Junior lands software design internship, codes key features of iOS app

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By Mareska Chettiar, Staff Reporter Junior Rhea Malik designed Matter’s two most important features this summer as their youngest and only intern. It all started when she cold-emailed more than 75 software companies to ask for an internship — most declined, either stating that there were no free positions or that she was too young....

By Mareska Chettiar, Staff Reporter

Junior Rhea Malik designed Matter’s two most important features this summer as their youngest and only intern. It all started when she cold-emailed more than 75 software companies to ask for an internship — most declined, either stating that there were no free positions or that she was too young. Still, Malik persevered and finally scored an internship at Matter, a startup company based in San Francisco, California. 

 

The company’s main product is their app known as “Matter: A better reading app” that lets users pull articles and materials such as tweets, podcasts and newsletters from the web and organize them within a personalized content library. From there, users can read, annotate and listen with their human-sounding AI. 

 

Malik discovered Matter by searching for small companies and iOS apps that she wanted to develop. At first, Matter did not plan on hiring an intern, but after receiving a robust cold email, they decided to take her in. 

 

“We didn’t have an open position but quickly decided to bet on Rhea,” Matter tweeted. 

 

Over five-weeks during the summer, Malik designed two important projects. The first was a Weekly Roundup, which shows users 10 popular articles from that week and allows them to explore new options. A popup appears every Saturday telling users that the Roundup has been refreshed. 

 

“They (users) can read articles and discover new content with (the Weekly Roundup),” Malik said. “I created the feed it is displayed on.” 

 

Her second project was a feedback pop-up where users could react with emojis and send messages to developers. If people reacted with a positive emoji, it would display a confetti animation with the emojis used, and if negative, a feedback dialogue will pop up. 

 

“It gives us better feedback from our users and improves our app store ratings,” Malik said. “It also improves user experience.” 

 

Malik worked with other employees and her mentor at Matter to develop these projects and experience how a software company works first hand. 

 

“I’ve been used to working with people at the same skill level as me, but everyone there knows so much more (than I do). I’m just trying to absorb as much information as possible and see how the real world works,” Malik said. 

 

As of now, Malik is finishing up a collaborative project which allows users to share articles with their friends within the app. Her internship at Matter is set to end around Oct. 16, with this project being her last. Malik sees her time there as a perfect setup for her future in computer science and startups.

 


Mareska Chettiar can be reached at [email protected]

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