Showing posts from February, 2023

Why tech startups are important to Trinidad and Tobago?

I think this is an important question that we need to be asking. I think the Ministry of Digital Transformation and the government should be answering this question also. We need to have a conversation around this. We need to have time, effort and resources put towards the local tech startup ecosystem. It is in the interest of the private sector as well. Startup culture is better suited to some. An avenue for some of our bright minds to thrive. I can relate to this. When I worked for myself I was more happy. Some persons are just wired differently. There is no one shoe that fits all. This is the information era and we are working towards a digital economy. Technology was seen as a key component of our roadmap to recovery planning following the pandemic. Nirad Tewarie in his opening remarks at Stories from Tech Startups has said that, "why are tech start-ups so important? It’s because countries and cities that have invested in tech start-ups have witnessed a major tech revolution

My Idea - MASALA - Message Alert System At Location App

I have this idea for a message alert system. It will consist of posters and subscribers. Posters could be WASA, TTEC, TTPS, FLOW, etc. Subscribers would be the public. We would be able to set up locations like work, home, current location and receive targetted alerts based on the locations we have setup. We can even setup times when we do not want to be disturbed. Flow for example could send out an alert to all subscribers in Cunupia that there is an outage and subsequently when internet has been restored and to restart your router for example. We can customise what type of alerts we want, sms, email, app or automated phone call.  At the core this might not be a novel idea. I have not seen it around. This might turn out like a food delivery app where there can be many. What would make masala different is how well it is developed, unique features, the market and use cases it covers, how well I can market it, etc. What do you think of this idea? Share with me in the comments below.

Digital Government in Trinidad and Tobago

What is digital government? Digital government is the use of digital technologies to deliver government services, information, and processes to citizens, businesses, and other government agencies. You will also hear the terms egovernment, digital nation, digital-first government and digitally enabled government in the discourse. For all this to work, widespread digital literacy is needed. We have to ensure that vulnerabled groups are not left out. Trinidad ranks poorly in the UN 2022 egovernment index at 93. This index is a composite measure of three important dimensions of egovernment which are provision of online services, telecommunication connectivity and human capacity. We have a lot of work to do. We need all hands on deck. In our politics there is much talk about constitutional reform. In my thinking we should develop a system of politics that is modern and suited to us and move away from the one we inherited. The government is the largest employer and manages huge budgets. So m

Being lucky and privileged

I have had some amount of luck in my life. I have had some amount of privilege also. We all do. Some persons more than others. We are all dealt different hands in life. I think it is important to recognise this. We should think about this and maybe we should not be so hard on others. We should be willing to help others. We should pay it forward. Lets provide benefits for others in the same way we benefitted in one way or the other. Be humble. Be kind. Everyone is struggling with things we can't see and we can see. Be open to calls for equity. What is luck? One dictionary definition of luck is, the force that causes things, especially good things, to happen to you by chance and not as a result of your own efforts or abilities. What is privilege? One dictionary definition of privilege is, an advantage that only one person or group of people has, usually because of their position or because they are rich. So while we recognise luck and privilege so that we are humble, kind and helpf

Being persistent and standing up for yourself

Life is tough. The struggle is real. I have argued with persons before. Getting older I dont argue with persons anymore, I just ignore and move on. There is no right way, it is just a choice. There is advantage and disadvantage to everything. I do feel passionate about certain topics and I have taken stubborn positions before. Persons may not like you for this but persons will find any excuse not to like you anyways. Nonetheless, I am open to constructive criticism. I am learning everyday. I came across this quote online and I wanted to blog about being persistent. "It's not that I’m so smart, it's just that I stay with problems longer," from Albert Einstein. There are benefits to being persistent. I am a coder and techie so I know about troubleshooting and debugging. Trying and trying until the problem is solved. As a blogger I often have my questions ignored especially in the public sector but I still do. It is my duty and at the end of the day it cannot be said tha

