All posts filed under: Software Engineering

I pivoted and I didn’t tell you

Hey there! It’s been a while. As you can tell from the title, I paused working on 20 Seconds some weeks ago. Now, in autumn, the Corona numbers prove me right; the exhibition and event industry will struggle to make it through a winter without in-person conferences. Online events are much less visited and not really accepted yet, from what I can tell. We’re all spending too much time on video calls already, and we’re still hoping to get back to normal soon. The decision wasn’t an easy one. I didn’t see much sense in continuing with the sudden loss of a market, but I also felt uncomfortable to pause something I had just announced. This project was ought to become a success, not another pipe crap! But there was no point in continuing unmotivated. I kept looking for other opportunities. is now closed

When you’re hitting this post, you likely tried to visit BotPreview, my tool to create previews of Messenger chatbot interactions. After more than three years, I decided to pull the plug and shut it down. If you have been using BotPreview in the past, I thank you for being a user and hope you found it to be useful! Keep reading if you’re interested in why I pulled the plug.

Introducing: 20 Seconds

I started this posting a couple of times. Once in mid February while waiting for boarding, still unaware of how bad the crisis would become soon. Once again from the sofa in my living room, with a ban on public gatherings in place and thousands of deaths in Europe. Every time, the news became only worse. Sars-CoV-2 kept tightening its noose around the world. One of the many consequences of the spread was that one trade fair after another got postponed or cancelled. MWC, GDC, ITB, FIBO,… currently lists 1306 cancelled or postponed fairs and exhibitions worldwide (24/03/20). Why am I writing this here? Well, coincidentally a new business idea happens to be in the trade fair space. But let’s go back in time a couple of years first – 13 years, specifically.

Free the Robots! Mein erstes Produkt für die Facebook Messenger Platform.

This is a repost of a note I originally published on my Facebook account on August 12th, 2016, in German language. Vielen Dank, dass du meinen Artikel geöffnet hast. Es würde mir viel bedeuten, wenn du ihn zu Ende lesen würdest und mir Rückmeldung gibst. Es geht um Chatbots, Conversational Commerce, die Facebook Messenger Platform und ein Produkt, das ich entwickelt habe.

How to build a game like Flappy Bird with Xcode and SpriteKit

When I heard about Flappy Bird for the first time, the hype was already in its final phase: developer Dong Nguyen had decided to pull the app from the stores in “22 hours from now“. Apart from overreacting users and an allegedly daily advertising revenue of up to 50,000 US$, the simple game mechanics were something that caught my attention. The concept of clicking/tapping to keep the player on track wasn’t really an innovation in itself, but given the hype it caused, it was certainly worth a closer look. As a Sunday evening challenge, I tried to reproduce the game mechanics and ended up with less than 200 lines of code. Update Feb. 20th: I added the score counting part and included suggestions by readers Sascha and Nico. Updated code is pushed to GitHub. Update Feb. 27th: Fixed a small glitch in the tutorial that DylanYasen pointed out, thanks! (No code change.) Update Apr. 9th: Sorry, I currently don’t have time to update the tutorial. In the meantime, take a look what reader Daniel Bocksteger …