The Download: Derek Roos of Mendix

For Derek Roos, chief executive of Boston-based Mendix, being “unplugged’’ means being connected to only a couple of apps or websites. Photo: John Tlumacki.
For Derek Roos, chief executive of Boston-based Mendix, being “unplugged’’ means being connected to only a couple of apps or websites. Photo: John Tlumacki.

Derek Roos is cofounder and chief executive of Mendix, the Boston company that helps create apps for businesses such as Genzyme, Yahoo!, and The Boston Globe.

What’s the device or app that you can’t live without?

I use a whole series of apps, but the most important ones are for my productivity. I’m on Evernote every day, all day long, on both of my iPhones and my Mac. It’s basically what I use to track meeting notes and minutes and thoughts and ideas.

You have two iPhones?

Yeah, I have one with a Dutch plan and one with a US plan — I always carry two phones. I travel a lot, so I spend a third of my time abroad, and it’s more efficient to do it this way. One has a cover and the other doesn’t, that’s how I tell them apart.

What’s the first app you open when you wake up?

I usually check my e-mail before I get out of bed, as our office in London is six hours ahead and by then my inbox is filled. We’re an application development platform and have Facebook-like capabilities so I check that first thing for messages from colleagues. Then I usually get up early and run five or so miles with RunKeeper. I do that and then jump in the shower and start my day. My mind is going top speed from the moment I wake up.

How do you take in your news?

Twitter and LinkedIn. Then I usually check the BBC, New York Times, and TechCrunch. Those are my three main news sites.

What’s the last app you downloaded?

The Volvo Ocean Race app. I follow the race in real time. I love to sail and it’s a great event, every year they do it, but it’s the first time they have this app. They track the data from the boats in real time; you can see how fast they’re going.

What’s the killer app that you’re using most right now?

Amazon Cloud Drive. It lets you store unlimited photos for free. My phone was filing up with pictures, but if you download the app and if you have an Amazon Prime account you can store all of your photos online and delete them from your phone.

How do you unplug?

It’s really only when I go out running, but even then I’m listening to Spotify and I have RunKeeper on, come to think of it. That’s a good question. I don’t really unplug.

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Janelle Nanos can be reached at janelle.nanos@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @janellenanos.
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