My Self-Development in 2017

My corporate annual review period recently passed, and I was reminded of all the skills developed and completed tasks over the past year, both in and out of work. Sincerely, remembering what I've done over the past year makes me feel good, and really reminds me of how much I enjoy learning.

Video Courses

Although largely focused on reading to learn, I do partake of various streaming video resources via Pluralsight. The course I've completed this past year:

Multiple courses on management and leadership

Quantitative & AI-related courses, accompanied by work in R, Python, or VBA


Software Development

Work and Periphery


To avoid repeating myself, here are My Most Popular Posts of 2017.


Review: Complex Adaptive Systems: An Introduction to Computational Models of Social Life

Complex Adaptive Systems: An Introduction to Computational Models of Social Life (Princeton Studies in Complexity) Complex Adaptive Systems: An Introduction to Computational Models of Social Life by John H. Miller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A thought-provoking introductory exploration to modeling social systems, covering ideas for rule-based agents within a variety of rule-based systems, moving onto evolutionary-like automata and organization of agents to solve problems. Underlying some of the ideas, one could see references to deeper concepts, e.g., nonlinearity, attractors, emergence, and complexity, none of which was explained explicitly. At times, I did find the writing tedious, as some ideas were too obvious to spend time detailing, but overall, a well-written easy to digest text.

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My Most Popular Posts of 2017

Although I've made many posts on my Data Analytics Workouts site in the past year or two, some generated more interest than others - nothing here was virally popular - so I've written a post listing the most popular ones. Here is a link to the post.

Ideal Management


Anyone that knows me that I read a great deal, and one of the topics I focus on is management and leadership. It has meant attending B-school, reading books on management, as well as reading numerous articles and studies - I definitely prefer to base my ideas on statistical proof - so I think I have a good sense of what research says excellent management and leadership means. After reading a blog post that resonated with me, but I thought overly-specific, I decided to abstract that article's rules into something generic, add some needed items, then convert those items into practice.

The only issue is that this list is a bit of a 'kitchen-sink-laundry-list' including everything without concern for the appropriateness. When I look through my history, very few managers have been what I saw as truly excellent. For other items, they were not specifically a manager's duty but were provided by the organization, such as with providing training.

The Source

How to Tell If You're a Great Manager:

Software engineers will be obsolete by 2060

In response to an article on Medium, Software engineers will be obsolete by 2060, I responded with the following:

Interesting article on The Economist titled Automation on Automation Angst, http://www.economist.com/node/21661017, that looks at several publications that look at the historical effects of automation, and although there is always a fear of being replaced, ultimately more jobs are created than destroyed. Software engineers disappear? So what! There will be other jobs, with different titles, and in the interim, the more people use tech, the more there will be a need for software engineers.

Because of this, a person asked for my opinion on maintaining their career as a .NET developer, to which I responded:

Although I am a .NET developer as well, I focus on expanding my project management and leadership skills, as well as developing skills in AI/ML. Rather than bore with all the details of my background, here is what I think:
Somewhat more generally:
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