From Qbasic to Solidity: How Okechukwu Wisdom is Creating Impact in Blockchain and Beyond

As the youngest advisory board member at the Lifeboat Foundation, Okechukwu Wisdom stands as a testament to the power of determination and passion in the face of adversity. Hailing from Abia State, this 17-year-old prodigy has charted a remarkable journey from tinkering with robotic cars to becoming a proficient Blockchain Developer.

Can we know you?

I am Okechukwu Wisdom, and I’m 17 years old from Abia State. I am the youngest advisory board member at the Lifeboat Foundation.

How did you start?

Back then, I wasn’t opportune to have a laptop and internet access much. My brother and I would create robotic cars and gamepads, using cartons to build robots. It was really fun for me. I have the intention of building a full-fledged Iron Man robot, and that’s what drove me into robotics. I got the inspiration from movies.

Gradually, I moved into coding when I was in JSS 3. However, I wasn’t vast in coding because I focused more on the hardware part. So, it was in JSS 3 that our computer teachers told us about Qbasic programming language, and to me, at that time, it was groundbreaking. Though he didn’t go into the coding part, I took it upon myself to start coding with Qbasic. I created many projects then in school. When my brother created a calculator with Qbasic, I was amazed, and I created a current affairs project in Qbasic. I wrote it on paper becaus i didnt have a personal computer, and it was around 200 lines of code, a groundbreaking accomplishment for me. My mind opened to the world of coding and the problems it can solve.

Tell us about your experience as a cybersecurity person:

Then, I wanted to hack things and serve as a safeguard. In coding, you only build stuff, but you don’t look at how this software can be safeguarded from bad attackers. I learned about hacking CCTV cameras, mobile apps, and lots of stuff. It was my friend who introduced me to the possibility of cybersecurity, and it really got me interested.

How was your parents’ reaction?

At first, they scolded me and told me to focus on my studies, and truly, my school grades were dropping, and I couldn’t balance it. They told me to focus on school and make coding secondary.

Can you tell us about a specific project and the problems you’re trying to solve?

I would mention two projects. I created a project with Solidity where users can contribute money to fund a project. Also, I got the knowledge of creating my own programming language I had to do a lot of research on data structures and algorithms. The programming language is modelled after Python. I’m still working on it to make it a full-fledged programming language.

Let’s talk about Blockchain. How did you start?

I got to know about Blockchain when I was in primary 5, but after some time, I forgot about it. I was in my final year in secondary school when one of my friends reintroduced it to me. She was creating amazing applications with Blockchain, and the thought of Blockchain being decentralized was amazing to me.

I decided to gather resources and learn more about it. My quest for more knowledge had to be paused for me to pass my final year exams and as I was turning 16, I told myself that when I get a laptop I would make my name prominent in the web3 space so I quickly delved deeper into my studies and came out secondary school with flying colours.

I didn’t get a laptop right away but the moment I got engaged in blockchain, I knew this was what I would do with my life.

Within a short time, I have been able to achieve certain things. I became a Blockchain Developer, I got my first remote job as a Blockchain Developer at ZendMart and also at SmartDeploer in January. I became an Ambassador at the Polkadot ecosystem a popular blockchain company, I got admitted into Summer of Bitcoin where participants get to work with Bitcoin-related projects, I got certified as a Bitcoin Developer by Saylor Academy and many others.

Did you attend any school to learn all these?

I learned a lot of these things by myself. Assuming I wake up in the morning, I would keep doing research on my own. I use Sololearn app, w3schools and youtube

How many languages do you know?

I learnt a lot of programming languages like Python,C++, C, Kotlin,R, Java, Golang, Rust, C#, Objective-C, Javascript and few others, and I learned them because I didn’t have a focus, but right now, I write Solidity, Python, and Rust.

If given a chance, what problem would you solve in Nigeria?

There are lots of problems, and for me, I want to build a good decentralized bank. Our banks today are not well-structured. The waiting hours in banks and other issues.

In 5 years, where do you see yourself?

I’ll be making waves and helping young techies like me.

Advice to kids?

Just like me, I started last year and I’ve gotten a job. Ask yourself if it’s possible, and yes, it’s possible. Second question you need to ask yourself is how do they do it? Then you need to work seriously and show people you can do what they cannot do. Thirdly, you need to grow your network and also volunteer, even though you’re not paid, but you’ll get ideas. Don’t forget to set goals on what you want to achieve and have a dream that you’ll be big.

Advice to parents:

They should endure the process with their children and support them in the process.

Wisdom can be contacted on Twitter (X) here

Do you know any Nigerian kid doing well in the tech space and you’ll like us to spotlight? Kindly contact or call +2347015016330, +2348137197307

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