The Future of Life and Health.

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Today was my doctors appointment, and yes I am not pregnant. I am sitting here ready to see one of the most sought-after dermatologist, and still I am amazed at how I can afford him. His consultation ….just to see your face, is Ksh7,000 to a Kenyan to a Chinese $70 and I tell you….that Chinese man walked away.

Many a times I write on this wall on the things shity, things I am not happy about, but today…..testing the true advancement in first life and health, the former that makes me alive and the later to be able to see the doctor and know that minutes after my appointment my life will have improved.

Norberg wrote that life expectancy in Kenya increased by almost ten years between 2003 and 2013. After having lived, loved and struggled for a whole decade, the average person in Kenya had not lost a single of our remaining lifetime. Everyone gets ten years older, yet death has not come a step closer.

Yellow Fever for example, a viral disease transmitted by mosquitoes, was so named because its victims turned that color before dying in agony. According to an account of an 1878 Memphis epidemic, the sick had “crawled into holes twisted out of shape, their bodies discovered later only by the stench of their decaying flesh…….(A mother was found dead) with her body sprawled across the bed…..black vomit like coffee grounds splattered all over…..the children rolling on the floor, groaning.” (Pardon the description) But you get the point.

The rich were not spared either. FDR, the 32nd President of the United States was stuck by polio in 1921 when he was 39 years.

Being here has helped me to give thought to many advancement in health and life. I can single out my favorite example in the history of english language. It comes from the first sentence of a Wikipedia entry:

Smallpox was an infectious disease caused by either of two virus variants, Variola and Variola minor.

Yes, “Smallpox was”

Karl, saved a billion lives by his discovery of blood groups. The heroes did not stop there. Abel Wolman discovery of Chlorination of water saved 177 million, measles vaccine by John Enders saved 120 million, smallpox eradication strategy by William Foege saved 131 million, Penicillin Howard Florey 82 million……and the list will be endless if you give it much thought.

In Stalin’s law on war on death-“Things that can’t go on forever don’t”……as amended by Davies’s Corollary…..”Things that can’t go on forever can go much longer than you think.”

And that’s the world right now.

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The Sad Ending of Lord Egerton.

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The story of Lord Egerton is a really sad one. Maurice Egerton (4 August 1874 – 30 January 1958) was the fourth Baron Egerton. He was a member of the Egerton family and was the only son of Alan de Tatton Egerton, 3rd Baron Egerton and his wife Lady Anna Louisa.

Maurice was known as an aviation and motor car enthusiast, a friend to the Wright brothers. He served as a lieutenant in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve during the First World War after which he was granted some land in Ngata area near Nakuru in Kenya under the Soldier Settlement Scheme.

He later purchased a further 21,000 acres around the same area from Lord Delamere. On this land, he founded a school in 1939 named Egerton Farm School (now Egerton University). The school was meant to prepare white European youth for careers in agriculture.

But the story starts when he build his second house for his bride to be. And on seeing the house she said, you have build a house for chickens. Taking it as a challenge he started building another house, this time bigger and better. Close to the Castles that rested in the Land of the then King George VI.

Lord Egerton Castle as its known now was build from from 1938 to 1954. It’s said that he imported most of the things that he used to build this important castle. The castle has 52 rooms. Among them; dance hall with electric organ, dark chamber for developing photos, entrance hall, master bedrooms, study rooms and a wine cellar.

The story is later told that on seeing it, his bride to be said that was a house for the horse. And so she did not marry him and from that point its said the lord hated women and so he did chicken. Interestingly, the other culprit was the horse, and he went scort free. In those days I am sure he would not be able to farm….which was his passion without a horse. So it’s safe to say his hate was selfish.

So he never allowed Chicken and women in the compound where the stands. Maurice did not marry and on his death in 1958 the barony became extinct. Today the Castle still stands out, with most things vandalised. Its now the property of Egerton University.

