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Preparing a Virtual Conference Talk

This summer, when we all were still new to virtual conferences, I signed up for talking at two of them. Back then, I thought this was a great idea. I would be able to share my thoughts with the community and wouldn’t even have to travel for that. Talking to an audience from the stage or talking to the webcam? It wouldn’t be a huge difference, right? Oh boy, was I wrong.

Short and simple HTTP redirects

This week happy circumstances made me the proud owner of the rather short domain X.GL. Not yet sure what to make out of it I started with what seemed obviously cool to me: Craft myself one of the shortest possible email addresses. From now on you can save yourself some typing when addressing a message to me. Just send your love letters to And then it struck me that a short domain asks to be used for URL shortening.

A tale about a Legacy Application, Infrastructure as Code automation, and ideas on reducing the MTTR

Seasoned systems engineers may remember the time when a cloud was something everyone ignored on a network diagram. It was a time when applications ran on electrified metal and we all knew where our machines lived. In a closet at the end of the corridor. We stopped ignoring the clouds when they brought us data centers on demand along with our bosses’ excitement for saving money.

Love Letter to the Cloud

I discovered an undocumented feature in my wifi-capable, portable document scanner: It can upload scanned documents, such as unsolicited love letters, via a webhook. Implementing the server side of the webhook was a nice afternoon project.

Smartphone Astrophotography

A few days ago my wife and I visited the Teide Observatory on the volcano island of Tenerife. We learned about the donkey’s belly cloud-blocking weather phenomenon that makes the Teide national park the perfect place for stargazing. Yesterday, after sunset, we jumped into our tiny rental car and drove into the Teide crater for some astrophotography.