HackerPen: practice to ace tech interviews

3 min readFeb 27, 2022

Look.. If you had, one shot, or one opportunity, to seize everything you ever wanted, in one moment, would you capture it, or just let it slip?

— Marshall Mathers

For many people, getting a great job at tech is that one shot or one opportunity that fundamentally changes their trajectory of life.

To land that tech job, one must go through and excel at tech interviews.

Tech interviews are not easy, but it’s a skill that one can hone through practice, with consistency and determination.

We built HackerPen with a simple thesis in mind:

Empower developers to help each other get better at tech interviews, to capture that one shot in tech.

Inspired by many awesome products like interviewing.io and pramp.com, and equipped with our own vision, we set out to build a platform that:

  • Provide tools to conduct real-time coding and system design interviews
  • People can pair up to give and receive mock interviews
  • Allow people to choose and change interview questions
real-time codepad
pair up for mock interviews

Product differentiator

A common question people ask us is:

How is HackerPen different from Pramp?

While both products provide pairing mock interviews, we built HackerPen to be unique in many different ways, below is a comparison chart of the two products:

Pramp v.s. HackerPen

Two main differentiators to highlight: open-source question bank and virtual whiteboard.

Differentiator 1: open-source question bank

HackerPen imports all questions from an open-source question bank. HackerPen is a product built by developers, for developers. We want customer participation to be the backbone of the product.

source question from open question bank

Differentiator 2: virtual whiteboard

HackerPen is a product that stands on the shoulder of giants. Thanks to amazing open-source tools like Excalidraw, we fully integrated a real-time drawing board using its node package. People can have more dynamic mock interview sessions for system design, even cultural interviews.

virtual drawpad

Build with community participation, in the open

HackerPen is a product built by developers, for developers. To make it an awesome product, we commit to iterating and building together with the community. We aim to build this product with the community, we aim to build this product in the open.

Open-sourcing question bank is our first step towards building in the open. We are also committed to open-sourcing the core product of HackerPen — the real-time code pad and draw pad. We believe that by building it with the community, innovation sparkles, and ideas flow. There are a lot of things we don’t know, and we as a community can continue to learn from each other, and continue to grow. And such growth will reflect in the evolution of the product itself.

If you’re interested, check out our Github page.

Join our community ❤️

HackerPen empowers developers to help each other get better at tech interviews, to capture that one shot in tech. Join our Discord community, we would love to hear from you!