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MacRumors
Feb 10, 2009, 01:19 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/02/10/nine-year-old-iphone-developer-releases-application/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article/2009/02/10/141717-wen_300.jpg

Reuters recently reported (http://www.reuters.com/article/technologyNews/idUSTRE5140FI20090205") on nine-year old Lim Ding Wen from Singapore, whose Doodle Kids [App Store (http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=302828886&mt=8)] application has seen over 4,000 downloads since its release several weeks ago. The free application, designed for his sisters aged three and five, allows users to draw on the iPhone screen using random shapes and colors and then erase their creations by shaking the device.

TG Daily followed up (http://www.tgdaily.com/content/view/41357/140/) on the story to reveal that the program, along with a number of others, was originally written for the Apple IIGS, as detailed on a personal website (http://virtualgs.larwe.com/Virtual_GS/Lim_Ding_Wen.html) set up for him by his father, an Apple IIGS enthusiast. A second Apple IIGS game, Invader War (http://virtualgs.larwe.com/Virtual_GS/Invader_War.html), is also being ported to the iPhone and will be made available through the App Store.

Article Link: Nine-Year Old iPhone Developer Releases Application (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/02/10/nine-year-old-iphone-developer-releases-application/)



h.21
Feb 10, 2009, 01:37 PM
I think I'll skip this release.

chr1s60
Feb 10, 2009, 01:44 PM
People are making way too big of a deal about this. I am impressed that a nine year old can write and release an app and happy that he has had over 4,000 downloads, but this has just received way too much press. It was on the front page of Yahoo! yesterday and I have seen this on numerous other sites.

dacreativeguy
Feb 10, 2009, 01:55 PM
Haven't 9 year olds been manufacturing products in Asia for years? :)

MysterMac
Feb 10, 2009, 02:04 PM
his dad is an iphone developer, coincidence ? meh

Veri
Feb 10, 2009, 02:06 PM
The average ultra-geek certainly can program by the age of 9 (IIRC I was just getting my teeth into ARM assembler on the Acorn A3000), this much is clear. But isn't it always the way that the story is spoilt with something like...

originally written for the Apple IIGS, as detailed on a personal website set up for him by his father, an Apple IIGS enthusiast

,,,which even to the least cynical man must read, "but basically his dad did the hard stuff."

If the kid were operating on his own steam, I expect he'd just release the app and be done with it, and no-one would even know his age.

If there are any 9 year old kids reading this: fear not, you can be a developer too, whether your dad has a clue about computers or not. Mine certainly didn't :D.

chuckcalo
Feb 10, 2009, 02:09 PM
I saw this on engadget 1 week ago, it's impressive how a "9 year old" can write/develop/test a painting program. It takes skills to even make a new application.

I'm not 100% sure he did it on his own.

Dagless
Feb 10, 2009, 02:42 PM
I don't get the hype around this. I was making games on my Amiga when I was 8, and PC at 9 with no help from anyone. My own code, art, music. Many of my local friends were also into this kind of thing. I'm sure there are even more young coders in the wild now.

Seriously. Where has this hype come from?

iWoz
Feb 10, 2009, 02:54 PM
fair play to the kid

overanalyzer
Feb 10, 2009, 03:17 PM
I'm kind of with others on this. I'm an application developer now basically because I was already writing programs for use in educating my classmates by the time I was 9 (and of course first learned to program a few years before that). While I think the majority of people aren't like that, I do think that the majority of people who become serious developer hobbyists or professional developers are like that, so I don't feel like this kid is particularly unique.

Not to rain on his parade, of course. I just also don't get the press attention.

wonderbread57
Feb 10, 2009, 04:41 PM
"TG Daily followed up on the story to reveal that the program, along with a number of others, was originally written for the Apple IIGS"

The Apple IIgs was Discontinued in 1992... That would make the purported 9 year old author -7 or -8 years old at most when it was originally written. Assuming he did not write it while he was merely a conversation between spouses (if that) then the father obviously wrote the program for the Apple IIgs. Which means the story is concluding that the kid PORTED the code to iPhone?

