The Teen Web Conference, held at London’s Google Campus in the heart of East London over the weekend, highlighted a lot of young talent just starting out in the technology industry.
During the conference attendees were encouraged to share their work through five-minute talks.
The process revealed an interesting age range at the event, so we caught up with participants from both ends of the scale.
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Andrew Brackin is the founder of deal site, GetDealy. At 18 he is at the older end of the spectrum. Mark Brannigan is ten years old and although not actually a teenager, he fit in well with the lineup of speakers.
Brackin used his five-minute presentation to demonstrate his plans for a charity startup which he hopes to launch in San Francisco later this year. “The platform is essentially trying to open source charity. Letting charities crowd fund projects while using the skills, ideas and voice of their donors to their advantage,” he explained.
Brackin is ready to hand over the reins of GetDealy in order to move on to his charity startup. He’s currently planning a move to the states in order to pursue this business.
Brannigan who attended the London Real-Time hackathon earlier this year, found it was a good experience which helped him become more involved in programming. “I love it when something I’ve written actually works and delivers a fully functional solution,” he says.
Though still very young, Brannigan has already published a workbook to encourage other young developers to follow his lead. The book outlines the basics of programming and is aimed at tech-minded youth in Branningan’s own age group.
For now Brannigan is working on making another game, but once this is done, he plans to write and launch another workbook as part of the ‘Coding for Kids’ collection. No small ambition there.
As the youngest attendee and speaker at the Teen Web Conference, it interested a lot of people to ask why he decided to venture into programming and coding. His answer was nothing out of the ordinary and sounded like any other developer, “I find coding interesting because there are no limits to what you can do with software,” he says.
Both Brannigan and Brackin are at either end of the teenage scale and both are venturing into very different areas of work. What they do have in common is a level of achievement rarely found in adults, let alone other people their own age.
The teen entrepreneurs at this event had open minds and the confidence to inspire attendees. It’s important to encourage this enthusiasm and support in order to ensure these teenagers can change the businesses of the future.
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