Here are my big rocks for the year. I know you are only supposed to have two or three and I came up with four this year.
- Consultant Collaboration - I would to facilitate more collaboration among LabVIEW Consultants. I would love to see some more projects where a bunch of us all work together. I recently started a fractional CTO role at a company, where there happens to be another LV Consultant working as an advisor. I'm enjoying working together with him. I did a collaboration with DSH in 2023 that also went well. I also partnered with Enrique on a job last year and quite enjoyed that as well. In talking to Llewelyn, outside the LabVIEW world this is very common. The success of the LabVIEW Consultant Summit tells me there is a thriving LabVIEW Consultant Community out there. I also think we have an unexpected asset in Lyle. I was upset when I found NI laid him off and NI's loss is our gain. He has a lot of expertise, particularly around business development. If we as a community leverage that, I think we could build something great!
- Software Tools - Creating new software tools that help make developers more effective brings me joy. I'd like to do more of that. Having better tools helps to make me more valuable as a consultant. The process exposes me to new ideas and skills, and the results serve as good marketing. While it may not directly make money, it does benefit the business.
- "Blue - Like Black but for LabVIEW" - I've been working on an auto-formatter for LabVIEW. I've made a lot of progress recently. I'm very excited about it.
- SAS-GCLI-Tools - In 2023 I put together several G-CLI tools and CI tutorials. I'm hoping to expand that this year.
- Class Refactoring Tools - I have some class refactoring tools for extracting interfaces and for renaming AF Messages. I need to publish those and add some other refactoring tools as well.
- CI/CD Runners as a Service - CI/CD in LabVIEW is hard. I think there is a market for CI/CD as a service, especially for small or medium-sized partners that can't afford an IT or DevOps department. I'm envisioning a solution where an engineer can go to a web portal, select a version of LabVIEW and other drivers, enter a repository url and API key and click a button to get a functioning runner. I'm going to explore that and see where I end up.
- Monetize the Podcast - That's it. I need to find some sponsors and I need to figure out how to use the podcast to generate more leads without ruining its character and preserving the value it generates for listeners. That probably also involves figuring out how to entice more listeners to join the Patreon. If you're reading this and are interested in sponsoring, we've got a variety of options and are willing to work with your budget. Reach out to Taylor for more info.
Every year I create a reading list. Most years I don't finish it, so this year I decided to do something different. I'm only committing to four books - 1 per quarter. I will likely read more, particularly as I continue to try and grow my Python skills. I wanted to make sure I left myself plenty of time to read some more fiction this year. I feel like that has been missing the past few years. It brings me joy and channeling my inner Steve Watts, I am going to be very intentional about doing more things that bring me joy this year.
Here is the list:
- Think Like a CTO - Alan Williamson
- How to Grow Your Small Business - Donald Miller
- The Problem With Software - Why Smart Engineers Write Bad Code - Adam Barr
- Clarity and Impact - Inform and Impress With Your Reports and Talks - Jon Moon