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2023 In Review

Written January 4, 2024

    It’s hard to believe it’s been another year, but it’s time to reflect on the year to identify growth and good fortune.

    # Accomplishments

    # Professional

    • Wrote and Recorded the reMarkable Made Simple Course

      • 40 Lessons to take you from beginner to expert on the reMarkable
      • (still needs editing and marketing in 2024)
    • Started E-Ink Roundtable with Kit and Voya

      • We did 4 broadcasts this year
    • Did my first livestream unboxing (on the Supernote A6 X2 Nomad)

    • Found my first Coaching Client

    • Went on The Creator Way Podcast with Yonatan from Gling

    • Started the Weekly Reset Email Newsletter (Subscribe here)

      • Reached 100 subscribers on the newsletter as of it’s first publishing
    • Held the first Knowledge Workers Discord Community Event

      • 5 people showed up 🎉
      • Ended up doing three events total throughout the year
    • Registered an LLC for The Knowledge Work Company

    • Gave the Building Apps that Don’t Suck talk at RVA.js Conference

      • This was my first true conference talk that wasn’t a Meetup.
      • Thank you to Drew Lytle for a ton of editorial help. Go check out his work: www.drewis.cool
    • Guest Contributed on Thor’s Newsletter

    • Built an updated Product Design Portfolio

    • Got featured on The Browser Company’s Boosts Gallery https://arc.net/boosts

    # YouTube

    • Released 45 Videos

      • Received 2 Million Views over the last year
      • 16,325 Subscribers
      • 37.6K Likes
    • Set up Buy Me A Coffee as a donation platform

      • I got my first Buy Me A Coffee backer. Thank you to Cooper from Washington, DC
    • Figured out a Slide Treatment for my videos that makes the segues feel significantly cleaner and more polished

      • Figured out a template for a YouTube Pinned Comment
      • Clarified my channel mission as Tools and tips for improving your focus and creativity
    • Put together a YouTube Production Checklist

    • Figured out how to get better audio out of the Sony ZV-E10 and Rode Videomic NTG:

    • Took Curtis Judd’s Izotope RX course and learned a good bit. Definitely worth the $49.

    • Started monitoring link usage with Short.io

    • Learned how to do typewriter animations for videos using Apple Keynote

    • Learned how to grade S LOG 3

    # Creative / Programming

    • Wrote the Reflection Obsidian Plugin
    • Updated the Obsidian Weekly Review Plugin to now sort files by Oldest to Newest when running a Weekly Review
    • Learned how to use Svelte
    • Learned Neovim and tmux
    • Updated brandonkboswell.com to use Tailwind CSS
    • Integrated Github Copilot into my workflow. My initial impression is that it is helpful and is worth the $10 a month.
    • Learned a good bit about AI, LLMs, and Vector Embedding.
    • Installed Llama 2 and Mistral 7B on my Mac via Ollama.

    # Personal

    • Developed a list of people I should connect with: People I should reach out to

    • Made a mini-music video for Charlie’s entry to sing with Andrew McMahon

    • Started doing early Morning Yoga

    • Removed the Ivy from the shared wall

    • Finished the Ikea Wardrobe (it still technically needs trim, but aside from that it’s done)

    • Fixed the Delonghi Magnifica ESAM3300 with a new pump

    • Learned how to make Smash Burgers at home

    # Experiences (in no particular order)

    • Date Night at Jewfro with Jimmy, Jordan, Mary, Rangus and Marshie

    • Blue Atlas w/ Jordan and Jimmy

    • Brunch with the Beanlands

    • Date Night at Stella’s with Marshie

      • Ate a lamb dish, Helopitas and shared a caraf of white wine
    • Hanging out with The Rocks

    • ZZQ lunch with Dad for his birthday

    • Nokoribi with Drew, Matt, Pedro and Gaelan

    • Beers with Greg Herrington at Pro Re Nata after snowboarding. Charlie and his kids had a great time playing, and it was great to relax and just chat around a fire.

    • VCU was able to beat former coach Mike Rhoades

    • Returned the Peloton Tread

    • Charlie’s excellent performance of Naughty from Matilda at the RMS Talent Show

    • Seeing the Dorsata Team in Chicago, IL

      • Going to The House of Blues and then visiting the Bean afterwards with Eric, E, Greg, Michael
    • Going to the VCU Black and Gold Game with Marshie, Charlie, Mia and Tabitha

    • Right thumb pain ;(

    • Tennis time with Robert

    • Charlie made a lemonade stand yesterday and made $19.

    • Found out I have genetically high cholesterol.

