Technology in Our Own Words: Dynamic, Flexible, and Open for Everyone – A Collab with Princess Mbamalu.

The idea of technology not only being for exceptionally smart, A+ students, is one that has been existing all along, but hasn’t been emphasized enough, I daresay. If technology was just for really smart people, it would become boring, and lose the zest and flexibility that makes it such a desirable career field.

I collaborated with Princess Mbamalu, on such an interesting topic to let you know that you don’t really need much, other than the primary passion for solving world or community problems and creativity, to begin in technology.

In this writing collaboration, we define technology from our viewpoints, and show how adaptable and inclusive it really is.

Technology in Our Own Words.

When defined plainly, technology is the science of the application of knowledge to practical purposes. It borders a wide range of fields like computer hardware, software development, data storage and management, networking, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence.

But Princess defines technology this way:
Technology is about solving problems, creating changes, and making a world of difference through various technological aspects.

And for Vanessa:
Technology means a change in mindset, a new approach towards things that have already been. Technology means looking at things from a different angle, using creativity to think up ways to solve a problem and make change.

It’s important as techies, and as anyone looking to venture into the tech field, to have your own personal definition of technology based on your individual perspective and how tech and its branches have impacted you. Because when you do that, it gives you a better understanding of it, how flexible it is, and all the amazing things that can be achieved through it.

A Little about How We Began and How Tech Has Made Us Better.

From Vanessa’s perspective:
I wouldn’t exactly call myself a math-wiz, or someone who is exceptionally good in maths. And this was one factor that made me hesitate before going into tech. If you’ve ever come across one of Google’s search suggestions: ‘Does coding require math?’, know that I’m one of those that made that search!

I was afraid that I’d get stuck along the way when the advanced part of programming came up, but the truth of the matter is that although programming does make use of math concepts and operations, it isn’t too far from the maths we learn in school. And even if you were terrible at maths in school, your boldness to take up the challenge determines how passionate you are to make change and solve problems.

And from Princess’:
I got into technology first because of my love of cool technological devices and my quest for more knowledge. As I grew older, I came to a realization that there is a lot more I can do and achieve in the tech industry. I became very much interested when my Technovation teammate and I took up solving one of Africa’s biggest health problems. The process we took in solving the problem made me understand more about tech and improved many aspects of my personal growth.

Tech has absolutely changed my life (I will always testify). I can write a book about how tech has changed and is still changing my life, especially in areas of my confidence, writing skills and wealth of knowledge, time management, and the shocking opportunities it has brought my way.

Technology exists to make us better and solve problems.

Technology is all about solving community or world problems. It’s not just about building cool stuff or coding up great apps that no one asked for. All the big names in tech today, solved problems – some problems they solved, people didn’t even know existed, neither did they know that they needed to be solved.

From Tim Berners Lee, creator of the world wide web, who solved the problem of the inability of people to interact with each other and with machines for information sharing at the global level, to Gladys Mae West, the woman who invented GPS, and solved the problem of the inability to exactly pinpoint the location of something on the Earth’s surface. The big and upcoming names in tech solved and are solving problems existing in their communities and in the world. And that is the purpose of technology.

Coding or engineering aren’t all there is to being a techie.

The fact that almost everyone in tech you see on social media codes apps or is into a tech field that involves the use of computers and programming languages, doesn’t mean that you’re good to go once you learn to do that. Coding, engineering, and their likes, are applications of technology.

Big thinkers like Albert Einstein, Max Planck, and Isaac Newton would have died as ‘one of those guys with big ideas’ if they hadn’t worked to create real-world applications of their ideas.

But before coding or engineering can be done, a thought process must take place. To be a good tech person, you should have these skills/qualities:

  • Resilience/Perseverance
  • Creativity.
  • Problem-solving skills.
  • Self-motivation.
  • Good communication skills.

No matter how brainy you may be, you would be a half-baked techie if you don’t have these skills, because without them, what are you then doing?

Careers in Tech That Don’t Necessarily Involve Coding.

