Nick Winter: Founder/hacker at CodeCombat and Skritter.
CodeCombat is a multiplayer programming game for learning how to code. With thousands of schools and millions of students, the company is bringing K12 computer science education to everyone, regardless of gender, race, or background. They believe that everyone should have the opportunity to learn.
The ultimate goal of CodeCombat is to bring more users into the field of computer programming by making the logic and syntax more accessible and enjoyable to learn. The end game is to educate a whole new generation of computer programmers that started their journey by slaying ogres and defending their castles from oncoming enemy hordes.
Who is Nick Winter?
Some people might know Nick Winter as the author of the book, The Motivation Hacker. Having attended Oberon College, Nick was the co-founder of Skritter in 2008, the number one app for learning Chinese and Japanese characters. Nick’s inspiration came from hanging out with a friend at 3 am who was playing a Nintendo DS game called “Trauma Center: Under the Knife”. Players used a stylus to draw incisions on the screen. Now, if only that kind of writing could be applied to learning Chinese characters.
For ten years, Nick developed a Chinese specific space repetition learning algorithm and a stroke level handwriting recognition system to make Chinese as easy to learn as Spanish. His passion for coding and language lead to him co founding CodeCombat in 2013 to give learners the feeling of wizardly power at their fingertips by using typed code and real programming languages.
After starting CodeCombat, Nick has shifted his focus to CodeCombat and has left Skritter in the hands of his team. He also developed Quantified Mind, a web-based tool for running experiments on what affects your brain and Telepath, a personal computer analytics dashboard for Quantified Self purposes, Telepath Logger also can produce time-lapse videos of a concept called the “maniac week”, where you ignore all distractions, fight no fires, and just work as efficiently and hard as you can for a week. A husband and father of a ten month old child.
Based out of San Francisco, USA, Nick Winter and his fellow co founder, Matt Lott have created a company that now has up to 50 employees and 6 main investors. The company has raised a total funding amount of 2.1 million. The company’s CB ranking is 9,295. This for profit company is directing its efforts towards creating a programming game for learning computer science–a full curriculum to empower teachers in grades 3-12.
I think that this company has taken on an ambitious goal that could pay off for them in the educational market. Many educational coding ventures are focused getting coding into the hands of young kids. What makes CodeCombat unique is that they are trying to provide a coding program to all students locally and quite possibly globally. This is clear from Nick’s passion for making learning easier for students and adults alike. He has been able to take his passion and love for coding and is currently sharing that passion with the future generation of students.