Byron Jenkins, also known as Code Herk, grew up in North Philadelphia in a boxing family. His father was a trainer and he spent much of his youth training with him. His background in boxing also inspired his name (Code Herk). His father’s nickname was Herk and he was known as Little Herk. He came up with his name as a way to market himself and stand out. Simply he likes to code and his name is Herk, so he came up with the name Code Herk. Even though boxing was what he grew up on, computer science has always sparked Byron’s interests. He attended Delaware Valley Charter School, which wasn’t a great school, but he had some pretty helpful teachers. He was determined to educate himself about computers and how they operated even though he had limited resources. He taught himself the program language Swift through extensive research and reading and began programming at the age of 14. He now knows 8 different program languages. Currently, Byron is in his Junior year at Temple University studying Computer Science.
The first app he created was used to help his friend get his music content out there. His latest app, which took six weeks to create and was released last Spring, is called Huelo. Huelo was originally a submission for a scholarship through Apple. Unfortunately, he was not able to meet the deadline for the submission so the app was a useful creation of his own. The game is a spinoff of the Atari game Breakout. He says he wanted to make a game that was actually challenging, but still fun. The development of this game was a learning tool for Byron as well. He learned how to handle constructive criticism and to usefully critique himself. His future plans for the game are to make it available on Android platforms as well as implement a Facebook connection.
His advice to anyone interested in developing their own app is to do extensive research and write all ideas down. Some questions that need to be asked are “What are the Pros and Cons?” and “Does it already exist?(be original)”. He also suggests to be careful of who you share your ideas with.
Byron’s ultimate goals in life are to obtain creative freedom and provide resources for others interested in the field of Computer Science. He ideally would like a good opportunity to make money and still do what he loves, whether that means working for himself or with a company. He just wants to be able to see his work out there and have a place to express his creativity. Progress and influence are his main priorities. Computer Science needs more people of color and women, specifically women of color, which he would like to provide a resource for them to have opportunities in the field.
If there is anyone interested in learning to code, computer science or have questions feel free to contact him below: