Jake Worth

Jake Worth

My Annual Review 2023

Published: December 28, 2023 3 min read

  • retros

Each year (mostly) I conduct a review to reflect on the ending professional year and share the results of that review on this blog. Here’s the full collection:

2023 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015


Work was fun this year! I spent it building software for veterinary clinics. Specifically: leading the redesign of our onboarding, dashboard, and product offerings on the web, and then building major portions of an internal information management tool.

Under ‘boring and essential’, I designed and implemented a comprehensive test suite that includes linting, formatting, and type checks, as well as unit and integration tests, and established continuous integration for an in-development application.

In soft skills, I led a team retrospective and cross-team demonstrations, made substantial contributions to technical thought leadership, and provided guidance, coaching, and mentorship through expert code reviews to peers. And I wrote a lot of docs.

Technically, I dove deeper into TypeScript and JavaScript testing than ever before.

I got to travel for work to San Francisco, to meet my team and see our clinics. It was a great trip.

Here on the blog, I wrote twenty posts. Three of my favorites:

After reading Building a Second Brain, I revamped my note-capturing system around the PARA method and the app Notion. I was using a mishmash of physical notebooks, Apple Notes, Asana, and Google Drive previously. Getting my ideas into a searchable, somewhat organized digital format has been transformative.

Lastly, I took over and rebranded the Maine JS Meetup, hosted four high-quality events with my co-organizers, and doubled our membership from 70 to 140 JavaScripters. Years of trial and error organizing Vim Chicago made this opportunity feel fun and intuitive. I have big dreams for our growth in 2024.

What Did I Learn?

This year I felt technically stronger than ever before. I once thought I might get bored as an individual contributor, but that hasn’t happened.

A development I didn’t anticipate as a senior IC is that sometimes you’re considering problems that other programmers don’t see. It’s strange to feel compelled to justify that the problem I see is a problem, or one worth solving. And, in a world of constraints, not everyone will agree with my prioritization. I’m becoming more comfortable fixing the problem for my own satisfaction and the benefit of my team, without explicit approval.

Through my work, I’ve become a growing advocate for user experience and accessibility. The user is everything. As Mark Cook says, “Success is not delivering a feature; success is learning how to solve the customer’s problem” (The Lean Startup pg. 66). A few of my posts this year show what I’ve learned and where my opinions lie.

2024 Goal

Host twelve Maine JS Meetups and write a technical book.

Thank You

A massive thank you to:

  • My partner and family, who make it all possible
  • My teammates, who continue to be incredible
  • The Josh + Dillon mastermind, who help me kill dragons
  • Maine JS Meetup co-organizers, members, speakers, and sponsors
  • Everyone who reads my blog and newsletter, and interacts with me online
  • Maintainers of React, TypeScript, Vim, Ruby, PostgreSQL, and all the other software and hardware I rely on every day

Have a wonderful 2024.

What are your thoughts on this? Let me know!

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