About me

My name is Rutger Mensch and I'm a software developer from The Netherlands who is fascinated by web development. Although my specialty is back-end development for websites, I have significant experience with front-end development as well. I enjoy working on projects that allow me to explore new technologies or use the ones I'm familiar with in new ways. A selection of the projects I've been involved with as a developer throughout the years can be found on the projects page.

If you would like to contact me, you can send me an e-mail at rutger[at]rutgermensch[dot]com, or you can reach out to me on LinkedIn.


What technologies do you use?

These days I mostly use Python (2) with Flask and SQLAlchemy. My database of choice is PostgreSQL. I also have extensive experience with PHP and MySQL, including popular frameworks, libraries and APIs such as Symfony, Zend, Silex, Doctrine and the Facebook API. Finally, my VPS runs an Nginx server (with uWSGI), but when push comes to shove I could probably also configure an Apache server. I'd like to learn Scheme.

Do you also do front-end development?

Yes. Although I specialize in back-end development for websites, I enjoy front-end development as well and have a lot of experience with it. This includes JavaScript: I have used jQuery, MooTools, AngularJS, Knockout and Backbone.js, among others.

How did you learn to code?

Initially I was self-taught. I've been interested in HTML and later CSS from a young age, and started developing dynamic websites in 2008, when I took it upon myself to create a website for the Dutch Super Smash Bros. community. I enjoyed it so much that I continued coding on other projects, and in 2011 I turned my passion into my job when I started working full-time as a PHP developer for Dutch Digital Agency MediaMonks, where I learned how write software in a team for big projects with a tight deadline.

I have an M.A. in Media Studies (with honours) from the University of Amsterdam. You can read my M.A. thesis here. Although in hindsight Math or Computer Science could have been a better major for me, Media Studies did teach me how to learn efficiently and independently, which has aided me in learning new development skills quickly. Besides that my studies significantly improved my writing skills, especially in English. I also got to see quite a lot of movies that I otherwise wouldn't have seen. I'll leave it up to others to decide whether or not that was a good way to spend tax money.

What is your IDE/editor?

Vim. I like how customizable it is and how it's relatively easy to bring your customized version of Vim to other machines using your .vimrc. I also regularly use the PHPStorm IDE, and I have used Netbeans and Eclipse in the past.

What OS do you use?

Debian. I like their conservative approach to developing software, which focuses on maintainability and stability. Also Debian's packaging system is amazing. I'm not particularly religious about Linux, but Debian fits me well.

Where is the travel map that used to be on this page?

In 2014 I went on an extended trip to (mostly) Asia which ended up lasting more than a year. While I was traveling I maintained a map of my route on this website, which can still be found here.