Ben Pasternak was sitting in class one day, bored and distracted. But instead of doodling or staring dreamily at a crush, the 15-year-old Australian invented an app.
His creation, a brain teaser game called “Impossible Rush” would go to dominate app charts worldwide, beating out big names like Tinder, Vine and Twitter.
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— smh.com.au (@smh) October 8, 2014
According to Business Insider, Pasternak -- who lives in Sydney and has been dubbed Australia’s “next Mark Zuckerberg” -- got the idea for the app during a science class and started chatting online with an American friend, Chicago teen Austin Valleskey, about his concept.
Valleskey, 15, liked Pasternak’s idea, and the two friends, who had met via the Facebook group High School Hackers, began working together on “Impossible Rush.” It reportedly took the boys only a few hours to code the simple but addictive game, which involves collecting colored balls by tapping on a rotating colored cube.
Here's a demo of the game:
New York-based social media marketer Carlos Fajardo saw potential in the boys’ app. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Pasternak and Valleskey contacted Fajardo with their idea, and he agreed to buy the app for $200. Fajardo -- who is listed as the app's developer on iTunes, while the boys are listed as creators -- then marketed the app and soon saw it explode in popularity worldwide.
The Herald writes that “Impossible Rush” peaked “at number 7 in Sweden, 16 in the U.S. and 18 in Australia, above apps such as Vine, Google, Gmail and Twitter, and has clocked up 300,000 downloads in the six weeks since it launched.”
Valleskey recently told Business Insider that topping the app charts had been a “dream” of his.
On Twitter this week, the teen marveled at his sudden fame.
"I wanna be on the cover of Forbes magazine"... close enough! pic.twitter.com/jY7fIkAES4
— Austin Valleskey (@austinjv98) October 7, 2014
According to The Australian, Pasternak is currently working on another app, called "One," which will allow users to access all their social media feeds from one place. As for Valleskey, he’s reportedly working on an interactive gesture game called "Veer."
"Everyone I tell has the attitude that there are a million-plus apps out there, [they say] 'what are the chances of your app working out? You're just a 15-year-old kid'," Pasternak told Fairfax Media, per the Herald. "But now ‘Impossible Rush’ is out, I've proven to myself -- and everyone -- that it's going to work out."