Early years

I was born on April 17, 1998, amidst the picturesque landscapes of Hoa Binh province, Vietnam. From the very beginning, the universe seemed to beckon me toward a destiny intertwined with technology.

In the year 2000, my family's journey led us to the vibrant city of Hanoi, where I was but a tender 2-year-old. It was here that I encountered my first dalliance with the digital world.

In the heart of our new home, a relic of computing history awaited - a computer powered by an Intel i386 processor, with Windows 98 as its operating system. Despite its age, this machine held within it the promise of a new frontier.

Guided by my sister's wisdom, I embarked on my inaugural voyage into the digital expanse. Through the pixelated landscapes of 8-bit games, I discovered a realm where imagination knew no bounds. Thus began my odyssey into the ever-evolving world of technology.

2005: Embracing the Digital Frontier

In the summer of 2005, at the age of 7, I ventured into the uncharted waters of the internet, a burgeoning realm still novel in Vietnam. Accompanied by my aunt to her workplace, I was captivated by the possibilities that lay before me.

Beyond mere entertainment, I delved into the depths of coding tutorials, quickly mastering HTML and JavaScript. With newfound skills, I crafted my first applications, including a personalized message encryption tool and a password-protected "lock" program for safeguarding my digital treasures.

Fueling my passion further was my foray into electronics, guided by my father's expertise. Together, we embarked on projects ranging from FM transmitters to amplifier circuits, each one a testament to my growing prowess.

Throughout secondary school, my affinity for technology earned recognition, with teachers often seeking my assistance for various computer-related tasks.

However, this journey was not without its challenges. Between 2005 and 2010, much of my work fell victim to hardware failures, with data backup a luxury beyond reach in an era of expensive storage devices.

Yet, from these setbacks emerged resilience and an insatiable thirst for knowledge, propelling me forward on a path of endless discovery in the ever-evolving world of technology.

2010: Pioneering Pathways

At the tender age of 12, while my peers were still grappling with the basics of programming in Pascal, I found myself embarking on a journey of innovation and discovery.

With a thirst for knowledge that knew no bounds, I delved into the intricacies of programming, swiftly mastering the art of code. In a feat that left many astounded, I crafted a program capable of calculating the areas of triangles, circles, and rectangles - a testament to my early aptitude for algorithmic thinking.

But my explorations didn't end there. Venturing into the realm of hardware, I dismantled my MP4 player, driven by an insatiable curiosity to unravel its inner workings. To my amazement, I discovered a miniature computer nestled within, complete with its own RAM, CPU, and flash memory. It was a revelation - a testament to the remarkable complexity hidden behind the facade of a simple music player.

In the realm of gaming, I experienced a thrill like no other with my first AMD GPU. As I immersed myself in world of DiRT 3, I couldn't resist the urge to push the boundaries further. Armed with determination, I embarked on the daring endeavor of modding the GPU's heat sink, unlocking new realms of performance through overclocking.

But my pursuits weren't confined to the realms of programming and gaming alone. With a penchant for creativity, I ventured into the world of Photoshop, teaching myself the intricacies of digital art through trial and error. Armed with nothing but intuition and a willingness to experiment, I unlocked the potential of this powerful tool, transforming my imagination into digital masterpieces.

Simultaneously, I embraced the burgeoning field of mobile photography with the acquisition of my first Nokia mobile phone. Captivated by the world through the lens of my device, I embarked on a photographic journey, capturing moments of beauty and inspiration with every click.

As 2011 dawned, I ventured into new territories, harnessing the power of Adobe Flash to create dynamic live wallpapers for my Nokia phone. Each creation was a testament to my growing prowess, with skies that shifted and morphed with the passage of time - a symphony of creativity and innovation unfolding in the palm of my hand.

2012: A Technological Renaissance

In 2012, at the age of 14, my journey into the realm of technology reached new heights as my parents bestowed upon me a Samsung Galaxy Y smartphone - an Android marvel that would serve as the canvas for my burgeoning creativity. With boundless curiosity and a thirst for exploration, I delved into the depths of its operating system, pushing the boundaries of what was possible.

Armed with my newfound device, I embarked on a journey of discovery, delving into the intricacies of Android customization. From rooting to modifying system files and even reverse-engineering smali and XML codes, I wielded my smartphone as a gateway to endless possibilities.

