Internet bandwidth has being my major problem since I decided probably six years ago to venture into software and web development. Internet bandwidth in Africa is sold exactly at the same rate as phone credit vouchers. It is so expensive. There is no special package for developers who consume huge amount of data. This telecommunication companies forget that the internet possess a huge amount of informative data that can be used as a powerful tool for boosting economic growth and poverty reduction.
I personally turned down a lot of internship and job offers when I came home for the long vacation and I have learnt so much and earned so much recognition for a small I.T start-up Oasis Websoft, I created exactly a year ago. I am currently changing from being just a developer into a great business man.
Every day I meet great techies who work for huge tech companies but they would have being better off as entrepreneurs building great technologies for Africa. You don’t have to blame them so much; this is Africa where women would hardly marry guys who do not have financial security.
An African developer tries to play all the roles in a company from being the CEO to the company’s publicist. Instead of focusing on one thing and mastering the art. He spends his time mastering all the aspects of a company. It is sometimes good but it comes with its own banes.
It is also great for a developer to understand all the roles but it will be best if he can focus on one lead role and be a master of it. So in one start up we could have a developer, user interface designer, two top coders and one marketing guy J
Bottom line: These guys are less than half-baked and cannot do productive work.
Those who get jobs afterwards land more technical jobs like computer administrators, hardware jobs and so on. Instead utilizing the methodologies they learnt in programming and so on. Companies who hire them for such job do not realize that these guys can actually build software to make their work a lot easy. It time for Africans to believe that software is actually something we can create for ourselves.
It is great to participate in code competitions and hackerthons to test your coding skills but it is a different ball game if you want to build kick-ass technology to solve real life African problems and make money along the way.
It is also high time our environment start to stand firmly behind young African men and women developers who are always up at dawn working on something they believe in. It is not enough to congratulate them vocally of their achievements, it will be right if you can support them with your resources be it financially, intellectually, skills set and much more.
</ Raindolf >
The Agonies of an African Programmer – Gregg Pascal Zachary