Benjamin Hopfer Software Solutions

Problems and solutions of a freelancing software engineer

I’m a freelancing software engineer with strong algorithmic skills and in depth experience with C# and C++.

This blog presents a selection of my past and present work as well as some hands-on solutions to problems I encountered.


26 Feb 2020

I moved to github pages

I was unhappy with my bloated, outdated homepage and moved to a much simpler version on GitHub pages.
During the migration, I also checked up on all pages and blog entries and edited them as necessary.

I hope you like the new clean structure as much as I do.


16 Sep 2015

vtkBioeng for vtk 6.2

For an upcoming mesh collision problem in one of my C++/vtk/Qt projects I wanted to try the collision filter in the vtkBioeng package (website, git repository). However, the current source code is not compileable with vtk 6.x, because backwards compatibility with vtk 4.x code was removed.


07 Oct 2014

3D Data Visualization with VTK

I wrote this article on 3d data visualization with VTK for the Toptal Engineering Blog, but I’m also co-publishing it here on my own blog. The first two graphics were kindly provided by Toptal, the remaining content was created by me in close collaboration with the editor Nick McCrea.


24 Aug 2014

Qt 5, vtk 6 and Visual Studio development environment

For my current client, I’m writing medical 3d processing software in C++. The targeted platform is Windows for now, but this might change in the future, so I had to make sure to make my choices accordingly. We also need dual compilation to both 32bit and 64bit.

The client agreed with my proposed setup which was C++, Qt 5, vtk 6, and Visual Studio. I decided to go with the CMake build system and will share some insights about my setup here.


22 May 2014

I passed the interview process of toptal.com

A few days ago I passed the last interview round for toptal.com (affiliated). Toptal is a platform for connecting freelancing software developers with companies. In this sense it is much like freelancer.com or upwork.com, but there is one very big difference: they only accept developers that are actually good.


18 Apr 2014

Shut the box in Flachau

Last Christmas I was a few days in the skiing resort Flachau in Austria to visit a friend. There I encountered a strange dice game, which I later learned to be “Shut the Box“.

Problem: How do you play the game in order to maximize the amount of free coffee you receive?


10 Apr 2014

Typesetting my Master’s Thesis in LaTeX

When I saw the LaTeX thesis template provided by my department I cringed. It seemed like the only goal of the unknown creator was to preserve paper, completely neglecting aesthetics and readability. Fortunately I was allowed to create my own template.

Problem: Find and adapt a LaTeX thesis template that meets both established and my own aesthetic standards.


10 Apr 2014

Master’s Thesis on large 3d CFD datasets

In my Master’s thesis I used C++ in conjunction with the vtk framework to process CFD datasets of up to two Gigabytes in size.

Problem: Cluster a large, dense, three-dimensional CFD simulation result into homogeneous areas that can be used for graph based simulation and visualization.


10 Apr 2014

Life insurance calculation core

During my studies I worked part time in the life insurance math department at the GRAWE. After smaller initial projects I started working on a novel C#.net program for prototyping new life insurance products. It was meant to replace a small TurboPascal program that was in use at the time and has long exceeded its software complexity and memory limits.

Problem: Develop a calculation core to do calculations for all insurance products that every existed in the company or any of its many subsidiaries.