:rolleyes::apple::confused:

pmpknetr21
Feb 10, 2009, 04:45 PM
People are making way too big of a deal about this. I am impressed that a nine year old can write and release an app and happy that he has had over 4,000 downloads, but this has just received way too much press. It was on the front page of Yahoo! yesterday and I have seen this on numerous other sites.

The average ultra-geek certainly can program by the age of 9 (IIRC I was just getting my teeth into ARM assembler on the Acorn A3000), this much is clear. But isn't it always the way that the story is spoilt with something like...



,,,which even to the least cynical man must read, "but basically his dad did the hard stuff."

If the kid were operating on his own steam, I expect he'd just release the app and be done with it, and no-one would even know his age.

If there are any 9 year old kids reading this: fear not, you can be a developer too, whether your dad has a clue about computers or not. Mine certainly didn't :D.

I don't get the hype around this. I was making games on my Amiga when I was 8, and PC at 9 with no help from anyone. My own code, art, music. Many of my local friends were also into this kind of thing. I'm sure there are even more young coders in the wild now.

Seriously. Where has this hype come from?

I'm kind of with others on this. I'm an application developer now basically because I was already writing programs for use in educating my classmates by the time I was 9 (and of course first learned to program a few years before that). While I think the majority of people aren't like that, I do think that the majority of people who become serious developer hobbyists or professional developers are like that, so I don't feel like this kid is particularly unique.

Not to rain on his parade, of course. I just also don't get the press attention.

The people that are writing about this kid are people that are NOT developers, so they have no clue as to how early someone might start the "software developer game". When people, journalists, computer users hear words like programmer, App Store release, 400 downloads, etc., they think to themselves, "Wow, that sounds hard." Then they hear that the person who did it is 9 years old and they think, "Man! That kid must be a genius!"

They're not you guys. They're not aware that this could be a common thing amongst developers. Neither was I, quite frankly, until I read this. Point is, stop hatin' on the kid. Put the bottle of Hater-ade away and leave the kid alone. So he gets a little press for his pop's effort... Who cares? (Well, you guys do, but why?) :o

NAG
Feb 10, 2009, 05:40 PM
"TG Daily followed up on the story to reveal that the program, along with a number of others, was originally written for the Apple IIGS"

The Apple IIgs was Discontinued in 1992... That would make the purported 9 year old author -7 or -8 years old at most when it was originally written. Assuming he did not write it while he was merely a conversation between spouses (if that) then the father obviously wrote the program for the Apple IIgs. Which means the story is concluding that the kid PORTED the code to iPhone?

:rolleyes::apple::confused:

Yes, the instant Apple discontinued the IIgs all IIgs in existence exploded and vanished into the ether leaving no trace save some floppies with a paint program on it.

Seriously, this is kind of a silly part to nitpick. I find it unlikely that a 9 year old did the whole thing by himself but it isn't out of the realm of possibility that he did a good deal of it.

branjosef
Feb 10, 2009, 05:58 PM
Amazing. Knew it wasn't a 9 year old from the US.:rolleyes:

wonderbread57
Feb 10, 2009, 06:17 PM
Yes, the instant Apple discontinued the IIgs all IIgs in existence exploded and vanished into the ether leaving no trace save some floppies with a paint program on it.

Seriously, this is kind of a silly part to nitpick. I find it unlikely that a 9 year old did the whole thing by himself but it isn't out of the realm of possibility that he did a good deal of it.

