About timsp

As a founder of SSB BART Group (SSB), Mr. Springer has been working in the field of accessibility and web design for many years. Tim designed SSB's core technology and lead the development of InFocus™, the industry's first commercial software for testing Web accessibility. Tim was the chief architect of the Accessibility Management Platform (AMP) and SSB's Unified Audit Methodology. Mr. Springer advises many large corporations and Federal agencies, including the Social Security Administration, HP and Wells Fargo Bank, on the technical challenges and best practices required to successfully achieve accessibility. He holds a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Computer Science from Stanford University.

2017 Life Goals

Weekday Schedule

  • 6:30 AM wakeup
  • 6:30 AM – 7:15 AM Coffee, Food, Meditate
  • 7:15 AM – 7:45 AM take care of kids get them moving
  • 7:45 AM leave house or workout
  • 9:45 PM – Stop using computers, watching TV, and read or otherwise spin down
  • 10:30PM Sleep

Physical

  • Work out four days a week – Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday
  • Tuesday, Saturday, Sunday run on the treadmill – hour weekdays, hour plus weekend
  • Thursday do the elliptical trainer
  • Monday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday PT and weight training
  • Workout as early as possible in the day
  • Walk to lunch – avoid the car whenever possible
  • Take the stairs but give yourself a break after you run
  • Check my blood pressure once a week and track it on a weekly basis

Diet

  • 50% vegan, 45% vegetarian, 5% carnivore
  • Maintain weight around 180 lbs. Check weight weekly.  If its over 185 more than two weeks its time to start managing down.
  • Limit snacks between meals to fruits and other “whole” foods.
  • Manage towards a lower salt intake
  • Drink alcohol in moderation and responsibly – like most things in life the people that get it right tend to strive for a good balance.
  • Hard liquor doesn’t agree with your system anymore because you are, face it, middle age.
  • Pull the heavy beers entirely and be exceptionally limited with even light beers.  Drink good beer when you drink it – just don’t drink it much.
  • Drink wine instead, you know you like it.
  • If you drink (i) too much or (ii) too late it keeps you from sleeping.  If you are going to drink something do it earlier or you will be awake for an hour at 2AM wanting to go back to sleep and feeling tired the entire next day.  Different drinks, different impacts, but you can’t go wrong with lighter drinks.

Caffeine

  • A solid double espresso in the morning and then no coffee for the rest of the day seems the right balance. That’s a nice kick in the ass to get moving without making you jittery in the latter half of the day.
  • Ahh – Diet Coke – drink less of this even though you aren’t very good at cutting it out.   When possible replace this with ice tea which is awesome – just takes a little effort to make

Personal

  • Have a monthly check-in with my wife about the overall family and how we are doing
  • Go on a date with my wife at least once a month – use Tuesday night to plan it
  • Take a trip at least once a quarter with the family.
  • Use the money you have to free up time to spend with the kids. When I am working, work hard. When I am not working focus on quality and depth of relationships with my kids.
  • Strive towards a life that centers around family – broadly defined – and quality relationships.
  • Work to get a fifteen minute mindfulness meditation session into the daily structure of things.
  • Get the work you have to do on weekends done early in the weekend and then have a relaxed recovery time.   Pushing it out to EoD Sunday just makes it hang over your head the other days.

On The Road

As part of my job I travel a fair amount for work.   I find that if you aren’t thoughtful about your strategy for living on the road you eat and sleep poorly, run your body down and generally create an unstable situation.   So I started to think through – what are some good rules of thumb for keeping healthy as one travels.

  • Yes, life on the road is hard but at thirty-eight you can no longer give yourself a free pass when traveling – the same rules for diet still apply
  • Give yourself permission to work out every day ideally in the morning before you head into whatever you are doing.   Double bonus if you can run around the city for the workout.
  • Whenever possible fly in late the night before – ideally leaving after the kids are asleep.   This is an easy way to avoid a painful early morning flight, give you the ability to work out early and be in an optimal state for a meeting.
  • For multiple nights, cycle through business, friends and nothing in three day increments.   Business get the priority throughout as it is your fiduciary obligation.   If you get a second night free connect with a friend in the city.   If you get a third night free block it out and take an admin night to relax, catch up and go to bed early.
  • Make time to FaceTime.
  • Order a sparkling water at the same time you order wine or a beer.   That’s an easy way to stay hydrated and keep your pace slow.
  • Account aggressively – more thank you think you should – for jet lag and sleeping in a weird bed.   It will mess up your sleep and you should go to bed earlier and plan to wind-down longer to account for it.
  • People like to drink with the boss when he comes into town but there are more of them than you (and they are way better at going out then you are.)   You aren’t remotely capable of keeping pace, you’re old, don’t even try and be comfortable turning in early.

