Developer Rudy Huyn brings apps to the people

Write it.
Rewrite it.
Write it.
Erase it.
Cut it. Paste it.

I’m supposed to be writing about Rudy Huyn. Instead, I’m composing my own house music about the writing process with iDaft, an app he created for Windows Phone using beats from French band Daft Punk’s song “Technologic.”

My next song is more provocative.

Touch it. Watch it. Touch it. Watch it. Touch it. Watch it.
Fax. Fax. Fax.

Huyn’s approach to developing Windows Phone applications is simple: “I just create apps I like and want to use,” he told me. The 31-year-old French developer is responsible for bringing third-party versions of popular apps like Instagram, Vine and Tinder to Windows Phone, often adding his trademark “6” to the name: 6tag, 6sec, 6tin and so on.

The passion and productivity of this self-declared “Microsoft fan boy” landed him a spot at the company’s Most Valuable Professional Summit for the third year in a row last November. With his spiky black hair and boundless energy, Huyn is perpetually enthusiastic about his work.

That’s because it’s not work.

“My grandfather painted a lot,” said Huyn. Making apps is “exactly the same thing. Except I have no brushes, no white paper. I just have my PC, my page, and I create something from that. Developers are just artists. We’re just numeric artists.”

Huyn (pronounced “Win” and short for Huyn-Van-Phuong, a Vietnamese name) practices his art form from the couch of his apartment in Rennes, France, a small city in the west coast of the country, in Brittany. After receiving an engineering degree from Institut National des Sciences Appliquées of Rennes, he began work on software for TV set-top boxes, and moonlighted as a mobile app developer for fun.

But his day job started to bore him, and he wasn’t in love with the available tools for iOS and Android app development. Plus, managing his day job and his night work was getting to be too much. “I wanted a change,” he shrugged. So he taught himself the C# programming language, and a few months later the Windows Phone software development kit (SDK) was released. “I said, ‘I want this to be my new life.’”

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