I considered that possibility but deemed it was too low probability to need to account for. Considering the guy is a developer I assume he likes to develop for machines that are still being sold. So it's actually more likely that he wrote the code closer to 1986 when it was introduced then when it was discontinued. Regardless the point was to establish that the father authored the "original" version, a point which I don't believe you are disputing. So your post appears to be an exercise in silly nit picking it self. We can pretend it was a clever (and deliberate) way of driving the point home.

branjosef
Feb 10, 2009, 06:21 PM
Breaking news... A 9 year old in the US says screw technology, I'm to busy with the ladies. Another example of The United States leading the world from the rear.

http://features.csmonitor.com/books/2008/10/13/a-9-year-old-author-tells-us-how-to-talk-to-girls/

wonderbread57
Feb 10, 2009, 06:29 PM
Breaking news... A 9 year old in the US says screw technology, I'm to busy with the ladies. Another example of The United States leading the world from the rear.

http://features.csmonitor.com/books/2008/10/13/a-9-year-old-author-tells-us-how-to-talk-to-girls/

SNL did a spoof of this in December when John Malkovich hosted:
http://www.nbc.com/Saturday_Night_Live/video/clips/update-9-year-old-advice/866321/

Digital Skunk
Feb 10, 2009, 07:49 PM
Amazing. Knew it wasn't a 9 year old from the US.:rolleyes:

Right, because we don't give awards for other people's work. Or celebrate mediocrity. At least in the part of the country I live in. :rolleyes:

fair play to the kid

Sure, if the article said that the kid ported the apps over that his father had written, or if it said that 9 year old kid ports useless apps that father made 17 years ago and no one really cares," then sure, he'd get all the credit.

Not to mention that his idea is far from original so it should read, 9 year old kid reinvents the wheel from father's old programing. :D

andreab35
Feb 10, 2009, 08:00 PM
I still don't understand the logic behind how a 9 year old can create a successful application- but I cannot still get the grips of iPhone development?
:confused:

Gooseboy
Feb 10, 2009, 08:25 PM
and i wrote this silly thing 9-year-old creates iPhone hit (http://zachpaez.com/)

What's lame is that this stupid app wasn't even in the top 50 until after the article. So how is it a hit? It's just the news creating the news.

Darkroom
Feb 10, 2009, 08:43 PM
all the jealous comments on this board are hilarious...

wonderbread57
Feb 10, 2009, 09:12 PM
and i wrote this silly thing 9-year-old creates iPhone hit (http://zachpaez.com/)

What's lame is that this stupid app wasn't even in the top 50 until after the article. So how is it a hit? It's just the news creating the news.

Haha. That article has a familiar tone from The Onion.

alexbates
Feb 10, 2009, 10:51 PM
This is actually a pretty good program. I have had three-year-olds play Crash Bandicoot on my iPod, but it wasn't too easy for them. This seems like the perfect app for younger kids to get if they want to mess around with one of their parent's iPhones in the car or somewhere.

Good job Lim and keep up the good work!

matthewlesh
Feb 10, 2009, 11:11 PM
Haven't 9 year olds been manufacturing products in Asia for years? :)


lol.. i like what you've done there.

notjustjay
Feb 10, 2009, 11:42 PM
I was about 9 years old too when I wrote my first program for the Apple ][. Here it is, in it's entirety:

10 PRINT "I CAN BEEP!"
20 PRINT CHR$(7)
30 GOTO 10

I ran the program, and my teacher came over, saw the output, and said "Yes, you most certainly can. Now make it stop!"

glowingstar
Feb 11, 2009, 12:16 AM
all the jealous comments on this board are hilarious...

heh! no kidding! the know-it-alls love to rip on others' accomplishments. cuz, you know, the IIgs version toooootalllly had the ability to be shaken to erase the picture. no, really! it was like one of them, how you say...etchy sketchy thingies. :rolleyes:

Veri
Feb 11, 2009, 12:29 AM
all the jealous comments on this board are hilarious...
I don't understand the habit of dismissing any questioning of an alleged success as "jealousy". It happens most commonly when people discuss whether someone earned their wealth - there's always someone who crawls out of the woodwork with the ad hominem "you're just jealous!" as if this even addresses the argument. I've had my fair 15 minuteses of fame for my successes as a younger lad, and now I look back and think I was an immodest, arrogant irritant. Anyway, end of prologue.