2016 Packing List

  • Plane Clothes
    • Yoga Pants or Cargo Shorts
      • Shorts work better but not when travelling to cold weather
    • Tennis Shoes
    • Boxers
    • Comfortable Workout Shirt
    • Athletic Socks
    • Ok Weather – Solid Color Sweater
    • Cold Weather – Fleece
  • Standard
    • T-Shirts – Under Armour White (3 || #Meeting Days), Print (3-5)
    • Synthetic Boxer Briefs (Days)
    • Jeans (1) – Dark Blue or Black
  • Workout
    • Workout Shorts (3)
    • Headbands (2)
    • Athletic Socks (2)
  • Meeting
    • Dress Shoes + Matching Belt
    • Dress Socks (#Meeting Days)
    • Dress Shirt (#Meeting Days)
    • Suit (1) or Sport Coat (1)
      • If suit, make sure two dress shirts are white
    • Tie (2)
  • Other
    • Puma Flip Flops
    • Workout Headphones
    • iPod Arm Bad + Visor
    • Dopp Kit – Drugs, Hair, Teeth,
  • International
    • Passport
    • Plug Adapters for country
  • Cold Weather
    • Long Johns (1)
    • Swap in long sleeve t-shirts when traveling cold
  • Optional
    • Hat
    • Extra Workout Shorts (1)
    • Regular Shorts (1)
    • Sweater (1) – Extra sweater – wear other on plane
  • Carry-On
    • Laptop and iPad
    • Noise Cancelling Headphones
    • Office and House Keys
    • iPhone Charger Cables
    • IPhone Charge Block

2016 Life Goals

Weekday Schedule

  • 645AM wakeup
  • 645 – 715 Coffee, Food, Meditate
  • 715 – 745 take care of kids get them moving
  • 745 leave house or workout
  • 645PM to 700PM – Family Hindi Practice.  Make this part of the bedtime process with the kids after they are done with eating and watching video and before they go back for bedtime.   We can do this anytime on the weekend.
  • 10:15PM – Stop using computers, watching TV, and read or otherwise spin down
  • 10:45PM Sleep

Physical

  • Work out four days a week – Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday
  • Monday and Wednesday focus on running on the treadmill – get up to a solid hour
  • Friday do the elliptical trainer and some core strength training
  • Saturday do a long run – work up ten to twelve miles or an hour and a half
  • When doing a cardio workout strive for a 155 – 160 BPM rate for an hour
  • Workout as early as possible in the day and enjoy the positive vibes for the rest of the day
  • Take time Sunday morning for a physical exercise activity with my kids.  This could be a hike, bike ride, game outside, a trip to the swimming pool or some other outdoor or exercise activity.  This would give my wifea chance to have a few hours without a child around and would give daddy and kids some bonding time.
  • Maintain weight under 180 lbs. Check your weight weekly. If its over 180 more than two weeks its time to start managing down.
  • Walk to lunch – avoid the car whenever possible
  • Take the stairs but give yourself a break after you run
  • Check my blood pressure once a week and track it on a weekly basis

Diet

  • 50% vegan, 45% vegetarian, 5% carnivore
  • Target weight of under 180 pounds.   At the end of any month if a seven day average is over 180 pounds take the time to lose the weight.
  • Eliminate snacks between meals.
  • Take a supplement mix of Omega Three, Vitamin D daily.
  • Be good to my bones – eat enough calcium from bioavailable sources
  • Manage towards a lower salt intake
  • Drink alcohol in moderation and responsibility. Like most things in life the people that get it right tend to strive for a good balance.
  • Hard liquor doesn’t agree with your system anymore because you are, face it, middle age.
  • Beware of heavier beer as they (i) taste wonderful and (ii) are loaded with calories. Keep it two about three pints a week. That seems a good balance of tasty beer, sleep and weight.  Other than that drink wine – you know you like it.
  • If you drink too much it keeps you from sleeping.  If you are going to drink something do it earlier or you will be awake for an hour at 2AM wanting to go back to sleep and feeling tired the entire next day.  As a general rule that doesn’t happen with wine. Also different drinks, different impacts, but lighter drinks tend to be better.

