Reflections on 2014 and Goals for 2015

As I sit here now at the end of the year, I can look back on 2014 with joy and fond memories. I leave you with two images: one of the sun I shot using the Televue 5x power mate (to get 9000mm effective focal length for my solar imaging setup). The other is of the moon while I was walking through Oxford the other day – just to show that perspective can make the difference in images.

Sunspot and granulation of the sun taken with Televue 5x Powermate (uncropped)
Sunspot and granulation of the sun taken with Televue 5x Powermate (uncropped)
Moon in the sky as if held within the
Moon in the sky as seen through the crenel (notch) of the tower

As my wife knows, I have many different hobbies. And the interest does move from one to another, until it returns full circle back to the same hobby. But there is one thing in common amongst all my hobbies – there is technology (and shopping) involved, be it rearing fish (getting that better filter to maintain water quality), hi-fi (getting that better sound), computers (getting the fastest system), photography (getting the best cameras and lenses) and cooking (getting gadgets to help cook better food), plus others as well. Hence my website will cover many of my interests.

At the beginning of the new year, I am not one to set New Year resolutions, as I am aware that these are made to be broken. Instead, I do have long-term goals which I have set myself over the years. And one of these I have finally managed to accomplish this year – I have managed to setup my own website, which I started in August 2014. And thanks to all you readers out there, I am getting close to an average of 500 visits per day to my website. As I have a lot of things I’m interested in, I will try to cover these at some point during the year.

My goals for the coming year (2015) are:

1) Continue to post at least one thread per day, as I have done in the last 5 months and hopefully give readers a different perspective of looking at common things, things we take for granted.

2) Complete setting up my personal cloud and home server containing all our photos, music and videos for easy access by my family. Even as I speak, I am ripping the CDs I own to iTunes so all my collection will be within easy reach.

3) Astrophotography: I intend to do more solar imaging, especially as I now own the Televue 5x Powermate to get even larger images of the sunspots. I am considering getting the Daystar Quark to do solar imaging in H-alpha. I would love to image the Orion nebula as well as other galaxies out there in the coming year.

4) Review more new gear which are out there, to post my personal experience with these and hopefully help people decide if the gear is worth buying for them. I do not like reviews that are too long and lack a clear summary, so I will keep mine brief but packed with information (both good and bad points of that piece of kit).

Here is wishing all my readers a happy and prosperous New Year.