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2016 in review

Keeping in with the tradition, here’s my 2016 in review.

wedding
2016 TLDR: Got married. Travelled. Went to work.

2016 goals

  • Docker
    Feels like I hopped onboard the Docker train at just the right time, with the release of Docker for Mac significantly making this easier for development teams to pick up. My appreciation for containerisation effectively led to a revolution in the way we write and deliver software for Sky Sports. I went on to present our usage of Docker at Sky’s internal software delivery guild and also presented a live demo of creating a full end to end continuous delivery pipeline. I’m really excited about this technology and expect to be talking more about it in 2017.
  • Attend a conference
    Went to PHP UK Conference in London. Really enjoyed getting to see Jordi Boggiano talk. Came away from the conference with ideas around Docker and microservices which I’ve since referred back to and gone onto implement.
  • Cloud
    Launched a production app in Google Cloud Platform (yeh that’s right, docker in production 😉 ). Would like to broaden my experience with other popular vendors (Amazon and Heroku in particular).
  • Learn another language
    Language toolbelt is certainly PHP & JS heavy at the moment. Developed in Python for the Premier League Clips project which was fun. Also built a new iOS app in Swift (which I really enjoyed as a language). Certainly room for improvement.
  • Learn Symfony
    As part of a large project at Sky, I got to grips with Symfony, which I’m now a really big fan of. Got the team to use some of the more exotic features which has helped tremendously. Hoping to post more around this soon, but life with Symfony is a lot better.
  • Modern CI platforms
    Tried out a couple of “modern” CI platforms – CircleCI and Gitlab CI. Both of which have been welcome improvements on my past experiences with Jenkins (or at least the implementations). Thankfully I now get to work with Gitlab CI on a daily basis.
  • Functional programming
    Went on the back burner again. Going to attack it properly in 2017.

Books read

Personal achievements

  • Got married! Had the best day of my life whilst surrounded by my favourite people. The 3 week honeymoon wasn’t bad either!
  • Visited six countries for the first time; Czech Republic, Germany, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia.
  • Scuba dived the Great Barrier reef. Was a bit scary given the last time I dived was six years ago, but it was fantastic.
  • Led an ambitious international project with a mix of onsite and remote colleagues. Still ongoing but a great portfolio piece when it launches. Created some really good relationships and gained a lot of experience along the journey.
  • Had my first taste of mob programming with Woody Zuill in a full day workshop at Sky.

2016 was a full on year. Now I’m settling down into married life, I’m hoping to take on some more ambitious projects in 2017. Onwards and upwards!

Chris Bell

Chris Bell is a software engineer based in Leeds, UK. Enjoy his personal accounts and insights into the weird and wacky world of software development.

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