originally published 18 May 2020, 1:00 am EDT By Alec G. Tech https://www.techtimes.com/articles/249696/20200518/viral-17-year-old-inventor-of-covid-19-tracking-app-turns-down-8-million-to-keep-site-ad-free.htmTimes
After turning down 8-million dollar offer to keep his coronavirus tracker ad-free, the 17-year-old boy is now an internet sensation.
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What’s Made Him Decide To Keep The App Ad-Free
Avi Schiffmann,17, is known as the inventor of the most visited coronavirus tracking app in the world. He used this project as a good excuse to procrastinate on school work, saying that the app has taken “100% of his time.” Schiffmann is indeed proud of his project. However, he doesn’t want to become a model or wants to make a name for himself during the pandemic that is currently spreading across the world.
The coronavirus pandemic looks like it’s not going to be over anytime soon, and Schiffmann is working hard to update his tracking app until the end continuously. Governments and people all around are now using his app to get updates about the coronavirus around the globe.
Once the pandemic is finally over, he’s planning to shut down his servers and make a page that would compare COVID-19 to the other deadly virus, SARS, and Spanish flu.
The reason for the comparison is that he thinks that it can be used as a historical outlook on the coronavirus for people to use his studies for future virus and pandemics around the globe, which will be a huge help to scientists and researchers given the statistics his servers are continually pushing out.
Schiffmann is also planning to update his app to add more features and keep it ad-free for the entirety of the time to make it quick, accessible, and clutter-free for everyone to use.
How Does The App Work?
Schiffman created an app–a project he has spent most of his time–is capable of getting information about the deadly coronavirus from sources such as WHO, CDC, and other government sites. The app shows worldwide infections, deaths, recovery rates, and rates of change.
The site offers new features you can use, like the new survival rate calculator. The site also contains infections broken down in map-view and pages with necessary information about the novel coronavirus. Not to mention tips for hygiene and several symptoms that are now being associated with COVID-19.
Schiffmann said, “In the future, I hope pressure is on the WHO” to make a tool like this: “The responsibility shouldn’t be on some random kid, but it’s obvious that people want to know the statistics.”
Schiffmann has said that the time consumed by this app has come at a price for his health by saying that he had to stay up for 50 hours straight. He also estimates that he has been working on the app for over a hundred hours already by saying, “It’s taken over my life,” but didn’t wait to add that he will “gladly take on the pressure.”
Plans for the Young Inventor
Despite people telling him that turning down eight million dollars would be a decision he would regret in the future, he said, “I’m only 17, I don’t need $US8 million… I don’t want to be a profiteer.”
He even said that he has gotten job offers, including one from Microsoft, but is not interested in them for now but said, “Now I know a ton of VCs and investors… if I started a company tomorrow, they’d at least read my business plan.”
Schiffmann’s dream connection would be from Bill Gates, and he’s especially interested in talking about the crossroads of public health and technology. So Mr. Gates, if you happen to hear about this kid, make sure to give him a ring.