Niels Vanspauwen, Developer in Hasselt, Belgium
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Niels Vanspauwen

Verified Expert  in Engineering

Software Developer

Hasselt, Belgium
Toptal Member Since
January 26, 2017

Niels is a seasoned software architect and entrepreneur with over fifteen years of experience. He's a generalist with strong communication and business skills who speaks the language of customers as well as techies. He has extensive experience as a product architect in B2B hi-tech software as well as B2C web and mobile software. Niels enjoys designing and implementing simple solutions to complex problems.


React, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, MongoDB, Java, Python
Swift 4, JavaScript, React, Ruby, Android, iOS, Go, React Native, Swift
Book Widgets
JavaScript, React, iOS, Objective-C, Google App Engine, Python, jQuery, CSS3...




Preferred Environment

React, Git, CSS3, HTML5, iOS, Swift

The most amazing...

...project I've worked on is BookWidgets, a platform for teachers that allows them to generate their own interactive HTML5 apps for the classroom in minutes.

Work Experience


2017 - PRESENT
  • Headed up the engineering team of 20+ software engineers and data scientists.
  • Built an IoT solution for the smart energy grid domain.
  • Led complex technical projects, from ideation and inception to implementation and delivery.
  • Liaised with customers as a primary point of contact.
Technologies: React, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, MongoDB, Java, Python

Senior Software Engineer

2017 - PRESENT
  • Worked on various projects, including native iOS apps, React Native apps, and web apps.
Technologies: Swift 4, JavaScript, React, Ruby, Android, iOS, Go, React Native, Swift

Technical Founder

2013 - 2017
Book Widgets
  • Conceptualized, architected, and implemented a SaaS platform for teachers. Our platform lets any teacher, regardless of technical skill level, quickly put together interactive lesson materials for iPads, Chromebooks, and PC.
  • Implemented a native iOS app, 40+ HTML5 applications, a web server, and an admin web app.
  • Architected to scale to millions of users, using Google App Engine, Google Compute Engine, Google Cloud Storage, and more.
  • Handled marketing and customer communication as well as technical pre-sales support.
  • Led a team of five, including software developers, sales and marketing specialists to go from scratch to a 6-figure annual revenue.
Technologies: JavaScript, React, iOS, Objective-C, Google App Engine, Python, jQuery, CSS3, HTML5, Qt, C++

Solution Architect

2010 - 2013
  • Architected the merging of three competing products into one overarching solution.
  • Worked with customers and R&D teams around the world to learn the different technologies and define the integrated solutions.
  • Provided the R&D that ensured that our #1 customer moved over quickly and flawlessly.
Technologies: Eclipse, Java, Qt, C++

Product Architect and Engineering Manager

2008 - 2010
  • Managed a software team distributed over three sites in Europe and the USA.
  • Defined new products and worked with the marketing department, translating high-level market and customer needs into highly technical products.
  • Handled technical due diligence when performing acquisitions.
Technologies: Qt, C++

Principal Software Engineer

2000 - 2007
  • Designed and implemented electronic design automation products, mainly written in C++.
  • Wrote complex, large-scale software systems in C++ for Linux and Windows platform.
  • Created and designed authoring tools, debug tools, and analysis tools.
  • Created a framework for high-speed simulations of sophisticated electronic systems like smartphones and digital cameras.
  • Contributed to the whole process, from ideation, customer validation, and technical design to implementation and testing.
Technologies: Qt, C++

I am the technical co-founder of this SaaS platform that lets any teacher, regardless of technical skill level, quickly put together interactive lesson materials for iPads, Chromebooks, and PC.

I architected and implemented large parts of the solution, and later became responsible for marketing and growth.

React Native App for Law Enforcement

I developed a RN mobile app for a company specializing in software solutions for law enforcement. This particular app was used by police officers to perform data collection during field investigations.

Virtualizer addresses the increasing development challenges associated with software-rich semiconductor and electronic products by enabling companies to accelerate both the development and deployment of virtual prototypes.

I was one of the R&D architects of this product suite, and the technical lead for a distributed team of engineers.

Virtual Platforms

CoWare's Virtual Platforms technology included a set of electronic system level design tools and ultrafast simulation libraries used by companies like Sony, Canon, and Motorola to develop the hardware and software of consumer electronic devices. I was a principal engineer and architect of large parts of the product.

System Mechanic
System Mechanic is an award-winning PC maintenance software. I designed and implemented several low-level libraries underlying this product, for instance for detecting and repairing file system issues.

Federated Authentication for a Google App Engine App

The client was developing a web app using Google App Engine (Go runtime) and wanted to make some parts only accessible to users that were logged in. Users needed to be able to log in using Google, Facebook, or a registered email/password.

This was implemented using Firebase UI.

An augmented reality iOS app written in Swift, tailored specifically for iPhone X, which involved heavy use of ARKit and AVFoundation for live video processing. I developed this app from start to finish.

Work Flow Software and Mobile App for a Law Firm

A complete software solution to automate workflows for a small law firm. Ranging from task management, shared inbox, automated fax and text message processing, document management, and more. Built from scratch using a React front end and a Ruby back end. The system sends out push notifications, text messages, and emails to clients to keep them informed about key information about their case.

Also, it includes a mobile app for clients to communicate with their lawyer, track the status of their case, upload documents, and more. The app was built from scratch using React Native.

The software solution was integrated with various other systems via APIs such as Clio and Twilio.
1994 - 2000

Master's Degree in Computer Science

Catholic University of Louvain (KULeuven) - Leuven, Belgium


React Native Academy



Deep Learning Foundation Nanodegree



React, Node.js, jQuery, Twilio API, Clio API, React DnD, Firebase iOS SDK, Firebase Web SDK, jQuery UI


Trello, Slack, Auto Layout, Xcode, Interface Builder, Git, Adobe Photoshop


Qt, React Native, ARKit, Redux, Django REST Framework


CSS3, JavaScript, C++, Objective-C, HTML5, Swift 4, SQL, Python, Swift, Java, UML, Go, Ruby


Mobile Web Design, Object-oriented Programming (OOP), Object-oriented Design (OOD), Agile Software Development, Test-driven Development (TDD), Concurrent Programming


Android, Linux, iOS, Google App Engine, MacOS, Eclipse, Firebase, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Windows



Industry Expertise

Project Management, Marketing


Full-stack, Mobile Web, Apps, APIs, Startups, Software Architecture, Team Leadership, Business, Web Services, Communication, Software, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Regression, Deep Neural Networks, Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN), Recurrent Neural Networks (RNNs), Sagas, Computer Science, AVFoundation, Federated Sign-in, Google BigQuery, User Interface (UI), Sales, User Experience (UX)

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