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Today, I launched Stage, a content management system, designed for band websites. As of today, it’s out there for everyone to see and use. It’s already making 307€ in monthly recurring revenue and hosting the websites of five bands, including those of internationally known bands like Nightwish, Epica, and Sonata Arctica.

This is a pretty huge deal for me personally. I love building software products...

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As a single founder, my time is valuable. I have to split my time between working for consulting clients, doing paperwork and acquisition, and working on my product Stage. I wouldn’t get anything done, without several tools I heavily rely on.

In the following, I want to share the most important products, that help me bootstrap my own product. Hopefully, you’ll get some insights into my toolset...

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I’ve always been a fan of Mathias Meyer’s reading lists. They’re one of my go-to resources to discover interesting books to read. While I didn’t read nearly as many books as he did, I wanted to share the books read in 2014 in the same vein. So here it is: my reading list of 2014!

The Personal MBA

Josh Kaufman’s book gives an birds-eye view about all business related topics. He covers value creation...

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More than once writing view code for a Rails application ends up with a messy template file. The separation of structure and style doesn't always work out as intended. Frameworks like Bootstrap force you to use nested structures and lots of class attributes. The view code ends up with a lot of duplication and is hard to read as a result. You'll get away with that for a while, constantly fearing the next redesign…

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More than two years ago, I joined flinc as a Rails developer. During this time, I helped building, launching and maintaining the realtime ride sharing network. From april on, I'm going to work as a freelance software engineer. It's not totally new for me, but it's the first time it'll be my main source of income.

Besides doing freelance software development work, I'm planning to focus more on my...

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Like any other build process, deploying Rails applications should be a quick and easy task. You should be able to deploy everything to your server with just one command. There are several tools available for this task. One of them is Capistrano, which is probably the oldest and by far the most popular deployment tool in the Rails community. Unfortunately the documentation is still not great and...

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Sometimes, when testing your code with RSpec, you'll notice similarities and duplication between your spec files. Most of these will involve setup that doesn't say much about the object under test. There's something that helps you to reduce this duplication: Custom example groups! RSpec itself (rspec-rails) uses example groups for the different types of tests for models, controllers, helpers and...

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Today’s my first day as a full-time employee at flinc where I’ll mainly be doing Ruby on Rails development. I got in contact with Michael a few months back when he joined the Web Development Fulda group on Xing. We met at the meetup in september and a few days later he invited me to their offices in Dieburg. I was impressed by their product and the spirit of the team, so I agreed on doing trial work for a week. Obviously they liked me and my work and offered me a job.

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During the last couple weeks I've been playing around with the iPad and Mobile Safari. I built a little tool to familiarize myself with the Multitouch JavaScript API provided by Mobile Safari as well as web applications for the iPad in general. I named the result Multitouch Inspector because that's what it does: Inspect the TouchEvents fired by the JavaScript API. ;-) Today I decided to rewrite the tool to drop the dependency on Prototype.js and I published it on GitHub.

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When testing helper methods that use Rails' output buffer (for example by calling concat) with RSpec, be sure to add this to your specs:

before (:each) do 
  helper.output_buffer = ""
end

Took me a while to figure this one out. Apparently RSpec doesn't initialize the output buffer and you end up with a NoMethodError on nil.

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