From 2019 to 2020

Some reflection on the past and goals for the future.

January 01, 2020 | Mike Buss

I believe setting goals and measuring progress is incredibly important. In this post, I’d like to reflect on 2019 and set goals for 2020.

Here were the goals I set for myself in 2019:

Grow my consulting business

My software consulting business Aeso had a record year for income in 2019. Ironically, one of my goals in 2020 is to spend less time on my business, because this was really taxing.

Redesign my personal blog

I finished redesigning this blog in December of 2019. I will probably redesign it again next year, but for now I’m thrilled with the result. If you have feedback, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Read 12 books

I succeeded in reading 12 books in 2019. Below are some of my favorites:

  1. Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
  2. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson
  3. Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky
  4. On Writing Well by William Zinsser
  5. Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport

Visit Hocking Hills

Hocking Hills is one of the most beautiful places in Ohio. My wife and I have always wanted to visit, and in 2019 we finally got our chance.

Create and sell an online course

I have always wanted to build and sell an online course on a technical topic. In 2019, I started developing Command Line for Developers, a course that teaches the basics of several command line tools.


2020 Goals

Here are the goals I’m setting for 2020:

Read 24 books

In 2019 I opted to read only 12 books so I could spend the rest of my free time on my business. At the end of the year, it’s clear that spending that much after-hours time on professional endeavors is exhausting.

In 2020, I’d like to read twice as many books. Maybe if I had read the right book in 2019, I would have learned that lesson sooner!

Write more blog posts

I put a fresh coat of paint on this blog in 2019 and now I’d like to take advantage of it. In 2020, I’m hoping to write at least one blog post per week.

Contribute more to open source software

My first open source contribution, a library for scanning barcodes on iOS, has done exceptionally well with over 1,000 stars on GitHub. In 2020, I’d like to contribute more to open source and maybe release another library.

Finish creating an online course

I plan to finish recording the Command Line for Developers course in early 2020. I think this course will be incredibly helpful to developers and I’m excited to finally release it.

Migrate all of my online services off of Google

I don’t agree with a lot of the decisions Google has made over the years and I’d like to migrate my services off their platform. I moved my mikebuss.com emails to Fastmail, which has been wonderful, but I need to finish migrating all my other services.

Migrate my business from QuickBooks to Stripe

I migrated from Wave to QuickBooks in 2018 and it’s been a huge disappointment. Apparently, paying $50/mo doesn’t buy you an ad-free experience, because QuickBooks bombards you with popups and banners and everything else they can think of. My next migration will likely be to Stripe.


I had a blast in 2019 and I’m looking forward to all the possibilities that 2020 offers. Happy New Year, everyone!


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About the Author

Mike Buss is a software engineer from Ohio who works primarily in the healthcare space. His work has been featured on Apple.com and helped hundreds of thousands of patients. In his spare time, he writes about software development and more.