A Closer Look @Sydney, One of the Creators of Pencil
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jmseeleyCommunity member
Autoplay OFF  •  a year ago

A Closer Look @Sydney, One of the Creators of Pencil

by jmseeley

For my first post Pencil, I wanted to interview Sydney

As one of the creators, I’ve seen lots of interviews Sydney has conducted and written, but thought it was about time that the community learned more about him (outside of his ‘About Me’ post)

How did I get in touch with Sydney?

I first met Sydney during my Sophomore year at University; in fact, he helped me get my first internship in the healthcare industry through his first startup TalentTrail

It all started with TalentTrail

TalentTrail, a platform that connected employers with employees, aimed to redefine the recruiting process for students

It was a great experience, but he decided on a new direction

After noticing that TalentTrail’s value prop, the matching process, diminished with scale, Sydney and his partner, Ryan Choi, decided to play around with a new idea. After awhile… Pencil was born

Always trying to solve problems, Sydney kept working

After experimenting with a couple of different ideas, Pencil, which started as a side project, became exactly the project he was looking for.

Pencil is a solution to the ‘old’ way of writing blog posts

By combining concise text with rich graphics and pictures, Pencil aims to convey more by saying less. And it’s working.

But how does it work?

Sydney believes that the key to Pencil, or any website, revolves around the community that it serves. He, therefore, aim to continue planning updates and features that focus on serving its users

And it's because of that mentality, that Pencil is growing

Not too long ago, Pencil was featured on Product Hunt, a website that lets users share new products for others to discover. After being successfully hunted, Pencil grew substantially.

And it still is.

Thanks to a bunch of users committed to producing quality, consistent content. I’m looking at you @jeremiah, @lelper, @geeky_yang, and many more.

The community deserves some props

But of course, even more props has to go to @Sydney and his partner Ryan, who continue to put in tremendous amounts of work to keep the site in its best working condition, for users like us.

What led Syndey here?

With a father who specialized in pathology, and a mom who worked as a medical technician, Sydney surreptitiously escaped the field of health… right down the street to tech

Growing up with chess

As seen in his "About Sydney" post, he started building communities back when he was young; working with a lot of people engaged in the chess community

He kept moving, and kept growing the communities he loved

Extending his experiences with working with chess organizations into many other facets of his life

It's led him to where he is today

Between creating TalentTrail, a community of people looking for employment, and Pencil, a community of people looking to share their experiences, it’s clear that we’re in great hands

We're looking forward to the next chapter

Thanks for helping empower us to tell our stories, chapter by chapter, in ways we weren’t able to before; don’t change, Sydney

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sydneyVerifiedco-creator of Commaful
a year agoReply
awww @lilianchen <3 now you get to teach me about social ;) :D

a year agoReply
A memorable experience I had with @sydney : Before I submitted my application to my first social media marketing position, Sydney made time from his busy schedule and spent an hour on the phone with me. He told me everything he knew about social media, which I applied (i.e. pretty much reiterated for a huge part of it) his knowledge and my application stood out. I got into a competitive social media advisory group because of him, and I think he deserves a shoutout! :)

a year agoReply
Awe thanks! This is an awesome story!

sydneyVerifiedco-creator of Commaful
a year agoReply
@jmseeley Ha! Great to finally read this. Thanks a bunch for doing the story man. I'm going to watch the video you made this weekend as we prep a bunch more of our next product changes! You're the man!!! @rch and others have been pumping hard to make this work! Awesome that you mentioned @jeremiah, @lelper, @geeky_yang and others, but we've got a huge group of people who have been amazing, including @jaswinderbrar and too many to name. Will make a post thanking some more people later.

a year agoReply
This was great.. Really makes me appreciate Pencil much more than I already did.. Good job guys @sydney & @jmseeley! Thanks!