Certainly! Tech isn’t only about numbers and code. Here are some careers in tech that don’t necessarily involve coding but are still very important in the tech industry:

  • UX/UI Designers: User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) designers design the look, feel, and functionality of websites, apps, and software. They work with developers, product managers, and stakeholders to create intuitive and engaging user experiences for technology products.
  • Project Managers: Project managers plan, execute and monitor software development projects. They oversee timelines, budgets, and resources to ensure that projects are completed on time and within budget.
  • Technical Writers: Technical writers create documentation, user manuals, and training materials for software products. They work with product managers, developers, and subject matter experts to ensure that documentation is accurate, comprehensive, and user-friendly.

And if you still need a little convincing, have a look at some people in technology who are using it to do things in other fields no one ever thought were possible:

Mina Markham, a “‘sasstronaut,’ front-end architect, self-taught technologist, and public speaker,” according to Forbes. She plays several roles, including designer, programmer, and speaker. Markham showcases her designing works and vision on her website. She stands as an inspiration for young creative minds who cannot afford a college degree but can still realize their dreams.

Linus Sebastian, YouTuber, presenter, producer, and the founder of Linus Media Group, makes amazingly-directed videos of product reviews, technology tips, and PC build guides, which are responsible for his rise as an influential person in the tech world.

Tim O’Reilly, founder of O’Reilly Media and the person who popularized Open Source and Web 2.0. In the age of Internet and technology, Tim is recognized as an influential pioneer and thought leader. His views and books bring hope to job seekers in a world that is cynical about the relation between automation and employment.

It may be a little harder, but tech is for us Africans, too.

In Africa, we believe so much in ‘when I grow up’. But know that today, it’s no longer about ‘when I grow up’. It’s about now. What you can start doing NOW in respect to the career you aspire and the person you want to be.

It’s far easier said than done, especially in Nigeria where most parents don’t support their children’s ambitions unless they resonate with theirs, and where most families sometimes don’t have enough money to take care of their needs.

Remember that technology is about problem solving, and to solve a problem, you must look at it from different angles. In the same way, you have to think beyond your limitations and circumstances, find ways past them, and get the skills and knowledge you need for your career in technology.

You really don’t have any limitations. You can begin with your smartphone, the old laptop you have at home, the laptops or desktop computers in your school. Make research on how best to begin in the field of technology that interests you the most and start somewhere, anywhere.

In conclusion, everyone can learn and excel in technology, regardless of their background or perceived abilities. You just need to:

Believe in Yourself: The first step towards any accomplishment is to believe that you can do it. You must believe in yourself and your ability to learn new skills and overcome challenges. Remember that every expert was once a beginner.

Start Small: You don’t have to become an expert in tech overnight. Start small and focus on learning one skill or technology at a time. You can start with simple coding languages like HTML and CSS, and then gradually move on to more complex ones.

Find a Mentor: Seek out people who are already working in tech and ask them for guidance. Having a mentor can provide valuable insight, advice, and support as you navigate the tech industry.

Join a Community: There are various tech communities online and offline that you can join to learn and network with like-minded individuals. Joining a community will help you stay motivated, learn from others, and find opportunities.

Be Consistent: Learning tech skills requires consistency and practice. Make a schedule and stick to it. Set achievable goals for yourself and celebrate your successes, no matter how small.

Take Advantage of Free Resources: There are numerous free online resources available to learn tech skills. You can start with online courses, tutorials, and forums. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and seek help when you need it.

Be brave enough to be different from those around you, to look at things differently. And be creative enough to think up new solutions to things. Let your own unique voice shine out, as a techie, and as a person.

Looking forward to celebrating your unique exploits in the tech space soon. 😊

Are you a newbie in tech? Or are you an established techie, and have anything to add? It’d be great to hear your thoughts and answer any questions you might have in the comments!

I took on this collab with Princess Mbamalu, an AI and Software Engineering enthusiast. You can connect with her on Twitter, LinkedIn and follow her on Medium.

And for more interactions and updates on posts, feel free to follow Ọlaedo on Facebook.

Ciao, 💋


A Little about My Unconscious Gap Year.

Hey, readers!

Ever heard about a gap year? I think I’ve heard the term before, but I only just learned more about it recently.

Turns out I took (and am still taking) a gap year. And in this week’s post, I share my experience.

En-joyeeee! 🌮

The other day, I saw a post by Eniola Osabiya about how the gap year he took after secondary school helped him improve personally and career-wise. And then I asked myself, “Did I take a gap year?”

Well, all things being fair: no, I didn’t – not by intention.

