Joseph Hudicka’s story is typical of most budding iPhone entrepreneurs. His idea for a software application for the phone – known as an app – is a fusion game of hockey and checkers. He successfully pitched it to investors, who shelled out thousands of dollars to an offshore software development firm. His research and development involved an army of testers and reviewers.

And his marketing efforts were tinged with his passion and enthusiasm for both hockey and technology.

But it all had to get done by 6:30 every evening. That is Joseph’s bedtime. He turned 8 years old in January.

“The most fun part was the night it came out,” said the Flemington second-grader, giggling mischievously. “I snuck out of bed and used my iPod Touch” device to check if the app had launched.

Joseph belongs to a generation that has never known a world without ubiquitous handheld and wireless technology. Experts say children like him are using such technology to control their own learning and, in turn, their own destiny. The process is pushing the boundaries of the educational status quo and could make kids everywhere smarter and more business savvy.

In Joseph’s case, his investors are “Mom and Dad.” His researchers? Fellow second-graders at a private Catholic school. And his marketing plan? Classroom show and tell.

“I firmly believe there can’t be a college on earth that can create those experiences to this level,” said Joseph’s father, Joseph Hudicka Sr., who together with his wife runs a company that makes database software for the federal government. “As entrepreneurs, we’re seeing our child experience what we’ve experienced in so many remarkable ways.”

Photo by The U.S. Army