From Developer to Entrepreneur
From Developer to Entrepreneur
  • Park Won-bin (CiTE 18)
  • 승인 2020.11.27 14:56
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I was the club president of PoApper from last year until this summer. PoApper is a club that acts as a developer network in POSTECH where people who share an interest in software development can join to participate in seminars or projects. As POSTECH’s only software development club, we also received lots of outsourcings. Most of the time, orders were small and simple: a website for the POSTECH-KAIST Science War, a game for freshmen orientation, etc. As time passed, we received requests for larger and more complex projects. However, more often than not, those requests ended up being canceled due to limitations rooting from our status as a “student club”. Just this January, we received a call from POSCO; the job ended up going to another company because of legal limitations and the fact that we could not “prove” that we had the necessary skills.
Early this April, I got a call from POSTECH Food Services (FS). They wanted to create a mobile solution for purchasing and using lunch tickets. This time, the plan was approved by the president and we started working on it. However, late in June, the project was eventually stalled for security and maintenance reasons. Of course. But thankfully, the head of FS gave us another chance: “Why don’t you try creating a start-up? I can then see you again when you are confident about the stability of your product…”
To be honest, I did have some thoughts on becoming an entrepreneur, and this seemed like the perfect chance. The head of FS introduced me to the head of the POSTECH Student Entrepreneurship Team. Fortunately, at that time, the Innopolis Campus Project for POSTECH Pre-Entrepreneurs was underway; we immediately applied for it, and just like that, PoApper Inc. became a legal entity and a company in September. I was no longer a president of a club, but the CEO of a company. An update: the request from FS is now transforming into a nation-wide project. We wish to launch this service to our school and neighboring regions soon.
Last but not least, I want to share a fun drama that I recently watched; Start-Up (2020) on Netflix. The show is about the beginning (Start) and development (Up) of youths who wish to succeed in Korea’s Silicon Valley. I was intrigued by the origin of the name “Sandbox”, a company that helps pre-entrepreneurs. The name came from a story that the father of Seo Dal-mi told Yoon Sun-hak, an executive of SH Venture Capital. “I wish that this floor was made out of sand, not concrete. Then I would do business as much as I wanted to. Long ago, my daughter bruised her knees while riding a swing. While her mother yelled at her to never ride that swing again, my daughter told me: put some sand under that swing. After we installed a sandbox, children now enjoy riding the swing. If this floor was soft as sand, I would enjoy doing business too… But right now, it is more rigid and scary.” The company “Sandbox” that Yoon Sun-hak later founded, now features a girl on a swing in its logo.
I was inspired by this story. I wish PoApper Inc. would become a sandbox for developers. Every developer would know—it is not easy to keep up with the costs of servers, developer accounts, tools, etc. We want to solve that problem and give developers a burdenless environment to focus on their work. We want to fulfill the role of “POSTECH Developer Network” by providing a platform for start-ups as well. We want to spread this development culture in POSTECH. I hope to one day invite you Postechians to our very own sandbox.


Park Won-bin (CiTE 18)