Caffeine

  • A solid double espresso in the morning and then no coffee for the rest of the day seems the right balance. That’s a nice kick in the ass to get moving without making you jittery in the latter half of the day.
  • Give yourself a two diet coke a week budget. I initially cut out all diet coke – see 2015 Life Goals – but it didn’t seem to have the earth shattering positive impact that was billed. So I think a little bit of this – as a treat – is okay but otherwise focus on drinking tea.

Personal

  • Have a monthly check-in with my wife about the overall family and how we are doing
  • Go on a date with my wifeat least once a month
  • Take a trip at least once a quarter with the family.
  • As a family we are going to work on learning Hindi.  We are going to carve out fifteen minutes to do this every day to do this with a combination of Rossetta Stone, Nana and nani and whatever other games we think of.
  • Use the money you earn more effectively to free up time to spend with the kids. When I am working, work hard. When I am not working focus on quality and depth or relationships.

I used to also publish my professional goals but as those are starting to contain more sensitive corporate strategy I have had to pull them off my blog. Feel free to e-mail me if you want that story.

2015 Life Goals

Weekday Schedule

  • 645AM wakeup
  • 645 – 715 Coffee, Food, Meditate
  • 715 – 745 take care of kids get them moving, get out of the house
  • 730 leave house
  • Workout M,W,F
  • 645 to 700 – Family Hindi Practice.  Make this part of the bedtime process with the kids after they are done with eating and watching video and before they go back for bedtime.   We can do this anytime on the weekend.
  • 1015 to 10:45 Stop using computers, watching TV, and read or otherwise spin down
  • 10:45 Sleep

Physical

  • Work out four days a week – Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday
  • Workout focus is running or other cardio and core strengthening via rowing – 50 mins cardio, 10 mins core.
  • Get to a point where I can run at 8 MPH for an hour
  • Run as early as possible in the day and enjoy the positive vibes for the rest of the day
  • Take time Sunday morning for a physical exercise activity with my kids.  This could be a hike, bike ride, game outside, a trip to the swimming pool or some other outdoor or exercise activity.  This would give my wifea chance to have a few hours without a child around and would give daddy and kids some bonding time.
  • Maintain weight under 180 lbs.  I lost a lot of weight about six years ago prior to getting married.  Since then I have continued to lose weight and for the last few years I have kept my weight to around 180 lbs.  This is still, however, slightly into the overweight territory for BMI and I have always wanted to slim down a little further.  With my workout approach keeping it under 180 pounds should be fine.
  • Walk to lunch – avoid the car whenever possible
  • Take the stairs

Diet

  • 50% vegan, 45% vegetarian, 5% carnivore
  • Target weight of under 180 pounds.   At the end of any month if a seven day average is over 180 pounds take the time to lose the weight.
  • Focus on a principally vegan diet (50%) with the balance being vegetarian (45%) and whatever (5%).   Eat meat about once a week.
  • Eliminate snacks between meals.
  • Take a supplement mix of Omega Three, Vitamin D daily.
  • Be good to my bones – eat enough calcium from bioavailable sources

Caffeine

  • Figure out the correct amount of caffeine to have on a daily basis and then don’t exceed it.   Be proactive in only consuming that much caffeine.   Swap out diet coke for ice tea at lunch.
  • You can keep drinking diet coke – just not too much. Last year I made a resolution to eat more natural, less processed foods.  Overall this resolution was successful and my diet in 2012 consisted of more whole grain foods, fruits and vegetables.  My one vice for processed food, however, remains Diet Coke and I still drink a 20oz diet coke a day most working days of the week.  To that end, if this is one of my limited vices I think I am okay – I just want to keep it to a 20oz diet coke and not drink a 40oz diet coke.
  • Drink a iced doppio in the morning and then not again.  There seem to be mild health benefits associated with drinking several cups of coffee throughout the day.  However, since I have a slight caffeine sensitivity drinking a cup of coffee in the morning and then not again seems like a good strategy.