I visited the Castle with my wife when we were celebrating our second year anniversary.  The gardens are really good for weddings and parties. And yes, women and chickens are now allowed to visit the Castle. The ghost of Egerton has rested.

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The inside of the Castle has not been maintained, especially the Bowl room, which if it is kept well can create a really nice experience for those who have never had one.  It’s also a pity that the management would allow something and pricy and eunique as the Organ to be vandalized. I wish more can be done on the inside.

I visited the Ethnographic Museum at the University of Addis Ababa, this was Emperor Haile Selassie’s house that he donated to host the university. It’s a wonderful museum and I wish the management of Lord Egerton Castle would do the same. 

The lady abandoned the house by calling it “chicken house” then the castle she called it “Horse House”. The Lord died and left it where it stood, its should not be abandoned again, it has had enough of it……and it needs justice.

 

Caves inside Menengai Crater.

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The Menengai Volcanic Crater is one of the main attractions in Nakuru. From the top it offers awesome views of nature at its best and the new Geothermal development adds to more eye pleasing and relaxing views.

I was trying to use google maps as a guide for accessing the Creator, it gave me two routes, one on Kabarak Road and the second on Nyahururu. All about 31 KM. But my intuition caused me to ask somebody at the petrol station we were fueling.

Just after the hospital there is a road going up the hill, it turns dusty after a few meter and goes all the way to the Kenya Forest Service gate which is the entrance to the crater. The road was very dusty when we went, it had just been done and there had not been enough rain to wash the dust away.

But for me the main attraction is the Caves, the place full of solitude and peace, away from every other thing. We were lucky to get a guide who could show us where the caves are since there’s no direction showing you how to get there.

But if you take the gate on your left while driving into the park, you will have to take your first left turn to and then the second left after driving for some time. That will take you to the Caves.

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The Caves however are protected area used as places of worship, you should not be surprised when you hear loud shouts and chanting when you approach the Caves. You will experience darkness like never before when you are inside the caves, its cold and the only sound is that of drops of water coming down from the ceiling of the cave.

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I took a moment of meditation and gratitude to God. When here, I felt a great presence of God and how amazing his works are. From the caves, there is still a different route that will take you to Kiamunyi if you don’t want do go back via the original route.

But being up there, you will enjoy the view of Nakuru town and  Lake Nakuru. There is more to see at the crater, for those who don’t know….and if you would want to see something so amazing, the caves will be it.

Enjoy your travel.

A drive at Lake Nakuru National Park.

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Lake Nakuru National Park is a main attraction in Nakuru town. Nakuru is the capital of Nakuru County. The town soon to be city sproal a lot the A104, which is part of the Northern Corridor.

When the Kenya-Uganda railway line was constructed, although heavily criticized as the Lunatic Express or a road to nowhere, it had a profound impact in the creation the nation today known as Kenya.

As the nation grew, Nakuru Town also developed out of the activities of the railroad as it was one of the major stopovers that encouraged growth of business centres along the railway from Mombasa en route for Kisumu.

 


Nakuru County was among the area that was annexed as white highlands, where many colonists chose to settle.

This county still have a lot trace of the white rule, big part of it is still under the few white, but also to good part is that a lot is under conservation. Major attractions in Nakuru, is a place we choose to visit, the Lake Nakuru National Park.

I would advise you if you have never done a park drive, make sure you do early morning or late evening. The park can be very hot, and animals always want to hide from the hot sun.

The road within the parks is always not turmarked, but it is well maintained. It is advisable to use an SUV but if you are like me, not able to afford one, even a sedan can manage 95% of the roads within the park. The only part we would not manage was the Out Of Africa viewpoint.

The road runs along the lake surrounding and with different exits, connecting the main gate and Lanet Gate. It also connects to Soysambu Conservancy. The park has two top viewpoints and two bird watching spots. The points to note are Baboon cliff, Out of Africa and Lake show where you can watch the flamingos.

