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New App Lets You Talk to Strangers on Campus

Dorm Chat, a free app created by a Penn State alumnus, is premiering at our university today.

Dorm Chat was made to keep the student body “tapped into the local conversation,” according to the creator Adam John. Built on a thread-based foundation, users are able to start discussions about any topic from the Econ 104 homework to what frats are throwing down this weekend.

What makes the app unique, however, is its regional focus– any conversations that are started can only be accessed within a 1 mile radius of its starting point. This allows for more focused dialogue and a greater diversity of topics that students handpick themselves.

John, the sole founder of the project, graduated from the Smeal College of Business in 2011 and has been working in technological innovation ever since. While he only divined this idea last December, he’s been working full speed ahead with New York-based development team OAB Studios to construct the software.

For a school with such an interwoven community, the power of a tool like this really becomes apparent, John says. The more people that have the app, the more impressive the implications– as he framed it, “you could literally organize a ‘wave’ at Beaver Stadium with a single message, or you could start a banger at your place with the click of a button; the possibilities are really endless.”

With a sleek, Snapchat-esque layout, Dorm Chat is meant to be intuitive for new users. It’s going to incorporate a ‘likes’ system which lets participants choose which comments they like the most, as well as promote the constructive participation which could lead to Dorm Chat Stardom.

While the app is being premiered only at Penn State, the creator hopes to see it make its way to colleges across the country. If there’s enough hype at a school, Dorm Chat could get “unlocked” in that region. Though it’s only available for Apple products at the moment, the creative team is currently working on a functional Android application.

For all of you social media fiends, you can check out the next networking app Dorm Chat here.

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About the Author

Alex Goncalves

International Politics and Latin American Studies major at Penn State, space explorer, man-child. Formerly a paleontologist-at-heart.


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