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I’m an independent IT consultant and entrepreneur in the Internet and software business. I’m interested in design, enterprise applications, web apps and SaaS products. I design and develop business solutions and applications. I help companies in terms of software quality and knowledge transfer, e.g. with Angular and Spring Boot.

Image Compression Utility: Squoosh

When working with images on web applications and websites optimising images and reducing their download size is a quick win in terms of optimising page and app load times. There are plenty of image compression utilities out there - both web apps and tools for local installation. Recently, I've tried out several of those again because I wanted to reduce the overall load time of this website and according to website audit tools such as Lighthouse image sizes definitely was an area ... Read more

Managing Permissions with IAM – Sample From “Stratospheric – From Zero to Production with Spring Boot and AWS”

The following is an excerpt from the chapter on "Managing Permissions with IAM" from the eBook "Stratospheric – From Zero to Production with Spring Boot and AWS" I'm currently writing together with Tom Hombergs and Philip Riecks. You can get the eBook over at Leanpub. Managing Permissions with IAM When deploying applications to a cloud service such as AWS, reliable security concepts are key. After all, we not only want to protect our users' data but also make sure that security within our organization ... Read more

Second Version of Stratospheric – From Zero to Production with Spring Boot and AWS

Two weeks ago, we released the second version of our eBook "Stratospheric - From Zero to Production with Spring Boot and AWS". This release contains these new chapters on IAM, local development, and automated deployments: ​ Managing Permissions with IAM - this chapter gives an overview of the concepts we can use with AWS in order to secure our resources and to authorize both individuals and applications to access them. Local Development Setup - this chapter explains how we can develop our cloud-based Todo application ... Read more

2020 in Live Gigs

I'm an avid music fan and concert-goer. As mentioned in last week's post I'd like to write a bit about live music events in 2020. For obvious reasons, 2020 has both been a very different and a very difficult year for live events and those that make a living from them: Artists and performers, speakers, conferences, festival, venues, sound engineers, sound and lighting technicians, caterers, stage hands. These were the only bands I was able to see during on-location live music shows ... Read more

2020 in Review

May you live in interesting times. - claimed to be a translation of a traditional Chinese curse - Usually I refrain from writing one of those end-of-the-year reviews because they often amount to little more than self-involved navel-gazing (been there, done that ...). However, 2020 was a truly interesting, extraordinary and in many ways remarkable year. So, here goes, navel-gazing and all ... In December 2019 (or thereabouts) what we today know as COVID-19 or the Coronavirus pandemic started to spread causing a global crisis ... Read more

Latency by The Radiophonic Workshop

On the 22nd of November, the electronic music pioneers of the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop (of "Doctor Who" theme music fame, amongst others) performed a unique piece of music called 'Latency', in which they make clever use of network latency to create a musical loop. Each of the musicians involved sequentially played his part in a loop. The result then was sent via the Internet to the next musician at another location, who in turn built upon what had been played until ... Read more

Using Maven Failsafe With Spring Boot

Maven Failsafe is a Maven plugin designed to be used in conjunction with the Maven Surefire Plugin. While the former plugin is intended for running integration tests the latter's purpose is to run unit tests. These plugins are tremendously useful for partitioning tests in Maven-based Java applications in order to make tests and builds run faster. When recently using Maven Failsafe with a Spring Boot application, though, I encountered a somewhat gnarly problem. Running mvn verify caused this error for all of the ... Read more

The Laws of UX

For a discipline that's commonly seen as being mostly fuelled by creativity rather than being particularly rule-governed, principles, maxims, and laws seem to abound in the world of design. This perception of design being about creativity, first and foremost, rather than deliberate thought is a naïve and superficial one, though. Design of course has always been about principles and constraints, Dieter Rams' famous Ten principles for good design being a particularly good example. UX designer Jon Yablonski created Laws of UX, where he ... Read more

Tools for Working With CSS Grid Layouts and Flexbox

CSS Grid Layout and CSS Flexible Box Layout, commonly known as Flexbox, are powerful techniques for implementing flexible grid and column- or row-based layouts with CSS. These two techniques enable designers and web developers to accurately and fluidly position elements and content on web pages and web applications. While Flexbox (see A Complete Guide to Flexbox by CSS-Tricks) predominantly works along a single principal dimension, called the main axis or flex direction (either row or column), and therefore essentially is a one-dimensional ... Read more

Mock Data Generators for Tabular Data

Developing a JavaScript-based web front-end, e.g. with frameworks such as Angular, at some point - especially during the prototype phase - often requires working with data supplied by a back-end data source. Tools such as JSON Server enable you to spin up such a data source as a REST API server in no time with zero coding involved. However, running a back-end server is only part of the equation that is testing a front-end against actual data. Another vital ingredient is the data ... Read more
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