Meet UK Inspiring Juniors 2018 winner Lydia Jones, from Liverpool.
1. How did you first get into technology?
School wasn't for me so I ended up dropping out a few years back and not long after coming up with an idea for a fitness platform due to training in the gym more as a release. At the time I didn't know how to code so I spent most of the time I was homeschooled researching and participating in online courses on platforms such as Udacity, Udemy, YouTube and Codecademy.
2. Tell us about your project.
My current app HallHang is students events GPS for university halls that allows students to make the most of the space that they are paying for just like any other tenant. We provided door-2-door navigation for student events being hosted across the city. The platform is currently undergoing many changes but one is to allow students not just leverage their own space but other spaces around the city to hold events for gaming, LGBTQ, tech, sport, drinks etc. We are rolling HallHang out in other cities around the UK later this year and into 2019.
3. What do you love about technology?
What I love most is that technology has now become that advanced it removes all boundaries. Some examples of this would be years ago it was much harder to find the right people you need to speak to due to the limited communication channels, now a world of creative people can collaborate much easier and building a startup no longer includes a Computer Science or Business degree.
One of the main things I love is the ability to work from anywhere at any time and this whole movement of working on your own terms. There are so many different roles within areas of tech, I just love how creative people can now be and how more people are learning that building that idea they may have is now easier than ever before.
4. Who inspires you?
I'm a book and podcast guru and could probably name over 20 different startup founders, influencers, world leaders and others that have all done certain things to inspire me but the ultimate inspiration for me isn't Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg or Evan Spiegel even though they have all built unbelievable things. The one person that I continuously look up at is Jeff Bezos and it isn't because of his net worth but the sheer determination he's had, how he broke the big goal down and surrounded himself with the very best to disrupt retail and many areas of tech - my favourite thing being Amazon Alexa and the whole #VoiceFirst movement happening right now.
5. What is your ultimate dream for the future?
My ultimate goal is to leverage both machine learning and voice to build a company that's team works in multiple timezones tapping into other creative talent pools. I'm currently working on a machine learning platform for retail that will be launched over the coming months and I'm super excited for this.