Why I write Code

Why I write Code

If you had met me a few years ago and I told you one day I would be a software developer or engineer, that would have been a lie. In high school I liked sciences and math, whenever we were told to mention or write down careers we would like to pursue I always said engineering. My engineering dream died off when I got admitted to university to pursue Agribusiness on campus, a course that was more on Business, Finance, and Economics related to Agriculture. All this was new to me since I did business as a subject partially in my first years in high school before dropping it off. Taking an agribusiness course was somehow an uphill task for me, especially during my first few years in the university since the learning and exam concepts were different from that of math and science-related mindsets only economics favored me.

In all this, I had to learn to grow a passion for the course and the field of study, and that way I used to see myself as a future economist or an agribusiness expert or farmer. Being Kenyan unemployment after university is a common thing and often while one is still in the university they’re always encouraged to take a professional course to act as a competitive advantage to add to their degree after graduating. My family encouraged me to take one professional course called CPA but I told them it was better if I take CICT since it will be an advantage to have IT-related skills on top of agribusiness. One thing led to another and I wasn’t able to take CICT but took the latter. In most phases of life, I was always attracted to tech but something took me away from it.

In my last year on campus I was hanging out with a friend and I accidentally saw them checking the Localbitcoins site. From there curiosity grew in me and I wanted to learn what bitcoin is from there I learned that it's a cryptocurrency and is made out of blockchain technology. Since then I followed a couple of influential people in the bitcoin and blockchain space on Twitter. Checking the current prices of bitcoin then it was about $5000 to $8000 as it kept changing. Clearly, I knew I couldn't afford to buy a bitcoin and there was no way I could convince my parent to consider investing in it. At that time I didn’t know about Satoshis or the P2P platforms that allow users to buy bitcoin from other crypto holders/traders who either buy or sell from those of any value from as low as $2.

I checked alternatives to investing in crypto and the option was becoming a software developer as blockchain code is open-source and needs developers to contribute to it. Personally, I knew I had to go back for a CS degree. At that, I chose to take my time and just hope that this is something I’ll do later. At the same time, I came across online schools that were focused on blockchain and also youtube channels on the same. I tried to follow them at those times.

The following year I came across P2P platforms and traders, some challenges I encountered were:

  • coming from Kenya formal mode of payment or money transfer is MPesa and it's hard to find a Kenyan that uses credit cards even local banks allow mobile banking via Mpesa which is common for the majority. Coming across platforms like Coinbase or Kraken needed a credit card for one to be able to buy or sell their crypto which wasn’t possible for me
  • scammers, whenever I would get to mention crypto on Twitter or join a crypto-related community on telegram I would have traders approaching my DMs and talking about investment options. Some looked convincing but always got to a point where I get away from being scammed and being more conscious

After a while, I came across BootCamp training that offers full-stack software development courses for 7 months and I felt like this would be the right path I can take in order to become a software developer and later on transition into blockchain development. Another inspiration is the fact that tech or people who transition into tech have a chance of landing roles in tech, unlike other traditional degrees that might not have job opportunities considering the state of unemployment after one graduate.

Having written code for more than two years I can confidently say this has been the best decision I’ve made so far. Thank you for reading through my article. You can leave a comment or suggestion below. We can also connect more on LinkedIn or Twitter.

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