I could type before I could write; I was given my first computer at 4 years old. Two years later
I was designing rudimentary computers
and impersonating David Attenborough.
work as a freelance web developer. Within a year I had been commissioned and paid for my first
After 3 years I'd built up an extensive portfolio of websites and worked at a web design studio.
We started coding in Delphi at my school and learnt SQL for database management. I took well to
this and became the assistant IT teacher.
I started development on my own video game, Light Bringer,
which deals with the social issues that plague South Africa. I had to learn 3D modelling and
coding in C# to do this. Read this article by Unity and this one by
Between 10 and 5.
At 16 years old I worked for Silicon Valley-based IT company Repl.it, alongside colleagues from Google and Facebook, whilst attending
high school in Cape Town.
Later in the year I interned at Root, a company
revolutionizing insurance. While there, I developed a secure banking app which generates a random pin for each transaction and
keeps your card disabled, except right when you need it. Unfortunately, this app got wrapped up
in red tape and never launched publicly.
I learnt Python in order to automate routine tasks and do web scraping.
I attended the Google Cloud
developers' conference which gave me insight into the future of cloud storage and computing. I
also completed a 2-year design and UI course at Putter School - furthering my creative pursuits.
I built my own computer from recycled laptop
I received the Victoria scholarship from SACS
High School for academic merit; the most prestigious award obtainable at school
A few weeks later I launched Bestee. She's a
virtual assistant app like Google Assistant or Siri but
offline, private and much faster.
I was invited to the App of the year awards, hosted by MTN Business, where I was named breakthrough developer of the year and
Bestee received the award for most
innovative solution. I was also invited to present Bestee at the Web Summit in Lisbon.
I went on to make my first live TV appearance; I was hosted on the Hectic Nine-9 show on SABC 2 to talk about
my inspiring story. I also made an appearance in Popular Mechanics and Stuff magazine.
I created a prototype smart mirror that
displays the time, weather and my upcoming calendar events.
I was awarded the Allan Gray Orbis
Foundation Fellowship to fund my further studies. The fellowship is given to the 100
most high-impact, responsible entrepreneurs in Southern Africa.
All this whilst still in high school.
I began studying towards a degree in computer science at Stellenbosch University, funded by the Allan Gray Orbis
University in Oslo, Norway invited me as a guest lecturer to address their students on
the journey to success in the world of technology.
I was featured in the Morning
Brew; one of the biggest tech newsletters in the world.
I began hosting computer science crash courses at Stellenbosch University, along with two
friends, for charity.
I worked for OccuPi Space, a commercial
property marketplace, as a senior developer - whilst juggling university lectures, scholarship
commitments and Bestee's development.
I took part in the SU Hackathon, along with my team of 3 first-year computer science students. We developed a
banking app that creates a Bluetooth Low Energy mesh network of all nearby devices, allowing for
offline mobile banking in rural and developing areas, for which we ended up as the overall winners. We were invited
to pitch our solution to the executive boards of Capitec Bank and Entersekt.
I wrapped up the academic year at Stellenbosch University with distinctions for all my modules,
102% for computer science and a 90% average.
At 19 I became CEO to a tech startup; InsiteBot is an AI-powered website chatbot that's as easy to set up as
editing a spreadsheet. It provides instant answers to your customer's questions, while gathering
insights for your business and boosting leads. We launched on Product Hunt where it trended on
the front page, netting us thousands of users and investor interest within hours.
I was awarded the SU academic merit bursary for being in the top 5% of the mathematical sciences
faculty at Stellenbosch University. I was also selected to join the Golden Key International Honour
Society as one of the top 15% of students in the world.
My virtual assistant app, Bestee, surpassed
50 thousand users.
During the Covid-19 lockdown, I took part in the Harvard University CS50x Puzzle Day with a few
friends. We did exceptionally
I built a web server. It's running a private
cloud syncing service (like dropbox) with 2TB of
As a university project, I created a fully-functional compiler in, written in C, for a
fictitious programming language that compiles to JVM bytecode. It's complete with syntax,
semantic and type checking. I also simultaneously learnt R code and MATLAB for my mathematical
statistics and applied mathematics courses respectively.
I delved deeper by studying computer architecture at a circuitry level. I also learnt to write
Intel assembly code and created a BF interpreter using it. Unfortunately I can't open-source these
projects due to university policy.
I ranked in the top 10% of app developers in the world, by app reviews, according to AppBrain and Bestee
passed the 100 thousand users milestone.
I released Definitively Black; my personal VS Code theme.
I was re-awarded the SU academic merit bursary and again invited to Golden Key. Taking
mathematical statistics enabled me to take an honours-level machine learning course in my third
year. I learnt ML from first principles; dimensionality reduction (PCA and LDA), un- and
supervised classification (Naive-Bayes, logistic regression, K-means and GMM) and Hidden Markov
Models. In my web dev module I created web apps and APIs with Flask and Node.js as well as
learnt advanced database queries.