Faces of FIFTY2

Marc G. - Software Developer

How did you find your way to FIFTY2?

I found my way to FIFTY2 five years ago in September 2016. I met Markus, managing director at FIFTY2, during our studies in computer graphics at the university of Freiburg. After completing my degree, our professional paths diverged, but we still stayed in touch. I followed how his project “Software for fluid simulation” became a company as a spin-off from the university. This topic was always very exciting to me and when they were looking for software developers, I took my chance to join FIFTY2.

And what is your area of responsibility at FIFTY2?

In the last few years, my area of responsibility has become more focused. I am mostly involved in the research and development of PreonLab, implementing feature requests from customers, but together with Elias, I also handle IT topics like in-office infrastructure and home office connectivity.

You just mentioned what your role is now at FIFTY2, but how has working there changed over those 5 years?

In the beginning, with only 6 people, all work had to be done by everyone. We all did IT, development, and support, along with going to fairs or events. It was quite exciting to see how the first customers got into the business.  Then it was thrilling to see the company grow, with unexpected speed, from a backyard building, both literally and figuratively, to a proper company taking up an entire floor of an office building.

You said the company has grown quickly, with new colleagues and employees joining all the time. What is everyday working life like at FIFTY2?

Well, you have to differentiate between pre-Covid and during-Covid times and also take the team size into consideration. We can be very proud of the fact that we have always had a good atmosphere within the team and throughout the company as a whole. Besides work, we play table football, cook and/or do sports together. Perhaps no longer all together but always in a small group. That works out well for the new employees, too. Our most recent co-worker to join us had been with us for less than two weeks and we were already going on bike rides and cooking together in the company kitchen. I think he feels super comfortable, and I think that’s the way it should be.

How did you get into computer graphics and your PhD topic?

Computer graphics always interested me, both in computer games and in animated films. In 2005, when the computer graphics chair was newly filled by Prof. Teschner, I applied as a research assistant and was thus involved in research, which turned into my diploma thesis. Afterwards, I was offered a PhD here. Meanwhile I was able to convince Markus that physically based animation is more exciting than robotics.

Sony, Nintendo or Microsoft?

In the past everything. Currently, Sony.

You develop the software, and at the same time you do support. What is your experience with customer support in general?

In my previous job, I had to deal with medical professionals. There, communication and implementation of needs was pretty difficult. At FIFTY2, since we are dealing with engineers, usually mechanical, or someone with a similar background, we speak a similar language. Our software PreonLab is actually a sandbox tool that can be used to simulate various fluids. But which issues are answered by it remains open. So it’s exciting to see what our users process with it, what questions they try to answer or what problems they try to solve – from filling pudding jars to designing sewage treatment plants, it’s all there.

What else is interesting to know about you?

I am interested in many things. I love to meet new people and learn new things. Whether it’s how to grow vegetables, how to play an instrument, renovate an apartment, lay a floor, etc. I am interested in food and quality products, and I like to know where they come from. Years ago, I joined an association that practices crop sharing. This means that its members grow their own vegetables with the help of a professional gardener and then share the harvest among themselves. In addition, I have my own garden where I plant and harvest vegetables together with my kids. Last week, for example, we harvested 10kg of strawberries and made jam. And above all, I’ve been a passionate cyclist for over 12 years, racing bikes and participating in 1-2 competitions a year or even challenging myself with an Alpine pass.

How to get started with
Preonlab CFD software?
Get in Touch