When you think of Dong Nguyen, you think of the game developer that trolled the world with the infamous Flappy Bird and its use of a quirk in human psychology to drive popularity, addiction and insane profit. At one point, the phenomenon got so out of hand that Nguyen hastily pulled Flappy Bird from all app outlets, leaving users to grab it from third party sources and some enterprising players to sell devices with the game installed for many times their worth to those who didn’t know they could get the game from other sources. He’s now busy with other games, such as the notoriously difficult Swing Copters, which just got a sequel last week. Thus far, he hasn’t faced down a repeat of the Flappy Bird fiasco, choosing to no longer use his genius for evil.
Just yesterday, Nguyen had a chat with Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google under Alphabet as of October. Pichai, a visionary himself, could be seen chatting animatedly with the developer, both likely picking each others’ brains for ways to spur even more creativity. The two shared some drinks on the backdrop of a busy street in Hanoi, where Pichai noted on Twitter, “…amazing where next great developer can come from”. Gnuyen took to Twitter himself to honor their meeting, having to say of Pichai, “Mr @sundarpichai is a nice and humble gentleman, like most Indian people I met before.” Clearly, he was humbled by their meeting, also saying, “Wow, it was a great honor to me. Today I met Mr @sundarpichai CEO of the most powerful internet company @google.” What the two discussed was not disclosed, of course, but such a meeting of great minds, each powerful in their own way, could only have borne good things.
While Pichai was in the area, he visited a cafe to speak to around 200 entrepreneurs in the area, stating that Vietnam should be a very successful place for startups in the mobile space, given the high internet usage and entrepreneurial spirit of the area. His speech lit a fire in the bellies of many an upstart programmer, presumably including Nguyen.