I wasn’t prepared to write an end-of-year blog post given the impending destruction of the world via a Mayan prophesied cataclysmic fury. But since that didn’t pan out I figured I’d better get typing.


Those of us that are software developers shouldn’t be too surprised that the world didn’t end. After all, how often do projects come in on time within the estimated date amirite?! (high five to all of you).

Highlights of 2012

This year has just been a blast. As my kids turn five and three, my wife and I find them so much more fun to hang out with. Also, this year I reached the one year mark at the best place to work ever. Here’s a breakdown of some of the highlights from the year for me.

  • January Twice a year we have an all-company summit where we get together, give talks, plan, and just have a great time together. This was my first one and I loved every moment of it.
  • February The MVP summit was in town. I wasn’t eligible to be an MVP as a recently departed employee, but I was eligible to host my first GitHub Drinkup for all the MVPs and others in town. We had a big crowd and a great time.
  • March I travelled to the home of the Hobbits, New Zealand to give a keynote at CodeMania.
  • April My family and I visited Richard Campbell and his family in the Vancouver area. I also recorded a Hanselminutes podcast.
  • May We released GitHub for Windows in May. I also visited GitHub HQ this month for a mini-summit with the other native app teams and recorded more podcasts including Herding Code and Deep Fried Bytes.
  • June I spoke at NDC in Oslo Norway. Had a great conference despite the awkward “Azure Girls” incident.
  • July Gave a last minute talk at ASPConf. The software I used to record it crashed and so there’s no recording of this talk sadly.
  • August Back in San Francisco for the GitHub all company summit. I corner Skrillex and force him to take a photo with me.
  • September Family vacation to Oahu Hawaii. I also end up giving a talk to a local user group and hosting a drink up. And my son started Kindergarten.
  • October I spoke at MonkeySpace and got really fired up about the future of Open Source in the .NET world.
  • November At the end of the month I was a guest on the .NET Rocks Roadshow. We had a rollicking good time. I went on a private tour of SpaceX with the fellas. We took the RV to the venue and I got to sample some of the Kentucky Whiskey they collected on their travels before recording a show on Git, GitHub, NuGet, and the non-hierarchical management model we have at GitHub.
  • DecemberThis was a quiet month for me. No travels. No talks. Just hacking on code, spending time with the family, and celebrating one year at GitHub. Oh, I also loved watching this Real Life Fruit Ninja to Dubstep video. Perhaps the highlight of 2013.

Top 3 Blog Posts by the numbers

As I did in 2010, I figured I’d post my top three blog posts according to the Ayende Formula.

  • Introducing GitHub for Windows introduces the Git and GitHub client application my team and I worked on this past year (103 comments, 68,672 web views, 25,048 aggregator views).
  • It’s the Little Things About ASP.NET MVC 4 highlights some of the small improvements in ASP.NET MVC 4 that are easy to overlook, but are nice for those that need them (49 comments 56900 web views, 26,044 aggregator views)
  • Structuring Unit Tests covers a nice approach to structuring unit tests for C# developers that I learned from others. This post was written in January which might help explain why it’s in the top three (52 comments, 41,852 web views, 26,073 aggregator views).

My Favorite three posts

These are the three posts that I wrote that were my favorites.

  • You Don’t Need a Thick Skin describes the realization that rather than develop a thick skin, I should focus on developing more empathy for folks that use my software.
  • One year at GitHub is a look back at my year at GitHub and how much I’m enjoying working there.
  • How to Talk to Employees argues that the way to talk to employees is simply the way you’d want to be addressed.

You People

Enough about me, let’s talk about you. As I did in my 2010 post, I thought it’d be fun to post some numbers.

According to Google Analytics:

  • Hello Visitors! 1,880,184 absolute unique visitors (up 6.15% from 2011) made 2,784,021 (down half a %) visits to my blog. came from 223 countries/territories. Most of you came from the United States (875,837) followed by India (267,164) with the United Kingdom (221,727) in third place.
  • Browser of choice:Just two years ago, most of my visitors used Firefox. Now it’s Google Chrome with 45.84%. In second place at 26.37% is Firefox  with IE users at 19.08%. Safari is next at 4% with Opera users still holding on to 2%. I really need to stop making those Opera user jokes. You guys are persistent!
  • Operating System: As I expected, most of you (87.16%) are on Windows, but that number seems to decline every year. 5.71% on a Mac and 2.24% on Linux. The mobile devices are a tiny percentage, but I would imagine that’ll pick up a lot next year.
  • What you read: The blog post most visited in 2012 was written in 2011, C# Razor Syntax Quick Reference with 119,962 page views.
  • How’d you get here: Doesn’t take a genius to guess that most folks come to my blog via Google search results (1,691,540), which probably means most of you aren’t reading this. Winking
smile StackOverflow moves to second place (292,670) followed closely by direct visitors (237,862).

My blog is just a single sample, but it’s interesting to me that these numbers seem to reflect trends I’ve seen elsewhere.

Well that’s all I have for 2012. I’m sure there are highlights I forgot to call out that are more memorable or important than the ones I listed. I’m bad at keeping track of things.

One big highlight for me is all the encouraging feedback, interesting comments, insightful thoughts, etc. that I’ve received from many of you in the past year either through comments on my blog or via Twitter. I appreciate it and I hope many of you have found something useful in something I’ve written on my blog or on Twitter. I’ll work hard to provide even more useful writings in the next year.

Happy New Year and I hope that 2013 is even better for you than 2012!