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Nick D'Aloisio did not have a typical 17th birthday: instead of celebrating with friends and family, he was busy launching the second edition of his popular iPhone app, Summly. While most 17-year-olds are worried about SATs and prom, D'Aloisio has kept busy by creating a news summarization app with over $1 million in financial backing.

Summly uses an algorithm to summarize news stories from the largest news organizations. The summaries are designed to fit a mobile screen perfectly.

"We worked very hard to create the user interface," D'Aloisio tells The Daily Ticker, "but equally, the technology is very robust?we've hired the best people in the world to create this algorithm that can take any news article, determine whether or not it's summarizable, and then produce a coherent paragraph of text automatically with no human intervention that's very scalable."

When D'Aloisio says he's hired the best people for the job, he isn't exaggerating. Summly works closely with the Stanford Research Institute to create the summary technology behind the program. SRI International also owns a small share in the company.

Summly has also partnered with News Corp. (NWS) in order to summarize articles that are normally behind a pay wall. D'Aloisio insists that other news organizations are also interested in Summly and that his application doesn't cannibalize traffic but instead drives interested parties to the news Web site.

"We're driving traffic, we're increasing discoverability of their content, and most importantly we're making it all look pretty and beautiful," explains D'Aloisio.

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i love to see young minds doing amazing things, always makes you think about what is to come in the future.

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I hate to see young minds doing amazing things, always makes me realise how much I suck.

:laugh:

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Pretty AND beautiful? Where do I sign up?

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I hate to see young minds doing amazing things, always makes me realise how much I suck.

:laugh:

This is what I was about to say! I'm like "man, I didn't do anything cool like that, and now it's too late" :laugh:

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I use Pulse but it's not as clean and slick as a lot of people say it is. It would be good if this app gets onto Google Play so I can give it a whirl.

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I've always wanted friends my age who could code with me at all. :/

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Hmm.... looks pretty nice, but I don't have an iPhone to try it out. From just the looks of it, I'd say it looks a little over designed. A little too much eye candy and not enough content, but I'd have to play with it to know for sure. There are a lot of alternatives out there, but to be built by a 17 year old is quite impressive. At 17 I was writing apps to make the mouse bounce around the screen to screw with my CS teacher. Makes me feel pretty useless now, haha. I signed up for the Android notification so I'll try it out when it hits that platform. I suspect the higher screen resolution will lend itself well to the app's ability to display the eye candy alongside the content better.

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