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My 2021 dev retrospective

I’m working on improving my habits so I’ll be writing yearly retrospectives… starting today! This is what 2021 brought about, professionally-wise:

2021 dev retrospective

Soft skills

I’m slowly navigating corporate world, organizationally-wise as well as human-wise.

  • I strive to ask the right questions to the right people.
  • I try to engage people on subjects of general interest (being up-to-date with business and technical decisions, learning opportunities etc).
  • I try to engage management on subjects of personal interest (learning opportunities). Currently failing at it, but I’ll get better :grinning:

I’ve also started networking a bit in order to keep in touch with ex-colleagues and acquaintances, as well as to keep up-to-date with tech trends that interest me.

Personal brand

I’ve managed to blog (somewhat) consistently throughout 2021, averaging one blog post every two weeks. There have been entire months where I haven’t published anything, and months where I published 9 posts.

I finally created my LinkedIn profile and started getting in touch with people in my past and present professional networks.


I have a career plan, yay! It’s not that I didn’t have one before; it’s just that I realized I prefer back-end engineering to embedded engineering. More on the actual plan in the New Year’s Dev Resolutions post.


Throughout 2021, my work has gotten more back-end oriented, which is right on track with my career plan. I also got to design an awesome hardware testing framework for our products, written in Python and loosely modeled upon OpenHTF. It makes writing tests a breeze with an intuitive API, and it strives to minimize time spent by test operators at the test bench. I hope to get the management’s agreement to publish it under an open-source license sometime during 2022.

Tech skills

So much to learn!… So little time!… –> My motto and the story of my life. :joy:

I didn’t have a proper learning plan for 2021 (which is something I intend to correct for 2022) but I managed to learn a thing or two during this past year:

  • Early 2021 I played around with Unreal Engine 4. Just because it’s cool. I haven’t finished the course yet but I was able to make a playable level for a puzzle game where the player has to escape from a creepy dungeon.
  • At work, Python kept me good company. I got the chance to intimately discover asyncio and flask. I’ve also had a lot of fun with selectors, which allowed me to implement some groovy finite state machines for a TCP-based protocol using raw sockets.
  • During autumn 2021, I got up to speed with modern C++ (C++11, C++14 and C++17 standards). I started porting my C-based Gal4xy turn-based game to C++.
  • During winter 2021, I familiarized myself with Protocol Buffers and gRPC. The plan is to use both in the Gal4xy C++ port in order to render it multiplayer.
  • Throughout the year I’ve read bits and pieces on architecture and system design. Scalability, reliability, microservices, load balancing, that sort of stuff. I still lack context. It will be one of my main focus points for 2022.


It’s been a good year. I grew a bit. I’ll strive to do better in 2022. I still don’t understand why I’ve waited so long to start writing yearly wrap-ups and to plan for the year ahead. Humans are weird, and I’m one of them. :smirk:

This post is licensed under CC BY 4.0 by the author.

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