Drinking

  • Be responsible – that’s real the rule.
  • Keep it between two and four. Two drinks on home days, three drinks on social days, four drinks on party days.
  • Don’t mix alcohol with any prescription drug. Be very careful with anything else.   Lorazepam or Clonopin as these can have serious cross reactions and potentiate the alcohol.  Don’t use this with alcohol or anywhere near alcohol.
  • Have fun!
  • Hard liquor doesn’t agree with your system anymore because you are, face it, middle age. If you decide to have a cocktail you are deciding not to sleep well that night.  Just don’t do it.
  • Drink the same amount more often – a few drinks several times a week – moderate daily drinking has a positive health benefit.  While I have drastically decreased the overall amount I drink over the last few years – welcome to your thirties – I still tend to drink nothing during the early part of the week and then most of what I drink in the latter part of the week.  Instead, I want to drink a regular, daily amount of wine or other alcoholic beverage.
  • Beware of heavier beer as they taste wonderful and make you fat. Keep it two about three pints of beer or two bombers – a week to keep sleep and weight gain relatively in control.   Other than that drink wine – you know you like it.
  • If you drink too much it keeps you from sleeping.  If you are going to drink something do it earlier or you will be awake for an hour at 2AM wanting to go back to sleep and feeling tired the entire next day.  As a general rule that doesn’t happen with wine.

Personal

  • Have a monthly check-in with my wife about the overall family and how I am doing in 2015
  • Go on a date with my wifeat least once a month.
  • Take a trip at least once a quarter with the family.
  • As a family we are going to work on learning Hindi.  We are going to carve out fifteen minutes to do this every day to do this with a combination of Rossetta Stone, Nana and nani and whatever other games we think of.

Professional

  • Execute the plan for 2015.
  • Exceed 10M in revenue run for the year get to a 12M run rate.
  • Exceed 12M in sales run for the year, get to a 16M run rate
  • Invest in SSB’s position as lead software and services provider in accessibility market.
  • Focus on moving the company to a product footing from a services footing
  • Keep skills sharp in core technical areas and domains
  • Research lateral markets (content quality, validation, privacy) that would complement the core of what we do in accessibility

 

2015 Packing List

Plane Clothes

  • Yoga Shorts or Pants
  • Tennis Shoes
  • Boxers
  • Solid Color Tight Fit T-Shirt
  • Athletic Socks
  • Solid Color Sweater or Fleece

Standard

  • Workout Shorts (3)
  • T-Shirts – Under Armour White (3), Black Cotton Stretch (1), Print (4)
  • Headbands (3)
  • Athletic Socks (4)
  • Synthetic Boxer Briefs (5)
  • Jeans (2) – Dark Blue, Black
  • Sweater (1) – Extra sweater – wear other on plane
  • Dress Shoes + Matching Belt
  • Dress Socks
  • Puma Flip Flops
  • Workout Headphones
  • iPod Arm Bad + Visor
  • Dopp Kit – Drugs, Hair, Teeth,

Meeting Clothes

  • Dress Shirt (2) – Make sure two of the t-shirts are white
  • Suit or Sport Coat
  • Tie (1)

Optional

  • Extra Workout Shorts (1)
  • Extra Regular Shorts (1)
  • Extra Dress Shirt (1)
  • Long Johns (1)
  • Hat

Carry-On

  • Laptop and iPad
  • Noise Cancelling Headphones
  • Office and House Keys
  • iPhone Charger Cable in Laptop
  • IPhone Charge Block

Notes

  • Swap in long sleeve t-shirts and long johns when traveling cold
  • Shorts and a jacket work better than yoga pants except when travelling to cold weather.
  • Jeans are not a great way to go on long flights.