The issue here is that this article celebrates mediocrity. The world already has a low enough expectation of the mind of the child, and when it sets the bar so cheap for other children, those who were genuinely doing brilliantly are discouraged, while those hitherto lackadaisical will only remain so. I know I'd have done better as a boy if I hadn't been told I was doing brilliantly at something when, in fact, I wasn't. It is too easy to impress the average. See also: the UK secondary school exam system, etc.

Dagless
Feb 11, 2009, 05:17 AM
I don't understand the habit of dismissing any questioning of an alleged success as "jealousy". It happens most commonly when people discuss whether someone earned their wealth - there's always someone who crawls out of the woodwork with the ad hominem "you're just jealous!" as if this even addresses the argument. I've had my fair 15 minuteses of fame for my successes as a younger lad, and now I look back and think I was an immodest, arrogant irritant. Anyway, end of prologue.

The issue here is that this article celebrates mediocrity. The world already has a low enough expectation of the mind of the child, and when it sets the bar so cheap for other children, those who were genuinely doing brilliantly are discouraged, while those hitherto lackadaisical will only remain so. I know I'd have done better as a boy if I hadn't been told I was doing brilliantly at something when, in fact, I wasn't. It is too easy to impress the average. See also: the UK secondary school exam system, etc.

Bingo.
I put it down to certain internet groups just enjoy using the word "hater" and try to shoehorn it into a message to anyone expressing the slightest doubt.

ebcdic-
Feb 11, 2009, 09:26 AM
Did this 9-year-old accept the iPhone SDK agreement?

NAG
Feb 11, 2009, 10:01 AM
I considered that possibility but deemed it was too low probability to need to account for. Considering the guy is a developer I assume he likes to develop for machines that are still being sold. So it's actually more likely that he wrote the code closer to 1986 when it was introduced then when it was discontinued. Regardless the point was to establish that the father authored the "original" version, a point which I don't believe you are disputing. So your post appears to be an exercise in silly nit picking it self. We can pretend it was a clever (and deliberate) way of driving the point home.

Your assumption is wrong. As a kid I tinkered around with old machines all the time. Just because you find it useless doesn't change the likelihood of this kid or anyone else developing on a IIgs recently.

And for the record, it isn't pretending to be clever but is instead arguing. But feel free to claim your assumptions are fact and to use anecdotes as your only line of support. It is cute.

Darkroom
Feb 11, 2009, 01:29 PM
I don't understand the habit of dismissing any questioning of an alleged success as "jealousy". It happens most commonly when people discuss whether someone earned their wealth - there's always someone who crawls out of the woodwork with the ad hominem "you're just jealous!" as if this even addresses the argument. I've had my fair 15 minuteses of fame for my successes as a younger lad, and now I look back and think I was an immodest, arrogant irritant. Anyway, end of prologue.

The issue here is that this article celebrates mediocrity. The world already has a low enough expectation of the mind of the child, and when it sets the bar so cheap for other children, those who were genuinely doing brilliantly are discouraged, while those hitherto lackadaisical will only remain so. I know I'd have done better as a boy if I hadn't been told I was doing brilliantly at something when, in fact, I wasn't. It is too easy to impress the average. See also: the UK secondary school exam system, etc.

veri, you're comment reads extremely bitter. what you are judging as being mediocre others may not think so. it's subjective and becoming better takes practice and encouragement.

chr1s60
Feb 11, 2009, 01:48 PM
and i wrote this silly thing 9-year-old creates iPhone hit (http://zachpaez.com/)

What's lame is that this stupid app wasn't even in the top 50 until after the article. So how is it a hit? It's just the news creating the news.

That was another thing I noticed. 4,000 downloads over a two week period is nothing amazing for the app store. After seeing the numbers that some developers have shared with us, 4,000 downloads in that time frame don't get you close to the top 50.

