Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- From calculators to cell phones and tablets, a Midlands company that started from the bottom has grown into a tech business aimed at addressing some of your everyday issues.
It all started in a high school math class.
"We got kinda bored in class and we decided we were gonna program some calculators to do our homework for us," said 52apps co-founder Chris Thibault.
"With a $150 calculator that's required nowadays, there's no reason to use it to add two plus two whenever we could use some of the better features," added co-founder Brendan Lee.
From that humble beginning, the high school friends created 52apps with the initial goal of creating one app a week.
"We were taking ideas from the community and people were coming in a pitching their ideas and we were selecting the cool ideas and then building the application starting Monday launching Friday," said Thibault.
The start-up is responsible for several free and paid health and education applications available across multiple platforms.
For example, FibroCite helps people understand and manage fibromyalgia. Canary allows parents to track their child's phone and receive reports on things like speeding or talking and texting while driving and smartNote helps students take, share, download notes.
The company, which is currently housed at the USC Technology Incubator, also does development work for clients as well.
"We have an application that's being used by port authorities, the navy, the department of homeland security," said Thibault.
They cannot discuss their work for the government but the pair is part of a winning competition team. They helped take the grand prize at the SPARC Hackaton in Charleston in August, adding to the successes Thibault never imagined.
"When we were sitting in algebra class programming in TI-basic, to do our homework for us, I didn't have any idea that it would reach this point," he said.
With so much already under their belts, what remains are even bigger goals.
"To be able to find something that's worth changing and be able to change it so that it make a people's lives better and it just last indefinitely," said Lee.