Generation Z, which today ranges from 11 to 20 years old, has lived their entire life with instant access to mountains of data on any topic that flutters through their imaginations. They’ve never known the frustration or sheer physical effort of rifling through the M-O volume of the encyclopedia to find out about the Magna Carta. They’re technologically savvy and just as likely to spend their time writing and programming video games as simply playing them. Perhaps the best way to understand who they are, what’s important to them and how they see the world is by having one of them share his experiences.
At this week’s METal, Thomas Suarez will talk about his personal journey into technology, his observations on the latest disruptive innovations, and his thoughts on the expansion of the current school technology curriculum to address the demanding needs of a highly adaptive and technology-savvy student population.
Thomas Suarez’ fascination with technology began at an early age. He taught himself how to program which led him to develop apps for the App Store. Thomas established his company, CarrotCorp, when he was 9 years old. He published his first app, “Earth Fortune” when he was 11 years old, and this was quickly followed by his most famous app, “Bustin Jieber”, a Justin Bieber whack-a-mole when he was 12 years old. He currently programs apps for iOS and Android and recently began developing and sharing apps and code for Google Glass. In 2012, Thomas gave a TEDx talk on the subject of kids teaching kids in the world of programming. His talk has been viewed over 3 million times, making it one of the most viewed TEDx talks of all time.
Thomas has been honored with several awards including:
* 2012 Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Award
* California Latino Legislative Caucus 2013 Latino Spirit Award Honoree – Dynamic Youth Award
* 2013 Tribeca Film Festival Disruptor Foundation Fellow