I will also advise you against leaving your car when you are not in designated areas, Lions can eat you in a minute, or the Buffalos or rhino can come charging at you, and just like in the movies, you will be running for your dear life.

Lake Nakuru of late has swollen to claim part of the park where trees and buildings sit, am afraid if this goes on we might not have the road. The views along the lake are breathtaking though and we made many stops to just look at animals and observe their body language.

The whole drive would be 45 KM around the park, with hills and valleys and a lot of lake shoe driving.

 

Rocking My World With Pace Headphones.

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The Story

A month ago I was fortunate enough to put my hands on Pace Headphones, brand new, just me me. For a long time I had been thinking about my migration to headphones from my iPhone earphones which mainly because of design and by this i mean either the earphones or my ears or both. If its my ears, I am not ready to blame God, I mean it is what it is. But if it’s the earphones than somebody at apple should be fired.

So then my most trusted team worried about the money, they discussed numbers in small tones on the same table I was sitting and all I needed to do was ditch my earphones with instructions to make the big package.

Many people don’t know what it means to own a new Porsche, and I mean brand new….myself included. But I have been privileged to be close to someone who does. When you buy a new Porsche from the dealership in Nairobi, you get a welcome letter, more like a certificate, or a thank you note from the Chairman welcoming you to the club just for blowing a few millions you know.

So there I was, after blowing $50 my wife needed for other important stuff and sure (women always have important stuff to buy other than headphones) I was standing with my package in my hands. A solid box with beautiful design…….giving apple a run for their money.

I opened the box, its not easy to open…..not the kind of box you just reap apart, this is different. Box aside I meet the case, black with a yellow zip and on top it just says Hallo Pace…….this reminded me the high days of Motorola. The first thing I saw after I opened the case was a letter from the Pace Designer, Givinalis Omachar.

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I tell you, I have never owned a new Porsche, but at this point I felt like I was in the history of something great, maybe not like the Porser but something great. Then I figured how bluetooth works, you press a button and hold……..the headphones speak “welcome to the world of pace” holding on to the button it says “Pace is ready to pair”. And just like that I was in a different world.

Sound Quality

First I must say, if you are trying your new place I recommend some of my favorite songs, Inner City Blues by Rodriguez, Concrete Jungle by Bob Marley and Mr Tambourine by Bob Dylan. The Pace Focus delivers sound details I previously did not hear with my normal earphones. In a well-produced song, you can hear all the vocals, the bass is just right, not too much to ruin the song, the instrumentals are clear and it does not sound like they are all fighting for your attention. I could only describe the sound coming off the Pace Focus as warm, loud and beautiful.

For those who do not fancy Bluetooth, Pace includes quite a long 3.5mm AUX cable to serve you, which is neat.

Battery Life

If you are like me, who is not employed by nobody to keep charging your gadgets every time then Pace is your baby. These things last forever on a single charge. Pace says that they should last you well around 35 hours of continuous use and I have no arguments with that, I have not used it for 35 straight hours. But still I have never been disappointed in the middle of a song and it decreard its death. I have noticed though the few times I am charging it, it takes a really short time.

Design

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Saving the best for last. The headphones are made out of hard plastic, but they still exhibit some quality. This might not sound well with you but, spending more than a month with my pair, I have no doubts. There’s a little flex when you bend the headphones, that’s expected of anything with this kind of material but it does not feel cheap at all.

The Pace Focus has two buttons both of which are on the right side. One button controls the on/off switch and the other controls the headphone’s volume. The volume rockers can be used to skip or go to the previous song when long pressed, double pressing the power button, pauses the playing song.

There’s also a tiny notification light between these two buttons, it’s easy to miss it, wish the size was a little bigger though. On the left side, there’s the 3.5mm headphone jack and a USB charging port. When put on, the headphones feel comfortable, not heavy on your head, easy to put on and remove.

The only downside on the design is that the headphones come in one colour, black. I do wish there were more colours to choose (maybe colors that would appeal to feminine) from but I guess black is the safest option since it goes with anything without looking hideous.