After I saw that post, I searched up the meaning of a gap year. It means: taking a year off, typically between high school graduation and college.

I didn’t intentionally take a gap year, so how did it then come about?

ASUU strike.

Let me explain a little:

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) went on a 8-month strike beginning from February 2022 to October 2022, putting a majority of the state and federal universties in Nigeira on hold – and causing the academic careers of us innocent students to be truncated. 😭

Although ASUU had a good reason to go on the strike, one of which was non-payment of lecturers’ salaries by the government, the strike still had a HUGE effect on us Nigerian students.

Continuing on…

Things going the way they were supposed to, by now, I’m supposed to at least be preparing to enter 200 level (my second year in uni), thereabout. But today, I’m barely at 100 level. 🤦🏾‍♀️

At first, the whole thing got me frustrated, especially when towards the ending of last year, I heard news that my uni would merge sets, meaning that by January this year, my set was supposed to have started school.

And then it was pushed it to March, and then July, and now August. 🥲💔

But good news: I got over my frustration and choose to see this time I had at home as an opportunity to learn skills, improve on the ones I already knew (and REST, too 😅🙈).

One of the first things I did after my realisation was to take part in the November 2022 Writing Creativity Challenge, hosted by the Creative Writers and Influencers Network (CWIN).

I didn’t make it out tops, but it was an experience.

From there, I began to reach out to and make connections with writers, people in tech, and generally, impactful people. I began to network and grow (and am still doing so).

This might pinch some people, but the moral of this story is that while most of my mates are spending this 1 year+ we have at home doing things that dullen their minds, I chose to work and learn and network and grow – even before I knew I was unconsciously taking a gap year.

It’s not late, though. From what I hear, by August (all things working out okay) all students in our currently pending set should have started school.

So, to Nigerian undergraduates in this pending set reading this, and to anyone at all who’s taking a gap year or something similar, don’t waste what’s left of this year you – we – have at home. Get a job, volunteer at an organization, learn skills, reach out to people who can be beneficial to you (career-wise, especially), and generally do things that’ll keep your mind active and learning.

Let’s not waste this gap year.

Ọlaedo is on Facebook. Feel free to surf on over there, give the blog a like and a follow for more updates.

No dulling. 🔥

March Wrap-Up

I’m that kind of person that often doesn’t know what date it is until something prompts me to check.

So, it’s no surprise that I didn’t even realise it was April fool’s day till I recieved a prank message from my classmate! 😅

It’s been a loooong while since I last wrote a monthly wrap-up blog post. I’ve wanted to get around to writing one, but the thought of sitting and reflecting on my past month seemed like a chore.

Bad, bad habit to me.

That’s also one of the reasons why I haven’t gotten around to having a reflection for the first quarter of 2023, and even a reflection of last year!

At this point, it’s okay to say I’m layzeee.

All the same, though, here I am once again with my wrap-up post for March 2023. Feel free to check out my wrap-up post for March 2022. 😊

Enjoyeee! 🍰


I didn’t really do much as a blogger in March, except read other blogs and drop a few likes and comments.

I did just about all of the writing on my social media pages. 😅🙈

My Personal Life.

This year has actually been quite hard for me, because I experienced a major shift in the roles I have to play in my family, so it’s often that I take on more responsibilities that I’m meant to handle normally.

This threatened to make me a sad, depressed person when the shift first came, but I overcame and am still overcoming it, because I’m looking at the bigger picture.

From the endeavours I’m making in my career, to my network and few real friends, to the steps I’m taking for my personal and professional growth. These are things that helped and are helping me see past the kind of overwhelming present.

This month, I also ended a relationship of mine. ☹️
One piece of advice from this experience is: You never really know somebody, so the safest thing is to guide the way you give yourself to that person.

I’m not necessarily talking about getting physical, I’m mostly referring to the emotional commitments and how much of the vulnerable part of yourself you let the person see.

What I have to say about it is plenty, sha. But I think one paragraph sums it up just fine.

Read this book again after so long. Glad I did!

My Spiritual Life.

You know that feeling you get when you’re with someone you know you can just be yourself around, or someone who’s always there to give help here and there whenever you need it?

That’s how I feel with God.

Although I can’t say I was following through with God’s will 100% of the time, but whenever I realized I was wrong, I always went back to God to forgive me.

