At the most recent TVNext Hack event, where developers competed for prizes in several different television tech categories, the winning “Best of Show” entry went to Twivo, a browser extension for Chrome and Firefox that blocks Twitter messages containing user-specified words. Its creator, 17-year-old Jennie Lamere, spent 10 hours creating the app after coming up with the idea the night before the event. Not only was she the only female among all the competitors — 81 in total — she was also the only developer not working in a team.
What’s the Big Idea?
Like lots of people, Lamere was tired of having her favorite TV shows — “Dance Moms” and “Pretty Little Liars,” in her case — spoiled through social media. She’s currently fine-tuning Twivo, but says a similar blocker for Facebook posts could be done. Her win at the TVNext hackathon has also put her in the spotlight at a time when the gender imbalance in computer science is still disturbingly high: Only 12 percent of graduates are women, according to the group Girls Who Code. For her part, Lamere will start at the Rochester Institute of Technology this fall, majoring in software engineering.