Another year is coming to a close, so keeping up with my tradition of the last few years (since 2010, see last year’s edition) I am writing down the things in the past 12 months that gave me a sense of accomplishment or joy. It is often easy to focus on things not achieved, or left unfinished, as those are the things demanding attention. Often I find that in my daily routines I focus on what’s next, and I tend to forget a lot of what I actually did do. Obviously any year also has its hard moments, disappointments and failures. So to remind myself that this year was a full year where things happened that I loved doing or enjoyed (sticking to mostly business related, some personal), here’s the ‘Tadaa!-list’ of 2014
- With Marc, Paul and Frank, I formally incorporated The Green Land and had our first (temporary) employee
- Got to work with the supreme audit authority on the Dutch first national ‘Trend report Open Data’, and now working on the next edition
- Did an open data workshop with the Dutch and British supreme audit authorities with an audience of all European audit authorities, as well as a study day with the Belgian and Dutch audit authorities. Impressed with their dedication and professional attitude. (It does of course help clarity, if your mission statement is in the constitution)
- Worked for the Flemish Chancellary on open data scenario’s for their consolidated database of laws and regulations
- Explored internet security and privacy in more detail, geeking out on running my own cloud in a Swiss datacenter
- Spent a week and a half in Berlin with Elmine exploring and learning, visiting conferences like Things Con and Re:Publica, while also spending time just hanging out with fun people locally
Out of comfortzone behind a sewing machine
- Got to (finally!) visit Gabriela and Ray in Limerick where Elmine and I both presented at 3D Camp at the University of Limerick
With Gabriela, Ray and Elmine on an Irish beach
- Presenting with Ernst and Elmine at Sia’s retirement farewell party, and feeling the lasting impact, emotion, and energy of our work together in Rotterdam 2007-2009, reconnecting to several team members. It is a rare treat to get to see the ripples of a (personal) change process years on like that. I was honored by your invitation, Sia.
Cocreated Sia’s Lifehack Calendar with party participants
- Stepped out of a large tendering process that could have provided for 3 years because it felt all wrong, realizing I can’t stomach the opportunists who aren’t really interested in delivering value, just feeding at the trough
- Quit working on a company I was helping establish, even though it has loads of potential (realistically more than my other activities even), because I needed to free up thinking time and shed energy sinks
- Worked in France, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, Kazachstan, and Kyrgyzstan, enjoying the differences in stories, experiences, perspectives and outlooks that it provides
Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, against mountains
- Spent a thoroughly enjoyable and relaxing summer week in a gem of an apartment in Copenhagen with Elmine, just enjoying each other, the sun and the city
- Organized the Make Stuff That Matters Unconference & BBQ, at our home, bringing friends, clients, peers, family, and strangers together for two exciting days of inspiration, with the outstanding help of the Frysklab team and their mobile FabLab
- Got to be there with and for friends in good and bad times, which is the definition of being alive and human
- Taking more time with Elmine to explore exhibits, festivals, such as Gogbot, Dutch Design Week, Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, 3D Print Canal House, Reina Sofia Museum, Smart New World in Düsseldorf, Ai WeiWei in Berlin etc.
Worked on seeing, noticing more
- Better balanced long term goals and dreams with actions across quarters of the year, yielding improved results.
- Worked for the World Bank as a senior consultant / external expert on open data readiness
Presenting in Kazachstan at Global e-Gov Forum
- Got to celebrate the 3 year existence of the local Enschede FabLab which I helped start, still going strong and having yielded a wide variety of amazing projects
- Knowing we’ve touched people, and made it possible for others to inspire people, with MSTM, based on the beautiful feedback we got, and seeing the ripples propagate in Denmark, Netherlands and Canada
- Ending the year with a final dinner at a great Swiss restaurant that is closing, in the excellent company of dear friends
My absolute highlight in 2014 was our third birthday unconference in June, Making Stuff That Matters. Not only because of the energy and joy we got from getting to host such an amazing bunch of people at our home, but also because of the things Elmine and I did in the run up to prepare (in Berlin and Limerick e.g.), the help we got doing that (thanks @trox!), the connections we’ve seen grow from it amongst those we invited, and how it is still creating impact months later where participants have taken their own additional steps around making. It was wonderful to create the place and circumstances in which that could happen. We can’t thank all who attended enough for the gift of their participation.
Created with flickr slideshow.