2014: Android Adventures

In 2014, I took my first leap into the world of app development, crafting Jelly Music - an Android app that garnered the attention of over 100 users. Though later removed from the Play Store due to compatibility issues, its legacy lives on through the source code, accessible on my GitHub repository.

Meanwhile, my thirst for knowledge extended beyond the realms of software to the very core of Android itself. Immersed in the world of custom ROMs, I explored the vast possibilities offered by CyanogenMod - an off-store Android operating system that opened new horizons of customization and control.

But my journey wasn't confined to the digital realm alone. On the hardware front, I continued to expand my horizons, honing my skills in gadgetry and DIY projects. From repairing external HDDs to crafting an enhanced version of the speaker I had built years prior, each endeavor served as a testament to my growing expertise.

Around end of 2014, a pivotal moment unfolded as my sister's boyfriend, now her husband, bestowed upon me a Raspberry Pi - a miniature marvel that would introduce me to the world of Linux server administration. With determination and grit, I transformed this humble device into a powerful server, harnessing its potential to host websites, configure Apache, and even set up dynamic DNS.

2015: Linux Kernel and Android

In 2015, fueled by a relentless drive for innovation, I embarked on ventures that would further cement my presence in the ever-evolving world of technology.

Teaming up with my brother-in-law, we embarked on a collaborative endeavor that would culminate in the creation of Ban co biet - an Android app designed to captivate users with intriguing facts sourced from reliable references. Available on the Play Store, our creation invited users on a journey of discovery, seamlessly blending entertainment with knowledge.

Simultaneously, my quest for mastery led me to explore the depths of Linux kernel development. Partnering with my trusty Sony Xperia M smartphone, I embarked on the creation of Nui Kernel - a modded kernel that would soon gain recognition on a global scale. Embraced by over 2000 users worldwide, this kernel granted me unprecedented control over low-level system functions, from overclocking and underclocking to voltage control and LED manipulation.

Photo of the compilation process of my Linux kernel:

But this journey was more than just a display of technical prowess - it was a voyage of learning and growth. As I delved deeper into the intricacies of Linux kernel programming, I unearthed hidden nuances and challenges that tested my skills and expanded my understanding. From the nuances of error handling to the complexities of multi-threading, each obstacle served as a stepping stone toward mastery, shaping me into a seasoned practitioner in the realm of system programming.

2016: Web Development

At 17 years old, the year 2016 marked a significant milestone in my journey - a year of innovation, creativity, and the forging of new pathways in the digital realm.

Venturing into the dynamic world of web development, I unveiled my inaugural creation - a website tailored for my school's annual prom. Seamlessly blending functionality with aesthetics, this platform revolutionized the ticket booking process for students, providing a streamlined experience powered by the latest technologies of the time: Firebase and AngularJS

Though simple in design, this website served as a beacon of inspiration, laying the groundwork for a myriad of future projects in the realm of web development. It was more than just a digital presence - it was a testament to my evolving skill set and a harbinger of things to come.

But my pursuits weren't confined to the digital realm alone. In the same year, I found solace and inspiration in the art of music, as my guitar skills flourished and forged a deep connection to the world of melody and rhythm. What began as a hobby soon blossomed into a passion - one that would weave its way into the fabric of my life, enriching every moment with its harmonious resonance.

2017: University Ventures & Entrepreneurial Pursuits

In 2017, my journey into the realms of academia and entrepreneurship intersected, marking a pivotal chapter in my pursuit of knowledge and innovation.

Stepping onto the esteemed grounds of the University of Engineering and Technology, a member of the prestigious Vietnam National University, I found myself immersed in an environment ripe with opportunities to cultivate my programming prowess. Embracing the challenges and camaraderie of university life, I seized every chance to hone my skills, including participating in web projects guided by my esteemed teachers.

Yet, it was in the realm of side projects that I truly found my stride. As a passion project, I embarked on the creation of my first Facebook Messenger chatbot - Chatbot CNH. This ingenious creation provided users with a platform to engage in anonymous conversations with strangers, akin to the renowned Chatible page. To my astonishment, the response was overwhelming, with over 200 users flocking to interact with the chatbot on its inaugural day.

