Bengaluru: Time magazine has named Indian-American teenager Gitanjali Rao as the first-ever 'Kid of the Year' for her 'astonishing work' using technology to tackle issues ranging from cyber-bullying to water contamination.

Speaking about the young inventor, Time magazine wrote, 'The world belongs to those who shape it. And however uncertain that world may feel at a given moment, the reassuring reality seems to be that each new generation produces more of what these kids have already achieved positive impact, in all sizes.'

Rao developed a phone and Web tool named Kindly, which uses artificial intelligence technology to detect possible early signs of cyberbullying.

Describing how Kindly works, Rao told Time magazine, "You type in a word or phrase, and it's able to pick it up if it's bullying, and it gives you the option to edit it or send it the way it is. The goal is not to punish. As a teenager, I know teenagers tend to lash out sometimes. Instead, it gives you the chance to rethink what you're saying so that you know what to do next time around."

"My goal has really shifted not only from creating my own devices to solve the world's problems, but inspiring others to do the same as well. Because, from personal experience, it's not easy when you don't see anyone else like you. So I really want to put out that message: If I can do it, you can do it, and anyone can do it."

The 15-year-old was last year named in the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. At the age of 12, Rao earned the honour of America's Top Young Scientist for creating a sensor that detects lead in water faster than other techniques that were currently in use. The 3d-printed device named Tethys allowing individuals to test water safety whenever needed.