inside the head of a powerfolk Java hacker
I'm mainly a developer and have been active in some form or another in opensource and freely available software since 1996. My first public initiative was for the Amiga computer where No Amiga To Waste was a site to facilitate and promote the interaction between developers and users. Apart from that, I ported some software over to the Amiga platform and wrote standalone applications for musical ear-training and the calculation of biorhythm.
Quickly after that, I got interested in Linux. I started as an independent web developer and created some small commercial sites in Perl. A few months later, I was employed at Ubiquity where I was the sole developer responsible for the day-to-day projects. They gave me the opportunity to specialize in cutting edge technology for the time (DHTML, Java, Xml). An open-source project that grew out of my voyages in the DHTML world is RelativeLayers. I wrote also some small tools, where Fm is probably the most notable. At Ubiquity I also started to write the first incarnation of a web application development framework in Java.
In 1999, I left Ubiquity and contributed a few chapters to the book Sams Teach Yourself GTK+ in 21 days. I started to work as an independent developer and did some considerable Java projects for EMS Taxipost and KBC. At that time I met a group of architects who needed assistance for the implementation of a real-time 3D project which was presented as an installation in a exhibition in Avignon in 2000. The tool I learned for that project gave me lots of ideas for the high-level approach of the current Java framework I'm working on.
After that, I started working on a web application framework in PHP which was used for the implementation of the websites of Netwerk and Netcetera magazines. In 2001, I founded my previous company, the Leaf, which only lasted for a year after which my associate and I seperated due to unsolvable differences in interest. During that time, I started work on another web application framework, which now grew into a full-time occupation. It is called RIFE and contains all the important approaches, methodologies and patterns that I tried out during the past years. Around the same period I started another GPL project QtUnit, a software testing framework for C++.
When I stopped the Leaf, I became an important contributor to Gentoo Linux, where I wrote big parts of the Portage package manager and tried to get the distribution to move to priorly defined stability targets. I also initiated and organized a rewrite of Portage in C++ , which never was continued due to differences with Gentoo's leader. For this C++ port I wrote a lot of documentation and backend tools, where the C++ coding standard and TinyQ are the most noteworthy. The package manager project is still being worked on (although at a very low rate) under the name of Bagheera.
In 2002, I started organizing everything for the creation of my new company, Uwyn. It has been founded in 2003. The core business is custom application development with FLOSS products. Additionally, our clients always receive the sources for every project and we demand to keep the rights to make it possible to package developments in abstracted frameworks, libraries and tools. These are released as FLOSS projects to the public.
As an experimentation to see what's possible with RIFE I started working on Drone, a modular IRC bot that can be integrated with a RIFE application. This means that there's a direct communication between a website and an IRC channel.
Various high-traffic public websites are now running on RIFE and more developers are starting to contribute. This year has been very exciting since several open-source projects based on RIFE are under development: Bamboo (standalone and embeddable RIFE forum module), Elephant (standalone and embeddable blog module written in RIFE), Bla-bla List (secure, simple, sharable to-do lists) and RIFE/Crud (RIFE extension for automatic creation of CRUD webapps from POJOs).
My work on Bla-bla List introduced me to OpenLaszlo, where I'm now also an official contributor. I plan on getting more active in the Rich Internet Application world and already sold a couple of solutions to customers.
Besides computing, I am also a musician (it's what I studied for). However, lately I don't have much time for it anymore, put I'm soon picking things up again and will start gigging again. If someone wants to know more about this, a lot is available online.
I live in Manage (Belgium) with my girlfriend, her two little daughters, our dog, our five cats and two hamsters.