Two years ago, Sara Winter’s nephew got in a skirmish at recess and was very upset. Winter suggested that the boy, who is on the autism spectrum, write a note to his parents on her Blackberry to tell them what he was feeling.

Astounded by the way he was able to express himself, Winter began searching for software that could help him do so more. Finding none, she eventually created a social networking-style interface for kids on the spectrum called Squag.