7 Insights From 12-Year-Old App Developer Thomas Suarez

August 20, 2020 / in Entrepreneurship, / by Number8

It probably comes as no surprise to any of us how well younger people adapt to technology. There are all those jokes and stories of how children are teaching their elders how to navigate even the most basic applications. This is a story about Thomas Suarez, a 12-year-old boy from southern California who taught himself to program. Thomas is now famous for having developed and sold a number of applications.

Thomas Suarez's Story

At a university, you can learn programming in classes. But for a 9 year old, that is not a viable option. Thomas Suarez started by teaching himself computer programming. He worked in Python, C, and Java, so that he could learn the basics of software development and implementation of computer applications. Then Apple released its iPhone. Along with the device came a software development kit. This is a suite of tools that allows a user to produce his or her own iPhone app. He started by testing the waters with “Earth Fortune”. This is a program that will predict the future through the colors displayed. Then he went on to a very popular variation of whack-a-mole called “Bustin Jieber”. These were not only available to play on the iPhone but also the iPod touch and iPad. Next was a big jump. Apple allows developers to sell independent apps through their retail stores for a $99 fee. Thomas went on to sell “Earth Fortune”. This app was followed by others with the encouragement of family, teachers, friends, and the folks at Apple. Inspired by Steve Jobs, this young man formed an app club at his school. Sponsored by a teacher, it is part of the iPad Pilot Program. This endeavor focused in part on the best ways to use iPads including which programs should be downloaded for use. Through both student and teacher feedback, participants identify favorite types of programs. When the application is ready for publication, local school districts can use it for free. Plus, anyone can buy the application, with proceeds going to local educational foundations.

Founding CarrotCorp

In 2009, at the age of 17, Thomas founded CarrotCorp selling mobile applications on the iOS platform. He developed four apps. Two were free downloads and two cost $0.99 each. In 2015 he created another corporation, Teleportal (formerly WiTag). This is to develop real world augmented reality experiences and platforms. Teleportal is a private, for profit-corporation. Learn more about Thomas Suarez by watching his TED talk. This YouTube video has had over 11 million hits to date. Currently, he is on a leave of absence from the Georgia Institute of Technology in order to devote his time to Teleportal. According to its website: “Teleportal's mission is to provide the world access to the most secure and intuitive computing tools. We believe Spatial Computing will define the next era of the Information Age. How the technology powering this future is built determines what it can do. Teleportal is helping build it right so it can do good. The decentralized networking core in Teleportal is designed to respect users' right to privacy. The Teleportal SDK empowers creators everywhere to help build a better future." In 2013 Thomas (along with other outstanding children) was interviewed to discuss the future of learning. He explained that the key was offering programming as a primary opportunity. His vision is for more opportunities that encourage collaboration and encouragement between students. He also felt this could inspire critical thinking skills learners could apply to many other fields of study. We are an information technology company with years of experience. We have helped hundreds of clients leverage technology to become more efficient and increase profits. Interested in learning more? Let’s connect. Send us an email or give us a call at 502-212-0978 and we can get the conversation started.


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