A year in review

I was listening to another great episode of Hackers Incorporated where Ben and Adam reviewed 2023 and figured it would be good to clean up my internal notes and do a blog post about it.

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Hackers Incorporated | Ben and Adam review 2023
Ben Orenstein and Adam Wathan on surviving the transition from dev to founder.
Hackers Incorporated


As a family and (recently) married couple we're doing great. The short version is that everyone is healthy, happy and content.

2023 was quite busy with a lot of visits from family and friends but overall we look back on the year as a milestone in our lives. A confirmation that moving abroad was the right thing to do.

During the numerous visits we learned that having a few days together truely allows us to reconnect with people we haven't seen in a while. Just being together for more than a few hours allows us to take time to catch up. And while moving 1500km from your home-town can at times feel lonely, these visits made us see how many great friends we have ❤️.


One positive effect of the move to Spain is an improved health. Not sure if it's because we sleep better or have a more active lifestyle but the little small pains of sitting in front of a computer most of the time have worn off. I'm still getting older though :-)

I started 2023 off well, with work-outs every day and a good habit of cold plunges every few days but after the summer break it has worn off a little. I didn't hit my goal of doing a muscle-up in 2023 but will try again in 2024. A regular routine of burpees, pull-ups and squads have strengthened my core.

Additionally I am drinking noticeably less alcohol and coffee which is mostly a side-effect of opportunity. No great coffee-bars close-by, or friends to spend the night having beers with.


Prezly has been a struggle in 2023. It's been one of the first years where the largest growth has been offset by some customers leaving or downgrading. We ended the year still with about 5% growth which in other industries could be considered a win. I guess we are spoiled.

After 10 years of being a co-founder I noticed that at times I am struggling to continuously find the right motivation and energy to keep pushing the same way we've been doing for the first years of that journey. Our team has grown to 27 people that all contribute a part of a well-running machine which also means that the pressure to question the status quo has decreased. There are no easy problems to solve anymore...

Earlier in the year Jesse and I had an open conversation about those feelings and our expectations to one other. We identified the most important issues and agreed to a plan for the next year. An important conclusion of this conversation was that we might be spending too much time on the stuff we do not enjoy doing and not enough time on the stuff we love (and are good at). It was an important reminder that the fact that it's our company (fully bootstrapped/no investors) is the best possible foundation to allow ourselves that.


A great source of energy was finding the time to hack away at some projects. Everything was in a way Prezly related but I spent time on a number of side-projects:

  • A plugin to see contentful items in storybook (tweet with video)
  • An internal version (powered by supabase) to analyse website attribution
  • Project to sync all website pages (from sitemap.xml) to an airtable base (www.sitemap-to-airtable.com)
  • Upgraded this blog to Next 14 + AppRouter. Implemented an RSS content viewer

Most of the code I wrote is probably crappy but I enjoyed the journey and upgraded a lot of my skills specifically around Typescript, Tailwind, RPC and edge/node functions.

That's that. I hope you've had a great 2023!