About me

My Name is Nils Kopal.
I am a cryptography expert and maniac, astro photographer, retro computer tinkerer, and hobby YouTuber :-). You are here on my private blog: https://www.kopaldev.de

Thats me! In the trailer of my YouTube channel “Cryptography for everybody” 🙂

In this blog I write about cryptology, retro computing, and anything else that interests me.

I hope you enjoy your stay on my blog and find something interesting.


The Decrypt Project

Right now, I work for the DECRYPT research project at the University of Siegen. In this international and interdisciplinary project, we research historical cryptology in all of its aspects. Feel free to have a look at our project page: http://www.de-crypt.org. In the project, I am responsible for cryptanalysis. For my scientific publications have a look at this page.
You can also find me on research gate: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Nils-Kopal.

CrypTool 2

Besides working for DECRYPT, I am the project leader of CrypTool 2 (CT2). CT2 is an open-source e-learning software for cryptology (cryptography and cryptanalysis) and freely available. I develop new components for CT2, but also supervise bachelor and master projects at different universities (e.g. Siegen, Mannheim, Bochum, Munich, and others) developing and researching for the CrypTool project. Visit our CrypTool project webpage: https://www.cryptool.org.

CryptoBooks – Bibliography of Crypto Books

Another topic I am involved in is “cryptobooks”, a bibliography of historic books about cryptography. Together with Tobias Schrödel (visit his website https://www.sichere.it) I created https://www.cryptobooks.org. Tobias and I are both (crazy!) collectors of such historic cryptography books and Tobias already created long ago an online database about such books. Together, we now created and maintain our online bibliography.

My Cryptography YouTube Channel

Some years ago, I started my YouTube channel about cryptology “Cryptography for everybody”, named after the CrypTool project’s motto. In my videos, I mainly use CrypTool softwares for the demonstration of cryptology. Visit my YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/c/CrypTool2/.


Astro Photography

I’ve also been an amateur astrophotographer since late 2022 (see https://www.astrobin.com/users/NilsAstro/). While my first images are generally okay, this one is the best image (one of the Andromeda galaxy — M31) I’ve taken so far:

The Andromeda Galaxy (M31)
The Andromeda Galaxy (M31)

The image is a stack of 5,33 hours images (each image 5 min) taken with the ZWO ASI 2600 MC Pro Color and the Skywatcher 150/750 PDS on a HEQ-5 Pro. Processed with SIRIL and Photoshop 🙂

Here is another nice image I took. It is NGC 7380, the Wizard Nebula. Its a total of 2 hours of RGB data as well as 1 hour of OIII and H-alpha:

The Wizard Nebula (NGC 7280)
The Wizard Nebula (NGC 7380)

My Retro Computing YouTube Channel

Also, I am a retro computing guy. I tinker with old computers (especially Commodore computers), solder, play games, and program (e.g. 6502 asm). I also upload YouTube videos about that stuff on my 2nd YouTube channel — but not so regularly as I would like to :-). Feel free to visit https://www.youtube.com/c/NilsRetroHobbyRoom.

Nils' Retro Hobby Room logo

CrypTool 2 on Facebook

The CrypTool 2 Facebook page you can find here:


Me on GitHub & Discord

GitHub projects: https://github.com/n1k0m0

Join the “Cryptography for everybody” Discord server: https://discord.gg/8JeTZd8EpT