And that’s the beautiful, refreshing part of having God as your constant companion.

School life.

Okay, so remember this post of mine I wrote when I was preparing for JAMB and WAEC? Well, I’m done with both JAMB and WAEC, and guess what? I’ve been admitted into the university!!! 🥳🥳🥳

I’ll be starting school by July, by God’s grace, and it’s exciting to think of life as a uni student away from home.

Although, I’m kind of okay with how my life’s going now: On weekdays I go to work as a grade school teacher, and after work hours from about 7:30pm to about 9pm (or later on nights when there’s power supply till the early hours of the morning), I work on our team’s app for the 2023 Technovation Girls Challenge. On weekends, I do chores, rest and spend more time on our app.

I’m already making plans to develop my Python for machine learning skills after Technovation, so uni life is all of a sudden looking less attractive. And my friends already schooling there aren’t helping matters by saying that uni is stressful!

So, I guess I’ll just enjoy life as it is till I start experiencing the foretold ‘stress’. 💀😫

My Career.

This is a new heading of my monthly wrap-ups, because since November 2022, 3 months after I had graduated secondary school, I began making intentional efforts towards my career as a software engineer.

Beginning from my participation in the November 2022 Writing Creativity Challenge organised by CWIN Africa, to my taking part in the Hashnode Dev Retro 2022 campaign contest, to my signing up for this year’s Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program, to my participation in the Technovation Girls Challenge for this year, to my connecting with notable young people in tech, to more other exploits still to come. 🚀😌

But my current activity and the one I’m most proud of is my role as the developer of our team’s app for the Technovation Girls Challenge. Our mentor for the Challenge, Maryam Bello, founder of ITIS 4 Dev Global, is truly amazing. She’s so supportive and she always encourages us directly and indirectly through her own endeavours and achievements.

Honestly, I’m very optimistic about my career this year. I’m already smashing my goals for this year (even goals I don’t have in my goals list!), and I really hope and pray that I’ll have something tangible to hold on to by the end of the year.

Let me just put this out there: As I said in my Academics heading, after the Technovation Girls Challenge, with it’s submission deadline by April 18th, I am going into Python (to refresh my memory) and then Python for machine learning. I will also continue with the AI-themed project I’m working on with a friend of mine.

And by this year’s end, I’ll be able to confidently add ‘Proficience in Python for machine learning’ to my resume. 🙏🏾😌

And that’s that.

I love monthly wrap-ups, actually, even though I procrastinate a lot before writing them!

Cheers to an awesome remaining 19 days of April.

Ọlaedo is on Facebook. Surf on over to the blog’s page, give a follow and like for more updates. 🤗

Happy Easter season. ✨️

What I Think About Being an All-Rounder.

Hey, readers!

So, I’ve found that recently, It’s been really hard to write on my blog. In other words, I’ve been finding it hard to write blog posts. I think one of the major reasons is that I’ve been trying so hard to sound…

What’s the word?

Like an authority? I guess that’s it.

You know, since I took part in the CWIN Writing Creativity Challenge and got to meet a lot of other writers and really amazing, inspiring people, I realized that they were all ‘intentional’. And it was this word, ‘intentionality’, that pushed me into writing in a boring way, and that made me lose faith in those ideas that came to me naturally when I thought about writing. I’d always wanted to ‘give value’ and sound… ‘like I 100% knew about whatever topic I wrote on’.

And so, I changed – or at least began to change my writing style.

But the good thing about this phase is that I became a lot more active on social media, Facebook to be precise. And even though I wasn’t posting content on Ọlaedo, the blog’s Facebook page was (and is) frequently being updated and promoted.

But I believe I’m back to normal. After listening to a masterclass by Okoye Ijeoma Dicta, founder of CWIN Africa, for us members of her Inner Circle Program, the point she raised from a question I asked her, about ‘writing from daily experiences, not in a stiff way’ made me realise how much I’ve been trying to write in ‘one particular’, ‘stiff’ way.

So, in this period, a lot of things have changed about me, I daresay:

My writing style.🌺

It’s not a good thing, really, because in my case, my writing style is what makes me stand out, I daresay. I HATE boring articles without a few jokes or everyday lingo here and there. And in recent times, whenever I open a Word document to start a post, that’s exactly how I write.