Veri
Feb 11, 2009, 02:51 PM
veri, you're comment reads extremely bitter.
Again with the ad hom. Ah well, could be worse, last week I was entertained with a, "you're probably saying that because you're black and paranoid". Just as discussions on race inevitably end up with one side conjecturing on the colour of the other, I guess discussions on achievement always end up with the "OMG bitter!" I'd hoped to avoid it by predicting it, but no ;-).

what you are judging as being mediocre others may not think so. it's subjective
"Well it's all subjective anyway" effectively allows the admission and rejection of every single conclusion. Why don't we make a feel-good article out of each child's first word, or the first time he scored full marks on a test? I still assert that is a celebration of mediocrity to take something that many have done and portray it as uniquely brilliant. If you think he made a unique technical achievement - for his age, or whatever - then justify it.

and becoming better takes practice and encouragement.
Yes! And it doesn't encourage the hordes of young programmers nurturing exceptional theoretical or technical ability to have one kid picked out merely because, ostensibly through the efforts of his father(*), he's published to the current Hot Thing: the App Store. How about more news coverage on talented and hard-working potential mathematicians, scientists, or linguists? Many such express their abilities through interesting programming, but run-of-the-mill programming per se is as learning to use a DIY toolset: not special.

On second thoughts, the story might at least encourage nascent agents and marketing consultants - uhoh :D.

(*) Not that obvious help from the folks precludes a story: consider Sarah Flannery.

alphaod
Feb 11, 2009, 03:17 PM
Very nice. Old news though.

branjosef
Feb 11, 2009, 03:22 PM
I wish I knew a 9-year old who could do all this. The only 9 year olds I know are too busy sponging their brains with the disney channel and wanting to be the next american idol. Hell I would even settle for a 9-year old who copies his dads programming ideas, because as I said before most of the 9 year olds I know are playing xbox 360 and prone to obesity. I blame the parents..it all starts when they're young

wonderbread57
Feb 11, 2009, 10:21 PM
Your assumption is wrong. As a kid I tinkered around with old machines all the time. Just because you find it useless doesn't change the likelihood of this kid or anyone else developing on a IIgs recently.

And for the record, it isn't pretending to be clever but is instead arguing. But feel free to claim your assumptions are fact and to use anecdotes as your only line of support. It is cute.

Ah, like your anecdote of tinkering around with old machines when you were a kid?

This seems to be a pattern where you accuse me of something that you demonstrate only sentences before the accusation. I'm sure it's some sort of psychological thing that is well defined but I didn't major in psych so I'm not familiar with the particular terminology that matches your behavior. It probably doesn't require medication, not to worry.

pro tip: this thread is now about flaming and reliving your dorky youth

daveorawk
Feb 12, 2009, 01:29 AM
Hell I would even settle for a 9-year old who copies his dads programming ideas, because as I said before most of the 9 year olds I know are playing xbox 360 and prone to obesity.


Yes, because sitting around using the computer to program stuff really helps prevent obesity... lol

Just sayin'.

Benguitar
Feb 12, 2009, 12:18 PM
Eh, no thank you. :rolleyes:

yoshinatsu
Feb 14, 2009, 10:01 PM
Eh, no thank you. :rolleyes:

Yeah... Me neither :cool:

RTiii320
Feb 15, 2009, 12:20 AM
Haven't 9 year olds been manufacturing products in Asia for years? :)

HAHA, O WOW. Where to begin... I think I won't say anything.. Hilarious.

ashjamben
Feb 21, 2009, 10:19 AM
Haven't 9 year olds been manufacturing products in Asia for years? :)

made me chuckle :)

branjosef
Feb 21, 2009, 08:38 PM
He's probably ten by now!!! This story's getting old. :D

FX120
Feb 21, 2009, 09:30 PM
Heh, when I was 10 I wrote a few graphical games in QBASIC...

branjosef
Feb 22, 2009, 10:25 AM
When I was nine years old, I wrote alot on my commodore 64....literally!!!



In marker, sometimes in crayon :rolleyes: