Vegard Skjefstad

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Year: 2012 (page 1 of 23)

2012

Yes, there are only hours left of 2012. We somehow managed to survive the infamous December 21. Nothing happened. Looking back at 2012 as a whole, though, quite a lot happened. 2012 was the year that…

  • I collected positioning and various other data about myself all year. I haven’t looked at all the data yet, but it’s over 250 megabytes of data in close to 51 000 rows, so it’s probably something interesting in there.
  • Quite a few one-liners were added to the collection.
  • I went to WordCamp Norway and did a bit of live blogging. I’m not sure if I’m going next year, the tickets are a tad more expensive and there are no detailed information about the speakers or what they will be talking about yet. Just a basic schedule.
  • I planned to attend a competition launched by my employer to write a mobile application and get the chance to win a trip to a conference of my choice. Unfortunately, I never really managed to get started. My notes and sketches are still laying on the desk in front of me.
  • I used a Windows Phone 7.5 phone for three weeks to give the mobile OS a test drive. In the end I couldn’t really find a single reason to replace my Android phone in favour of a Windows Phone handset. Read more about the three weeks: Part I, Part II, Part III.
  • We witnessed one of the most exciting Formula 1 seasons ever. I watched most of the races and as the final checkered flag, it was Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel who was the 2012 world champion, only three points ahead of Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.
  • I contributed to a Jenkins plugin, Wall Display.
  • One of my new year’s resolutions was to run more, and that I managed to do. Not a hell of a lot more, but I ran further than I did in 2011. What I didn’t manage, however, was to run a kilometre in less than 5 minutes. Maybe in 2013.
  • Another new year’s resolution was to smile more. Not sure how well I did, actually, so I will probably have to work harder on that one next year.
  • I bet on a single number on the roulette and won. Unfortunately it was only play money.
  • Tons of campaigns were launched on Kickstarter and I pledged money to 5 of them, all of which made they funding goal: Project GodusPredestination – A turn-based space 4X strategy gameLimit Theory: An Infinite, Procedural Space GamePlanetary Annihilation – A Next Generation RTSMake Leisure Suit Larry come again!
  • Steam tricked my into buying another 12 discounted titles. More games I will not have the time to play.
  • I converted the site to a responsive the design, the one you are looking at now – if you’re reading this before I change the design again. Response is great because it will dynamically change based on the size of the screen you’re looking at.
  • Apache was configured to use mod_spdy, which will eventually speed up the internet for everyone.
  • I created Parfait Amour for Pernille and Jocksan’s bachelorette/bachelor party. I also took a few pictures at their wedding.
  • I had been blogging for 10 years.
  • With the help of Anniken and her trip to New York, I finally bought that GoPro camera I’d been eyeing for a long time.
  • I finally got around to attach and secure the hammock I bought 10 years ago.
  • I read some great books, “Ender’s Game” by Orson Scott Card probably being the highlight of the year.
  • I didn’t go to the movies as much as I’d like, but that’s what happens when it’s so much more convenient not to go.
  • I started to bet a little on Formula 1 races, the Euro 2012 and – for some reason – horse races. In the end I got cold feet and chickened out, though. But I’ve still got $200 saved on the betting site. For the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
  • I wrote a few reviews.
  • Anniken and I went on a wonderful cruise on the Mediterranean Sea. I wrote four long entries about it, which you can read here: Civitavecchia to MessinaMessina to AthensAthens to KusadasiKusadasi to Civitaecchia.
  • I managed to cross 6 items of The List: Go on a cruise, visit an active volcano, go on a helicopter ride, fire a gun at a gun range, go on an American road trip, make a road movie.
  • I took a whole month of from work during summer and loved every single minute of it.
  • I bought myself a Galaxy Tab 7.7 to replace my old Galaxy Tab.
  • Hallvard, Klas, Hans Olav and myself finally managed to go on the US road trip that has been planned since 2009. I was the only one left of the original team, but it turned out to be a great trip. We took a lot of pictures and even made a road movie.
  • I became Lord of Lochaber. Haven’t had a single freebie yet.
  • The wp-days-ago plugin was updated to support AJAX.
  • I participated in Movember, raising over 1200 NOK (~USD 215). The Movember campaign as a whole raised over USD 128 million in total.

All in all, 2012 was a good year. Here’s to 2013!

Here are the wrap-ups from previous years: 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005 and 2004.