The thing is just that I was trying to sound like an authority, and at the same time write about ‘intentional’ topics: topics that matter to people working to live purposefully. But I didn’t know that I was just being plain boring.

My fluency in typing with a PC.😩

Yes. Very, very, very, very, very sad to note.

Y’know, since I got my Android phone, I’ve been spending a lot more time on it, with researching, social media, etc. And although I still do not like typing/writing with a phone, I find that that’s the option I go for, because of its ease of access; my phone is always nearby.

And so, when I make out time to use my PC to write, I find myself just typing, hoping on autocorrect to fix my typos as I go!😂

It’s frustrating when I then remember that I’m on my PC, so no autocorrect. And I have to start correcting myself manually, because I don’t really use the Microsoft Word Spelling & Grammar feature!😬

And even when I code, typing regular text (strings) and even some syntax of the programming language has become a little less easy.😭

But using a PC to type, and using a PC in general will always be better for me. I always miss the Microsoft Word Thesaurus and synonyms/antonyms feature, because my phone’s notepad app doesn’t have something like that!

My blogging consistency.😥

Of course, this can be linked with my change in writing style and the feeling of my words no longer feeling ‘okay-enough’, but it’s also about the WordPress community.

About 99.5% of my blog traffic comes from social media, through the referrals I make to the blog. But from WordPress, I have little or no views.

I know that maybe it’s because I’ve been away for quite some time, but even when I try to reach out to my blogger friends, most of them just answer plainly.

And that aside, I don’t know if it’s just me, but the WordPress community is getting colder and colder. All the people who used to show up with tags and fun updates are either less frequent, or have taken long breaks away from this space.

The inconsistency is – was – there for some reasons, but I have faith that I’m back now. Back to my weekly posting schedule.😁

The part of my professional life I’m more focused on.🚀

Although I might have mildly been hinting it on this space, I’m an aspiring software engineer by profession. And ever since November last year, I’ve been taking some big-little steps towards networking with the right kind of people, and making some projects of my own. I even wrote an article about my tech journey for the Hashnode Dev Retro 2022 campaign here.

I’m also taking part in the 2023 Technovation Girls Challenge, as one of my big-little steps. I have a team, and we’re working hard.

Wish me luck!

So, expect to see posts from my tech journey, either in my monthly wrap-ups, or as individual posts.👩🏾‍💻

I believe that the beauty of Ọlaedo is in its teen voice. The fact that I talk about the lessons I learn from the different aspects of my life as a teen – and almost-adult – are the beauty of this blog, and any lifestyle blog, for that matter.

So, I, Vanessa, am all-rounder. I write, I code, and in recent times, make digital designs as well. It feels good to have it figured out now, because now I’ve acknowledged it, I can focus on what aspects of my professional life I want to make most important and spend the most time on. It’s a therapeutic feeling, really.😌

Look out for more of what has been, and more of things to come. I’m introducing a monthly spotlight where I’ll be doing collabs with peeps in different fields on not-so-boring topics.

Stay tuned. 🤗📺

Ọlaedo is on Facebook, feel free to surf on there and give the blog a follow for more updates. And if you’d like to reach out to me to be a part of this monthly spotlight, you can indicate in the comments, so the line-up can begin. In January, I spotlighted Happiness Uduak. We both took part in a collab post on a really interesting topic.

Stay motivated, 🔥

Gender Bias: A Threat to Women’s Self-Confidence. ~A Collab with Happiness Uduak~

Hey, readers!

The tittle of this article is a sensitive one, and one I care a lot about. I’ve had it in mind for quite some time, and I’ve decided to write about it.

And joining me to pursue this line of thought is Happiness Uduak, content writer, ghostwriter, editor, and proof reader.

Happiness Uduak, apart from being a seasoned writing expert, is also a really nice friend of mine. I got to know her from the CWIN Writing Creativity Challenge I took part in last year.

And so, without much more intros, here’s Happiness’ article. This is a collab, so we swapped articles. You can read my article on her page, here.

Enjoyeeee! 🍰

Self-confidence is a key ingredient in the recipe for success, and it is especially important in the journey of intentionality. It allows individuals to set and pursue their goals with conviction and determination while believing in themselves and their abilities.

