Fireworks above skyline made with CSS

This year has been a crazy ride, from my first appearances in public speaking to becoming a Google Developer Expert and speaking in Berlin. It’s time to reflect a little on the past year, write a little recap and have some time with family and friends to kick-start the year of 2024.

My gosh, has it been a year already. Time sure does fly when you’re having fun. About a year ago, I wrote my holidays blogpost with a few goals:

  • Keep writing, do something related to scroll driven animations and CSS anchoring
  • Return to CSS day
  • Do some more guest writing
  • Follow Open-UI a bit more closely
  • Try public speaking

If this were a checklist I’d say I pretty much checked all of those points. I wrote about 17 articles this year, including 3 guest articles for Smashing Magazine. I haven’t written for CSS-Tricks anymore as they - unfortunately - don’t allow any guest writers anymore.

But on a positive side, Geoff Graham started working at Smashing Magazine, so I was able to work with him again, which is just awesome.

W3C community groups

I did keep following along with Open-UI. I still learn a ton out of this community group and I love the direction it is going. Now with invokers being available in Canary, exclusive accordions getting releases in multiple browsers and selectlist having a great prototype, it really is a joy to play around with all these goodies.

What’s more is that there actually are releases for popover in Chrome, Edge and Safari. With the polyfill available, it’s going to be a popping 2024. I’ve also started following along with the CSS Next community group. But I’m still playing a bit of catch up.

Keep building fresh content or updates

I try to write fresh content, or at least approach something from a different angle and will continue to do so in 2024. This is also a journey for me and articles get created by exploring and learning new things around the web. It’s also just nice to look back at the things I’ve learned.

I think it’s important to be true to yourself and others. When I write about a certain technique inspired by someone else, I will always mention the person who created it. When showing a demo by someone else while speaking, I add it to the credits and mention it out loud. I think that’s just basic respect and I hope people would do the same with the things I create. I’d rather write nothing, than to just steal something without shame.

Public speaking

From a first try-out at fullstack Belgium to speaking in Berlin as a GDE, If you would’ve told me that at the beginning of this year, I probably would’ve laughed at you. I’m still not the confident person that I want to be when doing this, but it’s gotten a bit better. I did learn that public speaking is something that can be trained, so when opportunities are presented for it, I will keep trying and working to get better (in my own “quirky” way).

A word of thanks

I’m grateful to a lot of people… Because this blog and the content I bring would be nothing without the patience, tutoring, retweets and invites by a lot of people.

It’s impossible to name everyone, but to summarize: Thank you, to everyone at the Open-UI group (Greg, Mason, Scott, Hidde, Luke and many more) for being patient with me and letting me help out, to the Google DevRel people (Una, Adam, Bramus) sharing my content and inspiring me, the people at Smashing Magazine (Iris, Geoff,…), to Dries and Freek for giving me my first chance to public speaking at Fullstack Belgium, to Claudia, for my first time speaking at Fronteers Belgium, all my colleagues at iO for the fun times, inspiration and hard coding sessions and the fantastic front-end developer day this year!

And especially, thank you to my family, my wife and my daughter, I’d be lost without them.

Goals for 2024

This might sound a bit strange, but I’m pretty happy at the moment. I was thinking of trying something with video as well, but as I hate a camera in my face, that remains to be seen.

I think I mostly want to keep improving at the things I’m already doing and who knows, maybe speak for more people than ever before.

I’d love to work a bit more on the Google Developer Expert program and i’m brainstorming about doing a bit more for students as well. Maybe this is something iO can support me in during the course of next year by allowing me to spend some extra time on it.

So, in contrast to last year, I haven’t got anything specific except for getting more involved with the community and improving myself as a speaker and just keep writing those articles.

I wish everyone of my readers a happy new year! Enjoy some time with family and friends and even though there are a lot of issues in the world, never forget those close to you, they are so important. Treat each other with respect and patience and make 2024, the best year ever.

PS: As by tradition: a CSS holiday card:

 in  general