Ali Kaafarani

A picture of Ali Kaafarani, modified with Google DeepDream. The picture is dominated by teal, purple and blue colors and has psychedelic undertones. However, it has a smooth appearance and does not seem to produce any immediate pareidolia effect. I am a senior software engineer located in Copenhagen, Denmark. I am a co-founder of Unseen Bio, a fast-growing biotechnology startup specializing in analyzing gut microbiome conditions, bringing users personalized feedback to improve health and wellbeing.

As I worked for some years on the DD-DeCaF research project, we built a unique tool which brings computer-aided design into the realm of metabolic engineering. In an endeavour to bring our cutting-edge research to industry, we participated in the Business Acceleration Academy at the BioInnovation Institute in Copenhagen, resulting in Metabolyzer, which has since joined forces with Unseen Bio.

Previously, I was part of the Norwegian Trekking Association (DNT), an organization promoting mountain hiking in the majestic Norwegian outdoors. I was a system architect and core contributor to a number of their open source projects.

Other open source projects I have contributed to include COBRApy and memote, a genome-scale metabolic model test suite published in Nature Biotechnology. A presentation of my modest career in academia is available on ORCID.

Some of my life-long passions include snowboarding, splitboarding, cross-country skiing and mountain hiking. It's not all outdoors and adrenaline though; I try to make time to read books, and have accumulated a short list of favorites. Additionally, I've loved playing video games since I was 5 years old, and at this point, I don't think I will ever outgrow them.

Did you know that there exists galaxies we can see, but never interact with because they're receding from us faster than light? No signal we send can ever reach them. If some of them harbor life, it is physically impossible for us to ever interact with those lifeforms. They're on their own, and so are we. Yeah, stop and consider that for a moment. Now let's solve FTL travel!