Fuelled by this initial success, I delved deeper into the realm of chatbot development, dedicating countless hours to optimizing its code for enhanced security and reliability. Soon, Chatbot CNH evolved from a mere experiment into a cultural phenomenon, attracting a growing user base eager to partake in its unique brand of digital discourse.

Recognizing the untapped potential of this innovative technology, I pivoted toward monetization, offering bespoke chatbot and web development solutions to eager clients. With a keen eye for innovation and a commitment to excellence, I crafted tailored solutions that met the diverse needs of my clientele, earning widespread acclaim for my dedication and ingenuity.

But my pursuits weren't confined to the digital realm alone. In tandem with my academic endeavors, I embarked on a journey of linguistic exploration, learning French in preparation for my aspirations to study abroad in France. Embracing the richness of cultural exchange, I collaborated with friends from the University of Languages and International Studies to organize events, leveraging my skills as a graphic designer to contribute to social causes and community initiatives.

2018: Academic Excellence in France

The summer of 2018 heralded a new chapter in my academic journey as I embarked on a sojourn to France to further my studies. Enrolling at the esteemed Université d'Aix-Marseille, I found myself immersed in a rich tapestry of learning opportunities, propelled by a thirst for knowledge and a relentless drive for excellence.

With dedication and diligence, I achieved commendable results throughout the school year, earning recognition from my professors for my exemplary performance. Such was the extent of my academic prowess that I was granted the privilege of bypassing certain courses, instead opting to delve into higher-level material as a free auditor - an affirmation of my aptitude and dedication.

During that year, I additionally engaged in Prologin, a computer science competition held in France. I achieved a ranking within the top 10 participants in the regional event held in Bouches-du-Rhône.

But my quest for knowledge extended far beyond the confines of the classroom. In my free time, I delved into the intricate realms of web development and machine learning, driven by a passion to explore the cutting-edge technologies shaping the digital landscape. From unraveling the mysteries of RNNs and LSTMs to diving into the intricacies of word embeddings with word2vec, I embraced each new challenge with zeal and determination.

In the realm of web development, I embarked on a journey of discovery with ReactJS, leveraging my prior experience with AngularJS to make rapid strides in mastering this powerful framework. As I honed my skills, I found myself pushing the boundaries of what was possible, crafting dynamic and immersive web experiences that captivated audiences and pushed the boundaries of innovation.

But my journey wasn't merely one of solitary exploration - it was a voyage of sharing and collaboration. Harnessing the power of the written word, I penned blog posts to share my insights and discoveries with the vibrant community of J2TEAM from Vietnam. Through documentation, explanations, and tutorials, I found a platform to communicate my knowledge and experiences, fostering a spirit of learning and growth that resonated far beyond the confines of academia.

2019: Towards Cybersecurity

As the summer of 2019 dawned, I found myself at a pivotal juncture in my academic and professional journey. Fresh off the heels of completing my first school year at Université d'Aix-Marseille, I was determined to further enrich my skills through real-world experience - a quest that led me to seek out my first internship opportunity.

Navigating the competitive landscape of the job market proved to be a challenge, with recruiters often placing undue emphasis on formal degrees rather than practical experience. Despite the obstacles, I persevered, leveraging my extensive portfolio of side projects to demonstrate my capabilities to potential employers. While many of my peers resorted to part-time jobs unrelated to their fields of study, I remained steadfast in my pursuit of a position aligned with my expertise.

Fortune smiled upon me just days before the deadline, as I secured an internship with Botfuel - a pioneering enterprise specializing in Conversational Marketing platforms. Drawing upon my knowledge of machine learning and web development acquired throughout the year, I proved to be a valuable asset to the team, delivering exceptional results and earning accolades for my productivity and dedication during the three-month internship.

Photo of Botfuel team, taken from my linkedin post

Buoyed by the success of my internship, I embarked on the next chapter of my academic journey, enrolling for my second year at INSA - an esteemed engineering school renowned for its rigorous curriculum and cutting-edge research. At INSA Centre Val de Loire, nestled in the picturesque Centre region of France, I found my home within the Department of Sécurité et Technologies Informatiques - a specialized domain focused on the multifaceted realm of cybersecurity.

2020: Pandemic and New Opportunities

The advent of 2020 brought unprecedented challenges with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. As lockdown measures disrupted daily life and shifted schooling online, I faced a period of isolation, compounded by the intensified academic workload.

