Vadim Panov, Developer in Hong Kong, Hong Kong
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Vadim Panov

Verified Expert  in Engineering

Software Developer

Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Toptal Member Since
July 13, 2020

Vadim is a software engineer with 15+ years of experience in embedded systems, Unix, networking, and cryptography. He has owned and brought products to market, combining skills in C++, C, Lua, JavaScript, Python, and more. Vadim acquired an EMBA to gain better equilibrium between tech and business challenges.


Balanced Approach Consulting
Embedded C++, AUTOSAR, C++, C++/CLI, TCP/IP
Vue, OpenWRT, Linux, MoonScript, Lua, C++, C, Embedded C, Unit Testing...
Keil, GCC, Android, Linux, GNU, Embedded C, Unit Testing, CI/CD Pipelines...




Preferred Environment

GCC, Linux, GNU, Docker, MacOS

The most amazing...

...product I've developed is a digital photo frame, resulting in exceptional user reviews.

Work Experience

Software Engineer

2022 - 2024
Balanced Approach Consulting
  • Did contractual work for a Linux security-related company. Implemented tools to stage different Linux distros, compile kernels, and automatically start tests in VMs. Backported hundreds of CVE patches to different versions of Linux kernels.
  • Performed contractual work for Woven by Toyota. Contributed to the OTA update library in the vehicle SDK team, helped with coding, testing, and designing using C, C++, AUTOSAR, and AreneOS, and did additional CI/CD works with Python, Docker, and shell.
  • Worked on a small macOS project to port an existing Linux Qt application to macOS. We agreed on creating homebrew for libraries and compilers, but additional debugging and fixing were required to create a brew bottle for M1 and Intel builds.
Technologies: Embedded C++, AUTOSAR, C++, C++/CLI, TCP/IP

Senior Software Engineer

2016 - 2022
  • Owned, coded, and delivered full-stack firmware for the custom hardware produced with our partner, using C, C++, Lua, and more.
  • Started with simple MVP firmware using OpenWRT-based firmware for Linksys WRT routers (C, Lua, Go, and jQuery). Created CI/CD pipeline with Docker and CircleCI, generating firmware images in a secure environment.
  • Scaled to many models with DD-WRT, C, C++, Lua, and deeper customizations, reaching 50 thousand active customers on these stacks.
Technologies: Vue, OpenWRT, Linux, MoonScript, Lua, C++, C, Embedded C, Unit Testing, CI/CD Pipelines, Internet of Things (IoT), JavaScript, Architecture, CMake, Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), Boost.Asio, Multithreading, Algorithms, Node.js, Python, Embedded Software, Embedded Systems, IT Networking, Router Development, Telecommunications, Embedded Hardware, Yocto, Cryptography, Networking, Encryption, ARM, Firmware, Jira, Git, CSS, HTML, C++/CLI, DHCP, DNS, IP Routing, TCP/IP

Senior Software Engineer

2014 - 2016
  • Developed the "Nixplay Advance," a digital photo frame embedded stack from scratch, becoming an Amazon best seller for at least five years with around one million units sold.
  • Unlocked by reusing only low-level SDK and redesigning UI/UX renderers to get the most out of the low-cost chipset. Created and owned the widgets, rendering code, and CI/CD pipelines.
  • Designed multiple components for the "Nixplay Edge" photo frame product line, including drivers, schematics, and lenses for motion sensors, as a key feature contributing to Nixplay's distinct outlook.
  • Built kernel middleware OTA updates and alternative mainboard prototypes based on low-cost chipsets with Linux and Android SDKs.
Technologies: Keil, GCC, Android, Linux, GNU, Embedded C, Unit Testing, CI/CD Pipelines, Internet of Things (IoT), Architecture, Multithreading, Algorithms, Microcontrollers, Embedded Software, Embedded Systems, STB, Embedded Hardware, Networking, ARM, Firmware, Jira, Git, C++/CLI, TCP/IP, OpenWRT