However, society has unconsciously conditioned this quality to the male gender over the years, leaving the female gender to fill in the gaps. Even in the 21st Century, some people still walk around with the ideology that men are more competent than their female counterparts.

Have you ever had a man interrupt you during a meeting or talk over you in a group setting? This type of behavior sends the message that a woman’s voice and ideas aren’t as valuable as a man’s. And when this happens repeatedly, it can make a woman question her intelligence and abilities.

It’s no secret. Women have been fighting for equality for decades. But what many people don’t realize is that gender bias doesn’t just affect women in the workplace, it can also take a toll on their self-confidence.

Nigerian society expects a woman to have a perfect body, perfect hair, perfect character, and perfect composure. The average woman is expected to go to school, get good grades, bag a rich husband, and pop out kids. And when a woman doesn’t live up to these impossible standards and tries to disrupt the system of ‘the ideal African woman’ they’re often criticized and shamed for wanting more.

This gender stereotype constantly bombards the minds of young girls with messages that suggest they aren’t good enough to explore male-dominated professional environments. Brilliant young ladies aspiring for more, are met with opposition and are accused of breaking the ancient system of ‘what a woman is supposed to do’. But, is this belief morally right?

The scary part is that if the unspoken belief that females should be comfortable in 2nd place continues to thrive, brilliant girls might listen to society and end up forfeiting their dreams and living with a deteriorating level of self-confidence.

The good news, however, is that we can all play a role in changing this narrative. We can ensure that this vicious cycle is trashed for good.

To do this, women should be prepared to counteract the negative effects of societal stereotypes and bias. They should invest in building supportive networks of friends, family, and colleagues to enjoy a sense of belonging and validation, which can counteract the negative effects of societal prejudice.

They should also be aware of various forms of bias that exist and be prepared to challenge them when they encounter them. Women should also build an unshakable sense of self-confidence to resist the negative effects of stereotypes.

Furthermore, they should have role models and mentors who have successfully navigated and overcome societal stereotypes. This can provide inspiration and guidance to them as grown women.

As individuals, we can also contribute to saving the self-confidence of young women by speaking up when we witness gender bias, and by supporting and lifting the women around us.

So, next time you’re in a meeting and a woman’s ideas are being dismissed, speak up and give her the credit she deserves. Be sure to remind every woman out there of all the amazing things she’s capable of. Because when we support and uplift each other, we can break down the barriers of gender bias and help women to reach their full potential.

And so, there you have it.

Go on over to Happiness’ page to read my article on the topic.

And if you’d like to share ideas on this topic, or reach out if you’d like to do a collab with me, the comments section is open. I’d love to hear from you.

You could also connect with the blog on socials. Ọlaedo is on Facebook. Follow the blog on there for more updates. ☺️

Thanks for reading. 🌺

Ciao, 💋

And then, Repeat It All with Purpose.

Hey, readers!

I’m glad we’ve made it so far in this series, and I’m glad to have been able to write about the lessons I’ve learnt from valuable experiences of mine.

A kudos to me, and a kudos to you. 👍🏾

After having followed up the series, from here, it’s just intentional repetition. Living a more responsible and accountable life doesn’t require much more than what you’ve been told in this Intentionality Series.

My articles in this series on personal branding, planning and scheduling, consistent effort in one’s craft, beneficial networking, and now intentional repetition, are the heart of the everyday actions of those people we say have their lives figured out.

The only thing that differentiates them from the ordinary, average person is how willing they are to constantly repeat these steps that produce results. It’s their consistency, and the fact that they continuously develop their personal value that make them stand out.

As I said in the first article of this series, I gained a lot from participating in the Creative Writers and Influencers Network (CWIN) 28-day Writing Creativity Challenge for November 2022. It opened my eyes to what it means to take charge of the pace and direction a person wants their life to go, and in line with my vision for this blog, I knew I had to share it on this space.

I advise you read every article in this series. Give yourself that jolt this new year.

You could also read my entries for the CWIN 28-day contest on Facebook here.

I’d always love to answer any questions you might have, or simply to connect. Drop me a comment below and let’s keep the conversation going.

And if you’d like to be closer to the blog, or to interact with me through a direct message, Ọlaedo is on Facebook. Feel free to give its page a follow.

As always, thanks for reading.

Stay motivated.🔥