Meet the Skritter Team


#1

Name: Jake Gill/ 高健
Title: Director
Bio: Managing the Skritter team and helping teachers bring Skritter into classrooms worldwide.

Language Learning Background: I’ve been studying Chinese for a little less than a decade. I earned a minor in Chinese from UW-Milwaukee after 5 years (and 56 credits) worth of language classes. During undergrad I spent two semesters in Taipei, Taiwan and one in Beijing, China. After graduation I returned to China for a six-week K-12 Chinese teacher training program before spending another two years at National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) completing my master’s coursework in Teaching Chinese as a Second Language (TCSL) and working as a distance-learning language teacher. I still study Chinese in my free time and I’m also working on improving my (very limited) Cantonese.

Extra: Apart from work you’ll most likely find me enjoying sci-fi novels, riding my bike, and working on amassing a giant collection of Magic: the Gathering cards (in Chinese of course)!


#2

Name: Jeremy Arns / ジェレミー・アンズ
Title: Japanese “Guru”
Bio: I help manage the dictionaries, Japanese blogging, hanzi/kanji character database, feedback, and some light development projects

Language Learning Background: I’ve been learning Japanese for roughly a decade, though oddly I’ve only been in Japan stuck in an airport unable to leave on a layover.

Extra: My favorite pastime and profession is Japanese-English translation. Besides that, I enjoy making music (listening is great too!), coding, gaming, botany, good people, Japanese food, long walks on the beach (just kidding, though there’s nothing wrong with that). I once built a tiny house and lived in it for a year with my fiance, but just recently sold it, and now want to build another one, someday!


#3

Name: Scott Erickson
Title: Cofounder, Programmer, Treasurer, Cook
Bio: I, along with Nick Winter and George Saines, started Skritter in 2008 when we were fresh out of college. I’m currently working on a variety of projects, including assisting Josh, Jake and Jeremy with some major projects this year, including setting up this very forum.

Language Learning Background: I’ve picked up bits and pieces of Japanese, French, Swedish and Spanish in my life, but my languages of learning tend to be the programming kind.

Extra: I live in Berkeley, California, and when I’m not programming I’m going for walks, reading, meditating, exercising, cooking and hosting gatherings for friends. I once spent a year living in different cities across the US, particularly Savannah GA, Austin TX, Oakland CA and Portland OR. I’m considered the “reasonable one” amongst my cofounders.


#4

Name: Olle Linge / 凌雲龍
Title: Chinese "guru"
Bio: I manage our blog, newsletter and social media channels, as well as various projects related to language learning. I’m also responsible for our Chinese support.

Language Learning Background: I started learning Mandarin in 2007 and have since spent four years in Taiwan, whereof two at the Teaching Chinese as a Second Language master’s degree program at National Taiwan Normal University. Before that, I graduated from a five-year teacher program, qualifying me to teach both Mandarin and English. Apart from Swedish, English and Mandarin, I have also studied French for many years.

Extra: I write about how to learn Chinese over at Hacking Chinese. I’m also interested in many other things, including writing (articles, fiction, games), sports (gymnastics,unicycling, diving) and games (role-playing, boardgames, Rubik’s cube).


#5

Name: Joshua McFarland
Title: Programmer
Bio: I started working on the Skritter HTML5 project back in mid-2013 which now fuels Android and hopefully allows us to expand to more clients in the future.

Language Learning Background: I spent some time dabbling in Japanese, but was ultimately fascinated by characters so ended up focusing on Chinese writing. I’m entirely self-taught and started building my foundation using the first Heisig book.

Extra: I spent a little more than three years living in China and half a year in Japan. Other than way too much programming I try to stay active in the music community by playing my trumpet and enjoy taking weekend bike trips when the weather permits it.


#8

#9

Name: Michael Prokopchuk / 柏麥可
Title: Developer
Bio: I joined the Skritter team in March 2016 and work alongside Josh and the rest of the team to write the code for the latest Skritter features.

Language Learning Background: I mostly studied Russian in college with some classes in Chinese and linguistics thrown in too. I’ll be attending National Taiwan Normal University later this year to improve my Mandarin. I’ve informally studied Japanese a bit, but hope to change that with a longer trip to Japan in the future. Over the years I’ve tutored foreign students and refugees in English, and earned TEFL certification in 2014.

Extra: I like to play violin and other stringed instruments. I used to be involved in several groups in the Michigan music scene, but since moving to join the Skritter team, I’ve started to work on my own material. Additionally, I enjoy reading a good book, drinking coffee as a hobby, playing board games, and getting into biking.