Spencer Yen

Hey there - I'm currently a student at Columbia University studying CS and something else interesting I'll eventually decide on. I grew up in the Bay Area, and as a result was exposed to the tech scene pretty early. I'd always thought it was super cool to come up with an idea and just make it. Throughout high school I worked on a bunch of iOS apps, got lucky and worked at a couple cool companies, and also organized the world's largest high school hackathon. Now I'm just trying to learn more about the world, work on impactful projects, and do fun things.


 •  DoorDash/KPCB Engineering Fellow (2017) - worked on iOS and Android development for the Alcohol team

 •  superlabs (Acquired by Zynga, 2015) - helped build Draw Something for Messenger on iOS from scratch

 •  Ever (2014) - learned how a real startup operated and worked on location based photo search on iOS

 •  FWD.us (2014) - worked on social sharing features on the Selfies4Reform app


 •  Selfie Activism (2017) - an app to send selfies and opinions to your representatives. Won Columbia's hackathon, learned a lot about the civic tech space, and realized this was the wrong approach.

 •  Flutter (2016) - an attempt at yet another college social app. Started off as an events discovery app, threw a couple launch parties during orientation, did Columbia's startup accelerator, changed the app to a location sharing app and then to a GIF sharing app. Social is a weird space.

 •  Eternal (2016) - a flashcard app that uses GIFs and the memory palace technique. I wrote about it, and someone else also wrote about it. Apple featured it in the UK too.

 •  Team Roots (2015) - around my junior year, mental health became a big topic of discussion in my community. A few friends and I wanted to lower the barrier to entry to get help by starting an anonymous online counseling platform for students.

 •  Yo From (2014) - in which Aakash Thumaty and I made a joke app and got a tiny feature in TechCrunch.


 •  From the Free Range Childhood to the Pre-Professional Adolescence

 •  In the Information Age, Imagine There’s No Heaven, No Countries, No Possessions

 •  The Cusp of a New Era in Human History: Human Gene Editing with CRISPR-Cas9

 •  How I Built an App to Remember What I Learn in High School

 •  Delusional Obedience: The Checklist Childhood


 •  Time Out or Burn Out for the Next Generation

 •  When Breath Becomes Air - Paul Kalanathi

 •  What Makes Us Happy

 •  Poor Charlie's Almanack

 •  The Organization Kid

 •  Good Old Neon - David Foster Wallace


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 •  Twitter

 •  Resume