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Manuel Kehl

Maker of terrible puns and delightful apps

Hi, my name is Manuel and I am an independent software developer and designer. I currently focus on apps for Apple platforms but have experience in other areas, too (from web design to low-level system framework and embedded systems development).

A photo of me overlooking the San Francisco skyline at one of my favourite spots in the SF Bay Area, where I lived for four years.

I’m originally from Germany (where I now live again) but have lived in Scotland, England and California over a span of seven years. Prior to starting my indie developer adventure, I worked as a software engineer at Apple for a total of five years, where I got to work on exciting projects, learn a lot and meet fantastic people.

My Current Work

I currently split my working hours between freelance work and my own app projects, both focussed on iOS, watchOS and macOS development in Swift. I’ve been deep-diving into SwiftUI for a while now and have really grown to like the framework a lot.

For my personal app projects, I am aiming to build a portfolio of specialised apps that solve a particular problem well while being intuitive, elegant and fun to use. My list of app ideas is based on problems I personally encountered and did not find a solution for (or at least none that is aligned with how I envisioned to solve the problem). These “scratch your own itch” scenarios are a significant source of intrinsic motivation for me, personally.

Other Things I Enjoy


Outside of software development, I love playing my guitar and singing. I have written a few songs myself and like to cover all kinds of artists that I personally like. I also enjoy drawing and painting although I have not gotten around to doing that a whole lot lately.

Sports and Outdoors

I enjoy travelling and love the outdoors: hiking, mountain biking and camping. I certainly miss California for its breath-taking nature but have found Europe to have many beautiful places, too!

Optimization and Automation

In many areas of life I tend to strive for a high degree of optimization and automation. When I’m not writing an app to improve a certain workflow, I’ll usually at least write scripts or create Shortcuts to automate certain steps.

Sometimes these Shortcuts get a bit out of hand and grow to the complexity of what could’ve been a full-blown app… And sometimes they actually serve as prototypes for what will become an app in the future.

While I have become a lot better at judging when it is not worth trying to automate a task, I definitely need to regularly remind myself to critically reflect about this 🙃

You know what they say:

Never spend 6 minutes doing something by hand when you can spend 6 hours failing to automate it

(source: Tweet by @zhuowei)

🙊 🙈

Get in Touch & Stay in the Loop

If you would like to follow my work or get in touch for any reason, I’d be delighted if you’d reach out, connect or follow me: