Pete Cashmore carries a quiet sense of urgency wherever he goes, despite his easygoing demeanor. As founder of the influential technology blog Mashable, the 25-year-old has been labeled everything from a tech wunderkind to one of the U.K.’s “Britons of the Year” in 2010. But the accolades do not impress him. Cashmore sees success as an ever-moving target, which drives his compulsion to be “on top of everything all the time.”
Growing up in the rural village of Banchory, just outside of Aberdeen, Scotland, the self-described geek was a sickly child who befriended the Internet as a bedside companion. Missing too much high school to graduate with his peers, he earned his diploma two years later– an early example, he says, of his tendency to be “ridiculously persistent.”
Intrigued by the Web and its democratizing power, Cashmore opted out of college and launched Mashable at 19. He started the blog in an effort to decipher technology for a mainstream audience in 2005. Today the 44-employee company, with offices in New York and San Francisco, draws more than 12.5 million unique visitors to its site every month.