It was a great evening hanging out with the team that flew in from South Africa including the founder and chairman of ThoughWorks at Co-creation hub. The room was filled with developers as they were introduced briefly to how unit testing can help the developmental process while working on a software development project.
The best software engineers that are employed by the likes of Google and Facebook are taken away to work from the company facility outside of Africa. How will these ones be able to work closely with their community and help to fight social and economic justice using software? That was the question presented to the audience by Roy Singham the founder of thought works. It was a compelling speech.
He shared with me why they are in Nigeria. ThoughtWorks recently opened an office in South Africa and are recruiting folks on ground in line with their mission—using quality software programming methodologies to fight social and economic injustice.
“We are in Nigeria to understand the local software environment in Nigeria. We foresee Nigeria being a dominant economy of Africa soon. We also believe that any software innovation that is going to happen in the African continent, Nigeria has to and will play a crucial role.
“As we are building a pan African movement to develop software capacity in this planet, we want to figure out how to tie in with the talent in Nigeria and help them become competent in using the best practice in agile extreme programming and best software development techniques in the world.
“Nigerian developers should have the best local knowledge and understand their people. However, there is need for them to engage in the best practices still. A lot of the ways software works is by peer programming. When you working on a project and you work with someone or peer up with someone who has already done that before and then when you begin to understand there is a better way to do unit testing or some other task of that nature.
“We want to foster virtual and physical pairing of Software developers in Nigeria with the rest of the continent and the rest of the world. This will speed up how the Nigerian software developers will be extremely smart and have access to best practices in software development and the best ideas.
“ThoughtWorks is not a traditional company; we are a social movement in social mission to advance the quality of software programming and also to stand for social and economic justice. The only way to help the over 800million living under low income in Africa [as we have in India] is for software developers in these countries to write software that solve their own problem. We don’t want to have dependency on a few programmers in the global north to fix these problems.
The intellectual, smart and young Africans have the obligation to build software for their people.”
There you have it. They are new in Africa, but have lofty plans. They don’t appear to me that they are taking this as a joke. This is time for whoever sees their offering as juicy to tap in. If you want to join them directly, you can visit ThoughtWorks’s website.
Looking forward to see how they help the programmers on ground fit into their plan of building quality software talents.