Senior becomes “Shark Puncher”

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Senior becomes “Shark Puncher”

Micah Green

Micah Green

Micah Green

Shark Puncher was released on the App Store May 27.

By Noah Salzberg, Online Features Editor

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A typical reaction upon hearing a story about a kayaker who was chased by a shark would likely either result in laughter or fear. Senior Micah Green, however, decided to react by designing his own app, Shark Puncher, which will be available on the App Store in late May.

The game is a multiplayer racing game, where Facebook friends can race against each other in a competition to see who can “punch” the most sharks.

“It sounds silly, but after putting some more thought into the incident, I realized there was potential for a game of some sort,” Micah said. “Once my parents said that they would fund me, I quickly got to work and started designing the app.”

Coding and designing an app requires not only a great deal of time, but also an immense love for technology.

“Micah discovered his passion for technology some time in middle school,” said Jeff Green, Micah’s father. “Since then, he has taken a very meticulous approach to his work and is very motivated.”

When Green put a great amount of work into Shark Puncher but still needed more help, he enlisted the assistance of many others.

“At first, I couldn’t program well at all and had no artistic skills whatsoever,” Micah said. “My mom’s work friend recommended that I check out sites like Freelancer and Odesk.com to find programmers. When I posted the project, I was flooded with bids from developers around the world who came from places such as Silicon Valley, China and India.”

The process of developing the app and balancing schoolwork was a tough challenge for Green, as he had to go through all the legal red tape of creating a business in addition to applying for college.

“Balancing school work was very hard, considering that starting a new business takes a ton of time,” Micah said.

Green is grateful for the support not only from his family, but also his peers.

“Personally, I think that Micah is doing a great job,” said Green’s friend senior Kevin Jiang. “He is definitely working hard on Shark Puncher, and it’s a solid app. It feels like it’s programmed by professionals, and it’s fun.”

The application itself is also charitable: 25 percent of the profits from Shark Puncher will be going towards purchasing Malaria treatments and providing preventative education about the deadly disease.

“I became really passionate about Malaria after doing a project for AP Human Geography,” Micah said. “After finding out that it was the deadliest preventable disease in the world, I wondered how we could let so many people die when there are treatments out there. Malaria has a cure, and the only issue is that millions around the world do not have access to the cure. My goal with Shark Puncher is to save thousands, if not millions, of people.”

Green will be attending Cornell University next year and hopes to continue his work in the field of technology through Cornell’s unique business incubator program.

“I’m applying for a business incubator called the eLab at Cornell University,” Micah said. “I am hoping to grow the company and expand the team while there.”

In addition to creating Shark Puncher, Green was one of 30 students selected from around the country to participate in a social entrepreneurial program sponsored by the Harvard Innovation Lab and Ashoka Youth Venture, an organization dedicated to inspiring and assisting youth in their business ventures. At this program, Green and his team developed software called School Scoop, a database for all school events, and they have presented it to venture capitalists.

“Micah’s team presented School Scoop to Principal Joan Benz and the MCPS Board Of Education in hopes of getting MCPS to use the software,” Jeff said.

Green’s hard work and dedication, along with his passion for technology, are gaining admiration from not only his parents and peers, but also from international entrepreneurial programs.

“I am very proud of Micah’s drive, motivation, creativity and his passion for success,” Jeff said. “I am and will continue to be 100 percent behind him in his goals as an entrepreneur.”