One of the fastest developing components of Harlem Week is the emphasis on technology and the ?hackathon? forum initiated by Clayton Banks, the founder of Silicon Harlem.? What Banks has been doing for the last several years is part of a surge from young Black Americans in the digital universe.
Banks and Silicon Harlem were not cited in a recent article in the New York Times about the almost invisibility of Blacks in tech economy, and as web and app designers, but others were, including Jason Young?s Hidden Genius Project, which in many ways mirrors the work that Banks is doing in Harlem.
The Oakland, California-based Hidden Genius Project was launched two years ago and has introduced hundreds of aspiring young men to the tech industry, preparing them as computer programmers and future entrepreneurs.? ?We are helping these young men to understand who they are and what they?re capable of,? Young told the Times.? ?We?re giving them a pathway and putting them on it.?
It is down a similar path that Banks has been guiding countless young men and women in metropolitan New York in teaching sessions and in forums to meet some of the leading engineers and innovators in technology.? The overarching goal, Banks stressed during a recent Harlem Week event, ?is to galvanize people to embrace technology and innovation as a means to economic prosperity.?
That aim and others will be part of the agenda at the Silicon Harlem Annual Technology Conference on Friday, Oct. 16, from 8:30am to 6pm, at the MIST in Harlem, which is located at 46 W. 116th Street.