Three Richmond students have developed an innovative, event-based photo sharing app.
Matt Waxman, Sam Greenspan and Jackson Taylor designed and developed “Remi,” short for reminisce, to “help college students remember their nights,” Greenspan said.
“The more time I spent thinking about it,” Waxman said, “the more I came to see that in reality, reminiscing isn't just a pivotal part of the college experience, but is really part of the human experience. No matter how old you are or what stage in life you are at, we all reminisce.”
Remi allows users to create personalized networks in which they can share photos instantaneously.
Users create an event, complete with a title and description, as if adding an event to a calendar on a smartphone, Greenspan said. The user then specifies the duration of the event. There is no limitation to event durations. Once the event is created, the user sends invitations to select members from their contacts list of their mobile device. Invitees then must check in to participate in the Remi.
Once the event has started, photos can be uploaded or taken with the in-app camera, Greenspan said. The Remi group page acts as a live feed, displaying all the photos uploaded throughout the event. The pictures and videos are exclusive to the attendees of the Remi. Uploaded photos can be liked and commented throughout the event by participants in that particular Remi.
At the conclusion of the event, and when that particular Remi is complete, the app compiles all the uploaded content and creates a 30-second slideshow, Greenspan said.
The slideshow is then saved to the user's Remi account. That individual can easily scroll down their personal feed of memories and either reminisce on a particular event by replaying the Remi video or reopening the group page and individually scrolling through the photos.
All pictures, whether taken by the user or another attendee, can be downloaded from the user’s phone individually or as a complete slideshow.
“It is a really cool way to have something that is an interactive memory from the event …and you can reminisce, or relive it,” Greenspan said.
Remi users will also be encouraged to share their Remi videos on social media platforms such as Facebook, Greenspan said.
Remi also eliminates the task of having to ask someone to send a photo to your phone and hoping they follow through, Greenspan said.
Waxman, Remi co- founder and junior business administration major and leadership minor, said he came up with the idea for Remi when he realized that reminiscing is a fundamental aspect of the college experience. Spending time with friends on the weekends and then sharing stories of their escapades afterward was something he really enjoyed.
Greenspan, Remi co-founder and junior business major, said he has known Waxman since their freshman year. Over the summer of their freshman year, Greenspan received a call from Waxman that started the conversation and brainstorming sessions that led to Remi.
Waxman and Greenspan had no prior programming knowledge or experience, Greenspan said.
Taylor made a serendipitous entrance onto the Remi path, Greenspan said. They happened to cross paths when a friend of Greenspan’s mentioned that Taylor was a programmer. When the time for hiring a programmer came, Waxman and Greenspan knew who to call.
Taylor, Richmond senior and Remi chief technical officer, said he began programming and designing apps when he was 15 years old, and has been freelancing for seven years. He has created about 30 apps throughout the years. His biggest accomplishment is the first app he created, Tutor Pro, a number-one educational app in 26 countries. After graduation he plans to continue his career in programming by starting his own company.
It took Taylor about seven months to develop Remi. He started with the design, then focused on the programming. Waxman and Greenspan had a vision and were very particular, but their lack of knowledge for programming extended the process, Greenspan said. Now, Taylor focuses on fixing bugs and glitches within the program.
The team has grown since, and is now composed of five members, including another co-founder, Waxman’s brother Mitch Waxman, and a designer in Canada, Sean Bowles, Greenspan said.
Remi is projected to launch in the next few months, once the terms and conditions and privacy policies are completed and reviewed by a legal team, Greenspan said. Waxman hopes to have a Beta version of Remi released in October for Richmond students.
Although the Remi code is copyrighted, Greenspan said he hopes to have the Richmond law department assist with the legalities of the app and has a meeting with Ashley Dobbs, director of Richmond intellectual property, in the next few weeks.
In the mean time, Remi is being Beta tested for bugs and glitches, Taylor said. As problems arise, he focuses on fixing them and making the app as perfect as possible in preparation for the launch.
Once Remi is ready to launch, it will be free of charge and Richmond students will be the first to download and give feedback, Greenspan said. Students can then spread the news of the launch.
“Our goal is to have it turn into a staple, sort of like Snapchat is. In the sense that, when you go out, you’ll ask, ‘Did you start the Remi?’" Greenspan said.
Contact reporter Tracee Carter at firstname.lastname@example.org.