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Friday Five: Kids who code and with startups

Chris Mayer
code.1

Friday Five is back once again. Featuring nude.js, a nine year old entrepreneur and something close to Minority Report

Another week has flown by at JAX HQ and it’s time to
celebrate – it’s the first day of meteorological Spring. You just
wouldn’t know it looking out of a London window this afternoon,
dull and overcast as ever.

Fortunately, we’re here to brighten up your day with five
irreverent things that caught our eye during the week.

1. What most schools don’t teach

There continues to be a clamouring for computer programming
in the curriculum, particularly here in the UK. Some countries are
ahead of the curve, already teach coding to school children.
Estonia for example began an initiative in September, offering
coding lessons to six year-olds.

Now, there’s big backing from some of the industry’s biggest
name for a similar scheme in the US, ran by
Code.org. Mark
Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Jack Dorsey and even tech showbiz
enterpreneur will.i.am appear in a new campaign video

explaining to kids why they should learn to
code
.

breaker

2. Coding Confessional

This site has been knocking around
for some time now, but
is currently
getting a lot of attention on Twitter. Got a workplace gripe
that you want to get off your chest, but fear recrimination?

Coding
Confessiona
l allows you to reveal some shameful
industry secrets or admissions anonymously. Visitors can then
absolve or condemn the confessor of their malpractice.

There’s some absolute crackers in there, which will make your
jaw drop or chuckle. Such as this one:

I almost never write comments, and when I do, they’re always
both cryptic and deceptive.

3. Click your fingers and it’ll appear (in 12
months)

This week’s Hardware You’ll Want To Predorder™  is
another gesture control system (yawn). However, rather than relying
on dodgy cameras or silly gloves,
Myo consists of a band
wrapped around the forearm that detects muscle movements.
The
promotional
video
shows users switching on music with a click
of their fingers, changing slides by swiping in mid-air and even
directing robots.

Myo

How much is actually real is unknown, but the company is already
taking $150 preorders to (supposedly) ship late 2013.

4. Nine years old, three startups

Entrepreneurs seem to be getting younger. Mark Zuckerberg was
19 when he launched Facebook in 2004, yet he’s got nothing
on
Henry
Patterson
. The nine year-old has an impressive
three ventures under his belt already. At age 7, he began selling
bags of manure for £1, before setting up his own Ebay store
containing items bought from charity shops (with parental
guidance).

Now Henry has turned his attention to sweets, as any kid
should, setting up his own children’s range Not Before Tea on his
mother’s site
Sherbetpip.
Normally a lemonade stand is enough for those wanting extra
pocket money.

5. Nude.js – Nudity detection with JavaScript [potentially
NSFW]

Winning our hastily cobbled together Project of the Week
(mostly because of its name) is this
JavaScript
implementation of a nudity scanner
. Patrick Wied,
the creator, isn’t on a censorship crusade and says the purpose of
nude.js is “to detect nudity, nothing more, nothing
less.”

It could be a useful piece of kit in child security filters
and perhaps even on social media sites. He’s keen to point out
that
nude.js is
a work in progress, with the detection rate at about 60%
currently.
For which reason we don’t recommend testing
it at work.

Image courtesy of Marjan Krebelj

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