Aditya Barot, a sophomore at Dunwoody High School, used his passion for computer science to teach himself how to build a phone app, using most of his summer to build a game and publish it.

Aditya has been invested in coding and app design from a very early age. He and his friends would often discuss their interest in the field and their plans to one day develop apps of their own, he said.

Aditya Barot (first row, second from right), displays an app he built over the summer. (Special)

He finished his first app earlier this year. Called Pixel.Jump, the app is a game where you must maneuver triangles at an accelerating speed.

Although science, technology, engineering and math programs, often called STEM, are rapidly growing at both public and private schools, Dunwoody High does not yet offer many classes that teach the skills Aditya wanted to learn, so he set out on his own.

“I would sign up for classes such as intro to digital technology or computer science, which I am taking this year, but I found that I didn’t learn much about programming other than the absolute basics,” Aditya said.

Aditya, however, did not allow that to stop him.

He began teaching himself to code and design as a freshman, often using sources such as YouTube tutorials and educational websites like Code Academy when he got stuck or needed help.

Those tools paired with his extensive background in robotics helped him successfully learn the skill by himself.

Developing Pixel.Jump took Aditya almost all summer. He started in late May, with sleepless nights and long days.

“When I really got into it, I would spend hours working each day,” he said.

Although the actual designing and building of Pixel.Jump wasn’t completely smooth sailing, the real challenge was getting it published.

His major setback was not being able to publish the app as a minor, but his parents helped him work a way around the strict guidelines and he was able to publish it on the iPhone app store.

“I’m glad I worked hard on it because, in the end, it paid off,” he said.

What’s next?
Aditya hopes to attend Georgia Institute of Technology after graduating high school. He also plans to have his own app development or design company.

“It’d be really cool to have a company of my own, where I’m in charge,” he said.

This article was written and reported by Halimah Budeir, a junior at Fulton Science Academy and a Dunwoody resident.

Editor’s Note: Through our “Standout Student” series, Reporter Newspapers showcases some of the outstanding students at our local schools. To recommend a “Standout Student” for our series, please email with information about the student and why you think he or she should be featured.