02016 Annual Report

Wednesday, April 12th, 02017 at 12:21 UTC

We are very slow at getting these numbers out the door for 02016. When looking back, we had a lot of fun, worked on a bunch of different project, but it was certainly a very dysfunctional year for the company. For various reasons, the company was pretty much shut for months at a time here and there. This meant that time tracking was pretty much at an all-time low. What numbers we do have are still useful, they represent the time we were at the office, so we can take a look at how we did spent our time working.

The goal of this document is to let others know what they can “normally” expect in terms of expenses, income sources, workload, services and more. Last year we published our 02015 Annual Report, along with 02014 Annual Report,  02013 Annual Report and 02012 Annual Report before that. Hopefully, this will be a useful insight into what to expect if you make the jump to freelancing or running a small business.


The average time logged was 1.8h per item. This is up from the previous two years. There could be several reasons for this. Last year, meetings tended to be short, to the point, and allowing us to get back to work. In 02016, we saw a radical decrease in meetings attended, down 4%, which would intern affect the average time as these short sessions no longer exist.


We sent out invoices to 11 different companies, that’s up from 6 last year. That means we are diversifying who we are working with and not limiting ourselves to just a few clients. We also took on projects ranging anywhere from 8–160 hours. Which is partly how we got to 11 different companies.

At the start of the year, we had a nice cushion of funding in the bank. We knew it wasn’t going to be a busy year, so we were aware that we’d be burning through some of that savings. It turns out we spent about twice as much as we made in 02016. Which isn’t a great position to be in, but while it looks bad on paper, we understand why the situation happened that way and are making efforts to correct the course.


We also like to look at how our work breaks down over the various services we track. This allows us to see if we are spending more or less of our time in meetings than previous years. It also allows us see if we are getting back to what we do best, programming.

It seems that over the last two years our Administrative role has dropped significantly. This makes complete sense after we managed to get one of the projects to a point where it is now self-sustaining. In return, we’ve seen a growth back into Programming and Travel.

Category 02012 02013 02014 02015 02016
Administration 6.17% 14.38% 30% 19%  10.5%
Consulting 1.16% 0.0% 0.0% 0.26%  0%
Design 3.60% 4.07% 6.5% 6.34%  5.4%
Meeting 26.27% 16.68% 14% 20.41%  16.2%
Presentation Preparation 2.28% 6.78% 1.3% 0%  1.8%
Programming 48.98% 52.97% 30.75% 39.16%  50.5%
Research 6.31% 1.66% 2.29% 4.47%  1.0%
Writing 5.23% 3.47% 4.4% 3.47%  3.4%
Attending 3.18% 2.16%  0.75%
Travel 3.76% 2.19%  10%
Photography 0.15% 0%  0%
Networking 2.6% 0.35%  0%
Pitching 0.35% 0.31%  0%
Podcasting 0.03% 0%  0.5%
Planning 0.46% 0.13%  0%


Our travel was minimal this year. We attended 3 events: O’Reilly Strata Conference in San Jose, London and New York. At each of those events, we gave a workshop about Data Visualizations using D3. Off the back of several of those trips we extended the stays to visit friends, family, coworkers and extended vacations. This is partly what killed our productivity this year – downtime and time-off.


This is another category that we watch closely. There is very little fluctuation in our expenses, partly due to the most overwhelming amounts spent on Salary and Taxes. They tower over everything else, which means that even an increase in spending on smaller categories is barely a few percentage points.

Category 02012 02013 02014 02015 02016
Office Supplies 7.06% 7.73% 3.39% 1.49%  3.80%
Tax 41.91% 37.29% 37.38% 55.78%  57.63%
Salary 46.90% 29.60% 42.1% 34.84%  33.76%
Conferences 3.26% 16.16% 4.85% 2.34%
Projects 3.71% 1.03% 1.69%  0.27%
Education 1.25%
Professional Services 4.24% 2.83% 2.72%  5.56%
Contractors 7.85%  –
Analog.is 0.42%  –

Since all of this year’s travel expenses were re-imbursed in full, we didn’t actually spend any money on travel. It was also a slow year and we didn’t have any contractors or any educational courses, even our project budgets dropped.

Web Stats

When we look at the breakdown of the most popular articles in 02016, it was nearly identical to that of years past. These articles have good Google Juice and have heavily been linked too. It also doesn’t help that we’ve been pretty quiet on the writing front these last few years, so our contributions recently have been lacking.

Article Year Traffic
Future Predicting, what the next 100 year might look like 02009 28.8%
Getting to your Minimum hourly rate 02013 5.27%
Titanic Visualized 02012 4.67%
What are 2D barcodes 02009 3.52%
Accessible Color Swatches 02011 1.51%
Pie charts and other circular visualisations 02009 1.45%
PaperNet Boarding Pass 02010 1.14%
Professional Oaths 02010 0.98%

Notes for 02017

It feels a bit like a cheat to be writing what the plans are for 02017 sometime in Q2 of 02017, but here we go. This is sort of like new year’s resolutions now, you plan on doing something big but it never seems to happen. Our goals in 02017 have certainly been tempered.

Our plan for later this year is to have a small conference called Material. There are several goals, firstly to host a conference that we’d want to attend. Something cerebral, interesting and mind-bending. We also want to show-off Reykjavik, some interesting speakers and give back to the community that has given so much to us.

We are also running on auto-pilot for the next few months while we blow-off a lot of dust. We’ve been in a holding pattern on several projects for way too long and by Q3 we’re cutting all the cords. Things need to be self-sustaining by then and these projects will have to go their own way. That should then free-up a lot of our time to get focused again and run this as a well oiled machine – which is to say, we set our mission.