Michal
Altair
Valášek

Contact

I travel the world, but live in Prague, Czech Republic, Europe. If you want to contact me, here are my contact links:

I'm PGP friendly. If you want to communicate with me privately and securely, encrypt your message using my PGP key and send it to my regular e-mail address. You can validate my identity via Keybase.

Press

For press-related inquiries, comment requests etc., please use the contacts above, preferrably e-mail. If you need them, you can download print-resolution photos.

I refuse to cooperate with media owned by Agrofert group for moral and political reasons.

Developer, speaker and consultant

I'm software developer and I work for Altairis. I prefer the Microsoft .NET platform (ASP.NET) and C#, but I can work with many other languages if needed, although usually I tend to bitch a lot when I have to do that.

Microsoft MVP logo

Since 2004 I'm Microsoft Most Valuable Professional. This honorary title is yearly awarded to people who use their free time to help other users (or in my case developers) with Microsoft platforms and technologies. I'm oldest serving MVP in the Czech Republic.

I usually don't write bigger application myself, having lots of other commitments. I usually work in capacity of architect and consultant. I often help by writing small but complicated pieces of software, usually related to security, cryptography or digital signatures.

As a speaker, I help people and computers to understand each other. I have my own range of development and security courses for Gopas, the biggest Czech computer education provider, and I'm one of the founding members of smaller but much more agile DotNetCollege project.

Often I give talks at conferences and similar events like TechEd, ShowIT, MS Fest, DevDays etc. I also help to organize some other events like SecPublica, Arch/Sec or CoreStart.

My newer open source code can be found on GitHub, older projects are on CodePlex. My current baby is the AutoACME, the Let's Encrypt client for Windows and IIS.

Security

My other passion is cybersecurity and related fields like cryptography. I don't consider myself to be security researcher or hacker (although I have some... experience :-), but rather the explainer and publicist.

I'm strong believer in freedom of speech, of right to anonymity and I fight against censorship and heavy-handed state involvement in cyberspace. I fight against the censorship of the Internet in the Czech republic, ie. by publishing step by step guide to setup your personal Streisand VPN Server (Czech only).

In my capacity of consultant I also help Czech companies to secure their systems and securely implements cryptographic technologies, such as electronic signatures, timestamps, long-term digital archives etc.

I also helped to solve several criminal cases as court-appointed expert consultant. I'm proud I helped to put some people to prison and even more proud that I helped other people out of it.

Writer

I co-authored several books, but they are generally out of print now. I wrote hundreds of articles (usually security-related) for many Czech periodicals, both online and offline, from mainstream newspapers to pretty obscure publications.

Most of my current articles can be found in the Czech newspaper Hospodářské Noviny. I try to write a "Bezpečnostní svodka" ("The Security Brief"), the overview of important events in cybersecurity, every week for them.

I also have my own blog, both personal and professional (see links below), but now the blogs are currently a bit abandoned, as I use other outlets like Facebook or Ask.fm (where you can ask me questions anonymously).

Deviant

I'm nationally well-known pervert. I don't hide my interest in various kinds of BDSM, mainly ponyplay - both as the horse and trainer. I'm bisexual switch, which means I don't discriminate ;-) - I like both doms and subs, males or females, the play is what matters.

Since 1998 I run BDSM.CZ, the oldest and biggest Czech server for sadomasochists. I was one of people who helped to shape the Czech BDSM scene in its infancy and I'm proud of it.

For years, I worked for Lupus Pictures, now defunct spanking movie production company and I'm proud that I helped to change shape of the spanking movie industry by several groundbreaking endeavours of its time.

When time permits, I do yearly talk and Q&A session for students of sexuology at the Charles University in Prague with my friends. Some years were even recorded and are available on YouTube.

I was also one of protagonists of a documentary movie Nebe, peklo by David Čálek, produced by HBO.

You can find me on FetLife, which is like Facebook for perverts and fetishists.

Furry

I'm one of founding members of Czech furry fandom. My character is - not surprisingly - a black horse and I do fursuit as well. I'm also CEO of two Czech furry convention: ZodiaCon (general furry convention) and TechFurMeet (con dedicated to not-only-furry makers). I also own and op the #furrycz IRC channel on FurNet, but IRC is being quickly replaced with other forms of communication.

Maker

As a creative person I love to make things. Recent technological development helped me in this regard as well, because now it's easier to make things than ever before.

My friend Josef Průša (of the Prusa Research fame) introduced me to 3D printing some years back. Even today I consider 3D printing a miracle come true. The sci-fi idea of drawing something in my computer and then having in robotically created in the physical world amazes me. You can find my 3D designs on Thingiverse.

Another friends of mine, Štěpán Bechynský and Martin Malý are guilty of bringing me back to microelecronics. I work with Arduino, ESP8266 and similar microcontroller platforms and I create some interesting things. Some of them are related to my interest of security (like the SerialRFID project or Czech keyboard emulation), some are just for fun and education, like the Arduino-based electronic lock, which I created for escape game, where you open the lock by playing a piano.