Resolutions

Since 2013 is creeping up on us, let’s talk new year’s resolutions. Last year I had two (text scraped from last year’s wrap-up):

  • Run more. This doesn’t necessarily mean that I’ll use more time on exercise, but the times I don’t really feel like spending two hours at the gym, I can jog for 45 minutes instead.
  • Smile more. This is probably The One Cliché, but it really has something to it: I saw a documentary about a paramedic a couple of weeks ago and the guy was smiling and friendly to everyone. And I’m not talking that kind of friendly that makes you want to punch the guy in the face. He managed to balance it perfectly and all I wanted was to be his friend. Yeah, I even think I had a slight man crush. This year I’ll try to smile more, not to attract man crushes, but to test the theory that it’s impossible to be in a bad mood with someone who smiles at you.

How did I do? Let’s start with the second one, smile more. I think I managed to keep it up for about a week before I returned to my usual grumpy self. To be honest, I hope people don’t see me as grumpy as I sometimes feel, though. In 2013 I will continue my quest to smile more; science has showed time and time again that smiling is contagious.

As for running, I did fairly good. According to Endomondo, I ran 125 kilometres, which is not a lot but considerably more than in 2011, when I ran only 16 kilometres. On top of the 125 kilometres running come the 1309 kilometres I biked last year. Not too bad. I’m hoping to keep running in 2013 and break my 125 kilometres record, and hopefully push my time per kilometre below 5 minutes.

But that was last year. What’s in store for the 2013 new year’s resolutions? One thing is for sure, 2013 will be more ambitious than 2012:

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2012 in Music

According to last.fm, my top 50 artist list for 2012 is, in order: Sting, MUTEMATH, Biffy Clyro, Matthew Good, Tycho, Marconi Union, Kent, Solar Fields, The Police, Hammock, Coldplay, Adrian Lux, Tomáš Dvořák, Dumdum Boys, Josh Garrels, Phutureprimitive, Disco Ensemble, Silversun Pickups, Aes Dana, Younger Brother, Blood Command, Rebecca & Fiona, Gossip, John Mayer, Cydelix, City and Colour, Ben Howard, Apparat, James Vincent McMorrow, Pearl Jam, Alberta Cross, Mastodon, Trifonic, Above & Beyond, Benjamin Francis Leftwich, Carbon Based Lifeforms, Cinnamon Chasers, The Drawing Room, The American Dollar, I Awake, Rise Against, Jon Hopkins, The Asteroids Galaxy Tour, Chase & Status, Matthew Santos, Idlewild, Mike Doughty, Emancipator, Just Jack, Bonobo.

It’s a good mix of alternative rock, singer/songwriters and electroncia. Here are a few of the new artists I discovered in 2012. Everything below is scraped from last.fm and Wikipedia.

MUTEMATH

MUTEMATHMUTEMATH is an alternative rock band which formed in New Orleans, LA, United States in 2003. They consist of Paul Meany (vocals, Rhodes, keytar, keyboards, samples), Roy Mitchell-Cárdenas (bass, percussion), Darren King (drums, samples), and Todd Gummerman (guitar, keyboards, backing vocals).

Since MUTEMATH released its first EP in late 2004 and hit the road in 2005, their inherent nature has challenged limitations and expanded parameters. By the time of the 2006 self-titled debut, their blending of adverse genres into its own innovative sonically adventurous creation earned them a reputation as one of modern music’s most daring young groups. By 2007, they would find themselves Grammy nominated and declared by Alternative Press as “the #1 band you need to see live before you die.” But in the process of pushing boundaries even further for themselves, they almost pushed themselves out of existence during the making of their sophomore album Armistice. “It was a risk we had to take,” says King looking back on what they set out to accomplish for Armistice. “This record was by far the most painful music-making experience I’ve ever had, but also the one I’m most proud of.”

The band is best known for their 2007 single “Typical”, taken from their 2006 self titled album. The song’s innovative backwards video was nominated for a Grammy in 2008 for Best Short Form Music Video. Speaking with Songfacts in a 2011 interview, Darren King poked fun at the somewhat futile nomination : “For the rest of our career, we get to say “Grammy nominated band.

Official site | MUTEMATH on Wikipedia | MUTEMATH on Spotify | MUTEMATH on last.fm
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Pictures from the US Road Trip

It’s long overdue, but it took a while for everyone to go through their pictures and remove the most incriminating ones. Anyway, here are a few snapshots, in no particular order, from our September road trip to the US west coast. Photo credits to Hans Olav, Hallvard and Klas. If you enjoy the picture, you might also like the video we created from the trip.

December 15, 2012

It’s way better than December 3 last year, but according to the weather forecast, it’ll start to rain soon.

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