developer outreach events in various capacities. As the year began, I promised myself a few things: I would bring some discipline in my work life, allocate time to pursue childhood hobbies, follow a minimalist lifestyle, spend less money on clothes and household items, and spend time with friends and family. Did most of it quite well, and I am happy as I am writing this :) Ohh.. and my love for Wikimedia has flourished in this past year.

Here is a recap of my activities, learnings, and reflections:

Year in Review 2017

January — March

  • Moved into a studio apartment in Oakland and decided to live by myself
  • Helped organize the Wikimedia’s Developer Summit in San Francisco, helped coordinate an unconference, remote participation, plan the session guidelines, etc
  • Attended the team offsite in Tiburon, California where I met all my team colleagues from 11 different countries in-person for the first time. They were all so awesome ❤
  • Flew to Boston to meet with Manisha and Priya for a reunion. Started a knitting project on the plane
  • Started running in the evenings around Lake Merritt near to home in Oakland. Continued this for around three weeks, realized very soon this is not my cup of tea
  • Spoke at FOSSASIA in Singapore: “The Wikimedia free software community: Learn ways to get involved” and re-connected with some of the former collaborators from the open source world
  • Flew to India for a few days to meet family members
  • Was quite disturbed by new executive orders announced under Trump’s administration and worried about my status in the United States as an immigrant

April — June

  • Traveled to Los Angeles to apply for an Austrian visa
  • Bought a new bike and named her Schweenie. Got her set up on Twitter and blogged about an interesting random act of kindness incident while on a biking adventure with her
  • Did a road trip to the Napa vineyards with cousin who was visiting from Mumbai
  • Participated in the writing day of Write the Docs conference in Portland and helped engage a few tech writers in contributing to the MediaWiki project
  • Flew to Vienna, Austria to attend Wikimedia Hackathon (my first ever) and introduced newcomers to Wikimedia tech and helped them get started
  • Did a week-long backpacking trip in Europe. Visited Czech Republic, Hungary, and Slovakia. During this trip, I realized that I don’t know a thing about the world history. After I got back from my trip, I started taking history lessons on Khan Academy
  • Took part in the the San Francisco’s pride parade with Wikimedia colleagues

July — September

  • Attended Wikimania (my first ever) in Montreal, Canada and learned quite a lot about the Wikimedia movement and made new friends
  • Worked remotely from home country India for about a month. Though missed being in the high-speed internet land, got a chance to spend some quality time with friends and family members
  • Flew a fancy kite (for the first time) from a hilltop in Berkeley with Priya
  • Explored a couple of museums: Exploratorium and the Computer History Museum

October — December

  • Have been consistently cooking Indian food since I am back from my trip home, as I realized how much I love it
  • Started volunteering at ScriptEd as an instructor to teach tenth graders of the Oakland Charter High School some web development basics
  • Finished two knitting projects that I kick-started earlier this year: a muffler and a pussy cat hat
  • Attended the Google Summer of Code mentor summit at the Google Headquarters and shared with others what projects students made for Wikimedia
  • Led a two day workshop around Google Code-in and Wikimedia for the ChickTech organization in San Francisco
  • Finished a book “Tuesdays with Morrie” gifted by friend Suchakra
  • Started reading a few others books: “Lifelong Kindergarten,” “Algorithms to Live By,” “Tiny Beautiful Things,” “The Cathedral and the bazaar.”
  • Got my learner’s permit, took some driving lessons, and appeared for the driver’s license test, though failed it badly :P

In the year to come, a few things that I want to work towards: being consistent in my activities, take a new direction for my passion for teaching and learning, mental well-being, personal life (:P), and learn to keep up with the information overload.

Happy New Year 2018 ❤