The year 2014 is almost over, but looking around my developer colleagues, I see that there is still a lot of old knowledge and outdated techniques for using your Mac for (web-) development purposes. To counter this lack of information I will outline the steps I took to lift my two primary OS X systems into the new age. Gone are the days where we need to have a webserver, database system and a plethora of different packages installed on our main operating system and deal with breaking changes whenever a new OS update (Hello Yosemite!) comes along.

This post talks about setting up your own private local development server with all the needed software to start developing applications with PHP and MySQL without having to install any server software on your main operating system. The end product will also give you the means to quickly set up an identical virtual machine on any number of additional computers you might want to use for your development.

Disclaimer: As I am a heavy user of Laravel these days, this set-up will mainly center around web development and PHP.

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phantsy is all about places.
phollow likeminded people that have the same taste and interests, add new places or rate existing ones in order to create your personal collection of favourite places. also keep in mind: the more places you rate, the more likeminded people and recommendations phantsy can find for you! explore a trusted world. we phantsy that.

I developed phantsy in collaboration with Getdesigned GmbH. It is a Laravel PHP webapp with a modern responsive HTML5 frontend.

Give it a try. I’m happy about any feedback you can offer!

Linked Things IconI’ve started a new blog about a recent passion of mine: The Internet of Things.

The site Linked Things will accumulate information about products that are connected via the internet or local networks and can be controlled, combined and programmed.

Currently I’m aiming for one new post per week, but if you’ve got links or ideas please use the contact form on the page to send me your messages so I can gather as much data as possible about the internet of things and up the volume of posts with your help.

And please spread the word!

Plazes world map

I guess we’ve had this a long time coming, but now it’s official: will go out of service.

I’ve received this email today:

Hi Azathoth,

Thanks for being part of Plazes. We hope you enjoyed the journey, past or present.

The time has come to say farewell, and next week, Plazes will go out of service.

From next week, you can go to and move your history to Nokia Maps. Your plazes will become favourites on Nokia Maps for your PC or Mac. Shortly after next week, you’ll also be able to sync your favourites with Nokia Maps on your phone.

If you like, you’ll also be able to download and save a history file containing all your activities and plazes.

With Nokia Maps, you can search for interesting places and find your way there with walking, driving and public transport directions. And if you find somewhere new on your travels, you can add it to the map, write reviews, post a rating and add photos.

If you have any questions, please contact Nokia Support.

Kind regards

Your Plazes Team

For those who don’t know; was a very early (I’ve became a member in early 2005) geosocial network developed in Berlin, Germany, that worked off your internet connection’s router Mac address as a location identifier. GPS or WiFi location weren’t available then. Later you could also check in via text message from your (pre-smart) phone.

Other then the technicalities it was pretty similar to what foursquare is today (minus most of the gamification features). It was fun! I can remember one time, when I chased down Singapore Airport during a 30 minute stopover, just to reach the smokers lounge at the other end and connect my iBook to the free WiFi so I can score another checkin.

When Nokia bought the company in 2008 I had the feeling, that development of the service pretty much stopped and eventually I too stopped using it. My last checkin was 2 years ago and that’s probably also the last time I logged on to their site. This Email today just reminded me of my account and I enjoyed looking through previous travel endavours of my former self.

Thank you & R.I.P.