Dailymail.co.uk: Meet the Australian whizz kid, 12, who's already created five apps and caught the eyes of Facebook and Apple – and he won't let his autism stand in his way

Hamish Finlayson is a 12-year-old app developer taking the tech world by stormAlready he has been noticed by some of Facebook and Apple’s top executives The young developer has autism, but uses his experience to inform others Next month he will attend the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) in India

Fiona Connor For Daily Mail Australia

He’s just 12 years old but has already created five apps, met the US Secretary of State and caught the attention of tech giants Apple and Facebook.

But Hamish Finlayson is no ordinary boy.

The young developer has autism, but uses his experience with the condition to teach other autistic children how to handle the disorder using one of his groundbreaking apps.

Hamish, from Townsville, has been coding for more than three years and is one of a growing number of genius youngsters who are fast becoming an asset for technology companies who utilise their natural ability and enthusiasm.

Hamish Finlayson (pictured) is a 12-year-old app developer taking the tech world by storm

Hamish Finlayson (pictured) is a 12-year-old app developer taking the tech world by storm

Hamish Finlayson (pictured) is a 12-year-old app developer taking the tech world by storm

Already he has been noticed by some of Facebook and Apple's top executives 

Already he has been noticed by some of Facebook and Apple's top executives 

Already he has been noticed by some of Facebook and Apple’s top executives 

Hamish’s clever App ASD and Me allows autistic children to pinpoint ways to deal with the disorder while educating them at the same time, with the help of cartoon character Triple T Turtle.

‘Autism affects about one per cent of the world’s population and their families,’ Hamish told Daily Mail Australia.

‘It’s with you for life and many people don’t understand what autism is. I don’t want to people to be afraid of people with autism just because they don’t understand it.’

The idea behind the download is that by repeating coping strategies in a game setting, people with autism are better placed to deal with real life situations.

On a daily basis Hamish struggles with understanding and handling his emotions, like many people on the spectrum. 

‘I also fidget a lot and use stress toys to keep calm.’

Hamish is determined to debunk myths around autism and showing others it will not stand his way.  

‘I want to spread awareness about autism and show people what it’s like to live with autism, and create some strategies for people to deal with the problems it creates.’

Hamish's clever App ASD (pictured) and Me allows autistic children to pinpoint ways to deal with the disorder

Hamish's clever App ASD (pictured) and Me allows autistic children to pinpoint ways to deal with the disorder

Hamish’s clever App ASD and Me (pictured) allows autistic children to pinpoint ways to deal with the disorder

The tech-savvy whizz rubbed shoulders with top American entrepreneurs at the GES 2016 attended by then US Secretary of State John Kerry

The tech-savvy whizz rubbed shoulders with top American entrepreneurs at the GES 2016 attended by then US Secretary of State John Kerry

The tech-savvy whizz rubbed shoulders with top American entrepreneurs at the GES 2016 attended by then US Secretary of State John Kerry

His other four apps have an environmental theme with more than 7,200 people are using Hamish’s apps across 54 countries.

Next month he will attend the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in India where he’ll pitch his app to investors and fellow entrepreneurs.

The event will be attended by President Donald Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, who is a guest speaker at the Hyderabad conference.

The tech-savvy whizz kid has already rubbed shoulders with top American entrepreneurs and was at the GES 2016 attended by then US Secretary of State John Kerry.

The young developer has autism, but uses his experience to inform others and has created an app to help educate others and aid people with the condition 

The young developer has autism, but uses his experience to inform others and has created an app to help educate others and aid people with the condition 

The young developer has autism, but uses his experience to inform others and has created an app to help educate others and aid people with the condition 

Following the summit Hamish was invited to the Facebook campus and was offered a FBStart grant to continue developing his app and more 

Following the summit Hamish was invited to the Facebook campus and was offered a FBStart grant to continue developing his app and more 

Following the summit Hamish was invited to the Facebook campus and was offered a FBStart grant to continue developing his app and more 

He has had a number of mentors and advice from varying business-minded successors including Sean Langton, General Manager, Strategy & Planning Enterprise Services at Bankwest, Shaan Pruden, senior director of developer partnerships at Apple, and former US Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Rick Stengel. 

Following the summit Hamish was invited to the Facebook campus and was offered a FBStart grant to continue developing his app and more.

Despite the difficulty of the skill, Hamish says it is possible for anyone to learn to code.

Hamish has rubbed shoulders with some elite entrepreneurs including Ime Archinbong, known as director of product partnerships at Facebook and a running buddy of Mark Zuckerberg's 

Hamish has rubbed shoulders with some elite entrepreneurs including Ime Archinbong, known as director of product partnerships at Facebook and a running buddy of Mark Zuckerberg's 

Hamish has rubbed shoulders with some elite entrepreneurs including Ime Archinbong, known as director of product partnerships at Facebook and a running buddy of Mark Zuckerberg’s 

The GES 2017 in India will be attended by guest speaker Ivanka Trump 

The GES 2017 in India will be attended by guest speaker Ivanka Trump 

The GES 2017 in India will be attended by guest speaker Ivanka Trump 

He joins the likes of Yuma Soerianto, who first began creating his own websites at six years old.   

The now-10-year-old met with Michelle Obama who was overjoyed to meet the young genius as well as Apple CEO Tim Cook as the youngest attendee at this year’s Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose California. 

He received a WWDC Scholarship to attend the five-day conference and got the opportunity to meet Apple CEO Tim Cook and former First Lady Michelle Obama.   

‘She was very kind, and I couldn’t believe I could meet someone who was so inspiring. 

Yuma Soerianto (pictured) from Melbourne won a scholarship to attend Apple conference earlier this year 

Yuma Soerianto (pictured) from Melbourne won a scholarship to attend Apple conference earlier this year 

Yuma Soerianto (pictured) from Melbourne won a scholarship to attend Apple conference earlier this year 

She asked me if I was the youngest person at WWDC this year, and was so amazed, she even bowed down to me,’ he told Daily Mail Australia. 

‘I showed Mr. Tim Cook my apps, he was especially amazed that I could make an app on the plane on my way to the United States. 

‘He was proud of my achievements and my skills, and couldn’t wait to see what I could do next.’

Yuma says that other kids and adults should never feel apprehensive about learning coding.

‘Coding requires perseverance, and that is what anyone can do.  

‘You also need creativity for ideas to make apps, and kids already have that. So, truly, anyone can code.’ 

The 10-year-old showcased his app developing skills to Apple CEO Tim Cook 

The 10-year-old showcased his app developing skills to Apple CEO Tim Cook 

The 10-year-old showcased his app developing skills to Apple CEO Tim Cook 

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