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2017 in review

2017 in review

photograph of Minneapolis skyline

Photo of my new home, Minneapolis, by Daniel McCullough on Unsplash

In 2017, I:

  • Earned my yellow belt in krav maga
  • Drove 1,321 miles cross-country* to make a new home in Minneapolis, MN
  • Learned how to drive a manual car
  • Started taking computer programming a bit more seriously
  • Visited Poland
  • “Came out” as a socialist and joined DSA (I’m now a monthly sustaining member and believe you should be, too, if you’re a progressive of any flavor–DSA does amazing work nationwide)
  • Told anyone who would listen about Sarah Schulman’s Conflict Is Not Abuse: Overstating Harm, Community Responsibility, and the Duty of Repair. Go read it, now.

I also accomplished a lot professionally, but that’s a post for another time.

I began using Qbserve to track my computer-based time around June of this year. In looking back at the past six months’ worth of data, I’m a bit disturbed to learn that I spent:

  • 2 days chatting in Slack
  • 18 hours watching Netflix
  • 8.5 hours watching Amazon Prime
  • 26 hours answering emails (both personal and work-related)
  • 21.25 hours in Omnifocus (task management software for complete nerds)
  • …and at least 20 hours faffing about on various social media sites

In 2018, I hope to maintain or lower most of these metrics (which would mean I’d be cutting that time spent roughly in half), in favor of getting to know my neighbors and deepening my personal relationships, both at work and at home.

To that end, I’m aiming to leave Twitter for the year (though I may pop back in occasionally for work-related postings). (Here’s a bit of background on why I’m making that decision.) It’s a bit nerve-wracking–Twitter is pretty important to me professionally–but I’m guessing that it will pay off to spend my time and energy elsewhere.

I’m also looking to simplify my life in other ways, which will mean fewer new projects (and ending some existing projects–more on that in the months to come). Saying “no” has historically been difficult for me when I get excited about an idea. In 2018, I want to do less, but better.

I hope to update this blog more regularly, in lieu of offering updates via social media. If you’re reading this, chances are I want to hear updates from you, so you should stop what you’re doing and email me right now to say hello ( for work colleagues, for friends and family).

Here’s to a grounded, intentional 2018!


* If you’re curious, this road trip consisted of overnight stops in Clayton, NM; Dodge City, KS; Kansas City, KS; and Bloomington, IN. This was my fourth cross-country road trip. America is a great big beautiful place–especially the middle part.

Why I just deleted my ten-year Twitter history

Why I just deleted my ten-year Twitter history

I just used a service called Cardigan to delete the 10k+ tweets I’ve published since 2007, when I first joined Twitter.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve changed a lot since I was 24 years old.

It didn’t make sense to me to keep ten years worth of miscellany–silly jokes, uninformed hot takes, occasional sharp insights, and so on–up on the Internet, gathering dust, making advertising money for Twitter. I don’t want to support a company that even with a $10.8 billion valuation somehow can’t get it right and stop banning innocent users rather than the Nazis who are harrassing them.

I don’t enjoy Twitter anymore. Over the years, Twitter has gone from a great place (to stay in touch with friends and former colleagues worldwide, to find interesting research and industry news, to meet new people) to one that seriously bums me out every time I log on (every day brings a new outrage, smart people sniping at each other, Mean Librarian Twitter, and unintelligible memes). It’s become superficial on a lot of levels. It’s often used as a tool to demean and call out rather than enrich and uplift.

All that said, I’m not going to delete my account outright. Twitter is still somewhat important professionally, so I’ll continue using it to share the occasional piece of research or to livetweet interesting conferences.

But I’d rather let my writing and research speak for itself, in longform. And for my personal and professional relationships to deepen, offline.

I’ll be slowly unfollowing accounts who aren’t directly relevant to my interests or my work at Altmetric (sorry!) and hopefully logging on a lot less. I’ll also aim to delete my tweets and favorites every so often, to keep things fresh.

If you need me, email me at (personal) or (work).

With love and gratitude to my friends and followers for ten years of shitposting and networking…