About me: Thomas Lotze

Deutsche Fassung


Born in march 1976 in the town of Suhl in the Thuringian forest (then belonging to the GDR, now sitting right in the center of Germany), I grew up and spent the first eight years of school there. I then moved on to the Goethe school, Ilmenau, where I attended a special course in mathematics and the natural sciences. During that time I did a lot of mathematics and was close to participating in the International Mathematical Olympiad twice. I received my highschool diploma from the Goethe school in 1994.

After school I went to the Bauhaus university of Weimar to study architecture. However, for the summer term 1995, I switched to the Friedrich Schiller university of Jena and enrolled for a study of physics. My main interest throughout my study was with theoretical physics and mathematics. For the final experiment of the practical physics training I chose a topic from astronomy: the spectral classification of stars. The subject of my diploma thesis was a theoretical one as well, «Two-Dimensional Models of Black Hole Radiation». I started working on the thesis in the winter term 1998/99 at the institute of theoretical physics of the Jena university as a member of the quantum field theory group, finished it in the winter term 1999/2000, and received the diploma early 2000.

Next, I began working on a PhD thesis. I joined the gravitational theory group and chose a subject from classical general relativity: the C metric. While working on this, I had my first experiences as a seminar teacher. After two years, however, I switched to the Institute of computer science and started a thesis in the field of pattern recognition.

Developing software

From 2004 to 2016, I worked as a software developer for gocept gmbh & co. kg. Work at gocept is based on the Python programming language, the Zope application server and the eco-system of software projects around Zope. Just like these systems, a good part of gocept's products are Free Software. Between 2005 and 2009 we were publishing the User's Guide to Plone, an end-user manual for the Zope-based content management system, Plone.

Programming computers has been fascinating to me not only since working with them professionally, but from the moment I first sat in front of such a device. That must have been in 1987, the machine was a K8915 made by Robotron (GDR) and the programming language was some dialect of BASIC. Later came the C64, the BIC (a GDR computer made for education at schools) and PCs, in 1992 I started working rather intensely with the LaTeX typesetting system and programming languages such as Turbo Pascal, later C, Perl and finally, Python. I've been using Linux as an operating system since 1999 when I got used to Unix-like systems in daily use at university.

As of today, I've been publishing a number of small software projects of my own, which are mostly written in Python and serve to ease some aspect of my everyday life, such as creating this web site. I was maintaining the LaTeX project web site from 2003 to 2015 and am a member of the LaTeX developers team.