No tech stuff to talk about today. Bored and chewing a code-lock at the Hub.
So let me share some tidbits with you. These are my personal thoughts. Not the thoughts and consensus of sijui my village in Meru or of all Arsenal fans or of all XP fanatics.
No. Just mine. Mimi. Salim. Alone. Solo.
Like I always warn, if you are the type that think the ICT board are Angels, that Safaricom is baba na mama and that females are over-rated, then don’t read on. This is one of those blunt blog-posts that will spoil your day. Moving along…
With every day, we become wiser.
With every snooker, you learn to masse.
With every ICT Awarding and granting process results, you realize one thing. This is Kenya, and some things will never change. 2 things remain constant:
- The primary focus of all applicants is always the money. Never the business. The win is the END, not the MEANS to a profitable business. 2 questions beg:
- Name one winner of the Tandaa Grants last year who has a working product/business/sustainable entity from last year’s winnings. I can name a massive ZERO. But I can name a few people who have bought better watches, suits, shoez, females and cars.
- What has the ICT board done to ensure the winners are accountable and blacklisted if they fail the execution? Personally, I am not sure. I might be wrong, but seeing the same people short-listed every year, makes it clear that such benchmarks are as present and as transparent as the real purpose of Konza City.
- Same winners will always be selected. So, why even bother? Nokia had to slice the Prize money for the African Code Challenge to batches of USD 50k from USD 1M because the last winner used the money ‘kwa njia nyingine zisizoeleweka’. Sadly, the same winner, just won USD 140, 000 on the Tandaa Matching Grant. Their latest innovation, a buggy Vaadin-based AppStore that has eBuddy, OperaMini, Shark or Die and the best Kenyan Mobile App called m-Atusi.
I am not going to claim to be an expert in the field of Kimenyano or to have access to any back-stage information, but like I said in a blog-post before, we are just a country of talkers. Planners. Strategists. But no doers. Too much talk. No wonder we are number 2 on twitter. Yadda, yadda.
I got the list of the winners from @Techweez today and it is a general consensus that 90% of the winners were just tyre-kikers. Concepts. No real prototypes of working mimics of the app. And that is the the Kenyan story. Our winners are always the loudest-speaking and best-connected demagogues.
The only sensible thing I have ever heard Raila say was that we should not compare ourselves with or lie in bed in peace at night with the comfort that we are miles ahead of 5th-world countries like Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. We should better ourselves. Not benchmark our goals and achievements against chronic mediocres and under-achievers.
I am pro-meeting-of-great-minds. As long as the meetings are progressive.
A lot of my friends asked me why I did not attend the ConnectedKe 2012 conference. “What for?”, I asked. “Apart from having sweaty-balls, chilling at Shakatak and being masticated by mosquitoes bred from the 4-K Club, what more value will it add.”.
The theme and aim of ConnectedKe Conference for 2012 should have been to REVIEW what we had achieved since the last conference in 2011. Not make MORE blind plans. Not sit down all day in nipple-constricting AC temperatures and listen to plans. Oh, wait. This is Kenya. All we do is plan and talk. Sound brainy. Be told we are awesome. Then go back to work on Monday. And keep wondering why, while over 30, we are still employed.
Why should I pause from code and attend a conference where I will meet the top leeches and brain-slurpers Kenya has to offer? I might share a super-brilliant concept during a lazy afternoon at the Bustani swimming pool, then 3 months later, I see it on a bill-board, powered by BernSoft. Why?
Ok. clearly vitu mob zimenijamisha. So acha tumalize hii post na something less antagonistic.
I really pray that I get the focus and time required to build the @AngryKenyans game to completion. I really do. I want to showcase the potential of mobile coding in Kenya. A cash-camel that uses no Ads. Fuck Ads. And here is why I cringe when a mobile developer talks about Ads. 4 unique ways to make money everyday, per-user, without ads.
Tuvitu from Shimba got over 950, 000 combined downloads on the Ovi Store. Revenue generated? A massive Zero Billion Kenya Shillings.
Back to code.