Wednesday, September 25, 2013

My Interview With Idd Salim: Blogger/Coder/Entrepreneur for Star Newspaper

Idd Salim

Sometime last year in January I had an email interview with Idd Salim (May Allah rest his soul in peace). As the Star correspondent in Migori county I approached him via an official request on FB and he accept and gave me his email address easily.

The interview was slotted for the '5 Minutes Interview' though it didn't get published I wish to share it here (the bold are the questions and answers follow after.....):

I’m good at…… Playing pool, Coding using OpenSource, making friends and developing solid and working systems just from a basic conversation.
I’m bad at… Arguing, especially with people who don't have facts.
The last book I enjoyed was….. The Art of War by SunTzu. I live a-lot by it's principles since coding is like war against deadlines, human weakness and complacency and believing you are better than you actually are.
The most surprising thing that happened to me was……. Being called to Starehe Boys' Centre from Isiolo. It was a binary moment in my life. Dead or alive. Starehe made me what I am today.
A common misconception of me is that…… I am player because I have a lot of female friends and I am very open to new people irrespective of their social status and origin/tribe.
One of my worst childhood fears was…….. Ghosts. I still do and I cannot watch a horror movie at night since I cannot sleep afterwards.
My ideal night out is……. Going for a polite dinner with friends around 6PM, African Food. Then playing pool in a money game just for fun, then sip RedBull (I’m a teetotaler) in the dance floor.  
In another life I would be…… A professional football/pool player, I used to be the best striker in Primary, but as soon as I saw a Computer at Starehe, I never looked back.
If I were a politician…….. It would never happen, I despise politicians with their lies, empty promises and embezzlement.
The best age to be is……. 36. 
The best part of my job is……. The fact that I never need to leave home or dress up. I work whenever I feel and however I feel, as long as I deliver the systems on time and as expected. I am in the business of delivery and inventions. Not suits, ties, offices, 9-5s or bosses. 
My greatest regret is…….. Spending 4 years in Uganda. Kampala is like Naivasha here verylow-tech. As a techie, these were wasted years. I have been working hard to recover lost time, and all is looking up.
Historical figure I most identify with is……… Napoleon Bonaparte and  King Henry VII of England. They restored peace where there is chaos. I see myself on their shoes as a mentor in the Kenyan Technology industry to most upcoming software developers.
Living person I most admire is…….. Larry Wall the author of PERL whose book teaches about life skills in a tight world to reach ones goals.
My greatest achievement is…… Developing a Citizen Watch online service for public resource condition and utilization that we are now deploying to over 17 countries.
My favourite  writer is……….. Robert Greene 
My greatest possession is………….. My pride and knowledge. Also, my 3 Samsung Galaxys and Computers.
If I was going to die in five minutes my last words would be……. With God and Code, all things are possible. Respect and worship both.
(Idd Salim is the CTO of Symbiotic Media Consortium and a IT Consultant on Systems, Unix, Mobile and IT Security. He is also a popular blogger and a pool addict. Find out more about him by visiting his website :

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