      • Was able to lower it 40 points with diet and exercise, but it still needs medication.
      • Tried Rosuvastatin, but it made me grumpy
      • Simvastatin seems to work well
    • Reached out to Peter to tell him thank you for his work and found out that he watches my videos as well. ♥

    • First copyright dispute scam on a YouTube video

      • Got all of this resolved. Thank you KaizanBlu
    • A fun night out with Marshie at the Butcher Brown show

    • A wonderful Spring break day at Monticello with Marshie & Charlie

    • Left Spotify for Apple Music

    • Switched to Neovim and then to VSCode

      • It was a fun, painful and exciting journey, but a huge distraction
      • The VIM journey was still plenty worth it as I absorbed the motions, learned a ton about the Terminal, and also got a fresh perspective about editors that aren’t Sublime Text. I think this has made me significantly more open-minded and I embraced some different approaches because of this.
      • I think the answer is: VIM bindings are good, but VIM as an editor has more pain associated with it than I would like. Plus, I don’t think I need the last 10% of customization that makes VIM special.
      • It lasted for about a month, before I realized I would be better off with VIM Motions in VSCode
    • Got invited to some betas

    • Monthly Check-Ins with Brian

    • Met Drew

      • Thank you for everything, Drew!
    • Dinner at And Dim Sum with Emily and Devin

    • Tried Vivobarefoot Gobi III, but they weren’t for me.

      • I want something lower that is easier to get in and out of.
    • Charlie made a lemonade stand yesterday and made $19.

    • Tie-Dyed for the first time

    • Bought a refrigerator for the first time. There’s something really satisfying about picking the one that you want.

    # Game Changers

    • Started using VIM Motions in Obsidian

    • Switched to Wezterm from iTerm

    • Started using Voice Memos and Whisper

      • Superwhisper for Mac Transcription
    • Switched to an ortholinear, split keyboard in the Glove80

      • This improved my posture instantly
      • Initially dropped my typing speed from 85wpm to 26wpm. Ouch.
      • Went from 26wpm to 80wpm in about a month
    • Started using Dark Mode for everything

      • Dark Reader Chrome Extension for giving sites a Dark Mode theme
    • Learned I can work while on the treadmill

    • Learned to record the intros for your YouTube Videos at the end. At this point you know exactly what the video is and you’ll be able to convey it more easily and also get started more quickly.

    • Learned about Boxed Breathing

    • Learned how to use Visual Mode and Caret Mode in Vimium to quickly select text

    • Switched to Raycast

      • It’s awesome, I should have switched to Raycast a long time ago.
    • Tabitha coming through with the art for the living room.

    # Books Read

    # Games

    • Playing Sonic Team Racing with Charlie and Marshie

    • Finished the initial campaign on God of War. It was so good. Thank you Derek

    • Overwatch 2 with Bryson, Logan and Charlie

    • Rocket League with Bryson

    • Astro’s Playroom with Mom and Charlie

    • Hogwart’s Legacy with Marshie

    • Dominion Seaside Expansion with Mom, Charlie and Marshie

    • Played Tainted Grail until way too early in the morning and lost on a missed button press.

    • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

    • Marvel Midnight Suns with Marshie and Charlie

    • Played a bunch of Pac-Man and Galaga at Freehand Hotel with Charlie and Marshie

    • Finished It Takes Two with Marshie

    • Disney Illusion Island with Marshie Boswell and Charlie

    • Fall Guys with Charlie

    • Lego Fortnite with Charlie

    • Party Animals with Charlie

    • Super Mario Wonder with Charlie and Marshie

    • Boop with Charlie

    # TV / Film / Theatre

    • Shrinking has been such a great show

    • White Lotus

    • Super Mario Bros Movie w/ Charlie and Marshie

    • Watched all the mainline Star Wars films with Charlie

      • Episode One was her favorite. She loves Padme Amidala
    • Finished the Avengers Infinity Saga with Charlie

    • Being able to take Charlie to Hamilton for $49

    • Beautiful with Charlie and Marshie

    • Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

    • The joy of watching Clerks 2 with Marshie

      • The writing is excellent
      • Dante’s acting is terrible
      • Everyone else is excellent
    • Winning Time

    • House of Gucci

    • Break Point

    • Watched the first two Pirates of the Carribean movies with Charlie

    • A fun afternoon with Marshie and Charlie at the Taylor Swift Eras Tour film

    • Skins with Marshie

    • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child with Charlie

    # Concerts

    • The Devil Wears Prada, Fit for a King, Counterparts, and Landmvrks at The Norva in Norfolk, VA
    • Saw Andrew McMahon and Wildermiss

    # Places

    • Massanutten, VA
    • Chicago, IL (2x)
    • Charlottesville, VA
    • New York City (2x)
      • Weekend with New York City w/ Marshie
        • VCU are A10 Champions over Dayton
        • Tokyo Record Bar
        • Visiting Video Games New York
        • Visiting Strand Book Store
        • Staying at Moxy East Village
        • Eating at Mamoun’s
        • Happy Hour at Amelie Wine Bar
      • Weekend in New York City with Charlie and Marshie
        • Koneko Cat Cafe
        • Starbucks Reserve
        • Dynasty Dimsum
          • They had a Hello Kitty egg custard dessert that tasted like a Nata.
    • Orlando, FL
      • Took Charlie to Disney World
        • Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser was awesome.
    • Stanardsville, VA
    • Clarksville, VA
      • Went camping in Occoneechee State Park in Clarksville, VA
    • Orkney Springs, VA
      • Went to Shrine Mont
    • Nova Scotia, Canada
      • Went to Canada for the first time for work.

    # Things