Lasting impact is measured by the ability to inspire others to join the cause.  I received an email from SXSW about an article that was written about some of the work I’m doing. Written by student Ronald AngSiy. SXSW Interactive presents a series of blog posts highlighting the winners of this year’s SXSW Interactive Scholarship Program.

Great inventors don’t imagine things in the future. They imagine them in the present, and create the future.

I originally wrote this essay on Steve Jobs. An original answer? No. An original visionary? Yes. However, sometimes the most visionary people are the unknown ones, the people you don’t even realize are changing the world because they focus more on changing it than letting others know that they are the ones changing it.

In this age where people are becoming brands and brands are becoming more like people, Wilson To stands out by blending in. As a mentor in the Microsoft Student Partner program, I saw him as a friend and father figure.

However, his vision is changing the world.

To has developed a computer-based malaria test. Specifically, he uses smartphones to “digitally characterize anemia, visualize blood cell rupture and parasites, and provide three-dimensional modeling of cells through single image acquisition of low-volume blood smears by peripheral finger pricks.”

This electronic test can be used repeatedly and drastically changes the costs of diagnosing patients in seconds, rather than hours. He hopes to use this mobile platform for other medical tests as well. Lifelens is purely funded by prize money Wilson To wins from various competitions.

He’s made it to the International Finals of Microsoft’s “Imagine Cup” competition and has taken this idea to the US Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan. Oh, and he also has had an audience with President Obama.

Despite those accolades, I found all this information on sites like Businessweek and The Huffington Post. Too humble to brag of his achievements, he keeps himself working and focuses on mentoring me throughout my technological journey.

There’s an app for everything; now there’s an app for saving lives. Literally. Quite literally. Help Wilson To create the future.

Article can be found here: http://sxsw.com/node/9734

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