my blog. for you.

Let’s talk digital.

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.

Debugging for Mobile Browsers

Occasionally, web developers need to debug a web app's behaviour in a specific browser on a specific device or class of devices. For desktop devices this usually isn't a problem because every modern browser nowadays provides a console, where application errors and custom console.log statements pile up. However, on mobile browsers there's usually no browser console, or browser development tools, for that matter. Analysing browser logs is still possible via vendors' development tools like Apple's Xcode, for example. Still, that process often ... Read more

Improving Developer UX

Software engineer and data scientist Gabriel Pickard recently has published an article about developer experience being fundamentally harder than normal UX. He defines developer experience as the user experience of the tools software developers use in order to do their job: code editors IDEs command-line tools Gabriel identifies these main aspects in which in his opinion developer tools are failing their users: Counter to any UI/UX philosophy, as programmers we find ourselves maintaining vast background knowledge about the structure and dynamics of our programs, with nary a ... Read more

GDPR Transparency: Web App for Managing GDPR-related Activities in Your Company

GDPR Transparency is a web app for managing the record of processing activities (see https://gdpr-info.eu/art-30-gdpr/) and technical and organisational measures (seehttps://gdpr-info.eu/art-32-gdpr/) as required by GDPR. Since I didn't feel comfortable with the common - rather makeshift - solution of managing GDPR-related processing activities (see https://gdpr-info.eu/art-30-gdpr/) in a spreadsheet table I've created this web app called GDPR Transparency that allows you to manage that kind of information for your business: https://bjoernkw.github.io/gdpr-transparency/ The source code is available here: https://github.com/BjoernKW/gdpr-transparency GDPR Transparency is a PWA based on Angular ... Read more

Reprise: Petro Salema – Storyteller Extraordinaire

Almost five years ago I wrote about a talk given by Petro Salema at that year's edition of beyond tellerrand in Düsseldorf: Petro Salema – Designing Interfaces That Think @ beyond tellerrand Düssedorf 2015 A common advice given regarding talks and presentations, especially ones of a more technical variety, is to not just talk about technical details but to tell a story. While this piece of advice is good and well-intentioned it's not usually exemplified or specified in any more detail. Steve Jobs is ... Read more

Alternative Git Workflows

In his 2018 article "4 branching workflows for Git" software developer Patrick Porto outlines these four proven Git workflows and their respective advantages and downsides: Git Flow GitHub flow GitLab Flow OneFlow While Git Flow probably is the most well-known and most widely used one of those it's also received quite some criticism for being overly complex. Even Git Flow originator Vincent Driessen, has only just recently noted that when he originally conceived of this workflow more than 10 years ago he had explicitly versioned software packages ... Read more

Don’t Just Document Software, Tell a Story.

Humans tend to remember stories much better than mere facts, which probably is why storytelling has such a long tradition in human history. Storyteller is - quoting from their own description - an "editor plugin that generates web pages that recreate and animate entire programming sessions" (see this playback repository for examples and the project's GitHub repository for more details). It's an interesting, novel take on software documentation in that instead of merely describing some current state of code and what it's supposed ... Read more

Monoliths Aren’t Inherently Bad

Self-professed minimalist developer Kelsey Hightower a few months ago wrote about monoliths being the future. The microservice design pattern has been trending in software development for quite some now. Unfortunately, more often than not it's been indiscriminately treated as a panacea to every software architecture and design problem out there. Microservices can help with one aspect specifically: Reducing deployment risk. If you have a large monolith and frequently need to make changes to a specific part or feature provided by that monolith the whole ... Read more

The Richardson Maturity Model for REST APIs

On his website about software design patterns Martin Fowler provides an in-depth explanation of the Richardson Maturity Model for HTTP-based REST APIs by Leonard Richardson. According to that model REST APIs come in 4 levels of sophistication: Level 0, aka the "Everything is a POST request" model for example propagated by SOAP. This is basically tantamount to remote procedure invocation. Level 1 - Resources: Every resource is accessed through its own canonical URL. Level 2 - HTTP Verbs: Verbs such as GET, PUT, PATCH and ... Read more

My name is Björn …

Looks like my name's broken. Perhaps next time I'll check in under a non-Unicode, strictly ASCII charset one. Does that count as a @KevlinHenney? — Björn Wilmsmann (@bwilmsmann) October 2, 2019 https://twitter.com/bwilmsmann/status/1179428788708560896 Read more

No-code, Low-code, Some Code and Everything In-between

CTO-for-hire (through Freeman Clarke) Alex Hudson recently wrote an article about what he terms "The 'No Code' Delusion": That so-called no-code and low-code tools will replace bespoke business software development entirely, no trained software developers required anymore. In a nutshell, it's the old pipe dream of just having to write a specification (in this case a visual one) and having the actual code write itself, the fallacy here of course being that the code is the final product rather than the specification ... Read more
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