When I hit 20 my life projects were:
- two SFF trilogies
- a formal theory of morality
- a formal theory of mind
- integrating and modeling my own mind
- designing an ideal OS
The next two are more or less done. Any further progress on them has been shelved because it wouldn't affect my life or the real world. I haven't read an AI researcher I didn't come to despise so telling them how to construct a mind sounds like a bad idea. Even assuming they would listen which they never would.
The before last is done to the point where any further progress wouldn't even be visible. For something with no definable end goal, it's as done as done can be.
The last project would affect my life directly, indirectly, affect the whole world, and eventually transform it utterly by undermining hierarchical media and teaching direct democracy. It's the ultimate example in leveraging meta levels.
Design work is substantially complete. The holdup has always been implementation. First because analysis isn't my strong point, second because I end up regressing every time.
That is, I need some tool to do something, discover that all the tools presented as candidates are hopelessly inadequate, and end up having to learn a whole new subject domain to build the tool. The new subject domain is invariably something I dislike and resent learning which causes an enormous holdup until I feel comfortable in it.
I am at the point of working on an OpenGL framework because I need one to build a weird 3D engine because I need it to build a 3D UI paradigm because I need a UI for the first application that's going to take advantage of my OS. It's a good thing I'm going to be publishing from the top down - UI first with very little OS then application then rest of OS.
Yes, it takes developing software across 4 levels of abstraction (3d, engine, objects, UI, social) in order to redefine human-computer interaction, in order to displace Unix, teach real democracy, undermine top-down media, and redefining software licenses in order to transform the software industry, in order to transform the real world's politics and economics. And it takes having every single level of that hierarchy in mind simultaneously.
I started a blog on design a few years ago intending to explain this whole process but there didn't seem much point.
Needless to say, I have more projects now.