2014 Packing List

New and updated

Plane Clothes

  • Yoga Pants
  • Tennis Shoes
  • Boxers
  • Solid Color Tight Fit T-Shirt
  • Athletic Socks
  • Solid Color Sweater

Standard

  • Workout Shorts (3)
  • Workout Shirts (4) – White / Gray / Black
  • Headbands (3)
  • Athletic Socks (4)
  • Synthetic Boxer Briefs (5)
  • Jeans (2) – Dark Blue, Black
  • T-Shirts (7) – Three Solid Color, Four Print
  • Polo Shirt (1)
  • Sweater (1) – Extra sweater – wear other on plane
  • Shorts (1)
  • Black Belt
  • Flip Flops
  • Workout Headphones
  • iPod Arm Bad + Visor
  • Hat

Meeting Clothes

  • Dress Shirt (2) – Make sure two of the t-shirts are white
  • Suit
  • Tie (2)
  • Dress Socks
  • Dress Shoes
    • Black Shoes – Belt Packed
    • Brown Shoes + Brown Belt

Other

  • Dopp Kit – Drugs, Hair, Teeth,

Laptop Bag Carry-On

  • Laptop and iPad
  • Noise Cancelling Headphones
  • Office and House Keys
  • iPhone Charger Cable in Laptop
  • IPhone Charge Block

Weather Notes

  • Swap in long sleeve t-shirts and long johns when traveling cold
  • The polo and an extra sweater can be swapped for a nicer outfit

Note: Shorts and a jacket work better than yoga pants. Jeans are not a great way to go especially long flights.

How to make pizza dough – AKA The Pizza Dough Algorithm

I have been laboring for the last few years to build the perfect pizza dough at home.  Through countless trials and tribulations I arrived upon a volume based recipe that I defined in my Pizza Dough Recipe post.  When I got my new mixer, however, I decided to upgrade the recipe to a weight based approach – true baker style – and keep it as simple as possible.  That, roughly, is the following:

  • W = Weight of flour in grams – 1kg is the best base. Split 60 / 40% between all purpose white and whole wheat flour;
  • W * .6 = Weight of water in grams, also volume of water in milliliters. Got to love the metric system. 600ml base.
  • W * .02 = Weight of salt in grams. 20 grams base.
  • W * .07 = Weight of olive oil in grams. 70 grams base, 63ml by volume.

Measure out the ingredients by weight, putting them into a bowl, onto a scale with a tare (zero) functionality.  Zero out the scale with the bowl on it and then, as you add in ingredients to the bowl, zero things out as you go.  A kilo of flour makes about four medium size pizzas.

Keep the water separate and put a package of dry yeast in the water with two tsps of sugar.  Water should be 105 degrees.  Give the sugar and yeast a few minutes to bloom, wake-up and generally start to party.

Mix and need the dough.  Don’t do this by hand.  It’s a pain in the ass and you won’t get the dough to have the right texture.  Use a stand mixer.  (If you don’t have a stand mixer buy a KitchenAid.  Yeah, they are expensive, but you will be happy you have one and they will last you twenty years.)  Set the mixer to four on a scale of one to ten, pour in the water slowly and let it all mix and knead for 12 minutes.

Take the mixer bowl off the mixer, cover it with a towel and give the dough two hours to rise, ideally in a oven with a proof setting (or an oven set to 100).  Punch the dough down and then cover the bowl in plastic wrap and to rise for another few hours.  If you have a short time frame to make your pizza, two hours or so, you can let it rise at room temperature.  For longer – and longer is better – let it rise in the refrigerator for 18 or 24 hours.

Cooking the pizza dough is a ‘nother deal entirely – I will work on transcribing my notes from that later.

 

2013 Life Goals

Every year I publish my life goals for the year – a collection of goals I want to accomplish across a variety of different areas in my life.  You can see the list under the Goals main menu item on this page. My 2013 life goals extend and build on those from 2012 and my assessment of how I did against those goals.

Physical

  • Work out four days a week – Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday – In 2013 I had the goal of working out five days a week and was successful with that.  In 2013 I want to take one of those workout days – Saturday – and use it instead to have a physical activity with my daughter.
  • Take time Saturday or Sunday morning for a physical exercise activity with my daughter.  This could be a hike, bike ride, game outside, a trip to the swimming pool or some other daddy daughter outdoor or exercise activity.  This would give my wife a chance to have a few hours without a child around and would give daddy and daughter some bonding time.
  • Maintain weight around 175 lbs.  I lost a lot of weight about four years ago prior to getting married.  Since then I have continued to lose weight and for the last few years I have kept my weight to around 182 lbs.  This is still, however, slightly into the overweight territory for BMI and I have always wanted to slim down even a little further.    For 2013 I am planning to drop another seven pounds and have an average weight around 175 pounds – getting me lower into the average BMI target I should have.

