BIT-101 in 2021


I don’t always to a year in review post, but I like to do them when I remember to do so. Looking back over 2021, I’m surprised by how much I did and how much I posted here. Things really got quiet during the last few months, so I forgot how much stuff I cranked out earlier.

Some highlights:

  • 75 blog posts this year! Whoa. Most in a LONG time. And more views on this blog than in well over ten years (thanks HackerNews!)
  • I did a fair number of tutorials on math, graphics and creative coding techniques.
  • I finally created a solid version of MinimalComps for the web! Renamed Minicomps (
  • I did a bunch of general visual, interactive experiments, even some interactive audio generation stuff.
  • I participated in 7 days of code in July.
  • I created an animated gif every day in August for #awegif2021
  • I bought a Mac. And liked it. But Linux is still my personal daily driver.
  • I did a deep dive into Perlin, Simplex, and Curl noise, which was pretty interesting for me and spurred a lot of conversation elsewhere.
  • I broke down and experimented with NFTs.
  • I did a deep dive into gif and video making tools, several posts worth of tips and tricks.
  • I started a mailing list.
  • I celebrated 20 years of BIT-101!

Sometimes I get a bit down on myself, thinking I’m not doing anything interesting. But when I list it all out, it looks pretty impressive. There was quite a bit going on in my personal and work life the last few months, so things toned down recently. Nothing particularly bad, just stuff pulling my attention away and leaving me with not much energy for writing either code or much else at the end of the day.

I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things in the coming year though. I think I’ve inspired myself to write more after taking a look at the above.

One thing I definitely feel the need to follow up on is the whole subject of NFTs. I’m still very conflicted over them. I created more than a handful and was surprised how much money I was able to earn from the ones I created. Then I took a little break from it for a few weeks and came back and did some more. Then took a more permanent break. I still don’t feel very good about the whole thing right now. I still don’t understand what people are paying for and what they think they are getting. There’s a whole lot of people cranking out a whole lot of low quality, low cost NFTs. And there are established, well known artists making fewer pieces and getting very high prices for them. And there is everything in between. The system as it stands seems like a fad right now and it feels like it will all come crashing down before very long. On the other hand, I believe there is something there that could evolve into a very stable and useful system of rewarding artists for their work. I’ll keep watching the space. I expect a lot of change in it in the coming year. I’m intrigued where it might go, but I’m not 100% comfortable participating in it as things stand. Which sucks, because I like money as much as the next person, and it’s a relatively easy way to make money doing what I like to do. I’m not drawing a line in the sand, but for now I’d rather just code cool pieces and let people look at them without “collecting” them.