Celebrating Steve Jobs

I have never owned an Apple device. Hopefully in the future that changes. The main reason? I just dont have the money for those. But that does not stop me from admiring Steve Jobs. Apple and Samsung are the leading smartphone brands in Trinidad. Apple is a hugely successful company and Steve Jobs has left a legacy. One of my favorite quotes from Steve Jobs is "Everybody should learn to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think." I have been calling for tech and coding to be made mandatory in our schools for the longest time, just like Maths and English. Steve Jobs was born on the 24th February 1955 and left us in 2011 at the age of 56. Did you know that his middle name was Paul? He cofounded Apple with Steve Wozniak. His father was Syrian and his mother was German-American. He was adopted shortly after his birth. According to what I am reading on wikipedia, growing up Steve had difficulty making friends with children his own age and was seen by his classmates as

Data is the new oil

Trinidad and Tobago has been an oil and gas economy for many years so we can relate to the terminology and comparison. The quote's origin is from 2006 by Clive Humby and was popularised in 2017 when the Economist published the report "The world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data". I emailed the Ministry of Digital Transformation and asked, "What does "data is the new oil" mean to you and what does it mean for Trinidad and Tobago and how do we capitalise on this?" I think the country needs to answer these questions. It is an old term but then I will hear that we in Trinidad are usually playing catch up and so here I am today trying to get some discussion around this. When we talk about data we are talking about open data, big data, IoT, AI and data analytics among other things. We should be making use of these as we try to diversify away from oil and gas. Data analytics can help with generating business and revenue. We need data driven

Esports in Trinidad and Tobago

What is esports? Put simply esports is competitive video gaming. Usually there are huge sums of monies involved in the big tournaments. There are even teams and leagues much like football and other big sports. Streaming platforms like Twitch bring the action to huge audiences. Let me point to some of the things that are happening in Trinidad and the region in the esports space. Jamaica seems to be taking the lead and has been long standing in this space and there is the Jamaica eSports Initiative . According to their website they set out to engage youth by developing competitive video game skills, encouraging fair play, building team spirit and establishing Jamaica as a recognized member of the global esports community. Bahamas and Guadaloupe are also making moves. A memorandum of understanding had been signed between 12 Caribbean and Latin American Esports Federations to form the Caribbean Esports Federations Alliance in 2020. I have not found more than this MOU signing. Sadly Trinida

Words have power

This is why I write. I am. I want. I can make a difference. I wanted to write a blog post on this topic since before and was prompted to do it tonight when I stumbled upon Messiah Ramkissoon's message - words have power.  Think about reading a good book. How does that make you feel and think and act. I like to share mostly the positive. There is more than enough of the negative being shared. I am a poet also and I will condense what I would have written in a blog post into a poem instead. Words have power By Hassan Voyeau I can make a difference This is my deliverance My beautiful mind is speaking Positive actions I am seeking I will use my words wisely Let the world live nicely

Technology and Carnival

It is Carnival Monday here in Trinidad. Disappointed that the doubles shop was not open this morning. Carnival is on my mind. Technology is on my mind. Trinidad is on my mind. How do we use technology to make carnival better? Some persons think carnival is a waste of money. I think we all have indulgences so we should not be pointing fingers. My indulgence is ordering food and spending time on social media. I am not going to dictate others entertainment choices. That being said I do think that carnival should be made profitable for the country and technology can help. Firstly we need to use social media, apps, websites, live streaming and other tech to market and sell carnival to the rest of the world. We should be educating partners in carnival on available tech. We can have competitions to crowd source ideas. We should be studying carnival to determine the pain points and problems. We should involve our local content creators and influencers. Develop case studies that others can lear

Teching out loud

It is the Carnival long weekend here in Trinidad and Tobago. I am here relaxing in the quiet of Warrenville thinking. A bunch of things. I say let me start a blog post and just write what comes to mind. A sort of thinking out loud. First on my mind is the dearth of local tech content creators. I get a big smile whenever I come across any local tech content. If you know of any Trinidad and Caribbean tech bloggers or tech youtubers please please share with me. Maybe the next MKBHD will come from the Caribbean. Maybe the next Steve Jobs will come from the Caribbean. I want to see and hear us. Next I am thinking about some current affairs in the local tech space. Starlink application is waiting on the minister's approval. What ever happened to the 3rd mobile operator license? Waiting on TSTT to launch paypr. I thought Digicel would have launched an ewallet first . I dont know why they chose that name but I would have chosen something else. If you have local tech news and know of things