Diet

  • Take a supplement mix of Omega Three, Vitamin D and Probiotics daily.
  • Be good to my bones – eat enough calcium from bioavailable sources
  • Drink the same amount more often – a few drinks several times a week – moderate daily drinking has a positive health benefit.  While I have drastically decreased the overall amount I drink over the last few years – welcome to your thirties – I still tend to drink nothing during the early part of the week and then most of what I drink in the latter part of the week.  Instead, I want to drink a regular, daily amount of wine or other alcoholic beverage.
  • You can keep drinking diet coke – just not too much. Last year I made a resolution to eat more natural, less processed foods.  Overall this resolution was successful and my diet in 2012 consisted of more whole grain foods, fruits and vegetables.  My one vice for processed food, however, remains Diet Coke and I still drink a 20oz diet coke a day most working days of the week.  To that end, if this is one of my limited vices I think I am okay – I just want to keep it to a 20oz diet coke and not drink a 40oz diet coke.
  • Drink a 8oz cup of coffee in the morning (and then not again.)  There seem to be mild health benefits associated with drinking several cups of coffee throughout the day.  However, since I have a slight caffeine sensitivity drinking a cup of coffee in the morning and then not again seems like a good strategy.

Personal

  • Develop a family hobby. My wife had a great idea on this front of getting some artist easels for everyone that we could use to paint.
  • Go on a date with my wife at least once a month.
  • Take a trip at least once a quarter with the family.
  • Publish book notes on books read
  • Learn some Hindi
  • Have a night a week where we work on side projects and not watch TV

Professional

  • Execute the plan for 2013.
  • Hit 7.5M in revenue run for the year.
  • Secure SSB’s position as lead software and services provider in accessibility market.
  • Grow laterally into development services market and prepare for movement into secondary compliance domains – SEO as a primary starting point.

My start of the year clean-out diet for 2013

Every year for the last few years I have used January and February as month to diet, take off a few extra pounds from the holidays and generally clean-out my system.   This year I wanted to drop my target weight a few extra pounds from 180 lbs to 175 lbs.   To that end here is my approach for January:

Eight(ish) Hour Diet – I just read about the Eight Hour diet in Men’s Health the other day.  The basic concept is that you have an eight hour window within which you can eat whatever you want.  For the other sixteen hours a day you don’t eat anything.  I haven’t read the book but they claim some benefits from the fasting for a sixteen hour period.  On this I remain skeptical.  I do, however, expect that the total calories consumed drop significantly simply by dropping the window in which you can eat.  I tried it this last week and it is, overall, doable although an eight hour window is a little difficult to make work on days that you aren’t in a more structured schedule or environment.  So I have adopted it for the five days a week that I am at the office with a little flexibility to a nine hour day as needed.   Generally that sets me up from a 10AM to 7PM window for eating which works for me.  On the weekend I am to keep the spirit of the diet and simply not eat after my evening meal.

No Alcohol – For the last few years I have taken time during January or even longer to abstain from drinking and generally detox my body.  In addition to getting better sleep I probably drink another 3/4 of a pound a week ~ 2600 calories – in wine or beer.  So eliminating this is an easy low hanging fruit and has the positive benefit of detoxing my body.

Calorie Counting – As I have done in years past I plan to track my calories using a Google Docs spreadsheet.   A few years back I lost a bit over forty pounds using this system and since then I have managed to keep it off.  So this is just the same system that I have used.

Posting Progress – When I did this last year to shed a few extra holiday pounds I also started to post progress to Facebook on a weekly basis.  This had the effect of both having me commit publicly to the goal and to gain encouragement throughout the process.   This year I plan to post notices to the blog, my Twitter account and to Facebook to spread the word and keep me motivated.

I started on January 2nd – January 1st is to cliche and there was football to be watch and beer to be drunk.  On that day I started at 183.3.  As of this morning I weighed 182.1 which is on track for what I expected to lose. My plan is to lose about a pound and a half a week and get down to about 175 lbs by the end of the month.  I will keep posting status updated as I go and let everyone know how things progress!

