December has been a crazy busy month for me, with end-of-year deadlines at work and preparations for the holiday period, so I decided to take a break from writing this for a few weeks.
The Christmas break has been a welcome period of downtime, spent hanging out with family and reading. It's also been nice spending the build-up to Christmas in London, with the city looking beautiful over the holiday period, even when everyone was away.
After the new year, I'm looking forward to getting back into the weekly routine of writing. But, for now, here are some of my highlights and favourite links from the past month.
With the end of the year approaching, it's usually a good time to reflect on personal progress and achievements over the past twelve months. For me personally, 2017 has been a big year, full of positive things that I'm proud of.
I've graduated from university with a degree in computer science; started a great new job as a frontend engineer at an AI startup; finally moved to a new apartment in West London; and, met the most incredible woman to spend my life with.
I'm not that big on New Year's resolutions, as they tend to be forced and doomed to fail, but one thing I've been meaning to be better at is reducing the amount of plastic waste I produce from food packaging and carrier bags. As someone who is supportive of reducing the terrible amounts of pollution in the sea, I've realised I'm somewhat of a hypocrite, and this is something I plan to work on.
Year in Review
The beauty (and the curse) of compulsively tracking personal data is that the services you use present you with interesting yearly reports and reviews. Here is a selection of mine:
This year I set a target of reading 50 books on Goodreads, but I actually managed to achieve 55. I will shortly be posting a review of some of my favourites, but you can find the full list here, including Rebecca Solnit, Italo Calvino, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Margaret Atwood, Yuval Noah Harari, and even some Dickens.
2017 Annual Report on Gyroscope.
Although it mostly consists of Radiohead's entire discography, my Spotify top songs of 2017 playlist is pretty darn good.
I didn't get out running as much as I'd like to this year, but I still managed some decent 5k attempts, tracked on Strava.
This summer, I travelled to Rome and the Tuscany area of Italy. Here is a selection of my favourite shots I've posted on Exposure.
Here is a selection of my favourite reads from over the past month. Grab a coffee and give these a read when you have the time.
Truth matters, by Roxane Gay on Medium's Words that Matter 2017.
Entropy: Why Life Always Seems to Get More Complicated, by James Clear.
Why millennials are facing the scariest financial future of any generation since the Great Depression, by Michael Hobbs on the Highline.
Waiting for the depression to lift, by The New York Times on Medium.
Google is really good at design, by Joshua Topolsky on The Outline.
Jony Ive on Apple’s new HQ and the disappearing iPhone, interview with Wallpaper magazine.
The Nationalist's Delusion, by Adam Serwer in The Atlantic.
Let it go: The Arctic will never be frozen again, by Eric Holthaus.
Thanks for reading and have a happy and healthy New Year!
Header photo by Riley Co on Unsplash.
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