Author Archive for Maverick Dickson

Making Gaming Fandom Interactive: Matt Salsamendi

Every fan wants to interact with their celebrity. When it comes to the (admittedly) geeky world of gaming, this holds especially true. Expert gamers are known for their large followings in gaming, as hundreds or even thousands of fans live stream their games. But as their fan base grows, interaction (through live chat and other similar interactions) becomes harder, and disillusioned fans leave gamers’ fan bases.

Enter Matt Salsamendi, an 19 year old CEO of Beam, a company which provides the interaction fans need with their gamer celebrities. Now fans can provide warnings, obstacles, and items to the gamer as they play, provide relevant, fun interaction with the gamer as they play.

Matt is really excited about the community that Beam helps to create. “Our platform is fundamentally social, and we’ve put substantial focus into creating a vibrant and connected community” Salsamendi said.

Beam was purchased by Microsoft in August of last year to integrate more effectively into the XBox gaming system. Salsamendi appeared excited for the change and is looking forward to seeing Beam grow.

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Local News by Your Neighbors: John Meyer

The news has never become more accessible, as John Meyer’s revolutionary way of reporting news catches fire in big cities around the United States.

John Meyer has created Fresco News, a news company which buys footage from local people who take photos or videos of local events. People take the photos or videos in the Fresco News app, and are the footage is then reviewed and the app user is compensated.

The Fresco app turns anyone into a journalist, and John Meyer says he hopes this creates more transparency in the news industry. With many people submitting footage of the same event, multiple viewpoints are shown, offsetting any bias the footage may have been framed to display.

At age 21, John Meyer has contracts with the local Fox News stations in several big cities, and has raised millions of dollars in Venture Capital funding for his business.

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Power Through Heat: Ann Makosinski

Sometimes genius is found in re-creating everyday tools. For Ann Makosinski, that is exactly what she did. The founder of Makotronics Enterprises, Ann Makosinski has created the Hollow Flashlight and eDrink. The Hollow Flashlight is a Flashlight which runs off of the power of your hand, and the eDrink is a mug which uses heat from the cup to create power.

Ann discusses how she loves to inspire others through talking about her achievements. At the same time, she is not set on her inventions, but is still exploring what she wants to do in life. At age 20, she has time.

Social Good Through Green Energy – Gabriel Mesa

Gabriel Mesa is unique. Not because he is an entrepreneur. Not because he has invented a biodegradable battery. But because he has done all of those things, and more, at the age of fifteen.

Gabriel Mesa is the founder of Mesa Foundry, a company with the goal of developing technology for the betterment of society. As of now, they are developing three technologies: an environmentally friendly green battery, a shoe insert which helps treat diabetic neuropathy, and a magnetic collar to treat sleep apnea.

Gabriel Mesa is an incredible serial entrepreneur, and at the age of fifteen, shows incredible promise to better the world. He currently serves on the Board of Directors at the Connecticut Invention Convention, and he is only a Junior in high school!

A Safer Safety for Guns

There are 1.7 million homes with children and unlocked firearms. Every 30 minutes, there is a shooting of teens or children. Gun safety is a serious issue, but gun use is still widespread. Kai Kloepfer, 19, is passionate about preventing gun violence, and that is why he developed Biofire Technologies: a company which embeds fingerprint scanners into the handles of guns.

Here, Kai Kloepfer has connected two things which seem to be contradictory: safety, and guns. Guns are generally seen as a dangerous, destructive tool; in a word, unsafe. This is seen in the many efforts which have been made to make guns safer: putting a safety on guns, gun-training, locks, increasing the costs of ammunition, and more, and yet people are still getting hurt.

Kai sees that guns need a fundamental change, a change which requires responsibility. That is why he created Biofire Technologies, which creates guns with a fingerprint scanner built into the handle, to ensure that the gun is only used by people who have been scanned into the gun’s fingerprint ID system.

The potential of this technology is tremendous. There is no fear of children finding your gun and hurting themselves. It takes away a lot of the incentive for thieves to steal a gun, as they will be unable to use it. You can know that your gun is only being used by people you trust.

This technology will not eliminate gun violence, but it is a big step in that direction. This technology fundamentally changes how guns will be used by people in the industry, by requiring safety to be considered with every use.


Biofire Technologies:

Forbes Profile: Kai Kloepfer:


Aditya Argawalla: Innovation In India

Aditya Agarwalla- Co-Founder of Kisan Network

Kisan Marketplace is an online marketplace connected to farmers in India through a mobile phone app. The farmers use the app to sell their crops to buyers. This system generally makes things cheaper for both the farmers and the buyers, because it cuts out the middlemen and geography which limits them in India.

This business is unique due to the new rise of cheap smartphones in India. Until recently, smartphones were not commonly available to people in India. But with this recent rise, has come a great opportunity to use technology to help the farmers more efficiently deliver their crops to sellers. Aditya Agarwalla 22, dropped out of Princeton University to start this business with his father, a farmer in India. They have a simple app, which farmers download onto their smartphones, and it connects them with a vast marketplace of buyers, with Kisan Network acting as the middleman connecting the two.

Aditya Agarwalla saw a need to sell crops more efficiently for farmers. He tapped into the technology, which at that point was a relatively unexploited field. As the first innovators in this market, the Kisan Network’s success has been remarkable. They have moved over one million pounds of crops in under one year.