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Biography of Heinz Aisenbrey

I was born on 29Jan1938 in Stuttgart in the house of my grandfather. Shortly after my birth we moved to Edenkoben/Palatinate, since my father couldn't find a job in Stuttgart after he left the University of Stuttgart with his diploma as an architect. As he had specialized in underground construction (streets, foundation of bridges), he was assigned by the Hitler regime to design the "Westwall" defense line. During the war my father was with a pioneer troop and I was raised by my mother and my aunts in Edenkoben. The only dangerous war event I can remember was the air raid attack against an ammunition cargo train which the silly German army had parked at the Edenkoben train station. When the ammunition exploded half a mile down the road we had to seek shelter in a basement between potatoes and beets. After the war the friendly American occupation army was soon replaced by the less friendly French occupation army and we had to leave our rented apartment in Edenkoben. After a six months stop with our relatives in Guendelbach we could move to the house of my grandfather in Stuttgart, where my father joined us in 1947. He had escaped from Stalingrad and made it to a war prisoners camp of the US Army. Since he spoke English fairly well he soon was released. Meanwhile I was struggling with a new language - the Swabian dialect, which was so different from my Palatine dialect that I hardly could understand my relatives in Guendelbach. Soon we had to learn English in school which for me was only a bit more than another dialect, so I soon was pretty good in English. Besides English I took nine years of Latin and six years of French. Notwithstanding I enrolled at the Stuttgart University to study Telecommunications. After two years, during the summer break in 1962, together with my oldest school mate I left for the USA following an invitation of my aunt Hedwig Klinger who lived in Philadelphia, Pa. Hedwig was a cousin of my father and emigrated in 1929. We stayed in the USA for three months. Most of the time we spent in Philly, but also lived for three weeks in an apartment in New York and for one week in the YMCA in Washington, DC. Our greatest adventure: aunt and uncle took us on a three weeks trip out West following Route 66. On our way back we stopped in Menno and met among other relatives the parents of Kenneth. Ken then was stationed somewhere in Texas. Two years later, in 1964, I received my degree (Dipl.-Ing. in Telecommunications) from the university and joined AEG-Telefunken in Backnang nearby Stuttgart. I stayed in the Advanced Development Department for six years, switched to a lab writing standards and advanced to head this group. There I specialized in semiconductor devices and soon was appointed as the consulting engineer for our purchasing department. At that time, in 1973, I started visiting US semiconductor companies in the Silicon Valley. Since my wife Helga had a cousin living in Merced, whom we visited several times, I tried to combine my private vacation in Merced with a visit of the Silicon Valley only two hours away by car. I guess that I visited the USA about 25 times between 1973 and 1998.
In 1986 all Telecom activities of AEG were sold to BOSCH Telecom and in 1992 I was head of a department called Engineering Services with four labs in Backnang and one lab in Frankfurt. At that time we already were heavily relying on computer assisted engineering. All my employees had a workstation computer and an office computer - except me, who only had an office computer. We had our own servers running, separated from the rest of the company, because we had set up a Component Engineering System, providing services and libraries for electrical components. Every engineer in the company could use any computer as a client to log in to our CES. The screens an engineer could call looked very similar to today's websites with links to pictures, documents, standards etc., including very comfortable search options . We already used PDF as our standardized document format.
When BOSCH sold his Telecom operations to Marconi in 2000, I accepted a golden handshake and quit by the end of 1999. Since 2001 I am a pensioner of BOSCH. In 2000 I started my genealogy research, applying all my computer expertise gained during my last decade at BOSCH Telecom. There are many similarities with a CES: you need to collect data on persons instead of components, assign a unique identifier to each person and each family, set links between persons, link documents, photos, movies etc. to persons, places and so on...and backup the data safely.

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