13-year-old from Saskatoon among Apple’s Swift Student Challenge winners

Drake Jordan's app Sway helps users experience Synesthesia, a natural occuriung phenomenon present in only about two to four percent of the population

Apple hosts its Swift Student Challenge annually that tasks participating youngsters globally to display their coding skills by creating a Swift Playground app project on the topic of their choice.

This year’s challenge saw a 13-year-old from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan not only be a part of the winners, but also virtually meet Apple CEO, Tim Cook.

Drake Jordan, who started coding just two years ago after being intrigued by Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference, experiences synesthesia, a perception phenomenon where the stimulation of one sense involuntarily leads to the stimulation of another, like being able to see sounds, hear colours, touch smells and more.

Synesthesia can be a combination of any human senses, including touch, sight, hearing, smell and taste. It’s worth noting that synesthesia is not a disease or a disorder. It doesn’t have an impact on an individual’s cognitive abilities and doesn’t hinder the individual’s everyday life. Household names like Beyoncé, Marilyn Monroe, Mary J. Blige, Kanye West, Nikola Tesla, Frank Ocean, and Pharrell Williams are some of the several people who experience(d) synesthesia.

To help others experience the world the way people with synesthesia see it (or hear it), Jordan developed an app called Sway on Swift Playground. Sway helps people experience synesthesia in the form of movement and colour.

What Sway does is display a colour gradient on the screen that changes according to the way you move your device, combining how we interpret motion and colour.

According to Jordan, any two senses can be linked together, and he will try to add as many combinations to his app as he can, all while refining and polishing the app before it releases on the app store for free in a few months.

We’ll be sure to check the app out when available and share more information about it on MobileSyrup.