Inside Evernote: Garrett Larson

Posted by Alexei Rodriguez on 13 Feb 2015

Posted by Alexei Rodriguez on 13 Feb 2015

What is your role at Evernote?

I’m the lead developer on Penultimate.

How did you get there? i.e. What is your background?

I graduated from Carnegie Mellon with a degree in discrete math, then went to UNC to study image processing and analysis. I spent my spare time at school learning iOS development and joined Evernote as a mobile developer in late 2011. I’ve worked on several projects here, including Evernote Food and the Evernote iOS client. I joined the Penultimate team early last year.

Who has been your biggest mentor?

I wouldn’t say I’ve had a single mentor at Evernote. The company is full of smart and motivated people who are excited to share what they’ve learned and talk about what they’ve built.

Can you describe a few of the Evernote features you are working on now and/or you have helped build in the past?

I helped build the camera in the Evernote app and am now working to improve handwriting in Penultimate.

What are the big challenges?

Many of the challenges we face at Evernote relate to scale. Our solutions need to be efficient enough to scale to millions of active users, and it’s very challenging to make sure changes and refinements don’t break those users’ existing workflows. Additionally, solutions need to be robust enough to handle corner cases; even if an issue only affects 1% of users, that’s still tens of thousands of people who depend on us.

What is the most satisfying part of your job?

People love Evernote, and it’s really rewarding to hear them say how it’s made a difference in their lives.

What is your favorite Evernote feature? How do you use Evernote?

I love the search suggestions in the Mac client; the AI team is doing a really impressive job making search more natural and responsive. We use Evernote constantly at work to communicate and share designs. I also use it for code snippets, to-do lists, and recipes.

If you could only use 3 adjectives to describe Evernote’s culture what would they be?

Motivated, courteous, caffeinated*.

*We have a coffee bar with a professional espresso machine, and employees can sign up for barista shifts. It’s a fun way to get to know people that you don’t directly work with.

What is the best part about working for Evernote?

It’s great working with so many smart people who care deeply about the product. Also, the food is excellent.

Evernote Developer: GarrettLarson

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