With over 14,000 downloads in less than a year, Georgetown alumnus Ethan Diamond’s (COL ’09) iPhone app, MyFaceWhen, has exceeded his expectations.
Inspired by his time as a computer science major at Georgetown, Diamond and business partner Rodney Curl co-created the app, which allows users to create and share animated images in a graphics interchange format through iMessage, email and Twitter.
The app, which costs $0.99, was launched last May. Users can record a video, convert it into a high-resolution GIF and use it in iMessage in a manner similar to an emoticon. The app lets users browse and import hundreds of GIFs from reddit.com to share with friends and family.
Diamond said that MyFaceWhen enhances the social media network because it allows users to communicate and express themselves in innovative ways.
“Why write ‘Oops’ when you can post a picture of Will Arnett’s ‘I’ve made a huge mistake’ face from ‘Arrested Development?’” Diamond said.
Diamond became interested in computer science while completing his undergraduate degree at Georgetown and began working at startup technology companies after graduating.
“There’s no way I’d be here doing this if I hadn’t taken that computer science class sophomore year. I’m the type of person who loves logic problems and riddles,” Diamond said. “I took it to fulfill one of my math requirements, but by the time I graduated, I knew it’s what I wanted to do.”
According to Diamond, inspiration for the app was a collaborative effort.
“Rodney sent me various animated GIFs throughout the day,” he said. “We combined his habit of working them into the texting conversation with my idea of using the iPhone to create them.”
Diamond said developing the app was a relaxed process, but busy work schedules made it difficult.
Diamond said he hopes to improve the app by making a website, like Facebook and Tumblr, where people publicly can share and view each other’s GIFs.
“It’s been a crazy ride, but it’s a great project to work on,” Diamond said. “There are so many different roads we can take. We have a long ways to go, but MyFaceWhen will only get better.