By Sean Gellen,
Junior Liam Schroth discovered he had a knack for computers and coding at a young age, and taught himself everything he knows.
“My interest in computers and tinkering was born from boredom and eventually I realized that I was learning something useful and that motivated me to keep digging deeper,” Schroth said.
Schroth first got into coding when he messed around with a game he played and looked through its files.
“I think I just wanted to check something in the program’s files and found that I understood how the game was written,” he explained.
Schroth found YouTube videos of people doing the same things that he was doing on the computer, and that made him even more proud of what he had been working on.
“I sometimes spend afternoons tinkering with stuff rather than doing homework, kind of like a distraction from school,” he said.
Last Christmas, Schroth made his own computer from parts he got. He put the parts together in four hours, but didn’t realize that a CPU pin was bent until the next morning, when he fixed it by prodding at it with a tack for 20 minutes.
Schroth’s extensive knowledge about computers and coding led him to an online community of people he has known for two years now. The group live-streamed their play of the popular game franchise “Halo.”
“They set the example by streaming ‘Halo’ and that made me want to be like them and show them what I was capable of. They walked me through how to set my stream up and it soon became my hobby,” Schroth said.
When Schroth first started streaming, he loved the idea of having lots of followers and hundreds of people watching him at a time, but as he started to stream more and more he understood how the community behaved.
“I realized that having hundreds of people watching me wasn’t what I wanted, so I catered to just hanging out with friends while I stream and relax,” Schroth said.
Schroth currently holds the world record for fastest run-through of the “Halo” campaign, and is constantly streaming his attempts at various other world records in the game.
He wants to use the skills he has taught himself to find a job in which he can help other people with their computer problems.
“I’d like to work in an environment where I feel valued for my knowledge and can come home every day knowing that I helped people and relieved them from stress,” Schroth said.