Four Young People Who've Ruled the Tech World

Technology is becoming increasingly intertwined with every aspect of our lives. In many ways, young people are at the forefront of the tech evolution, as many of us now communicate with friends, learn and work digitally. But young people are not just adapting to these digital changes but in many cases they are creating the change. Here's our pick of 4 young people who have ruled the tech world.

1. Arfa Karim

Youngest Microsoft Certified Professional at age 9.

Arfa Karim was 5 years old when she first used a computer. By age 9 she passed the notoriously difficult Microsoft certification exam, becoming the youngest Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) ever.

So impressive was Arfa’s achievement that Bill Gates himself invited her to visit the Microsoft headquarters, where she spoke about encouraging women to join the IT industry.

Sadly Arfa died aged 16 in 2012. Her legacy is immortalised in the Arfa Software Technology Park in Lahore, which trains and provides opportunities for some of Pakistan's top talents in the field of science and technology.

2. Andrew Batchelor

Dundee’s youngest city ambassador and founder of Facebook page Dundee: A City of Culture at age 13

Andrew Batchelor was just 13 when he was announced as Dundee’s first young ambassador. Inspired by his love for his home city, he set up a Facebook page to update locals and visitors alike about everything Dundee has to offer.

The page now has more than 4500 likes, and its spin-off website is viewed by roughly 10,000 to 25,000 people every week. The success of Andrew's project shows how small digital ideas can have a big impact on a local community. 

3. Trisha Prabhu

15-year-old inventor of ReThink - to stop cyberbullying

After learning to code at 10 years old, Trisha wanted to use the power of technology to make the world a better place. Realising how widespread the problem of cyberbullying was, she tried to find a digital solution to this very digital problem.

At 15, she created ReThink, a programme allowing people time to ‘rethink’ hurtful comments and messages they may send, and enabling young people to make good decisions on social media.

4. Kelvin Doe

13-year-old self-taught engineer who helped light up his neighbourhood in Sierra Leone.

In Kelvin’s home in Sierra Leone, lights would come on only once a week. For the rest of the time, his entire neighbourhood would be shrouded in complete darkness when night-time fell.

At 11 years old, Kelvin began creating prototype batteries and generators using scrap metals and electronic bits he found in the dump. He took two years to develop a working model that eventually lit up his neighbourhood and lifted it out of darkness.

After that he built his own radio station. Using a homemade amp and mixer, he would broadcast under the name DJ Focus. From there, still only 15, Kevin became the youngest person in history to visit the prestigious MIT university in Massachusetts as a Visiting Practitioner, helping students with their own digital designs.