Ilya Boyandin

Web and Data Visualization Software Engineer


PhD in Computer Science, University of Fribourg, 2013
Thesis title: Visualization of Temporal Origin-Destination Data
Supervised by: Enrico Bertini, Denis Lalanne
Summary:Carried out an in-depth study of temporal origin-destination data which can represent movement of people, energy, material, etc between locations in geographic space. Developed Flowstrates, a novel approach for visualizing and exploring temporal origin-destination data. Carried out a qualitative user study comparing animated and small-multiple representations of changes in flow maps.
MSc Computer Science, St. Petersburg State University, 2003
Thesis title: Statistical Query Transformations for Question Answering in the Web
Supervised by: Igor Nekrestyanov
Summary:Developed an improvement for a state-of-the-art machine learning approach transforming natural language questions into search engine queries achieving a better quality of question answering.


Staff Software Engineer, Maps and Data Visualization, Foursquare (remote) – since July 2021
  • Working on Foursquare Studio. Responsible for implementing various geospatial visualization features: 3d animated trip layer, flow layer for mobility visualization, time scale synchronization for multi-dataset animations, swipe mode, editable rich text map annotations, JSON config editor, draggable legend, map scale widget, etc.
  • Contributed to the development of the Foursquare Map SDK (both JavaScript and Python versions) allowing developers to embed map visualizations in third-party apps and interactive Python notebooks.
  • Pilot implementation of SQL notebooks with map visualizations of the query results.
  • Developed the Paris Olympics Places app showcasing various APIs and Map SDK features.

Founder, GeoVisually, Zurich – since November 2020

Founding Engineer, Unfolded, San Francisco (remote) – January 2021 - May 2021
  • Helping to build the Unfolded Studio, the next generation geospatial analytics platform. The company Unfolded was later acquired by Foursquare.

Staff Software Engineer, Front End and Data Visualization, Teralytics, Zurich – February 2015 - December 2020
  • Designed and developed exploratory data visualization tools for the analysis of people mobility in various cities/countries around the world.
  • Designed and developed interactive dashboards and data visualizations for real-time transportation network monitoring, incident analysis, transportation planning in Singapore.
  • Devised a system architecture for scalable OD-data visualization to support interactive data analysis across billions of rows.
  • Technical and strategic leadership in a team of several developers.
  • Published, an open-source library for drawing flow lines representing movement on geographic maps in WebGL.
  • Developed FlowmapBlue, an open-source tool for geographic flow map visualization from spreadsheets published in Google Sheets.
  • Developed a series of interactive maps showing the effect the lock-down had on mobility which were published in La Repubblica, Forbes, Daily Mail, Bild, Osnabrücker Zeitung.

Data Visualization Engineer, Interactive Things, Zurich – June 2013 - January 2015

PhD Student, Assistant, University of Fribourg – April 2009 - May 2013
  • Developed JFlowMap, an experimental tool for the visualization of spatial interactions.
  • Developed web-based visualizations of AidData (financial aid given to developing countries).
  • Contributed to the BirdEye visualization library developed at the UN Centre for Advanced Visual Analytics.
  • Assisted in courses on Web technologies and Functional programming. Tutoring, giving occasional lectures, preparing materials, building supporting websites and utilities.
  • Tutoring in workshops on programming and computer graphics for students and school children.

Senior Software Engineer, Technical Team Lead, IT Department, University of Applied Sciences FH Joanneum, Graz – March 2007 - April 2009
  • Developed web applications used by the students, lecturers and employees of the university for the online administration.
  • Maintained the web and database server infrastructure for the online administration.
  • Designed and developed a web application for collaborative data collection and consolidation to provide a statistical overview of study- and research-relevant indicators.

Software Engineer/Research Assistant, Dept of Information Design, University of Applied Sciences FH Joanneum, Graz – September 2005 - March 2007
  • Designed and developed CGVis, a visualization tool facilitating hierarchical clustering, zooming and animation for the exploration of multidimensional datasets.
  • Designed and developed a standalone and a web version of a proteomic data classification tool implementing a cancer diagnosis method based on mass-spectrometry data facilitating multi-step feature reduction and SVM classification.The tool achieves 99% classification accuracy on the NCI Cancer SELDI-TOF study dataset.
  • Participated in the development of a presentation management tool for the information screens installed at the university. Developed the visual layout editor for arranging multimedia objects on the screen and the schedule editor similar to calendar in Outlook.
  • Improved the implementation of an algorithm detecting the behavior type of a user looking at a web page based on the real-time eye-tracking data.

