From April 27-30, Moringa School powered the largest tech event in Sub Saharan Africa – Nairobi Tech Week. With support from Twitter Developer Platform, Angel Hack, iHub, iLab (at Strathmore University) and Nest.vc, we were able to power an incredible event that brought together over 400 people in the course of four days.
The tech ecosystem in Kenya is growing rapidly, judging from the attendance and enthusiasm of Tech Week participants. Attendees were from all walks of life – from CTO’s to students. NTW’s various activities kept attendees busy all day long as no one wanted to miss any of the sessions.
The event brought together a diverse blend of local and global leaders in the tech community, in addition to students, senior developers, professors and CTO’s from various companies.
The sessions were informative and inspiring to attendees, many of whom said they would like to see these events more often. Entrepreneurs discussed how to incorporate tech in their start-ups. Students in tech-related disciplines got career advice. Job-seekers met with potential employers during the networking sessions.
“It was engaging and fun, and a networking experience that I enjoyed being part of,” said Cornelius Ngondo, a Mobile and Web Developer.
Panelists of the various sessions shared useful information and responded to all attendee questions. There was even time for attendees to freely interact with people they would never normally meet, like CTO Reg Orton of BRCK.
The Angel Hack Hackathon was one of the major attractions, with hackers from all over Nairobi working on their code to win the coveted $10,000 prize in the #SmartCityNairobi Challenge. Report Taka emerged as the first ever winner of the Angel Hack Hackathon in Africa.
The Twitter API session was another crowd-puller. Developers learned that with fabric.io kits, using the Twitter API is more simplified and enables developers to develop apps faster since tracking of the app usage is in real time.
“We thank Moringa School and iHub together with the Twitter Developer Platform for this one-of-a-kind event. I have learned so much and I hope to put it in practice soon,” said Juanitah Mutinda an IT student at USIU.
Overall, 22% of the panel speakers at NTW were women. Hopefully we will see an increase in this number when the next event is organized, and more women will be encouraged to go into tech.
As Kelly Shalk of Twitter Developer Platform said, “What moved me most was what everyone at the conference shared in common: a belief and willingness to change the world for the better using technology. Our team was inspired and impressed with the 37 projects that came from #SmartCityNairobi Hackathon, which used Twitter’s API to do just that for the city of Nairobi.”
Nairobi Tech Week is set to be a yearly event that will help improve the tech space in Kenya and encourage more people to get involved with the community.