work & projects

Working on again


Back in 2011 I built a simple task management application for my personal use cause I didn’t want tu use any of the given solutions. Now, 3 years later, I start working again on taskblitz which is the successor of this application. With a lot more features than a simple task management solution and a strong focus on small businesses it is a brand new project and business management software now entering the market. Hope you all enjoy our new product and your life just got easier with our solution.


How to set up usb tethering with a nexus 5 on windows xp

I really like Google products and how easy they work but trying to get USB tethering working on my Nexus 5 almost drove me crazy: no documentation or wrong one from google, old driver sets. So I am quite sure there are many people out there facing the same issue. So here is how I did it finally:

First of all stick to the official documentation you can find here. You need the driver file tetherxp.inf which is unfortunately not linked in the help file – I dunno why. When you google for the file on the web you will easily find it but it won’t work cause it’s outdated. The thing is that every device needs to be mentioned with the correct device id in the file. Most of the files you find are 2 or more years old, so no nexus 5 device id is included. I modified the tetherxp.inf file in order to make it work:


Rename the file to tetherxp.inf and follow the steps from the official documentation:

  • Follow the steps above to turn on USB tethering for your phone or tablet.
  • Download the following configuration file (tetherxp.inf) to your Windows XP computer. Typically, you can right click on the link and choose “Save As”. (If your browser adds “.html” to the file name, you’ll need to edit the name to remove the .html extension and replace it with “.inf” instead.)
  • Connect your phone or tablet to your computer using a USB cable.
    When Windows XP’s New Hardware Wizard opens, select No, not at this time, then click Next.
  • Select Install from a list or specific location, then click Next.
    Click Browse to browse to the directory where you installed the configuration file you downloaded in Step 1, then click Next.
  • When Windows XP finishes installing the software for Android USB Ethernet/RNDIS, click Finish.

Warum das wahrscheinlich mein letzter Festivalsommer war

Ich mag Festivals total gerne und fahre seit Jahren auf dergleichen um für kleines Geld möglichst viel Musik zu erleben. Was mir aber gerade in diesem Jahr extrem aufgefallen ist, dass die Festival-Szene immer mehr zu einer Maturareise & Ballermann Szene abdriftet. Und man muss dazu sagen, dass ich nicht auf die klassischen Rock-Festivals fahre, wo Trichtersaufen etc. Standard ist, sondern auf (ehemals Underground) Festivals für elektronische Musik. Es scheint aber so, dass auch die nun schon von der pickeligen Youngster-Partymeute entdeckt worden sind und als Training für kommende Springbreak Europes oder ähnliche geistlose Besäufnisse genutzt werden.

Man kann versuchen dem ganzen aus dem Weg zu gehen – was bleibt einem anderes übrig, aber es hat sich hier definitiv kräftig was verändert. Für die Veranstalter ist es sicher toll, da die Veranstaltungen immer mehr Leute anziehen, nur verunstaltet diese neue Kollegen auch konsequent die Campingplätze, sorgen für schlechte Stimmung und benehmen sich einfach nur vollkommen daneben. Es scheint als ist Dubstep jetzt die Allerweltsmusik der 16 Jährigen und jeder ist sooo Underground wenn er sich Skrillex am Campingplatz ertönent aus Mamis Küchenradio zu einer Trichterladung voll XXX reinzieht. Das hat für mich nichts mit Underground, noch mit sonst einer Musikszene zu tun – das ist einfach nur unterstes Ballermann Niveau. Soll auch Leuten gefallen und ist ja alles legitim, aber warum finde ich solches Verhalten jetzt auch schon auf nicht-mainstream Musik Festivals?

Ich für meinen Teil überlege mir sehr gut, ob ich mir das alles nächstes Jahr nochmals antun will, denn ich rechnen kaum mit einer Verbesserung der Situation. Oder vielleicht fahre ich auch zu den Kollegen auf den Ballermann und verpass ihnen eine Ladung Underground 🙂


Results of my master thesis on startup marketing

The work deals with the strategic and operational aspects of marketing in internet-startups. New technologies such as the internet created new potentials for the digital age and enabled new business models to become vital. After the shock of the dotcom bubble this economy gained traction and constantly evolved. Influenced by newly developed startup ecosystems in the German-speaking countries of Europe, there has been a new wave of founding that brought numerous successful internet-startups to existence.

In the understanding of marketing as a comprehensive customer-and market-oriented model of thinking, the work examines which strategic and operational concepts have been applied in successful internet-startups in various stages of their growth. The results give a very realistic picture of corporate practice, which is determined by an intuitive and opportunistic approach in the early stage and an in-creasing professionalization coming with the steady upgrowth.

