This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Remembering Aaron Swartz: We've Lost a Fighter

Editor's note: The day before we remember our veterans who have died to protect our freedom, we pay homage to a few business leaders who have recently passed away.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- He was dubbed an Internet prodigy. A master of the Web. The man who co-founded RSS and the popular site Reddit. His name was Aaron Swartz, and he died at the young age of 26.

Swartz, who suffered from clinical depression, was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment last January 11. He had hanged himself. He left no note and took family and close friends by total surprise.

From a young age, it was clear that Aaron was gifted. He attended private school until ninth grade, before leaving to attend classes at a local college. He was eventually admitted to Stanford University, but dropped out after a year, writing that he "didn't find it a very intellectual atmosphere, since most of the other kids seemed profoundly unconcerned with their studies."

At age 14, Swartz began to work on the RSS platform. RSS, or more commonly known as Really Simple Syndication, is an application defined as, "a way of allowing Web users to receive news headlines and updates on their browser from selected Web sites as they are published."

The RSS application is still widely used today, even though Swartz began working on it some 12 years ago. After that, he continued to develop applications and programs before his stint at Stanford.

After he decided that it wasn't for him, Swartz founded his own software company, Infogami. Eventually Infogami merged with the popular Reddit and Swartz soon became an equal owner in the company.

Not surprisingly, once Wired acquired Reddit in 2006, Swartz found office life mundane and was fired the next year.

It was then that Swartz found his true passion: Activism. He couldn't accept political corruption, which seemed to be common across the globe. After writing some well-circulated pieces and starting a few Web sites trying to combat corruption, he founded Demand Progress.

Demand Progress was an online advocacy group that gathered people on the Internet and set up a system that allowed them to contact Congress and other leaders in the United States government. Swartz used this network to spread his ideas about political corruption, reform and liberty.
1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $95.03 -2.90%
FB $116.73 7.20%
GOOG $691.02 -2.10%
TSLA $247.54 -1.60%
YHOO $36.59 -0.97%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,830.76 -210.79 -1.17%
S&P 500 2,075.81 -19.34 -0.92%
NASDAQ 4,805.2910 -57.85 -1.19%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs