Building Cool Apps and Coding The Future

Building Cool Apps and Coding The Future


I need a noun guys. I’m gonna pick Michael Jordan. Okay, Michael Jordan. (rewinding tape) Hi, I’m Shameless Maya and
this if Fast Forward Girls. If you don’t know me,
my name is Analia Blas. I just landed in San Francisco. GoldieBlox sent me down here. They gave me this super
cool gold suitcase. We have this little envelope, right? Pack a bag for the city
by the bay, which I did. I’m here, it says hi, welcome. Shook. How does data drive story telling you ask? Have no fear, you’re well on your way. Well, since I’m on my way,
I guess I’ll find out. That’s not very much of a clue, but it might be ’cause
girl look at this map. Do you see these? What could this be? What are these glasses? (airy music) Hi. What’s the deal with the glasses? That’s what’s in the box. I guess tomorrow’s a new day. I’ll find out what the GoldieBlox
team has in store for me. (light music) They’re taking me to the mystery location. I still have no idea where it is. I guess we’ll see. Hey guys. GoldieBlox just dropped me off in front of this huge building. (tape rewinding) Hey!
Hi! Hello. How are you? I’m doing good. I’m Esha. Hi, I’m Analia. Nice to meet you. I am Esha Gupta. I am a co-founder and
head of content at Hooked. Oh, I know that app. Me and my friends use it all the time. Oh that’s awesome. Are you ready to see how we build our app and tell stories on it? Yeah let’s go check it out. Okay, awesome. (tape fast forwarding) Hooked is an app that
tells stories in the form of chat conversations and also video, specifically for mobile. Even though we’re a very creative app, it’s very, very data driven at the core and we use science and
technology basically to determine what we
pursue on a creative level. We have 50 million people
coming in to the app every month
Whoa. reading our stories. That’s so cool. This is like our little
reading nook in the office. Oh I love this. I have to take a selfie with you. Can we take one?
Of course. Let’s do it. (camera snapshot) How do you use analytics to story tell? That’s a good question. We wanted to see if the gender of the hero of a story matters. Boys actually have no preference. Girls on the other hand, do
have a slight preference. They prefer having a female hero. You can conclude for that, that it’s better to have a
female character as a hero. That’s so cool. It really is inspiring to
make me want to be the hero of my own story. You are the hero of your own story. We threw up some code to show you what the behind the
scenes looks like at Hooked. – [Analia] Everybody here is coders or? Cyril’s our main coding man. He basically built the app from scratch. Do you know anything about coding? I took a high school course, I look a computer science class. I know the very basics. I know a little bit about
functions, four loops and IF statements, so a little bit. You’re off to a good start. I have a challenge for you. Okay. Are you ready? Yeah, let’s go. All right let’s do it. (upbeat victorious music) All right, are you ready
for the word challenge? Yeah let’s get started. We’re taking a piece from
one of our chat stories, and you have to fill it in
with different parts of speech. Okay. First word I need, is a verb. (yells)
Slurping. Okay, next word is a noun. (laughs)
My Tio Pepe. All right, and next word is also a noun. I need a noun guys. I’m gonna pick Michael Jordan. Okay, Michael Jordan. All right next word is a verb. – [Woman] Running out of time! Sleeping.
– [Woman] Need a verb! All right, and last word is a noun. Cream. Cream? Cream. (chuckles) Okay, all right. Don’t cheat, don’t peek. Oh, okay. Don’t look. (laughs) All right it’s time for the big reveal. Tada! Here’s your story! I’m gonna be future
Kate, and you’ll be Kate. Okay. – [Esha] I’m slurping
you from the year 2039. and I am you Kate.
(staff members laughs) – [Analia] I’m going to block
(staff members laughs) this Tio Pepe.
(staff members laughs) – [Esha] Wait!
(staff members laughs) I can prove I’m you.
(staff members laughs) – [Analia] How?
(staff members laughs) Esha] I know something
(staff members laughs) about you no one else knows.
