Kevin Purdy

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My 2014 in Abridged Review

31 Dec 2014


Things I Wrote

The Magazine

Funny Face, about the quirky historic roots of Buffalo typographic studio P22, written for The Magazine. I really liked writing for The Magazine, but their experiment has ended.

Buffalo Spree

In somewhat annual fashion, wrote a bigger piece for Spree. This one on the bittersweet saga of the Oppenheim Zoo. And, as is also tradition, a web-only pile of cool stuff I couldn’t fit into the text.

The Sweethome and The Wirecutter

I spend far more time researching, testing, and interviewing for these sites than I do actually writing. Quite proud of the resulting guides.

Other stuff

Things I Didn’t Write

Because either the time didn’t magically materialize, or I didn’t make the time, or the notes didn’t feel like they fit together. Vague hints:

Podcasts I Wrapped Up (In Beta)

In Beta started with Gina Trapani and myself as co-hosts in June 2012. Gina left In Beta to work on, among other things, ThinkUp. Gina, 5by5 network head Dan Benjamin, and some very gracious fans and friends encouraged me to keep the show, and its core discussions, going.

Earlier this month, I recorded my last episode of In Beta, #127. My In Beta co-host after Gina (excepting a few confused and frantic episodes with guest hosts) was Christie Koehler. Christie emailed Gina & I when Gina announced her departure. She told us she was a fan, listed her experience and interests, and, later on, told me she thought it was important that there be a female voice in the open-source discussion. She was very much correct. And she has been a very eager, wise, and accommodating co-host since episode #83. We’ve never met in-person, but at this point, we have at least a 12-pack of in-joke beers to run through. I am going to miss her place in my life.

127 weeks of podcasting taught me a lot.

Projects I Worked On


CoworkBuffalo is still open, which is no small thing. We wrapped up our Kickstarter project and hosted a party for it. I wrote a few newsletters. We met a lot of new people who work remotely, or for themselves. And the phone booths are now much more soundproof.


Year four was a big deal. Former speaker Adrienne Bermingham took the reigns. More than a dozen speakers and performers came to an audience of more than 350 people. The videos look beautiful, and I swear they will be online very soon. This thing happens every year, put on by volunteers, sponsored by very nice companies and people, and it knocks me over that it keeps happening.

Books I Read

Books, audiobooks, longform novellas, graphic novels, epic magazine stories … man, publishing, right?

Miles I Ran

289.3, according to RunKeeper. Toss in a dozen or so miles when my phone, RunKeeper, or my forgetfulness didn’t log the thing, and one or two 5K races where I dared to run without a live pace tracker—call it 300. Thank you to the friends who nudge me or scream at me to keep me running: John, Chaz, Clark, Jess, Brad, Ben.

People I Lost

Right now, as I’m writing this, on the couch? I can’t remember enough of them not to unfairly leave someone out. My great-aunt Doris Sherman, for one. But I know there are more.

I can tell you to the tenth of a mile how far I ran, but we don’t really log our lost ones, those that aren’t immediate but are still quite important, in any particular way. Me, at least, I don’t.

With a sadly tapped TK, I will try to come back to this section.

Tweets People Liked

I spend a lot of time on Twitter. Gladly, ThinkUp is watching, always watching. Here is that wonderful webapp’s list of my most popular tweets from 2014. Maybe the best tweet that wasn’t an Android, Buffalo, or in-the-moment, won’t-make-sense-in-one-year tweet:

Stuff I’m Using

It changes, this stuff. Year to year. Not all of it should, but I’m fussy. Professionally fussy, really.

Phone: OnePlus One. I don’t recommend it for anyone but Android nerds, but I love it. I wanted the second-generation Moto G to work for me, especially at that crazy unlocked price. But I make phones do too much at once. I’m impossible.

More? Yeah, more:

Computers: ThinkPad X1 Carbon (the first one), running Ubuntu 14.10 and Windows in a virtual machine. And a Chromebook that my wife and I basically fight for at home.

Tablet: None. It took a few years, but I figured out that I’m not a tablet person. Other than Pocket reading, just not my thing. I get them, I just don’t get me liking them, to paraphrase a former editor.

Software I use nearly every day: Almost all of it is web-based, or web-and-mobile-app: DuckDuckGo, Draft, Inbox, HabitRPG, Pocket, Square Cash, LastPass, IFTTT (it runs every day, at least), Slack, PocketCasts, Paprika.

For real-actual work, it’s Basecamp, Google Drive, and Harvest.

Photos of Dogs and Cats

You made it this far, through all that text. Thank you. Here, in return, are Howard, Cork, and Apricot.

Quite a year.