It's technically New Years Eve where I am, as I write this. I haven't done much blogging over the past week, because I've been re-charging my batteries and making plans for 2006. In this post I reflect on the year that's past and tell you a bit about my plans for R/WW in 2006.
A year ago I set myself a goal to convert my hard work on Read/WriteWeb into real-world success, particularly career wise. The fact I was able to quit my day job in August and then earn a living as a self-employed Web Consultant -- I think that means I achieved that goal. Plus I visited America, a place I've long dreamed about, for the first time in October and met many of the people I'd gotten to know via blogging. At the start of 2005, Read/WriteWeb had around 500 RSS subscribers. Just before the xmas holidays I'd reached a shade under 8,000. Not quite the level of growth Techcrunch has enjoyed, but not too shabby ;-)
Since this is a personal post and all but the first 500 of my subscribers has by now tuned out ;-)... let me take this opportunity to thank some people. Marc Canter was the first person to give me ongoing work. Marc's the first at a lot of things, so keep an eye out for DLAs and Broadband Mechanics in '06. Susan Mernit has given me a lot of interesting work this year, which has kept me on my toes and sharpened my skillset. I've also done work for Rojo, Nooked, Aqute Research, ZDNet (blogging), New Zealand National Library, Idealog, O'Reilly Media. Also a huge thanks to R/WW's sponsors this year.
In 2005 I met a number of amazing bloggers in person. Too many to mention, so I won't even try to list them all! But a special shout-out to my Web 2.0 Workgroup co-founders Mike Arrington and Frederico Oliveira. Also I owe a big thanks to Havi Hoffman and Elizabeth Osder from Yahoo, who introduced me to the good people of Yahoo and showed me around the campus in October. Finally I must mention the spicy noodles dinner with Mike, Fred, Gabe and the one and only Dave Winer. An evening to remember.
More travel beckons in 2006. I'm coming to Seattle at the end of January for Microsoft Search Champs. Also Ben Barren is trying to entice me across to Melbourne, to help him kick-start online media in Australia. So it'll be interesting to see how it all pans out career and life wise next year.
I'm planning to ramp up Read/WriteWeb in 2006, focusing on the intersection of Web technology and media. I really want to make R/WW a thoroughly professional site, where you can come to get the latest news and views relating to Web-based media. Just as one year ago I was excited by the possibilities of Web 2.0 (the Web as platform), now I'm excited by what I expect will be a huge year in 2006 for digital media. It's building on the Web as platform, taking it to the next level.
I like to be one step ahead of trends, so expect big things from Read/WriteWeb next year. Happy new year everybody!