Hi there! My name is Mark van Lent and this is my personal weblog.

Mark van Lent

On this weblog I (almost exclusively) write about the things I come across while coding. As a result most articles are related to developing web applications.

Python, Plone and Django

During my Computer Science study at the Delft University of Technology, I used a number of programming languages like Assembler (for the PDP-11), Modula-2, but also the more commonly used languages like C and Java. Part-time jobs and hobby lead me to code in ColdFusion, Perl, PHP and LaTeX.

While writing my master’s thesis in 2004 someone gave me a book about Python with the words “you might also like this language.” And I did! After solving a couple of Python Challenge riddles and writing scripts to automate some tasks, I decided to make writing Python code my day job.

That’s how in January 2007 I ended up with Zest Software where I got introduced to the world of Zope and Plone. Since 2009 I also worked on several Django projects. Between February 2011 and July 2013 I was an employee of Edition1 and the technical lead for their Plone based content management system, SwordFish. As of August 2013 I am a developer at Fox-IT.

This site

This website started in the Nineties as a static HTML site that listed my bookmarks. When I got the vlent.nl domain in 2003 it had already been upgraded to a PHP site.

A couple of years later, in 2008, I migrated to Plone to eat my own dog food. Two years later I changed my mind again and figured that a blog doesn’t need a complete content management system and decided to go with a more lightweight, Django based, website.

The 2012 edition of this website is more ‘back to basics.’ I realised that I do not even need a dynamic site at all for this weblog. So now I’m using Acrylamid to build this static blog out of articles written in Markdown. And if you are interested: the source used to generate this site can be found in a GitHub repository.

For a more visual version of the history of this site, go to the memory lane.


If you want to get in touch with me, you can use (in random order):

Or you can send an email to “mark” at this domain name.


If you want to send me an email and want to encrypt it, you can use my public PGP key to do so. You can:

  • Have PGP/GnuPG import it from a key server, e.g “gpg --recv-keys 0x2144528D88110619”.
  • Download the key from this site and import it, e.g. “wget -qO- https://www.vlent.nl/0x2144528D88110619.key | gpg --import”.

Either way, make sure that the downloaded key has this fingerprint:

1FFA 3F2D 26D6 B7FB AED7  FE5F 2144 528D 8811 0619

(To see the fingerprint, use e.g. “gpg --fingerprint 0x2144528D88110619”.)