Because life is not one dimensional!

I’m Back

I haven’t done a post in a while and I felt that I’m letting down my one and only fan Evans Njoroge (SIDEBAR: He’s a very good tweep! follow him on twitter.com/uhusiano). So its been a whole year since I last did this, so in as much as I’ve tried to convince myself that I am, I guess I have to begin to admit that I’m not a writer. I do better with the twitter/facebook one sentence postings style, thats how lazy I am at writing. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaanyway! Much has been going on with me in the last few months I’ve been away and most of it revolves around becoming a mean web developer. Sorry sorry, I hear the uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuhhs! Still working on the wife and kids thingy. You drama queens!!! lol

The outcome of me being a mean web developer has been putting up Weddings Kenya, which aims to be the ultimate wedding resource in the country. I am also in the process of becoming a Ushahidi volunteer (my way of giving back) and still planning out a number of new projects for 2011. It all bodes well with the recent tech environment that has been enabled through the efforts of the GOK and one Mr. Bitange Ndemo. So I say to myself and to all of the geeks behind that computer “onward and upward, you web developer you…”

Over and out!

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So blogging will not be as easy as I had initially thought. After the initial verve, I have slowed down a bit but it is largely not due to any fault of mine. Between work and reading through the AJAX for Dummies book, I have barely had time to put my thoughts together. Anyway, I know that as long as I have White African’s spirit to see me through, I will hack! 😀

So let me pick up from where I left off last week. In general terms the big question was (and still is), where does Africa figure in the Web 2.0 revolution? I did a bit of thinking and talking with a few people and I have a feeling that I might have figured the answer to my quandary. I will try to tackle these questions one by one, post by post.

Where does Africa feature on the Internet? From a recent IPv6 conference, which I attended, it was noted with concern that Africa is largely behind a NAT. Explanation – The much touted exhaustion of IPv4 addresses has led to the widespread use of NAT on African networks, which misleads people into thinking that Africa figures no where as far as Internet traffic is concerned. This in turn has kept the big Internet companies from getting into this market since on paper they don’t see any economic sense for such ventures. In fact a quick sampling of the network registration statistics on Facebook, as highlighted below, will give you a clue on Internet usage in the wider African region.

Kenya – 53,192 Members
Nigeria – 84,191 Members
South Africa – 677,590 Members
Egypt – 469,624 Members

Do not get me wrong, I am not suggesting that we can compete with the likes of Europe when it comes to the amount of Internet traffic generated. What I am saying is that as it is, we have an Internet presence that would validate targeting the continent as an e-Commerce and e-Business destination. Ask google! They already have set camp in Nairobi and are in the process of localizing their services for local consumption.

I wasn’t going to write about barcamp but I thought It does deserve a mention. For those of you who were there, you will agree that this must have gotten into records as one of the most successful ICT gatherings in the city. The numbers were good, the presentations were great so the day turned out to be awesome.

Barcamp got me thinking seriously about Africas approach to ICT. Now, I might not have as many as 21 but I have questions nonetheless.

  1. Where does Africa feature on the Internet?
  2. Do we have the infrastructure to compete?
  3. Are we tech savvy enough to compete?
  4. Do we have the content to keep our own traffic local and attract traffic from outside the continent?
  5. What is the way forward and how can all this be achieved?
  6. Where am I going to figure in all this?

Since I don’t want to take my employers time (I move to enter this post as evidence to support that litigation in the future), I will give my view and answers in my next post. For now ponder on that!

I got linked… I got linked… I got a mention on White Africans post on the Nairobi barcamp! Now you may ask, whats the big deal anyway? Well, picture this; you are a television anchor then Larry King gives you a mention on his show! Yes that is exactly what this is like. White African is the kingpin of bloggers and getting a link on his site is big! Maybe I am exaggerating a bit but what the heck! I got the hook-up!

I am a Blue-Green

Let it be known that my original theme was not just a random “picky ponkie” choice. The reason I picked it is because I had to pick a blue/black theme to be my first ever WordPress theme. Which brings up the question, why blue/black? The answer is simple really. Blue, because it is my favorite color and Black, because I am very proud of my African descent.
p.s. I am a great believer in the African people despite all the doom and gloom in our continent which is the only thing highlighted by the western media. (This demands a whole post!)

Anyway, on to my original topic, what has color got to do with anything? According to Dr. Michael F. Shaughnessy there are four personality types: blues, golds, oranges and greens. In his interview with George Boelcke of Education News (ednews.org) he further states:

Blues live life through feelings, dream the impossible dream and seek to make a difference in the lives of others. They have a huge sense of intuition, love to hug and connect with people in caring and genuine ways.

Now don’t get me wrong, Dr. Shaughnessy does not necessarily say that favoring blue for a color means you have a blue personality. For example, it could be argued that I am a green since he also states that:

Greens are the scientist and engineers of the world. They live life through logic and are very calm, cool and collected. They love to learn (and teach) and will really never open their mouth or commit to anything until it’s perfect. There really isn’t a problem they don’t want to tackle – the more complex – the better. While emotional stuff makes them quite uncomfortable, they love intricate discussions, puzzles and their valued alone-time on the computer.

So then, what personality am I? blue? green? or blue-green? Since the good Dr. does not rule out the possibility of “cross-breeds”, I will label myself a blue-green. I am Loving Geek! 😀

Yes! It has been in my plans to blog since like forever. This is my fourth year of “invisible blogging” (that is what I call it because, I have written so many mental blogs, which have never seen the light of day). I cannot really explain the delay in putting “pen to paper” (in this case putting hands to keyboard), but I largely attribute it to a prolonged writers block and a misconception of what I want to achieve by blogging!

So now that my block has ended courtesy of the good people who updated the related Wikipedia page and White African, whose talk [at Barcamp Nairobi 2008] on blogging was an eye opener, the begging question for me is, why blog? Off the top of my head I can come up with a number of reasons why I should, including:

  • Its the in-thing (it has been for a while) next to facebooking!
  • I have a lot of free time at work! (ahem…)
  • I am soon getting a Blackberry/P1 which will mean a whole lot of time on the Internet.
  • Winnie said I am a good writer! (a different story altogether)
  • My big sis is an awesome writer so I’m guessing I must have that writing gene lying deep within.
  • Everyone has a story to tell! As Achieng says time and again.
  • I have visualized a time in the future where I’ll be able to compile this into an autobiography of sorts. A little money and fame never hurt anyone!

These may or may not be the reasons one should blog but they are to some extent the reasons I will blog. So here is to a long journey ahead. I hope I will not be alone in this for a man is not an Island and I love attention. 😀