In just a few hours 2008 will come to a close and I'll ring in 2009 with my wife, son, and inlaws. This past year has brought some real challenges into my life many of which were unexpected. Fortunately, most of those challenges were met head on, were turned into opportunities, and then accomplishments. I played a major role in a very large datacenter migration project, one that involved months of planning and careful execution. That project, which migrated several thousand Web sites we host at Dealerskins was one of the most detailed, scary, and involved projects I've ever worked on. In the end it went very smooth. As they say, spend 80% of your time planning and 20% executing. Well, something like that anyhow.

There were several other major projects at work, some that took a matter of weeks and some that took over four months. During one part of the year I was managing over seven simultaneous projects involving four full-time Web developers, one DBA, two SQL Programmers, and one designer. It was super hard and I'm still learning while making a ton of mistakes. Many many thanks to the great folks that work with me at Dealerskins! It's been a pleasure working through the obstacles and challenges (and easy stuff).

Outside the office I was able to work on a few small consulting projects and create two new Web sites. The Nashville ColdFusion User Group site was a reincarnation of our previous site, and my wife and I launched a family blog at I continued to function as the user group manager for the NCFUG for the third full year.

During the last half of the year I had the pleasure of speaking at the BFlex conference in Bloomington Indiana, I wrote one article for the Fusion Authority Quarterly, and one article for the new magazine Flex Authority. Lastly, I served as an Adobe Community Expert for ColdFusion (Team Macromedia back in the day) for the sixth straight year.

I traveled to nine different cities spanning the east and west coasts of the United States including San Francisco, Cancun Mexico, and Norfolk VA. The year seemed incredibly busy to me but not when I compare it to other friends and developers (some who are both).

When I peer into my crystal ball I see 2009 being much the same as 2008. My travel kick starts again in a few weeks when I head to New Orleans for the NADA conference. Projects at work are more numerous than I've seen in a long time and we have plans to do some really great things for our customers (some of which have launched in the last two weeks).

On a personal front I plan to blog more, continue writing for magazines, and I hope to speak at more conferences next year. I also want to launch a new personal Web site, one that will replace and It's shaping up to be a fun and busy year.

To everyone who reads this I wish you and your family all the happiness and success you can stand. Happy New Year!!!

Aaron West's Gravatar
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This entry was posted by Aaron West on December 31, 2008 at 7:27 PM. It was filed in the following categories: User Groups, ColdFusion, Adobe Community Experts, Personal, Dealerskins, Blogging. It has been viewed 5126 times and has 3 comments.

3 Responses to A Short Review of 2008 and Happy New Year!

  1. Congratulations for the work in the community. That in 2009 the success and conquests increase more and more!
    Happy New Year! well coming 2009!!!!!

  2. Same to you, Aaron. It sounds as if our goals are very similar. I think 2009 will be a great year for us.

  3. Aaron all the best to you and your family for 2009. I was a pleasure working with you briefly in 2008. You have an incredibly challenging application environment and I must say some marvelous co-workers under good leadership. Good luck to you all.