A community of optimists hosted by Melinda French Gates

Emma Yang (based in New York City) is a 3-time Carnegie Hall Performer, MIT-Solver, TEDx Speaker, and the Founder of Timeless, a mobile app that empowers Alzheimer’s or Dementia patients stay engaged and connected to loved ones. Since its inception in 2016, Timeless has garnered many awards and media attention around the world, including Fast Company, Inc. Magazine, BBC, CBS, CGTN America. In 2017, Timeless was selected as the winner of the MIT-Solve Brain Health Challenge. Emma was designated as one of the 38 MIT-Solvers out of nearly 1,000 teams from 103 countries. In 2018, Timeless was named the Grand Prize Winner of the Women Startup Challenge hosted by Women Who Tech and Google. Most recently, Timeless was the recipient of Bayer Foundations' Aspirin Social Innovation Award.

An avid coder, Emma is passionate about Computer Science, Music, History, and Languages. In 2015, Emma won first place in the US and second place globally in Technovation Challenge, a global technology entrepreneurship competition for girls, out of 400 teams from more than 60 countries. In 2016, Emma was named one of New York’s 10 Under 20 Young Innovators to Watch and Crain’s New York’s 20 Under 20. In 2017, Emma was selected as one of the 100 Faces of Impact globally. In 2019, Emma was selected as one of the thirty World Science Scholars in the world.

Emma excels academically and is a Davidson Young Scholar, a member of Johns Hopkins University Julian C. Stanley Study of Exceptional Talent (SET), and the youngest ever mentee to enter Wolfram Research’s Mentorship Program. In 2016, Emma was the youngest participant of the White House’s Opportunity Project, representing Wolfram Research in bringing the power of the Wolfram Language to solve problems using Open Data.

A frequent panelist and keynote speaker at national and international forums, Emma recently spoke at the Alibaba Entrepreneurship Fund Jumpstarter Conference in Hong Kong, World Mobile Congress 2019 at Barcelona, Asian American Community Development Conference, TEDxFoggyBottom, Talks at Google, Misk Talk, Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai, and Women Who Code Conference to name a few. Aside from her school and entrepreneurship life, Emma is also a contributing writer for Quiet Revolution’s Quiet Diaries, a space for young voices to post their perspectives on life.

Born in Hong Kong, fluent in English, Chinese, and learning Latin and French, Emma’s goal is to speak as many languages as possible. In her free time, Emma enjoys listening to podcasts, music, reading, biking, and going to the movies.


What inspires you to do the work you do?

I am inspired by how technology can empower anyone to make a change. When I began creating the idea behind Timeless, I was a middle school student who wanted to help her grandmother with her daily life. My passion for coding and technology allowed me to amplify the impact my pursuit for a solution could have. I am driven by the fact that Timeless has the potential to allow me to help benefit Alzheimer’s patients around the world.

I am also inspired by the growing number of young people and girls leading in their respective fields, whether it be in STEM or otherwise. Even in the last few years, I’ve seen a growing interest from my peers in pursuing STEM fields in their education and careers, and more and more young people standing up for what they believe in and effecting a change. It encourages me to continue being a young girl pursuing technology and aspiring to realize innovation.

What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the fact that, as a girl and a young person, I have been able to take an idea and make it into a reality. I wanted to develop an app to help my grandmother. The result was a solution that has the potential to help millions of Alzheimer’s patients and their families around the world—Timeless.

On Sunday afternoons, you can find me...

Fiddling with a film camera, working on machine learning/tech/interesting-to-me projects, and probably toiling through a paper for school.