James Turk

Today in History

Earlier today I noticed an email I was looking up was from exactly three years ago. From there I wound up on a random path that had me reading emails from February 24th for the past 6 years. It wound up being a pretty interesting look at what I’ve been doing over the last few years that I thought I’d write up for my own benefit.

So, starting in 2005 here’s what was going on in my life on February 24th:

  • In 2005 my Gmail account was fairly new and hardly used. Further evidencing how new Gmail was the only notable email from 6 years ago is a Gmail invitation I sent my Dad.
  • In 2006 I was corresponding with several progressive clubs at RIT to organize an event to up membership at all of our clubs. I was particularly happy to be reminded of this workas organizing that event remains my favorite thing that I did as the president of the RIT College Democrats. Another related memory was that I ended up writing a Jeopardy game in PyGame with trivia from the various clubs (notable as it was one of my first times writing anything more than a simple script in Python).
  • Apparently I picked a pretty interesting day to do this: While reading emails from 2007 I realized that four years ago I had just finalized my start date for my internship at Sunlight Labs. It is hard to believe this was four years ago, I’ve been working for Sunlight ever since in some capacity.
  • 2008 doesn’t quite live up to previous two years. Nothing much happened, I donated a small amount to the Obama campaign and an old boss was on his way out and there were a few emails regarding his departure.
  • In 2009 I was working on plans for PyCon 2009 where we hosted our first Open Government Hackathon. This also happens to be one of my favorite events that I’ve helped to plan (apparently in February I’m all about the planning).
  • Last year, as evidenced by a higher-than-usual number of pull requests on the Open States Project I was actually at our second PyCon hackathon.
  • Today I’m in Raleigh attending CAR 2011. I’m giving a talk on “Mobile Apps for Investigations” which will mainly focus on the Recovery.gov LayAR I made a while ago.

    This has been fun, I’m curious how lucky I got as it seems like I picked a few pretty significant days. If you’ve never tried this before I’d recommend giving it a try, just go to Gmail and use the extra options (click “Show search options”) to look at some specific day. If you use Gmail as much as I have for these last few years it’ll at least prove an interesting trip down memory lane.