Summary

Passionate about software engineering, knowledge representation, artificial intelligence, and digital creation.

Master's in Theoretical Physics, Master's in Computer Science, PhD in Computational Biotechnology, and self-directed learner. For my PhD I created several software applications in cooperation with molecular biologists. After moving to Norway I have been developing a unique, intuitive web application that enables scientists to collect context-rich, computable knowledge on any topic.

I'm a:
1. Researcher (in Computer & Life Science): creating computable knowledge;
2. Full-Stack Software Engineer: good at both tough algorithms & large projects;
3. Photographer;
4. Entrepreneurial spirit.

As a software engineer, I have years of experience with JavaScript, Java, C++, PHP, MySQL, My full-stack web development skills include Vue.js, Node.js, AngularJS, Express, jQuery, MongoDB, git, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and more.

As a scientist, I help Life Scientists deal with large amounts of diverse knowledge. I am driven to find new ways to improve computer intelligence that enables their research, and beyond.
In particular I designed the technology VSM, that enables scientists to manually capture context-rich information on any topic, using a method that mimics natural language but that can be queried and parsed semantically. I used this as the basis to build the web-app SciCura.

As a photography enthusiast, I love creating portraits and meeting new people.

As for entrepreneurship, I'm interested in startups, and led a team of students in the intensive Take Off course at NTNU School of Entrepreneurship.


Software Projects

Vsmjs

Translating any knowledge into computable form, made easy.

VSM is a method for entering and displaying any type of knowledge, in a form that is both intuitive for human understanding and semantically precise for computation.

VSM is the combination of a new semantic model, tightly linked to a supporting user-interface design.

Vsmjs is the GitHub project that implements the VSM user‑interface as a web component that can be embedded in any web application.

2012-2015,  2018-present


SciCura v1

Collecting computable knowledge from Bioscience literature. (JS/PHP)

SciCura is a web-platform where life-scientists gather complex and diverse bio-information, and can then apply semantic search and processing.

The web-app supports versatile information collection: one can capture facts on any topic, while also storing all essential biological context.
Note that collection of detailed structured facts, called 'curation', happens manually because of AI limitations.

SciCura stores facts as semantic sentences, built from simple rules, yet enabling a context-richness like natural language.

The platform's development involves iterative front-end & back-end design and implementation, challenging graph-algorithms (for semantic pattern-matching and syntax visualization), webserver operation, and close cooperation with life-scientist users.

2012-2019


WordVis & OLSVis

Visualizing semantic dictionaries. (JS/HTML5/PHP)

I built an animated graph-visualizer & editor in JavaScript, connected it to various semantic dictionaries, and packed this into desktop web-applications.

  • WordVis lets you explore the English dictionary,
    see synonyms grouped by meaning, and browse them in a fluid, interactive web of words and meanings.
  • OLSVis lets you browse complex life-science ontologies (=terminology hierarchies).

2010-2011


Notable Earlier Work

  • SIM-plex: Gene Network Simulator. (Java)
  • MineMap: Text curation platform to cooperatively extract facts from bioscience literature. (Java/PHP)
  • Agenda: Multi-user app for scheduling meetings, holidays, and reservations at Becewa. (C++)
  • Database apps for billing/logistics. (Access/VBScript)
  • Physics+3D simulation engine in high school. (C/C++)

1994-2010


Research

Independent Scientist

Independent Researcher,  affiliated with NTNU

  • Publications on VSM.
  • Further development of VSM ?
    I need your financial support: on Patreon.💰🔬
  • Applying VSM in new projects ?  ➝ 

2020-present


Researcher / Software Engineer

NTNU, Trondheim, Norway

  • Computer Science for Cancer Research.
  • Design of a Knowledge Commons, a basis to model & predict cancer cells' response to drug combinations.
  • Expand VSM & SciCura.

2016-2019


Researcher / Software Engineer

Independent, Affiliated with NTNU

  • IT-engineer & close cooperation in Cancer Research.
  • SciCura web-app: iterative design & implementation.
  • Start-up case-study.

2012-2015


Postdoctoral researcher

Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim

  • Design of a general semantic format and visual interface, which bridges natural language used by people, and database formats used by algorithms. (VSM/UltraRel).
  • Development of WordVis and OLSVis.

2008-2011


Education

Full Stack Web Developer

(Self-directed learning)

Sabbatical year, using various online resources.

  • Advanced JavaScript front&back-end, Angular, NodeJS, MongoDB, etc.
  • Around 20 different Amazon Web Services.
  • DevOps tools.

2015


PhD in Biotechnology

(Computational, Integrative, Systems Biology)

VIB (Flanders Institute for Biotechnology) / UGent

Multidisciplinary work-environment. Building bridges between IT-tools and bio-scientists. For example:

  • Knowledge management: Building tools to help scientists cooperatively collect information from Bioscience literature.
  • Gene network analysis: Building a network simulator, applying it to unravel the logical wiring of plant cell division.

2003-2008


MSc in Computer Science

Ghent University

Software Development: graduated with Distinction.
Parallel BSc and MSc completed in just 2 years.

2000-2002


MSc in Physics

Ghent University

Theoretical Physics: graduated with High Distinction.

1996-2000


Scientific Publications


Skills

Vue.js, Node.js, JavaScript, Webpack, AngularJS, Express.js, Mocha, jQuery, Backbone, MongoDB, Browserify, git, GitHub, gulp, npm, Stripe, Agile, test-driven development, Bootstrap, responsive design, UI/UX, HTML5, CSS3, SASS, 20+ Amazon Web Services (AWS).

PHP, MySQL, Java, C++, VB, asm.

Photoshop, Illustrator, 123D Design, AutoHotkey, SublimeText, CMS, MS Access, audio-video-image editing, and 100+ software tools. Familiar with computer security, AI.

Creative. Perseverant. Thorough. Open-minded. Critical thinking. Self-reflection and improvement. Independent, proactive, enthusiastic spirit.


Languages

Fluent: English, Dutch.
Advanced: Norwegian.
Intermediate: French.
Notions: German, Spanish.


Activities

Hiking in Norway's mountains
Mindfulness meditation
Travel


Awards

Idea-Leader for Start-up, NTNU Take-Off (2014)

Selected as 1 of 6 in idea-leadership role in intensive entrepreneurship course.

Personal Postdoc grant, FUGE (2008)

Based on written project proposal.

Personal PhD grant, IWT (2003)

Based on written project proposal and two oral defenses.


Endorsements

Martin Kuiper

Professor in Systems Biology

Steven is extremely creative, not shy to adopt unconventional approaches, and has a good eye for identifying what biologists would like to see in software that should support their research.

Astrid Lægreid

Prof. in Functional Genomics

I have known and worked with Steven for nearly 10 years focusing on extraction and management of biological background knowledge from literature. During these years, I have come to highly appreciate Steven's innovative and goal-oriented approaches.

European Commission

Future & Emerging Techn.

(...) has potential to represent a significant contribution to simplified knowledge representation needed for effective crowd-sourcing, data management, database querying and reasoning.
The approach is ambitious and demonstrates a general understanding of the challenges, with original approaches to address these.