(staff members laughs) – [Analia] Oh yeah? What’s that? – [Esha] You have a Michael Jordan. You sleeping it up with a cream. (staff members laughs) and you can’t sleep without it. Love it. (laughs)
(staff members laughs) This is a crazy story, but I think we should put
your version of this part of the story in the app. What do you think? Yeah. Let’s do it. All right. Let’s change out the words to the story. – [Analia] You’re just
putting in everything straight into the text file? Into the text file. Just gonna upload this file
that we just edited together. Now, we’re gonna click into the app. It’s up that fast? You just have to scan a code
and your entire story comes up? Yeah, well we changed the text file, uploaded it, rendered in the app, and then we opened it with the code, and now we’re gonna see it live. – [Analia] That’s where
all of what I put starts? – [Esha] Yeah. I can’t believe that
it’s already on the app. Everything that I put in
the app, and I’m reading it. Yeah. My friends are never gonna believe that I wrote my own Hooked story. You can write one anytime for us, so just let me know. I’ll keep you up on that. (laughs) (tape fast forwarding)
(light happy music) – [Vlada] Hi!
Hello! Come on in! How are you?
Hi! I’m Vlada. I’m Analia. Nice to meet you. Nice to meet you. Welcome to my home. Thank you. Hi, my name is Vlada Bortnik, and I’m CEO and Founder of Marco Polo. This is where I work. We have 31 employees ranging
from three different countries and 10 different states.
– [Analia] Wow. I thought I’d show you
how Marco Polo works. (digital tone) we’re bringing back face
to face conversations in a way that’s really, really authentic. You just open up Marco Polo, you click either a person or a group that you want to chat with. I’m gonna pick Meagan here, and then you press start. You say, hey Megan! Hello! (laughs) That’s so cool. I am here with my friend Analia, and just showing her how Marco Polo works. You can tell she’s already watching. Oh. That means that when I’m done talking, she can still respond. They just come up right here, and you can see what they’re saying. Yeah.
And she sent a heart. She sends you a heart, yeah. Have you coded any of this? Very first version my
husband and I did together. My background is computer
engineering and art, and that really prepared
me for creating a new app. Being an engineer, the thing
I learned the most in school, the thing that’s most
important is problem solving. I took the first class that
our school has ever provided for our entire high school. We took a computer programming class. My teacher had never taught it before. He was my math teacher previously, and then he just started
teaching computer science. He was teaching us how to
program really early stages. We only know the super basics, but we were coding in Java. Uh huh, yeah. He taught us a little for Python.
We use Java as well. Oh really? Okay. Yeah on Android.
what parts did you- Well actually, when I was
a kid, I thought I wanted to be a Doctor since my
Grandparents are Doctors. But I’ve also always been
really interested in technology. I always liked taking things apart, and figuring out how things work, and so when my high school
offered computer science class, I jumped in and actually my teacher was also a math instructor. Really?
Yeah. I remember my Senior year, when it was time to apply for Med School, I realized that actually
I don’t want to be Doctor. I decided to do computer engineering. (digital tone) I really like that you are learning how the entire computer system works. I think that’s just
something so many people don’t really think about. Somebody has to sit down
and program these apps. I definitely think we need
to have more women engineers because we make up 50% of
the population, if not more. We got to be representing. The beauty of being an engineer is that any idea that you have, you can make it happen. I have a cool challenge for you. Are you ready for it? Yes, let’s go. All right pull up a chair. (upbeat victorious music) One of the ways we decide
what were gonna work on next is we listen to people who use Marco Polo. Every week I get a report of
what are the top 10 things that people are asking for. The thing that kept coming
up, like every week, was something like people
kept getting stuck. Saying Marco Polo is black
and white all of a sudden. We’re trying to figure out. Okay, what is going on? We figured it out that it
has to do with filters. People would swipe accidentally, and end up in a state like this, and they have no- and have no way to go back. Exactly. So, the challenge is how
would you solve this problem? Oh, okay. (laughs) Ideally, let’s do this together, because nobody likes
working by themselves. I’ll give you the pencil. How I like to start is thinking about what is the actual issue. We need to figure out how to make it so instead of getting to
