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Reflecting on 2013

I’m close to two weeks overdue, but it’s never too late to reflect on 2013, right? I’ve written a lot about a lot of different stuff, so I thought it’d be fun to do a year in review. Let’s get started. 

How did digital Frank do? (i.e. the blog)

How much did I write?

To start with, I wrote 31 blog posts, which brought my grand total of posts to 88. Unless my math skills are totally awful, that’s something like a 54% growth in content. Considering that I’ve always wanted to be a writer, and I’ve always wanted to write a book,  this seems like a good start.

What did I write?

I wrote something like 28 posts that were tagged with “web” in some way. Some 17 of those were just about content management and some eight of those addressed razor mediator. Some 15 of my web posts had specifically to do with Tridion in some way. The other five posts dealt with spacekittens, annoying recruiters, and disappointing endings to movies.

As is typical, my most popular post had nothing to do with web. I am Less Than got the most traffic in a single day. It was actually kind of cool to see such a positive response to that.

Did people read what I wrote?

More than should’ve, probably. I had 16,000 unique visitors. My most-read content all has to do with the contenteditable attribute, about 6,000 people in all read one of my posts on contenteditable. Beyond that, most people ready my rants.

How did Analog-Frank do?

How’s the living situation?

Well, I moved to Illinois.  So there’s that. There’s a lot of reasons for doing so —many of them good. I have a very big house and a giant trampoline in the backyard. This must count for something.

And the family?

Another big highlight is that my wife and I finally entered the system for adoption. So, we’re waiting to be parents, which we think is pretty darn cool. We have a nursery put together (kind of) and all that jazz.

What did I Learn?

I learned a wicked ton of cool front-endy things:

  • The BEM methodology
  • The CSS flexbox module: Layouts of the future
  • Stylus. My new favorite CSS preprocessor

And then there’s the not-so-front-end things that I learned:

  • Node.js. The JavaScript platform to rule them all. Building web servers with JavaScript is actually kind of super cool.
  • Grunt.js: A node.js task runner.
  • MongoDB: Databases in JavaScript. This is even more cool.
  • Angular.js: Google’s own JavaScript-based MVC framework

And then, hey, I learned some cool stuff about Tridion, too:

  • Extension building. It’s not easy, but totally worth it. Half the work is those config files.
  • Tridion Installations: LDAP and Active Directory are just a few things to learn about beforehand
  • Razor Mediator things: To prove how much of a muppet I am, I found out that Razor is .NET
  • Media Manager: Setting up an ECL connection, uploading videos, configuring outlets, and all the crazy things

What did Analog Frank do with the Digital Things?

For one thing, my Github account grew in repos and in commits:

  • My editable jQuery plugin got some cool new features
  • Nerd revenge was exacted against Axe Body Spray
  • Default schemas for Tridion is now a thing
  • Flangular was born, the HR employee management app that runs on node.js, is powered by MongoDB, delivered with angular.js, built by grunt.js, designed with Stylus, and laid-out in Flexbox.

What’s coming in 2014?

I still left 15 other posts in draft mode. Some of ’em might get deleted, but there’s a few to expect the first quarter of the new year:

  • CSS Fundamentals: Writing an Organized Stylesheet
  • CSS: The Breakdown || Specificity and Weight Loss
  • HTML Basics: Writing HTML Tables
  • CSS Flexbox and Tables
  • The Tridion user experience: Good Schema Design
  • The Case for Re-Architecting your CSS (with a CSS preprocessor)

Node.js has earned a special place in my heart, and angular.js is growing on me, so I expect those to become recurring topics. Not only that, despite my frustrations with SDL’s Media Manager – I actually really like it. Once I crack a few more riddles in that API, there’ll be a few more posts.

The most important post of the year, though, will be the one where I announce that my wife and I get to adopt someone special.

1 Comment


  1. //

    Count me in as one of your 2013 readers. I’m looking forward to the 2014 Paceux, especially that post on schema design. ;-) We might even complete the semantic content story by the 2014 Tridion MVP summit.

    Congrats on the awar, btw. I wonder what you’ll do with the logo and you blog’s design.

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