Blessing in Disguise? Lifestyle Change

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Before I saw success in software, my interests and goals in life were very different. There was a time when I was a gym rat and trained and studied Brazilian Jiu Jitsu every day of the week. I loved how grappling allowed me to be creative, lots of my colleagues would speak highly of my ‘style’ that can described as unorthodox. My style likely dates back to my wrestling days in high school. I always seemed to have a disadvantage in speed, strength and endurance. Because of this, I became successful with an unorthodox style that opponents used to seeing. I remember visiting NYU on a recruiting visit, and the head coach did not recognize me as a wrestler (I looked too skinny). In modern college wrestling, it seems like just about every wrestler has adopted some sort of ‘funk’ into their arsenal.

I loved Brazilian Jiu Jitsu so much that I believed that I would teach and own my own school, and fight in the UFC. I decided to take some time off from school at the University of Colorado – Boulder to focus on training and work on a software project. At one point, I felt very proficient, and was able to submit fighters in the UFC while sparring.

Then came the summer of 2010, I had an argument with a roommate in Boulder. The very next day, I decided to drive to Boston. I decided that I was going to train at Wai Kru and continue to program for myself and this company called Caring Family. I was training 7 days a week and programming. I considered myself to be selfish. I needed to ‘make it’ so I did not spend much time trying to get a girlfriend. I was happy with this life.

Then one fateful day, I experienced back pain. I took a week off training but it pain did not just stop. I went a chiropractor and and he looked terrified when he saw that condition my back was in. I also went to an orthopedic surgeon who recommended a an epidural, a steroid used to help with the pain. After three epidurals, I was left with no choice but to stop training. A was about to transition to a major lifestyle change. As a side note, for people with back problems, I highly recommend practicing yoga. It really helps strengthen your core, thus alleviating back problems. On top of that, it serves as a great stress reliever.

I moved back to Boulder and I was on a mission. I programmed night and day. I once again avoided dating just to focus on being successful. In about 10 months time after graduating, I achieved that success that I wanted and believed I deserved. If I had never injured my back, I very well could have still been a gym rat training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

I still train submission wrestling at the Edge in Hoboken, but the excitement that I used to have for the martial art has diminished. I enjoy living it up in Hoboken. Depending how you look at it, my back injury could have been a blessing in disguise.

Knag Enterprises LLC

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After officially starting my own software company back in 2009, I have neglected to setup a company website until now. My company took off in the middle of 2011, and by then there was such a high demand for mobile app developers. I figured that I would be swarmed with emails from companies asking for my services. I finally decided to setup my own company website to help express the direction my LLC is moving towards. Some of my friends and colleagues have claimed that I have ‘made it’ as I never had a full-time job in my life, and have been living a rather lavish lifestyle in the exclusive uptown Hoboken area. While I have been successful, I absolutely refuse to be complacent. About a year ago, I was earning enough money through app revenue to that I literally did not have to work any hours to pay my bills and save for retirement. As relieving as this may sound, this time in my life left me isolated and unmotivated. I’ve always been successful with inventing new types of technologies, and I love coming up with clever solutions to real world problems. One of my latest projects consists of a car finding app. There are several apps that require you to open your app, and press a few buttons to mark your location. If one remembers to do that, they will most-likely remember where they parked their car. With technologies such as Bluetooth, the extended features to come out every year for the smartphone platforms, and the internal GPS data from the auto companies, a very practical car finding app can be put together.

In the app space, I’ve specialized in prototyping. I have come up with ideas, filled niches, listened to friend’s app pitches, and have tried to crack out a prototype within a day. I’ve released an open sourced framework that publishes App’s QR code links to Facebook accounts with my affiliate ID attached to it and released it within 24 hours. I noticed the Dropbox iOS app lacked a feature where you cannot download a file from any given URL. I put together a functional app that downloads any file with a URL using their API and released it in about a week. To this day, it has made over 6 digits. You can download Download with Dropbox – Simple Downloader and Uploader Manager here.

What I love about being in the mobile app scene is that there seems to be no boundaries as to what can be accomplished. Completing a near flawless app powered by the world’s most powerful servers that keep the world connected is a very satisfying experience. My latest app is Instalist – Automated Valentine’s Gift Lift Creator. The app uses Amazon’s powerful product API, as well as Python scripts that help scalp the relevant data needed to appear in my app. From the moment my friend and business parter Desi Saran pitched me an inspiring idea, I became very determined to release a polished product. While the experience as a whole was very positive, I must admit that the final hours of polishing and perfecting the app were pretty tedious.

In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since. ‘Whenever you feel like criticizing any one,’ he told me, ‘just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.’

The final thing I would like to mention in this first post is that Knag Enterprises is not only about profit driven software. I care very much about giving opportunities to the less fortunate. For over a year now, I have been planning and setting up an after school program for the children of Newark to learn more about computers. I was very fortunate to grow up in a well off suburban area with caring, and friendly neighbors. In addition, I also had the fortune of being the son of Ralph Knag, who was an engineer at the world famous Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, NJ. For those who do not know, the best and the brightest pushed their minds to the limit and invented extraordinary things such as the cell phone, the UNIX operating system, the transistor, and the C programming language. C is the foundation to every other programming language in existence. So basically, all software in existence today is derived from Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, NJ. With Bell Labs and Princeton University, it is pretty ironic that New Jersey has such negative stereotypes involving Jersey Shore type things. Anyhow, growing up my father introduced me to a variety of educational games, and other types of ground breaking content that molded me into the person I am today. With the fortunate life I was given, and the success I have attained at a young age, I see it as a responsibility to give back. A cheap laptop with internet access gives the beholder access unlimited information to progress in absolutely anything they wish to pursue. On the other hand, a laptop with internet access can also be a host to nasty content, filled with dirty material that can harm our children or anyone for that matter. The goal of my philanthropic project is to guide the children to demonstrate how they can use computers and the internet to better themselves. I remember always thinking to myself that I would rather live in an tiny cabin with a computer and internet than live in a mansion that lacks computer technology. Without question, computers are the equal playing ground, they can help people escape poverty and lower the cost of higher education. The best part about this is that the barrier to entry (owning a computer) is no longer expensive. However, the time and effort to guide our youth is the most needed resource for my philanthropic project to be successful.

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Senior Year Resume

me

About Me

I am a recent graduate from the University of Colorado in Boulder. I’ve earned an Economics degree as well as a minor in Computer Science. As of now, I would like to continue to work/study in the computer science field and possiby combine my knowledge of economics in my work. Someday I hope to become a successful entrepreneur owning the rights to a wide variety software solutions. Recently I have started to develop mobile applications for the iPhone and Android platforms. Aside from technical skills, I enjoy practicing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as well as skiing.

Skills

  • C++
  • Java
  • PHP
  • HTML
  • iPhone and Android SDK
  • SQL

Contact Knag Enterprises

Justin Knag Enterprises Profile Pic
Justin Knag Profile Pic

“The most harmful phobia that results in the greatest amount of grief is irrational fear spawned by ignorance.” – Mark Twain

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1500 Washington Street Suite 9K
Hoboken, NJ 07030
knagenterprises@yahoo.com

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