Software Engineer, Ecofinance Finanzsoftware & Consulting GmbH, Graz – June 2004 - August 2005
  • Participated in the development of a web based treasury system for Deutsche Bahn and Commerzbank.
  • Implemented the Java infrastructure and XSLT stylesheets for the runtime generation of the front end UI code from XML sources.
  • Evaluated and optimized the performance of the XSL transformations.
  • Implemented support for long running jobs on the server-side of the system.
  • Developed the context-sensitive help for the system and the help authoring infrastructure based on DocBook.

Software Engineer, Elbrus MCST (by contract with Sun Microsystems), St. Petersburg – August 2003 - May 2004
  • Worked in the Sun's Java Swing UI library maintenance team. Was responsible for fixing bugs and implementing requests for enhancements in the button classes (JButton, JRadioButton, JCheckBox, etc). Fixed a total of about 50 bugs in the Sun JDK.

Software Engineer, Aloha, St. Petersburg – January 2001 - July 2003 (during studies)
  • Designed and developed a web based e-commerce system withorder tracking, credit card processing, back-office, inventory, statistical reports, etc. Developed the whole system from scratch, supported and customized it adapting it to changing requirements. The system is still in use on several e-commerce websites.

Web Developer, ALife, St. Petersburg – March 2000 - January 2001 (during studies)
  • Participated in the development of a system of intelligent agents capable of chatting to visitors of a website in a natural language and promoting its products. Implemented a highly dynamic web-interface for the subsystem that controlled the chats and let operators intervene in a chat if a bot was in trouble.

Teacher, Anichkov Lyceum, St. Petersburg – September 1998 - April 2000 (during studies)
  • Taught school children programming.

Computer Skills

Languages: TypeScript/JavaScript, Java, Python, Clojure, Scala, C
Web: React, Node.js, Next.js, SVG, Canvas, WebGL
Visualization: D3, Tableau
Geo:, Mapbox GL JS, PostGIS, QGIS
Databases: PostgreSQL, MySQL, DuckDB, BigQuery, ClickHouse, SQL Server, Redis
UI Design: Figma, Sketch, Photoshop

Public Speaking


  • Hands-on Visualization of Geographic Movement: How to make an interactive flow map at DataFest, Tbilisi, 2019
  • Robotics/Programming for kids with LEGO boost robot at Freie Schule Bergmeilen, 2018
  • UI development with Reagent in ClojureScript at Clojure Meetup in Zurich, 2014
  • Women in science: Drawing with computer for schoolgirls at University of Fribourg, 2011 and 2012
  • Programming and computer graphics for kids at Kantonsschule Solothurn, 2012 and Gymnasium Brig, 2011


Visualizing mobility data: the scalability challenge, Ilya Boyandin. Medium, Dec 2019.

Flowstrates: An Approach for Visual Exploration of Temporal Origin-Destination Data, Ilya Boyandin, Enrico Bertini, Peter Bak, Denis Lalanne. Computer Graphics Forum, International Journal of the Eurographics Association, Eurographics/IEEE-VGTC Symposium on Visualization, Bergen, Norway, June 2011.

A Qualitative Study on the Exploration of Temporal Changes in Flow Maps with Animation and Small-Multiples, Ilya Boyandin, Enrico Bertini, Denis Lalanne. Computer Graphics Forum, International Journal of the Eurographics Association, Eurographics/IEEE-VGTC Symposium on Visualization, Vienna, June 2012.

Using Flow Maps to Explore Migrations Over Time, Ilya Boyandin, Enrico Bertini, Denis Lalanne. Workshop in Geospatial Visual Analytics: Focus on Time, GeoVA(t), Guimarães, Portugal, May 2010.

Statistical Query Transformations for Question Answering in the Web, Ilya Boyandin, Igor Nekrestyanov. Conference on Digital Libraries (RCDL'2003), St. Petersburg, October 2003.

Visualization of Temporal Origin-Destination Data, PhD thesis, University of Fribourg, March 2013.


Other Activities