Paul Schaub Application 2021

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My name is Paul Schaub, also known as vanitasvitae. This is my re-application as a member of the XSF.

About Me

I have a bachelor's degree in computer science and currently, I'm studying to get my master's degree (almost finished now!). Until recently I was employed in a student job at my university hospital, doing medical informatics stuff, sadly no XMPP :( At the moment, I am making some money working on an OpenPGP library as a freelancer.

My involvement in XMPP began when I implemented OMEMO encryption for the Smack XMPP client library as part of my bachelor's thesis. Since then I visited 4 XSF Summits and 2 Sprints, took part in two XMPP-related Google Summer of Code projects as a student, and even mentored a student once. During my time with the IgniteRealtime Foundation, I became the number 2 contributor of Smack.

My main interests are end-to-end encryption which is the reason why both my bachelor's thesis was and my master's thesis will be around that topic. Although I don't feel confident enough in my knowledge I try my best to fuel the advancement of e2ee-related specifications. The past year I spent an extended period of time fully understanding OpenPGP.

I authored (and co-authored) a small number of encryption-related XMPP Extension protocols.

In my spare time, I'm writing articles about XMPP and free software on my blog.

I'm also a (currently inactive) supporter of the Free Software Foundation Europe, as well as a member of the Federated Networks Association Feneas.


I believe that open standards, encryption, privacy, and free software are essential building blocks for a healthy democracy. That's why I want to continue to support the XMPP Standards Foundation as a member to help to create a healthy communications ecosystem.


XMPP: vanitasvitae(at) (spam protected through captcha)

EMail: vanitasvitae(at)