9-Year-Old Female App Developer Wows at TechCrunch
Earlier this month at the TechCrunch Disrupt Hackathon, app developers from all over the world converged on San Francisco to present their new apps to a tech savvy audience. The most notable apps? A big miss from two Australian men, “Titstare” which allows men yet another way to ogle women’s breasts, and a big hit from nine-year-old app developer Alexandra Jordan, “Super Fun Kid Time”.
“Titstare” obviously and immediately outraged all of the Hackathon’s female attendees (and anyone with a soul) and TechCrunch quickly apologized for allowing it to get to the stage, blaming a screening process that was not thorough enough. While the apology and acknowledgement of sexism is appreciated, the fact remains that someone at TechCrunch on some level did see content from “Titstare” and let it pass. And that, we feel, is a real problem. The name of the app itself should’ve set off a red flag. But it didn’t, and proof of the misogynistic atmosphere in the tech world reared its ugly head in a pretty big way.
Following Saturday’s sexist calamity, Sunday’s app presentations brought a breath of fresh air in the form of nine-year app developer Alexandra Jordan. Her app “Super Fun Kid Time” allows kids who are bored (“Believe me I’ve been there,” Alex said in an interview) to easily schedule play dates with their friends. Alex’s dad Richard helps out with her coding (which she’s learning) but after her presentation he tweeted that the idea and drive came from Alex herself.
A nine-year-old girl techie making a splash at a large technology conference? That’s a big deal, in so many ways, and it definitely ended things on a positive note. These kind of things inspire us more than ever to keep recognizing and encouraging the efforts of women and girls in tech and to keep calling out the creeps.
But it’s also important to note that changing sexism in the tech world requires more than just calling out the offenders. It also requires intentional promotion of the achievements of women and girls in the industry so that we can inspire more females to enter the field and show the world that women are just as capable and as deserving of respect as men. It also requires all of us—women and men—to keep having these conversations, to keep talking about the accomplishments of women and girls in tech and to keep providing opportunities for learning, nurturing and mentoring.
Want to learn more about Super Fun Kid Time? Parents can sign up now for an early invite, but don’t delay. Alex’s app had more than 1,000 sign-ups less than 24 hours after her presentation. Well done, Alex! We can’t wait to see how you change the future of tech!
Image via Business Insider