The Year Behind & The One Ahead

2012 started with a big bang with attendance and active participation by the members of the community at a week-long event organized by the Youth Empowerment and ICT Foundation. The theme was “Developing Nigeria’s Next Generation of ICT Entrepreneurs” and there was a number of in-depth sessions on Android development handled by developers in the group.



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The community went in hyper mode for a hackathon – Global Android Hackathon which ran side by side with the Tech-In Education Hackathon (part of the tech-in series http://tech-in.org) which created an awesome opportunity to form teams to build Education-related applications in a space of 72 hours.

In that time, the different groups churned out a number of prototype applications, two of which have received awards and accolades and now have working and useful apps in the Google Play store. 
Asa   [ In Google Play Store ] & Efiko [ In Google Play Store ]

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In March was the GNigeria 2012 event – a two-day event which had several hundreds of entrepreneurs, tech enthusiasts and developers turn up to learn more about what Google has for businesses and the latest tech innovations for developers. We had lots of great engineers and product managers from Google talk to developers on and off the stage.

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We also had the Google+ hackathon which had developers in groups or as individuals create applications which used the newly released Google+ API. A notable and winning application out of that event in Nigeria is “LifeSavers” with its creative use of Google Plus public data API to solve depression as a social issue. The application uses Google+ public data to find depressed people and allows volunteers to spend their time hanging out with them and offer them words of advice. This hackathon went on in several other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and LifeSavers went ahead to win the grand prize – free Google I/O tickets for the team +Oyewale Oyediran & +Maxwell Udoba 
[More about the app and its builders here –



In the last week of June, we held the I/O Extended events at CcHub to allow developers who could not make it to Google I/O watch the keynotes, announcements and sessions live. Google I/O [https://developers.google.com/events/io/] is an annual developer-focused conference held by Google in San Francisco, CA with over 5000 participants from all over the world.

Video from I/O Extended, Lagos – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGPWVBFkgAg


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Not wanting to be left out of participating in the Develop for Good Hackathon [http://goo.gl/42GoU] , developers in the community joined forces to build a prototype for Assembly Bills — a web based platform that would help Nigerian citizens provide input on legislative bills and policies remotely, without having to fly across the country to the capital of Abuja to provide input in person, as currently necessary.

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There was also a meetup at the CcHub where there was a show and tell from MobiQube and Giddi Games. The founder of Giddi Games – Victor Dibia also took the attendees through the process of game creation using the Cocos2D game engine. The winners of the Africa Android Challenge were also on ground to demo their app and receive their prize of an Android device. Very importantly, we had +Emeka Onwuka  of Parkway Projectstalk to developers about mobile money and their platform tagged ReadyCash [http://goo.gl/zioBZ] and gave an insight into the already working capability of in-app billing on their platform.

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Quick jump to the Google Apps Developer Challenge  which had developers creating apps which used the Google Apps API. Four students are proud winners in the Google Apps Developer Challenge with their Form+ submission. The prize they won is US$20,000 and their department US$18,000. Form+ adds something crucial to Forms on Google Apps – the ability to upload files as part of a form submission. The files are stored in Google Drive.
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Along came the Google Places API Challenge, which currently has three qualifying submissions now in the applications gallery. All two of which are from active participants at GDG events [ +Gabriel Akinsete , +ayoola ajebeku]. 

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To wrap up the year was the GDG Devfest that had over 120 people (mostly developers) in attendance. Items on the menu were Android, CSS Preprocessors, CakePHP, Google Maps API and Google Apps Script. The devfest was a series of code-labs set in 45minute slots to introduce the larger community to a number of platforms and ease of development and integration.


It’s been a packed year, and we believe the year ahead will be more packed!

2013 is the year of the focused smart developer.

This year, the group will be focused on a number of platforms and technologies incredibly gaining ground here in Nigeria – HTML5, Android, Google Places, Google+, Google Apps and YouTube. There will be regular fixed schedule meet-ups at least once a month. The dates will be communicated next week.

To our newest members, you are welcome! It’s going to be an exciting year! Don’t forget to check our list of super links – http://goo.gl/J5mWh


Vote Our Apps for the People’s Choice award

After almost 3 exciting months of encouraging developers around the world to create meaningful applications using the Google Places API and municipal data sources to improve their communities, the Google Places API Developer Challenge submissions window closed on 30/11/12.  Numerous creative application submissions were received and a number of them came from Nigeria. Encourage them by casting your vote for the People’s Choice award.

The submissions in the Gallery by developers from Nigeria are:

1. Nearest Locator by +ayoola ajebeku
Nearest Locator is a location-based mobile app, a GPS powered directory of nearby places/establishments like banks, hospitals,  eateries, police stations, etc or  an address. Example: In an emergency, a person looking for the closest hospital to him/her-self would use the app and the application would display a list of hospitals according to proximity based on the user location gotten through GPS.

2. E-Secure Lagos +Sunday Akinsete
E-Secure Lagos is a mobile web-based platform for people in Lagos, Nigeria. Where citizens (the general public) can report and expose activities that infringe on public safety. It entails a collaborative partnership between the Police Force (other government and law enforcement agencies may also be involved) and the individuals and organizations they serve to identify problems, and also contribute in developing solutions to tackle them.

3. AvoidGoSlow +Sadiq Oyapero
AvoidGoSlow is a web app that aims to help users avoid traffic and plan their trip. Traffic is a menace in every part of the world, but it is very bad in most African countries especially Nigeria. Developed countries use traffic cams and other technological means to gather traffic information.

Let’s help them by voting for them.

You need to have a Google Plus account to vote. If you already use gMail, just click the link in the top left called “+You”.

To vote, please go to http://goo.gl/p8s7A and click on +1 beside the app you are voting for (hopefully at least one of these three 🙂 )

The GDG Lagos Devfest

The event kicked off with over 100 attendees at 3.20pm on Sunday the 30th of December with a session from +Abiodun Thorpe on CSS Preprocessors using SASS and Compass. The slides are available here.
This was followed an introductory session by +Chuka Ofili to CakePHP, a fantastic php framework. It’s rapid application development features were displayed by Chuka within the 45 minutes allotted for his session with a simple user registration and authentication system. Options to edit and delete came readily available too. In addition, its easy to enable RESTFul API capabilities were displayed. The slides are available here, and the code lab files are available here.

Lastly, we had a session for fresh Android Programmers by +Sunday Akinsete –  Creating your first Android app and working with a remote data source via an api. The entire code base for that is available here – http://goo.gl/kmhmE.

We had to postpone two of the sessions – Google Maps API and Google AppsScript in the interest of ending the event early. These will be scheduled for the next event.

+Chukwuemeka Afigbo from Google and +Fisayo Thinker from Samsung graced the event and shared their thoughts on the framework and tech space in the new year.

Here are some photos from the event

A follow up session will be taking place soon!