A recap of 2020

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

A recap of 2020

What a strange year!? A lot happened but not only bad things.

New job

The first change for me was in January - I started my new job at Elbgoods as Lead Backend Developer. As always in a new company the first challenge was getting into the tech-stack, to know the team and setting up the machine.

As preparation for my new machine I've created my .dotfiles repo which contains my most important scripts and uses brew bundle to install my used software.

A short time after I've started in the new company all of us horror for this year started in Germany - COVID-19. It hit our company harder than most other developers as our main customer is a leading event equipment company. So for some months we also were in short-time work with less salary. During the year we started some new projects to get through the downtime and since October we are back to normal.


One of my major goals for this year is the launch of my new website including my blog. It was a long journey but in my opinion definitely worth it.

Another important part of my life and career is the PHP and Laravel open-source development - and this year was great! I've released several new Astrotomic packages and worked on a lot of spatie packages. It was also the first year I was able to push some fixes and changes to the laravel/framework core. I was also accepted for the GitHub sponsors program to fund my work.

Website hosting

Over time I've created around ten websites for friends. Until this year most of them were hosted on a VM and run Laravel and WordPress. This year was the final problem with my VM - the OS is outdated and apt-get upgrade fails all the time. The certbot installation is also outdated and not able to retrieve new certificates anymore. As I don't earn money with these pages and managing a VM isn't this easy over several years I decided to move all the pages to my new stack - Cloudflare, Netlify, Imgix and GitHub. Except for two pages all of them are already migrated and are exported by spatie/laravel-export and deployed by GitHub actions.

The remaining two pages are more complex as they send emails and call APIs. So I will wait for Cloudflare pages and use Cloudflare workers for the FaaS logic.

The migration was pretty easy as I don't have to change anything to make the export package work. And it's a lot easier for me to maintain as I don't have to manage any server or SSL anymore. The performance is also better as everything comes from a CDN.


2019 ended with my hardest bike accident ever - an open wound in my right thigh. It had to be operated under general anesthesia - my first operation ever. After two weeks I was back home again. As the accident happened because of my own fault it was tough to get back on the saddle again. I did my first ride around half a year after the accident and started pretty slow.

This year was pretty good for riding a lot by bike as using the bus and the subway wasn't an option to get to work. So I got a ~9 month streak and completed over 2200km in 113h. During the year I've gained more confidence and were able to get to my best form.


Today was a year to celebrate - my girlfriend and I had our ten years anniversary. Because of corona we weren't able to do anything really special. So we had dinner at our favorite Italian restaurant.

Afterward we watched Maleficent: Mistress of Evil with the full cinema experience at home. We had an ads-block before the movie. I've played the movie theme on our speaker. And we had a ton of different sweets and chips.

Our dog

This chapter won't be as fun as the previous ones - so feel free to skip if you aren't stable enough.

As some of you possibly already know - we have a french bulldog named Yoda. In general we don't post our dog as much as we could but I want/have to share the story as sometimes it gets easier if you share things. In autumn he had his first epileptical attack followed by more till the end of the year. It's pure horror to helpless watch your loved dog pull out, fidget, cramp, struggle for air and being unable to do anything to help him. We now started with anti-epileptic-drugs which stop him from being a dog as he only sleeps the whole day - for weeks. So we spend a lot of time with our vet right now.


To be honest 2020 was a shitty year! But even in this year I had several ups and try to stay healthy, sane and optimistic. I wish you all a good new year and hope that it will be better.