Among the hordes of developers who attended Apple’s annual World Wide Developer’s Conference (WWDC ) this year in San Francisco , nine-year old Indian-origin Anvitha Vijay held the distinction of being the youngest.
The Melbourne resident, who taught herself to code at the age of seven, already has two apps to her credit and intends to develop more.
Vijay spent a year watching free coding tutorials on YouTube and the web, and learned how to program. “Coding was so challenging. But I’m so glad I stuck with it,” she said.
She attended WWDC after being selected for Apple’s scholarship program, which gives hundreds of free tickets to developers from around the world who are creating apps for Apple devices.
Vijay had dreamt of meeting Apple’s CEO Tim Cook and not only was she able to make that a reality at the WWDC but also managed to get a shoutout from Cook himself.
In the first few minutes of the show, an impressed Tim Cook pointed to her in the audience saying, “I met her and she is going to make one heck of a developer .”
Vijay, who found inspiration in her toddler sister focused on developing educational apps for children.
She built her first app, GoalsHi during the summer holidays last year and it won her a $10,000 student prize at the OzApp awards in Australia in 2015.
In an interview after her win, Vijay had said that her aim was to be a top entrepreneur in the world.
And, by the looks of it, she’s certainly on the path to becoming just that.
This year, her brainchild was the Smartkins Animals interactive app, which uses flashcards and sounds to help teach children the names of 100 different animals and their sounds. Vijay followed it up with another interactive iOS app that helps children learn about colours.
“Turning an idea for an app involves a lot of hard work,” said the little programmer as she described the process of developing an iOS app.
“There are so many components to building an app, including prototyping, design and wireframing, user interface design and then coding and testing,” she was quoted as saying.
The nine-year-old genius is already working on her next app, which would help children her own age set goals.