 

2012 Goals Accounting – How did I do in 2012?

This is an update on my 2012 Life Goals post  that defined the goals I had for the year.  This post is meant to review the goals, see where I did well and see where I have room for improvement.

Physical

  • Work out five days a week – Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday – Success.  I worked out five days a week for the entire year and kept the schedule above.  For 2013 I am thinking of removing one of the weekend days and keeping things spaced out a little more.
  • Maintain weight under 180 lbs.  Failure.   I kept my weight just over 180 lbs and probably averaged about 182 lbs over the course of the year.  For 2013 I am planning to drop another ten pounds and have an average weight around 170 pounds – getting me lower into the BMI target I should have.

Diet

  • Eat a diet of less refined items including, sadly, Diet Coke and focus on more natural items.  Success.  Overall I think I did a good job of this and keep removing refined things from my diet.   My one vice on this front, however, remains Diet Coke and I still drink a 20oz diet coke a day.
  • Take fewer drugs and over the counter medicines – focus on the few items that have real benefit. Success.  I removed all regular prescription drugs from my diet and cut back on the number of over the counter medicines I use on a regular basis.
  • Make sure I get enough healthy fats in the form of fish or supplements.  Failure.  While is definitely am taking Omega Three fats, probitoics and Vitamin D I don’t do so on a regular basis.   I would consider this one a success in 2013 if I can incorporate it into my daily diet and lifestyle.
  • Be good to my bones– Get enough calcium and vitamin D and drink less soda.  Failure.   As noted above I still drink a fair amount of soda and don’t get enough Vitamin D in my diet.
  • Drink the same amount more often – a few drinks several times a week – moderate daily drinking has a positive health benefit.  Failure.  I still tend to drink nothing during the early part of the week and then more in the latter part of the week / weekend.

Personal

  • Take a picture of baby girl everyday.  Success. While I don’t think we took a picture exactly, every day we did keep the camera around and, I am sure, generated far more then 365 photos of the baby over the course of the year.
  • Develop at least one family hobby.   Failure.  This is something we need to develop in 2013.  While my 18 month daughter doesn’t really care about hobbies – she just wants to play – it would be great to have some activities that are fun for everybody.
  • Go on a date with my wife at least once a month.  Failure.  While we did manage to go out a good bit our date night definitely was co-opted by work activities and various different double dates.   This is an area where I, personally, need  to be more active in 2013 in terms of planning and executing dates.
  • Take a trip at least once a quarter with the family.  Success.  We took a lot of family trips in 2012 including the Disney Cruise, Ohio, California, Canada, Princeton, California, Shenandoah Valley and Austin.

Professional

  • Execute the plan for 2012.  Success.  Overall we executed our core plan for 2012 and the company continued to grow on plan.  In addition, the last two quarters of the year showed huge sales increases and, if indicative of future events, foreshadow a strong 2013.
  • Hit 6M in revenue run rate before the fourth quarter of the year.  Failure.  Overall good progression against plan and growth throughout the year.  In fourth quarter we missed the 6M run rate by 20K.  However, we would have handily beaten that run rate in the fourth quarter except for a GAO protest of a core contract.  The protest we have no control over and it knocked off 260K of revenue from the quarter.  So while this one is a failure I am pleading extenuating circumstances and not incompetence.
  • Secure SSB’s position as lead software and services provider in accessibility market. Failure.  We have still not full positioned the company as “the” leader in the accessibility solutions space.  The overall strategy and activties for doing this, however, are certainly well in hand.
  • Grow laterally into development services market and prepare for movement into secondary compliance domains – SEO as a primary starting point.  Success.  For the first part, success for a different reason, however, which is that we decided that moving into the development services market is not what we want to do with the business.  Instead we really only want to focus on providing engineering services targeted at solving accessibility development problems.  As to the second with the completion of the underlying architecture and scale changes to AMP we are in a compelling position to move into other markets – an activity earmarked for marterial exploration in 2013. 
  • Define an M&A plan to complement the organic growth plan.  Failure.  Currently we have no well defined or structured M&A plan for the company.