Iddris Sandu, a prodigy innovator and genius popularly known as a ‘Cultural Architect’ and the tech guru behind Uber, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat.
“The Universe is always talking to you. It’s up to you to decide if you will
a. Listen to it, b. Hear it, c. Experience it, d. Disregard it”…Iddris Sandu
Raised by his Ghanian mother, he speaks four languages, Akan, Hausa, English, and French. He was taken to Ghana by his father at the age of 8 and his return to the USA was the same period the first iPhone was launched. This excited his curiosity “I just got super inspired. I thought – this device is going to change the world. The reason why the iPhone was so important was because it was the first time when regular consumers could develop for other regular consumers. Before, you really had to work at a tech company for multiple years to be able to offer any sort of input or to create an app. But Apple made it so mainstream. I knew it was the future.” he said. When he was 10 years of age, he learned programming languages on his own for almost two years in Torrance public library where he got spotted by a Google employee, who decided to take him as an intern to work at Google’s headquarters. At 13 he was given the opportunity to program for the first time where he worked on the initial Google plus, Google blogger, and other infrastructural areas.
Young Iddris Sandu — TEC Leimert
15 years old Iddris wrote an app for his high school which gave students turn by turn navigation of their classrooms. Being the only school in California that had an app made by a student brought a lot of recognition for the school and eventually an honorary award by President Obama. At the same period, Iddris wrote an algorithm which he sold to Instagram. He also consulted for Snapchat when he was 18. He got engaged with Uber at 19 which marked another turning point in his career. He produced the algorithm ACDI (Autonomous Collision Detection Interface), which is a piece of software that monitors in 3D space, the hands of the driver, and the interface could adjust the control the driver had on the car (Self-driving Car).
His core aim is to bridge the gap between the informed and uninformed, decentralize technology and alter the bias which is currently in technology, thereby “leveling the playing field” between silicon valley and young communities of color.
Photograph: Iddris Sandu at the “smart store”
In 2017, Nipsey Hussle spotted him working on an algorithm in a local Starbucks, and three weeks down the line they collaborated and established the first-ever ‘smart store’ The Marathon Clothing Store at Crenshaw Boulevard in Los Angeles. The online store continues.
Iddris has this to say on the importance of culture
“To all the tech giants out there. You ain’t cool without culture and the world really doesn’t revolve around you without culture. You should be working hand in hand with cultural influencers to build your platforms in the first place. You’re blinded to think you have an amazing standalone service. But like @michaelbjordan “NAH! F*CK THAT”. This is 2018. I’m encouraging all my people out there, THE TIME TO BUILD INFRASTRUCTURE IS NOW. We as a culture rarely own any technology infrastructure and If we do, it’s so mediocre. We need to build the next variations of these huge platforms. WE AS A CULTURE NEED TO REALIZE, WE NOT ONLY BUILD THE USER BASE UP BUT THAT WE CAN EQUALLY ESTABLISH OUR OWN POWERBASE. UNTIL WE REALIZE THIS NOTHING WILL CHANGE.
STOP FOCUSING ON HIGHER LEVEL INFRASTRUCTURE (APPS) AND START THINKING ABOUT LOWER LEVEL INFRASTRUCTURE (OPERATING SYSTEMS, KERNELS, HARDWARE & CULTURAL ALGORITHMS WE CAN LICENSE OUT ). THERE ARE THREE MAJOR OPERATING SYSTEMS (IOS ANDROID AND WINDOWS) AND NONE OF THEM ARE MINORITY OWNED YET WE KEEP BUILDING ON TOP OF THEM. THE COEFFICIENT OF SERVICES WE PRODUCE NEED TO BE HIGHER than the CONSUMPTION RATE OF HOW WE UTILIZE.
I (WE) GONNA CHANGE THIS CUZ I’M THE YOUNGEST IN THE GAME TO BE THAT BRIDGE BETWEEN TECH AND CULTURE AND (WE) ARE GONNA PUSH OUR CULTURE SO FAR And that’s a FACT.
WE GONNA TAKE TECH, DISTRIBUTE IT, AND SPREAD IT ACROSS GENERATIONS.
VERTICAL INTEGRATION 🎯
I’M BACK TO WORK!
THEY CAN’T EVER FATHOM WHAT WE’RE CURRENTLY BUILDING 🎯
Everybody NEEDS TO SEE THIS POST! IF YOU REALLY FOR YOUR PEOPLE PASS THIS ALONG! #WETHENEWPALOALTO#COSIN#PASSITALONG#LEGACY
It’s not a diss song..it’s a real song“
In an interview with hot 97, Iddris made it clear that ‘Self-hate’ is a business strategy which makes people think consuming is better than producing. He says we need to expose more young people to information which is far better than education because education can be out-dated while information keeps you updated with reality.
The next generation of leaders are definitely in Africa and with the right mentorship and guidance by people who look like them, they will make the right decisions to solve their problems and make the world a better place.
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