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Year of Change

Ok so its the end of the year and so its probably time for a quick yearly round up. This year has been a year of change for me. Quite a successful one as well to be fair and some of the changes have been quite drastic and range over a multitude of different areas of my life.

Technology

First and foremost change has been my total embrace of Apple and the Mac. This time last year I hated Apple and all the they make. Now I own almost one of every product line Apple make! This change of heart came from getting my first mac in February.some messing about with my old Windows tower machine left me looking for a new machine that was small (to fit in my room) and more powerful than an Atom based desktop (typesetting LaTeX documents on an Atom is slow and painful!) The only system that seemed to fill these needs seemed to be the Mac mini. It was certainly small and powerful enough to play HD video and so with Apples 14 day return policy in mind, I ended up getting one. And was blown away. My own keyboard and mouse combo (I’m a bit of a Logitech fanboy when it comes to peripherals!) meant it was just like my Windows machine before but better. The 14 days passed and no way where Apple getting the machine back from me! From there I slowly expanded my Apple products line when I saw how good iTunes was on the Mac. The windows version had always annoyed me and I hated it and didn’t want an iPod as I’d have to use it. Now I had a mac, it worked pretty flawlessly and did what I thought was the holy grail – it would let me create playlists on the pc and then sync those to my device and work flawlessly, something Winamp promised for Android but whose promise fell short of it’s actual implementation. So with that in mine, the iPod appeared (though I did go for the classic as I have a lot of music and wanted it all without having to pay silly money for the 64GB touch). Then my phone upgrade rolled around an therefore an iPhone seemed right. Finally, the holy grail was bought and an iPad was added to the happy family. The iPad is a great device and I’m yet to see an android tablet approach it in terms of usability. It’s just so slick.

In terms of other technology changes, 2011 has seen me break free from Googles control of my data – on iCloud release, I moved all my contacts etc to Apples servers. It made more sense to stay native, as Google also collected all my search terms. Now they struggle with that as I now use DuckDuckGo for most of my searching needs.

Health

This year I’ve managed to cycle over a 1,000Km. Which might not seem like a lot to those that cycle, but considering that I only got my bike in the the year before last, to go from no cycling to 1,000Km in less than 2 years I feel is somewhat impressive. This, combined with a change of diet in the later half of the year saw me lose about 10Kgs. This weight loss will hopefully continue in the new year! In fact, I’ve even started running in the past few months which has been something I’ve never considered before! Again, this will hopefully continue onwards again in the new year and hopefully my feet will have toughened up and allow me to run the longer distances I’d once reached.

Work

This year has seen me travel to Sri Lanka to present work on the results of my PhD. I’ve also spoken to ISO insurance services in the US and London regarding the work that I’m currently doing and it seems that they are potentially interested in my work. Fingers crossed something will come out of it at the end as it would be nice to see my PhD being used in the real world, rather than just sat on the shelf in Loughborough library.

So there we have a fairly basic round up of this year. Onwards to 2012!

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