Amidst the upheaval, solidarity emerged among friends as we supported each other through the pivotal second year of studies. Despite the hurdles, we persevered, ensuring our academic progress remained on track.

Looking ahead, I seized the opportunity to join an apprenticeship program, leveraging my practical experience to secure a position as a full-stack web developer at Botfuel. Despite the uncertainties wrought by the pandemic, I remained resilient, grateful for the chance to further refine my skills in a professional setting.

In the midst of remote work and social distancing, I also explored new avenues of personal and professional growth. Engaging in open-source contributions with SimpleLogin provided valuable insights into collaborative project development, while nurturing my creativity through photography offered solace amidst the chaos.

2021: Deepening Expertise

In 2021, my journey at Botfuel continued, marked by a relentless pursuit of knowledge and a deep dive into backend development - an area I previously hadn't explored extensively. With each passing day, I accumulated invaluable insights, honing my skills and expanding my expertise in this critical domain.

Amidst my professional commitments, I embarked on numerous side projects that fueled my passion for innovation and exploration. One such endeavor involved hacking a budget-friendly smartwatch, the Amazfit Bip. Collaborating with a vibrant community of developers, I leveraged my expertise to develop new applications based on a primitive yet intriguing API exposed by the firmware. Navigating the complexities of low-level system APIs and the FreeRTOS-based firmware presented unique challenges, but the journey was as exhilarating as it was rewarding.

In my moments of respite, I dedicated time to nurturing my artistic side, channeling my creativity into the creation of an artistic blog. This platform served as a canvas for self-expression, allowing me to share my unique perspective with the world and explore new realms of creativity.

Additionally, I embraced opportunities for social impact, joining the Vietnam Organization for Gender Equality as a freelance graphic designer. Through this role, I contributed my technical expertise to meaningful initiatives, leveraging technology to drive positive change and advocate for gender equality.

2022: Linux - Snowpack - New Beginnings

The year 2022 brought significant changes and challenges, marked by the closure of Botfuel, the company I had called home for some time. As the world navigated the aftermath of the pandemic and grappled with unforeseen events, I found myself embarking on a new chapter in my professional journey.

Fortune smiled upon me once again as I secured a position at Snowpack - a startup specializing in cybersecurity. Joining the team in September 2022, I immersed myself in the world of development systems, leveraging my expertise in C++ to contribute to the company's mission.

Amidst the shifts in my professional life, there were also significant changes on the technical front. With the purchase of my Framework Laptop, I made the decision to transition completely to Linux - a move I had contemplated for some time. While I had previously maintained a hybrid Linux-Windows setup due to software compatibility concerns, the shortcomings of Windows 11 prompted me to embrace Linux as my primary desktop environment.

This transition marked a significant milestone in my technical journey, opening new doors of exploration and possibility. As I navigated the nuances of Linux, I found myself immersed in a world of customization and flexibility, empowering me to tailor my computing experience to suit my needs and preferences.

2023: Professional Growth and Academic Milestones

In 2023, my journey at Snowpack continued to flourish as I excelled in my role, leveraging my expertise to contribute to the company's mission in cybersecurity. Embracing the dynamic nature of my work, I delved deeper into the intricacies of the Linux kernel, exploring concepts such as Docker, Linux namespaces, and SELinux with fervor and enthusiasm. As my responsibilities expanded, I found myself applying my backend development skills to enhance Snowpack's server infrastructure, while also leveraging my frontend expertise to improve the desktop application using cutting-edge technology like Flutter.

Photo of myself at school and on TV:

Amidst my professional endeavors, I reached a significant academic milestone - I graduated from my three-year apprenticeship program, officially becoming a certified engineer. This achievement was accompanied by the honor of being named valedictorian of my cohort, a testament to my dedication and perseverance throughout my academic journey. Additionally, I was selected as the spokesperson for my apprenticeship program, entrusted with delivering a speech at the graduation ceremony - an opportunity I embraced with humility and pride.

As 2023 unfolded, each achievement and milestone served as a testament to my growth and dedication, propelling me forward on my journey of continuous learning and professional excellence. With gratitude in my heart and determination in my spirit, I eagerly embraced the opportunities that lay ahead, ready to make a meaningful impact in the ever-evolving landscape of technology.

This portfolio is coded by Xuan Son NGUYEN, using NextJS and TailwindCSS

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