Hi, my name is

Stefan Hong

.

Nowadays, computers come in all shapes and sizes.

We have a lot of them. One in every room. Perhaps some more in the pockets.

However, the more computers we have, the more inconvenient they become.

Our files, and the apps that understand the files, oftentimes are not in the computer where we need them.


Use web apps and online storage, you say?

No. Web apps suck. I am not fond of putting files in strangers' computers either.


I like to keep my stuffs in my computers, and use native apps.

But as a result, my stuffs are all over the place, in different computers. Messy.


I want to change that.

This is my journey.
Long time ago,
I was an engineer at Excite@Home.
Good time.

entrepreneurship

I created an online pet supplies store petism.net back in 2002, for my wife. She loves pets, so I built the site to be her playground.

It started as a fun project written in 3 months. To both of our surprise, the business keeps growing ever since.

research

Back then, when I have time, I kept experimenting different ways of building web/network applications. I didn't like any of them. I believe it can be much simpler.

Finally, I came up with the idea of a new network protocol.

entrepreneurship

Acer had funded me to build a storage service with my new protocol. It is kind of like a "personal network neighborhood", in which you can access all your devices in one place regardless how they are connected.

I managed to make it work, but only just. The protocol is quite difficult to handle, which results in poor performance.

I had to either ditch the protocol to make the product work, or ditch the product to make the protocol better. I chose the latter, partly because Acer showed little interest in the product, and partly because I believe that the protocol, if done right, can profoundly change the world.

research

I collaborated with Prof. Joung and 4 of his graduate students to explore ideas about the protocol's design.

I started to realize that the simplicity I was looking for can only be achieved by a new programming language. The language compiler needs to understand the protocol.

entrepreneurship

A few years ago, petism.net had grown to the point that it makes more sense to have our own warehouse, so that's what we did. I wrote an ERP system from scratch to manage inventory. We also hire full time employees to do shipping and handling.

The company is much more profitable after this change.

research

I started my PhD program at National Taiwan University in 2009. Naturally, Prof. Joung became my advisor.

During my PhD, I took the plunge to create my own programming language, and successfully built a proof-of-concept compiler and a runtime system. Seeing something that I envisioned for so long coming to life is very satisfying. I am proud of it.

My papers on the language and the protocol have been accepted by an ACM conference and an IEEE conference, respectively. Both will be held in 2013. Hopefully they will arouse some interests. I have also filed a US patent for my final design.

SAC'13, Portugal

AINA'13, Spain

entrepreneurship

Now I shifted my focus back to the storage service that I tried to build long time ago. Because, surprisingly, I still cannot do that today. Although such products exist, they all look ugly and are awful to use. I can do better.

I hacked together a quick prototype last year. Since it was 2012, I wrote it in Javascript and HTML5. The whole thing works inside a web browser.

I soon realized that I don't like it. Files can't be opened by a native app is a major drawback. Moreover, browsing files by computer names feels so last century. There must be a better way. So I threw the whole thing away. Again.

entrepreneurship

During the second half of 2012, I was frantically searching for THE better way, and I have found it. I came up with a new design radically different from my previous attempts. It works brilliantly.

I call it Tildespace. I built a prototype in Spring 2013, and rewrote the whole thing a few times throughout the year until it is finally good enough for real use. It is in a private testing stage now, and only my classmates and close friends get to try it. I am planning to make it available to everyone in 2014.

I love it. You will love it too. Stay tuned.
Contact Me
Stefan Hong

Stefan Hong

洪振超

Email: stefan.hong@gmail.com

Facebook: stefan.hong

Twitter: @stefanhong