Four key aspects as potential success factors have been identified from the results:

  • Trial & Error-approach
  • Short time to market
  • Localization of the product/service
  • Scalability of the processes

They have been put together in an impact model that represents the main output of the work:

Modell Startup Marketing_002From the impact model we can conclude the following declarations for the different stages:

Early stage

  • Efficient product development and rapid build-up of the distribution have a positive influence on the time to market.
  • The informal strategy in this phase supports faster product development and thus a shorter time to market.
  • The communication depends on a brand definition and a partially developed product.
  • A faster time to market increases the chances of success (pioneer strategy).
  • The marketing spirit in the organization promotes error tolerance and allows a trial and error approach.
  • Incremental product development and a constant testing of the communication channels leads to better results (trial and error approach).

Later stage

  • A formal strategy supports localization and helps to synchronize the different geographical markets.
  • The formal strategy supports the decentralized organization of the marketing team and can coordinate all activities across the various markets.
  • The Product and the communication activities are required to be adapted to each country to work there efficient (localization).
  • The formalized and decentralized organization leads to scalability.
  • Distribution and communication activities must be scalable.
  • The strategy takes the coordinating role of all activities in order to achieve localization and scalability.
  • Scalability is a prerequisite for an economically growth.

The goal of the work was to identify strategic and operational aspects of marketing that are used in successful internet startups. Splitting again into the to growth stages, we can conclude:

Early stage

  • Opportunistic approach in the early stage.
  • Segmentation and positioning happens as part of a marketing concept.
  • Product development and rapid market entry as the central tasks. 
  • Lack of market research is compensated with customer integration.
  • Communication is the main activity in the marketing mix.
  • Use of various communicative channels.
  • The most important communication channels are online marketing, TV and PR.
  • Marketing as a leadership spirit in the company is promoted by the founders.

Later stage

  • Strategy rather than opportunistic approach.
  • The availability of cash is a key factor in the choice of a growth strategy:
    • Little money available -> bootstrapping
    • A lot of money available -> get big fast
  • scalability of the core processes is crucial for economical success
  • Communication is the key element in the marketing mix
  • Online marketing and search engine marketing are well scalable methods increasingly used
  • Mass media like TV can be used for rapid growth
  • The combination of TV and online marketing has been confirmed for e-commerce as the most effective combination. 
  • Customer lifetime value and CRM are gaining importance. 
  • The product development relies heavily on feedback from the  customers. 
  • A centralized marketing organization is suitable when operating on a few markets that are very similar. 
  • A decentralized marketing organization is suitable for companies with a large number of different markets to ensure a localization. Assistance can offered by a marketing service center.

The results of my work show how marketing is practiced and used in successful internet startups. However, it still requires further quantitative research to examine the success effectiveness of each aspect.

But I hope that I gathered some new insights that will help new and existing startups to optimize their marketing activities.


work & projects

Android Port of the 2048 puzzle game

Everyone seems to play the 2028 puzzle game nowadays. So I decided to make an android port of the game. It’s a simple web-based port of the original game with some optimizations for touch input. I’ve used the Cordova libary for building an android app out of it.

You can download an play the game from the Google Play store

Besides I created a small tutorial on how to get started with phongap/cordova

work & projects

Introducing my thesis on Startup Marketing

In 2012 I started a master degree and as time passes by really quick I am now in my last month of the program. As common in any master program I also have to write a master thesis. I chose not to write not the 53th or something useless thesis on social media but to deal with a nowadays very popular field, namely internet startups. Since the overall web2.0 hype the number of new companies in this area is constantly increasing and a few of them are extreme successful in their business. So I wanted to take a deeper look at some of these successful companies and find out what made them successful. Of course the main reason I could tell you without doing any research, is a portion of luck. But I wanted to go further and explore especially in the field of marketing if there are any strategic behaviours or executive patterns that makes a company successful.

May of you now might think the the whole field of success factor research is a dead end, just see PIMS for example. I am absolutely aware of the fact that all the big success factor studies have not quite a valuable output at last. And more than that I know that my research will not be the holy grale of startup success but I think the results can give new startups a set of patterns to follow and orientation that is proven by market leader companies.

The main aim of my research is to find out strategic and operative patterns uses by very successful e-commerce startups in their early stage and in their later stage. The more interesting part here is the later stage and the formulas of each startup to drive growth. As far as I reviewed the insights so far on that field, it is possible to create a theoretical scale model here that can be applied to other startups.

For the research I conducted interviews with CEOs or CMOs of e-commerce startups in the German speaking region. All the companies have steady revenue and employer growth as I define with this 2 parameters the economical success of a company. I limited the research to companies with an e-commerce business model, that means these companies are selling physical goods over the internet. I think this business model is one of the most exciting ones among internet startups because it requires to deal with a lot of different aspects of marketing to work really good.

Another point I want to mention now after speaking to the executives of some companies is that hardly any of them know exactly the terms when it comes to marketing. Marketing is always used as a synonym for communication and vice e verca. Also strategic and functional marketing terms are mixed so often. I don’t know why these terms you learn in every business school are not used in the right way out there? I have no answer on that…

That was a brief introduction of my thesis so far, I will keep you updated with result and insights.