Lars Nikander Frandsen

System Developer at Illumi A/S
Msc. IT Product Development from Aarhus University
.Net, Java, Node.js and Python
Umbraco, Angular and UCommerce

I'm a System Developer at Illumi A/S, a small consultancy bureau located in Aarhus. Currently, I live in a small apartment, in Trøjborg, but I and my girlfriend are looking to buy a new and bigger apartment somewhere in the city. In my spare time, I dabble in electronics, cuddle with cats and try to travel as much as possible.

I was born on 6th of June 1989 and I grew up in a small cottage, in Skanderborg, south from Aarhus. In primary school, I was very interested in physics and mathematics, and I was introduced to electronics by our physics teacher. I remember the epiphany moment of learning how to do more than just add a light to a battery when I was taught how to use a capacitor and a transistor. Making a small light blink instead of just showing a constant light or making a capacitive sensor for a light switch really opened my eyes to the fun world of electronics. I was a LEGO kid, as most boys were in Denmark, in the 90s, and see how you could use electric components as a form of building blogs really sparked an interest in me.

In 2005 I graduated primary school and went to a technical high school in Viby, ~15km from my hometown. I was in an all-boys Math/Physics class and here I got the opportunity to further expand my interest in electronics with programming. Up until then I only knew of programming as most people know it, as Magic. I was taught Java and Assembly programming and I managed to develop some of my first programs. At the end of High School, I even managed to create a small terminal, called Shilo, that would incorporate all the other projects I've made into one single app. It was able to tell how the weather was going to be given a specific date, have a basic conversation and even play hangman and a memory game. 

After high school I worked for a couple of months as an office assistant, to save up for going to Art School. I was very interested in Graphic Design and art and thought that this was my future career path. However, I didn't get into the Graphic Design course, but I was put on the Photography course instead and told that after a couple of weeks I could probably swap course to Graphic Design. But after a couple of weeks, I was so hooked on photography that it didn't even matter anymore, and after half a year at Art School, I was told that they would like me to come back as an Assistant to the photography teacher. I have a very technical approach to photography and liked to experiment with new methods and make my own cameras, lenses and dive deep into settings and specifications. Finding how chromatic aberration was influenced by the different layers of optical lenses or create stereographic images and interactive photo installations were right up my alley. I found a way to combine my technical side with my creative side, something that was never really a thing in high school.

When I was done at Art School I searched for things to do where I could combine these two sides as well, and I found that the bachelor in Information Technology did exactly that, so in 2010 I enrolled. During the first years of the bachelor, we covered everything from Architecture to various programming languages and even economics in software development. Late in my bachelor, I was offered a project job at the university, developing a system that could harvest energy from wastewater on a festival. This was my first introduction to how actual software development was in the real world, with meetings, deadlines, estimates and what else there is. I quickly became the main developer on the project, since the other guy who was supposed to work on the project didn't have all the skills that we thought he had, so the 300 hours became ~600 hours instead. But it was an amazing learning experience that I would not have been without.

After the bachelor, I decided to continue on the Master Degree in IT Product Development where I was able to go more in depth with stuff like smart home development, robotics, and distributed systems. I ended up doing my thesis in Collective Intelligence for EV3 robots. My supervisor was amazing at pushing me towards writing and thinking like an academic and a few times I even considered applying for a ph.d. in Computer Science. But after 6 months of writing, preparing for the defense and finally getting my Diploma, I felt like I needed some change. So I started looking for jobs, mainly within IoT, and by chance I found a job posting from Illumi, looking for a new System Developer.

I applied and shortly after I was called into an interview, and on 1st of April, 2016 I started working as a System Developer for Illumi. Here I have the great privilege of working with major clients and on projects used by thousands of people every day.