the filters by swiping, maybe it’s an icon at the
bottom that they can choose and then they can choose
filters from there. I know that there’s a few apps here, and things that you can
actually touch and do. It can be an icon down here, and then the user can touch it
and then that’s when they can go ahead and choose, okay this
is the filter that I want, rather than just swiping
so they don’t get stuck in that black and white. Great. The other thing to think about is, okay what are the down
sides of this design? Before people were just
able to swipe on a filter, to swipe on the screen to get to a filter. Now, we’re introducing a button. Right. What’s a downside of that? How can we tell users,
if you want a filter, this is the button to choose? Exactly. That’s definitely one of the downsides. The other one is, that now
something that they were doing so easily and fun is now- Is now more difficult. Every solution will have the positives
it’s downside. And the downsides, and we just got to
think through which one. I came up with another idea, and I’ll show it to you here. What do you use those glasses for? GoldieBlox gave me some as a clue. No way, that’s so funny. They also have a special filter on them to make it easier for me to be working on a computer screen for many hours. It helps with eye strain. Here’s a prototype that one
of our designers put together. You can see that what we
were really attached to is making it easy for
people to use filters as they’re recording. We thought that if as you’re swiping, it actually shows you the name. Oh, okay. Right in the middle, and make it easier. But what do you think
the problem is with this? (record scratch) People were still getting confused. (laughs) Yes, exactly. On top of it, it actually wasn’t super easy to implement technically either. Oh, okay. We actually end up going with the solution that you proposed. (victorious tune)
Oh, okay. Let me show you what that turned out like. I click on the conversation with Megan, and we added the button,
just like you suggested, and we put all the fun things you can do on Marco Polo in one spot. (light music) Congratulations. (laughs) Thank you! (tape fast forwarding) Aw, thank you so much.
Thank you so much. Thank you so much for
spending the day with me. Such a fun day to spend with you. Thank you for coming over. Before you go, I have something for you. Close your eyes, open your hands. Now open your eyes. I know you like buttons. Oh my gosh! (laughs) I’m gonna put it on my jacket! Awesome. Oh my God, yes! Can I help you do that? Yes, please. Thank you so much. Thank you. Okay, I got to go. Bye! Goodbye. (splash) Hi Analia, it’s Maya. How are you? I’m doing good, how about you? I’m good. Oh, love the hair. Thank you, I love yours. (laughs)
Thank you. I am here to help you choose a mentor. I heard you’re deciding between two. Yeah, I’m having a really tough time. Tell me about it. I just don’t know who to
pick between the two of them. They’re just such amazing women. What did you come up with? What are you thinking about?
Well.. Vlada was so amazing because she’s a coder and she was teaching me about
how she created the Marco Polo app and I got to see all of that, but then Esha brought me into the office and I got to see the
cooperation first hand, and the app, I love it. Me and my friends use it all the time, so I don’t know. I’m just really stuck between
who I want to mentor me. I don’t know, they’re just
such both amazing people. Yes it sounds challenging, but I think one, don’t be
afraid and I think you know, and it’s just about being brave enough to go with that decision. You know what? I think I know who I want to mentor me. I think I know.
Yay! Well I’m so proud of you and congratulations on
everything you’ve been doing. It’s so inspiring to see
young woman making big moves! Well thank you so much! (clapping) (laughs) Okay, we’ll talk soon and I’m gonna find out who you decide on.
Okay by Maya! Okay, bye. It’s Analia, and I thought about it, and I really would love
for you to mentor me if you’re down, please let me know. Send me a Marco Polo back. I’d love to ask you questions about coding and have you help me through my journey. Thank you much Vlada, bye. (upbeat music) Absolutely! I am so excited. Thank you for picking me
and I’m looking forward to being on this journey with you. Bye! This over here, it looks
really like, sci-fi looking Star Trek type clothes things. These are like lazar tag or something? It’s not lazar tag, it’s
called Music Not Impossible. It’s a wearable device. It means that it’s a piece of clothing that has technology in it. Do you want to try it on? Yes, can I? Yeah, I want to wear this.

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