We’re about a week into 2017 which means that by now: people have already given up on resolutions to lose 20 pounds, stop smoking and spend less money.
Resolutions are hard.
They’re especially hard when they require you to give stuff up. I’ve always liked the idea of resolutions that push you to do something in addition to what you do as opposed to just taking something away. That way, you succeed as long as you do even a little bit of what you set out to do.
To help you with resolution that you can stick to, I’ve put together a list my nerdy resolutions that I want to work on this year. Hopefully, they’ll inspire you beef up your nerd cred this year.
There was a time when I really enjoyed anime. Growing up I watched things like Pokémon, Digimon, Dragon Ball Z, and an assortment of weird stuff on Toonami. I found myself (like most kids in the 90’s) intrigued by the art style and plot lines that were more serious than other cartoons. As I got older, my taste matured and things like Gundam and Cowboy Bebop found their way into the mix. Like most things, I got busy and couldn’t find the time to sit down and watch stuff. Thankfully, this shouldn’t be a very difficult a resolution to keep now that Netflix lets you download content to your phone. Shows at the top of my list include Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Attack on Titan, One Punch Man and Ghost in the Shell…if only to prep for the live action movie.
Read the Classics
I have never read Frank Herbert’s Dune. Considering that Dune is one of the bestselling sci-fi novels of all time, I’m surprised that I missed it. But that’s not all, I still have major sci-fi/fantasy gaps with Ray Bradbury, Stephen King, Arthur Clark and Isaac Asimov. I want to work on reading more of those novels that made these authors great. That being said, I plan on being selective with the classics. Some things hold up while others become dated. I have read and enjoyed Asimov’s robot novels but I know that current robotics (a word he actually invented) are vastly different from what he talks about. And I’ll probably get chastised for this one, but I could not get into H.P. Lovecraft, I found him kinda boring.
Tinker with the Raspberry Pi and Arduino
There should be more to being a nerd than just liking some different fandoms. I think that there should be a creative aspect as well. A way to turn your passions into something tangible. As a gamer, I’ve always had an interest in the hardware that allows you to play different games. I added a backlight to my Game Boy Advance before that was a standard feature and modified a GameCube to read normal sized disks. I’ve wanted to get back into working with electronics and there’s never been a better time now the we have ch eap computer parts like the Arduino and Raspberry Pi. I’d like to learn a bit about how to program them and develop my own projects around them.
Put the Science back in Sci-Fi
When people talk about “hard” science fiction (like Star Trek) versus “soft” science fiction (like Star Wars) they’re talking about the divide between science fiction that tries to be as rooted in what we know about science as opposed to just being a made-up science fiction tale. This is in no way to belittle “soft” science fiction. Star Wars is more creative with its science but I think that’s a good way to think outside of the box and inspire generations of fans. I do however think that it’s important to understand the rules and know when they’re being broken. I want to learn more about the scientific breakthroughs that are going on today and revisit science with fresh eyes and a genuine interest that I may not have had while in school. At the top of my list are things like biology, physics and astronomy.