Digital tablets are no longer new or even expensive, but most of us still struggle to input our technical ideas (such as equations and diagrams) into a computer as easily as we write them on paper. I will discuss relevant existing technology and present scratchworktool.com, a tool designed to help simplify the digital writing process even without a tablet. I will also cover some of the important decisions and mistakes I made especially as I started building it. I hope these lessons will be helpful for anyone who is (or may eventually be) interested in developing similarly sophisticated products to solve a consumer-facing problem.
John Stogin is a mathematician and computer enthusiast. As a PhD student at Princeton, he studied partial differential equations arising from Einstein's theory of Black Holes and started scratchworktool.com as a side project to help with his studies. He earned his PhD in mathematics at Princeton in 2017 and also has a Master's degree from the University of Cambridge and a Bachelor's degree from Princeton. He currently works as a quantitative technologist at Radix Trading and continues to develop scratchworktool.com with his cofounders.