Senior Software Engineer

2012 - 2014
  • Developed ZigBee products, frameworks, and firmware.
  • Implemented firmware for their SmartEnergy display and a ZigBee smart light bulb compatible with Philips Hue, which helped to pass ZigBee certification.
  • Designed C++ and Lua framework for ZigBee IP gateway on embedded Linux.
Technologies: AVR, Zigbee, Linux, GNU, Lua, C++, C, Embedded C, CI/CD Pipelines, Internet of Things (IoT), Architecture, Multithreading, Algorithms, Embedded C++, Microcontrollers, Embedded Software, Embedded Systems, Embedded Hardware, Networking, ARM, Firmware, Jira, Git, TCP/IP

Senior Software Engineer

2008 - 2012
  • Designed Linux SDK with the kernel, drivers, operating system image, and C++ library delivered with lottery and vending machines, scaling to around 20 thousand units.
  • Developed an application for diagnostic, inspection, and demonstration of the SDK using C++, Gecko (WebKit), and JavaScript.
  • Created machine parts, including firmware for USB, IO, RFID, serial, and storage devices.
Technologies: Firmware, AVR, Linux, GNU, WebKit, C++, C, Embedded C, Architecture, Multithreading, Algorithms, PCB Design, Microcontrollers, Embedded Software, Embedded Systems, Embedded C++, Embedded Hardware, Networking, Git, TCP/IP

Software Developer

2002 - 2008
  • Developed firmware, desktop applications for Windows and Linux, and web projects.
  • Designed schematics and firmware for lottery and vending machines.
  • Implemented TinyOS apps and portions of ZigBee IEEE 802.15.4 stack for the Lebedev Institute of Precision Mechanics and Computer Engineering.
  • Created a Windows app for Tula State University which played interactive materials for distance learning.
  • Developed multiple smaller projects for custom hardware like AVR, C8051, MSP, implementing USB buttons and card readers, interfacing I2C sensors over MODBUS.
Technologies: Linux, GNU, Embedded Hardware, Firmware, TCP/IP

Photo Frame

I operated on hardware platform selection and custom video drivers for 2D acceleration and transparency rendering in this project. Also, I implemented UI/UX on the embedded system. The work resulted in great UI/UX, good cost using only 200MHz CPU with 64Mb DDR and 4Mb flash, CI/CD pipeline, and tests for custom rendering framework.

Router Development

Developed all technical aspects of a specific router model. This process included customizing operating systems with some components from OpenWRT, DD-WRT, and Yocto. Designed a custom Lua Moonscript framework with a scheduler similar to node.js but running Lua in a restricted memory environment. I put much effort into receiving router state updates on the front end using event-driven API.

Digital Photo Frame

The project is about a simple digital photo frame, where I implemented UI/UX on top of highly restricted hardware. Developed a custom font, image, and pixel rendering engine to create a smooth UI with all font dithering; this step gave the product an advantage on the market. As a result, the cost and quality were exceptional, and the product remained a best seller for several years.
2020 - 2021

Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) Degree in Business Administration and Management

Quantic School of Business and Technology - Washington, DC

1999 - 2004

Master's Degree in Computer Systems and Networks

Tula State University - Tula, Russia


Node.js, Vue


OpenVPN, Git, Jira, GCC, Keil, CMake


C, C++, Lua, Embedded C, Embedded C++, C++/CLI, JavaScript, Python, CSS, HTML


Linux, OpenWRT, Debian, Embedded Linux, Raspberry Pi, Blockchain, Android, AVR, Docker, MacOS


Unit Testing

Industry Expertise



Embedded Software, Zigbee, Bootloaders, Firmware, Embedded Development, CI/CD Pipelines, Internet of Things (IoT), Architecture, Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), Multithreading, Algorithms, Microcontrollers, Embedded Systems, Embedded Hardware, Cryptography, Networking, Encryption, DHCP, DNS, IP Routing, TCP/IP, WiFi, Device Drivers, IT Networking, Router Development, ARM, Computer Science, Control Theory, Automata Theory, Digital Electronics, GNU, MoonScript, WebKit, Business, Boost.Asio, PCB Design, STB, Yocto, Real-time Operating System (RTOS), AUTOSAR, Digital Hardware Design

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