Bram van den Heuvel Curriculum vitae E-mail GitHub LinkedIn 8 January 1999 Diemen, The Netherlands

About Me

Hey there! My name is Bram, and I'm a Dutch mathematics student who loves to do fun and interesting projects in his free time. On this website, you can see all about my interests, and you can follow my blog to stay updated about all the new things.

One of my most popular sites is my Rickroll Generator. Here's a live report of how many people have been rickrolled by this website as of now:

950,756 rickrolled victims

Achievement

TNW, here I come!

I am happy to share that I have been awarded membership to the T500, the group that recognizes the 500 most ambitious people under the age of 26 in the Netherlands who showed outstanding accomplishments in the digital world.

T500 Membership

I can't wait to attend the TNW 2021 Conference, where influential speakers like Emily Weiss, Cal Henderson and Larry Sanger will discuss the future of tech.

If you're going to be at the TNW Conference as well and you'd like to organise a meetup, you can contact me on my e-mail address.

Opinion

Dear politicians of the EU, it's time to decentralize the internet

It does not happen often that one buys over 6kg of tomato cans to express their opinion, but this is what happened to me. And no, I did not buy the tomatoes with the intent to throw them at someone. Instead, the cans were necessary for a demonstration of a decentralised communication network. In this article, I will explain to you what that is and why you should care.



What is that, decentralization?

Last January, I received a Whatsapp message in a group chat on Whatsapp from one of my friends, Sarah. She told us that she was going to leave Whatsapp, and asked whether we would all be down (25 people) to migrate the group chat to Signal, a messaging app that became commonly known for its encrypted messaging and for being a "good alternative to Whatsapp".

To be honest, I was personally slightly annoyed by this. I already have Whatsapp, Slack, Discord, MS Teams, Gmail, Snapchat, Telegram and other messaging apps installed, and the last thing that I'm looking for, is installing another app onto my phone. In an ideal world, I'd have one app, perhaps two, and take care of all my communications through that one or two apps.

At the same time I didn't want to lose contact with Sarah, so I was at an impasse here: do I want to lose digital contact with Sarah, or do I install yet another messaging app on my phone? I thought to myself, I wished that I could use my Whatsapp account and talk to my friend on Signal.

How great would it be if it didn't matter which app you used to talk to your relatives?

I discussed this topic with some relatives of mine, and then the concept of a decentralised communication protocol came up, which caught my attention.

The rise of Matrix

Apparently, there is this organisation called Matrix that has defined a decentralised communcation protocol. The concept of their protocol is that it allows for decentralised, interoperable communication. [1] What that means? It means that I can use any app of choice, you can use any (other) app of choice, and we can still talk to each other on our respective apps!

Or, that's what interoperability means: being able to talk to each other from different apps. Decentralisation means that you don't rely on any company for your conversation with your relative. No-one but you and your conversation partner choose how you communicate.

Website

Markdown Update: I will now use this as a blog

Even though this website was set up to be a personal blogging website, I noticed in the year 2020 that I never actually used it - instead, I mostly resorted to making posts on Reddit and sharing a link to that page. And especially since this website is also meant as a portfolio of my personal achievements, I thought that that was kinda odd.

Recently, I was inspired by the website of a friend of mine, who used a neat Python framework combined with Markdown. The server was extremely light and could easily handle thousands of requests per second, (or something, I don't remember the exact numbers) and it was surprisingly simple. So I decided to make my own version of it.

And here we are! Posts on my homepage can now get much longer: I built a way to view individual posts, and that way I can write super long articles without the older blog posts disappearing.

Why did I built it now, and not two months ago when I actually saw my friend's website? Well, that has to do with the next video that I'm working on: for Noordstar Q1 2020, there's going to be a LOT of information that I'd like to share, but I won't have time to put everything in my YouTube video.

Therefore, I will share any relevant details in a blog post like this one, for all the world to see! I hope you'll enjoy the next post. 🙂

Internet Meme

I built a Wilbur Soot Generator

If you've heard of Wilbur Soot, you may have heard of his fans' joke to replace the last part of his digital name by something that rhymes: Wilbur Foot, Wilbur Scoot, Wilbur Flute or Wilbur Doot. Today, I built a generator that shows a random image of this meme type!

There's not that much ingenuity involved, I just thought it'd be funny to make this. Have fun with it!

You can visit the Wilbur Generator here.


Internet Meme

I built a Rickroll Generator

Have your plans too been foiled several times by rich previews that give away that you're secretly trying to rickroll someone? Well, not anymore!

The rickroll generator lets you build a fake rich preview to fool even the Discord users! Feel free to give it a try.


Bachelor thesis

Noordstar Q2 2020: Bachelor thesis

In the last three months, I have spent most of my time working on my bachelor thesis! Now that it is finally finished, I happily present it to you. Unfortunately, it is very information theoretical stuff, so to make it up to people with a less scientific background, I have made a YouTube video about it.

Alternatively, you can read my actual thesis. Its last version is written in Dutch, but if you contact me through e-mail or Discord, we can talk about alternatives, including the option to have the document translated.

You can find the final version of my bachelor thesis here:

Pseudorandomness on Markov chains.pdf

At the bottom here, you'll find some other links that'll direct you to other sources and places to find more information. Feel free to check them out.


Bachelor thesis

Version 1 of my bachelor thesis is out!

Since the beginning of January, I have been working on my bachelor thesis, an analysis of pseudorandomness on Markov chains. The thesis was inspired by the D&D Town Generator that I built for Noordstar Q1 2020.

The article considers a compression algorithm based on pseudorandomness by encoding messages in a Markov chain and finding a pseudorandom algorithm that walks the correct path on said Markov chain.

Bachelorthesis BramvdnHeuvel versie 1.pdf

This article is currently only available in Dutch. If you wish to read an English version of the article, please send me an e-mail at bachelorthesis@bram.blmgroep.nl, and I will write an English version of the thesis if requested.


Website

Noordstar Legacy Q1 2020

In the last three months, I have been building a D&D Town Generator! The generator is using pseudorandomness to "store" every town, which means that the server can store an arbitrary amount of data - even though it's still memoryless!

In the video below, I give you a short demonstration of how the website works. Additionally, I give a brief explanation of how I built the website.

You can view the website here.