Spotlight: Greg Scown, co-Founder of Smile

Who are the people behind the technology that we love so much? We know the products, the websites, the online personalities but we want to learn more! 

Every week here at, we will spotlight a company, developer or person that supports Apple users by creating solutions or entertainment for the Mac, iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV and other platforms we all use and love by asking them to answer seven questions.

This week, we turn our attention to Greg Scown, co-Founder of Smile

1 – How did you get your start in technology?

In third grade, I convinced my parents to let me invest part of my savings in Ideal Toy Company. A few weeks later, Ideal Toy introduced the Rubik’s Cube. I tripled my investment and bought a TRS-80 Color Computer with the proceeds.

2 – What is your favorite computer of all time?

I’m really happy with my 15″ Retina MacBook Pro. Before that, I’d have to go with the Titanium PowerBook G4.

3 – Tell us about your latest product

Smile publishes PDFpen and TextExpander. PDFpen is a full-featured PDF editor for Mac, iPad, and iPhone. It handles the basics, such as adding text and images to PDFs, and it can go to the extremes, such as redacting account numbers, scanning & OCR, and exporting in Microsoft Word format. TextExpander saves you time typing by expanding custom abbreviations into larger pieces of text. At its simplest, it can turn “Tx” into “TextExpander”. At its best, you can whip off multi-paragraph support replies and use fill-in forms to customize boilerplate responses. Go all the way and automate using AppleScript, JavaScript, and shell script snippets. Learn more at:

4 – What was your first job?

Kitchen Boy at Yawgoog Scout Reservation in Rockville, Rhode Island. My first tech job was as a summer intern at Apple in the Collaboration Products Group, the folks who developed PowerTalk for System 7 Pro.

5 – What advice would you give to younger people just getting into technology?

Network. Meet people. Learn things. Work hard. Put yourself out there via social media and/or a blog.

6 – Who was your inspiration? 

My grandfather. He owned and operated his own shop building custom prototype machinery for 30+ years. He showed me that it was possible to work for myself, and I remain grateful for that to this day.

7 – Where can people follow you online, and what is your website?

I’m @macgreg on Twitter, and my blog is Info on PDFpen and TextExpander is found at:


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