How did Socratic start?

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I first met Shreyans Bhansali in early 2013. We had both spent years working at tech companies (Google, Venmo) and wanted to work in education.

We saw education as the "root of all good": we thought we could either try to tackle every problem in society one by one, or we could try to give more people access to better education so they'd be empowered to tackle more problems.

Notes from one of our first brainstorming sessions
We looked at the internet and saw this amazing communication medium which was falling short of its promise of helping students.

When students turned to the internet for help, they usually ended up on unhelpful sites like Yahoo Answers or Wiki Answers.

We thought the internet could do a lot better. We'd seen online communities build amazing resources like Wikipedia and StackOverflow when they were driven by a shared mission and we knew there were a lot of people in the world who cared about students having free access to better learning content.

So we started building Socratic.

From left to right: Kuba, David, Chris, Tyler

The first version of Socratic was extremely simple and Chemistry was the only subject available. Tyler DeWitt became the first teacher to add content. Soon after, David joined as our designer and Kuba joined as engineer.

The Socratic community started growing and soon included people from all over the world contributing to making learning easier.

Chris + Shreyans

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