For as long as I can remember I've been obsessed with technology and had an insatiable thirst to know everything I possibly can about the topics that interest me.
I get a great deal of joy out of solving problems and understanding how things work. It comes as no surprise then that Technology, Software Development, Mobile and Usability are the kind of topics I find captivating.
Picking apart a problem from every conceivable angle and striving to completely solve a problem is crucial in my mind. Understanding the needs of The User and keeping these at the fore throughout the software development process is also very important to me.
Most of all, I enjoy being creative just as much as focussing on the finer details.
Mukuru is a convenient, trusted, and secure international money transfer company based in Cape Town. They are one of the largest remittance companies in South Africa and have a global reach, with a focus on Zimbabwe, Malawi, Zambia, and Kenya.
Customers can send money quickly and cost-effectively across multiple channels including USSD, Mobi, Telephone, App and in person.
My main focus is on the mobile side, specifically Android, and I am tasked with the creation of APIs (both internal and external facing), applications, and reusable components.
We have a medium sized team spread out across the world, and I currently spend 40% of my time working remotely.
I have been pushing to introduce blockchain technology into the company since joining.
ViaMedia is one of the largest Wireless Application Service Providers (WASP) in South Africa. They connect directly into all the cellular networks and offer all forms of SMS billing, MMS, Web and WAP, Location Based Services, Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) technology.
I was made Technical Product Owner of the companies WAP offering after 6 months of service. I also drove the development of the companies Web and WAP advertising platforms, and engineered internal management tools that allowed the business to configure and customize new offerings and services centered around these products. I have also introduced Android application development into the workplace.
I worked closely with the C++, Java, Delphi, SQL and Infrastructure teams on technical solutions, and drove the internationalization of the company's product offerings.
I was well known for being user-centric and value-oriented, and often challenged businesses ideas and concepts from a fresh perspective. I was awarded Higher Achiever 4 years running.
This was also where I first became interested in Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies in general, and this passion has remained with me ever since.
Madame Zingara's Theatre of Dreams is a travelling dinner cirque extravaganza housed in one of the world's last remaining antique mirror tents.
I was in charge of all their IT requirements, from Website to Online Booking, VoIP, PABX and Cellular needs, Infrastructure, Point-of-Sale and all Support requirements that needed to be met.
The biggest challenge was moving location every few months ‐ this ensured that there was always a string of interesting and unique problems to solve, which is something that I really enjoy.
During my time here I also replaced a fair amount of proprietary software with open-source alternatives, travelled the country and got to meet some of the most colourful and genuine people in my life. It's a time I will always cherish and remember fondly.
Immigration Unit was a UK based Immigration company with offices in Cape Town and London. I worked at both offices. This was where I started using the command line as my primary development environment, and I haven't looked back since.
I started out as a web designer and developer at FishFinger and eventually started to also dabble in fashion, clothing and product design. The company expanded into import/export, and after some time I felt the need to get back into pure tech.
I studied computer science in High School and received a dip.comp.sci from CTi in 2002. I have completed courses in Entrepreneurship and User Experience.
Technologies & Passions
Android (native and hybrid), WAP, HTML5, Angular, Ionic, SMS, USSD, GeoLocation, XML, WURFL, DeviceAtlas ‐ I have used all these technologies and more in various combinations.
PHP, API development (REST, jSend, SOAP), database design, various frameworks (Laravel, Symphony, Kohana etc), ORM (Doctrine, Eloquent etc), node.js, go - in fact whatever is suitable for the task at hand. Some python here and there. Java too.
The command line, zsh/bash, ssh, apache, git, memcached, gulp, grunt, vulcanize, karma, jasmine, phpunit, postman, drone, travis, phantomjs, bower, npm, composer, puppet, kibana, cacti, nagios, elasticsearch, vagrant, ruckus, fabric, sql and nosql & the humble regex. In fact anything that's suitable to the task at hand. My editor of choice is vim in the terminal (with my custom .vimrc of course)
Penetration testing, black-box vulnerability detection, and general best practices. I never let a piece of software go live without a thorough test. I'm a white hat who thinks like a black hat.
UX, UI Design, User-Centric Design, HCI, Interaction Design, Multi-Channel Interaction, Multi-Platform Interaction, Mobile Usability, Responsive Design, Adaptive Design, Interface Design, Wireframing, Prototyping, Profiling and Caching for Speed ‐ I use everything at my disposal ensure delivery of a solid user experience by putting The User first.
This is an area that interests me immensely. I've been involved in the crypto scene in one form or another for a few years now. I have no doubt that it is the future of finance.
I'm using the word Bitcoin as a blanket term, and I actually mean cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology in general. The word Bitcoin is just something a layperson can understand at this point in time.