But hey, this is a good buy, maybe you will not like the same things that I liked, I must say for me…..I enjoy small pleasures, am always impressed with small things.

 

 

Africa Cyber Security Summit 2014.

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The highly anticipated Africa Cyber Security and Forensic Summit that was scheduled for the 27th and 28th September did not happen. This is the first time in my event planning that I was not able to make un event happen.

Organizing events is not an easy job, I have seen events become successful and I have watched other crumbule. I have not been part of one that has crumbled until this week.

We started with a great plan, seeking the partnership of the Kenya Cyber Security and Forensics Association, with expectations that together we will be able to pull together a great event.

We also hired the services of a PR company with was to approach sponsors and raise money that would make the event happen. For  sometime we felt we were on schedule, and we would make it, but as the date approached it became clear that it will be difficult to have the event.

We have not had discussions with the organizing team to see the way forward. Some people are of thought that we should give a new date and keep planning, others think that we should call it a day, at least for this year and plan for another year 2019.

We will keep you updated on what happens, if we will have a new date or if we will plan for the event for 2019.

Amazing Love For Joomla.

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Last week marked the end of a long journey we have travelled to make sure that we put an event together. Organising an event in Nairobi is not easy. Its really difficult getting sponsors for IT event and maybe other events. I have had opportunities to be involved in a number of events, Joomla! Day Ke being one of them.

For four years now, iHub being both the main catalyst for regional tech acceleration and a role model for tech hubs across emerging markets has supported this event by sponsoring a venue for the Joomla User Group – Nairobi and JoomlaDay Event.

Founded in 2010, iHub is a globally recognized organization that is deeply steeped in the local tech innovation culture. We are happy to announce that iHub has been and is still home for JoomlaDay Kenya, and we hope that this will be a partnership that will benefit everyone.

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Joomla! is a free and open-source content management system (CMS) for publishing web content. Over the years Joomla! has won several awards.It is built on a model–view–controller web application framework that can be used independently of the CMS that allows you to build powerful online applications.

As of May 2018, Joomla! has been downloaded over 93 million times. Over 8,000 free and commercial extensions are available from the official Joomla! Extensions Directory, and more are available from other sources. It is estimated to be the second most used content management system on the Internet, after WordPress.

Open Source Matters has always supported Joomla Day Events, depending on the budget they have. JoomlaDay events are officially recognized, but not organized, by the Joomla! Project and Open Source Matters, Inc. Each event is managed independently by a local community.

The participation this year was as balanced as it could be, 50 attendees ranging from Joomla Community in Nairobi, Techies, bading techies and students.

But important to say that the support from Open Source Matters is always not enough to make an event happen, and so the need to bring in more sponsors becomes important.

This year Joomshaper came to our rescue.

JoomShaper is the home of beautifully crafted unique Joomla templates and highly functional extensions along with award winning drag and drop SP Page Builder for you to create your dream website in minutes.

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What was new during this Joomla Day? Apart from a wide range of topics being covered, Networking and discussions, we hosted our first ever Joomla Administrators Exams, the second in Africa.

The Joomla! Certification Program has been created to ensure the competence of Joomla! professionals through documented measurement of skills and knowledge. The program aims to establish a certain standard whilst promoting a qualified workforce.

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Professional certification can play an important role in the decision of a company or business owner when hiring skilled individuals for specific roles. Six people had given interest in doing the certification exam, but only one has the courage to actually do the exam.

We thank iHub for providing the room and dedicated internet to be able to have a successful certification exams. It took a lot of time to get everything ready, being the first time, Joel Mbugua, who was supervising the exam had some difficulty getting things started. This is understandable, but we have a good start.

One of our speakers from Italy couldn’t make it for the event, but he managed to send a video link of his presentation.

Our desire for the future is to push this event to a different city other that Nairobi…..to be able to grow the community.

I thank all the speakers, who have shared knowledge during this event. I thank the people who have worked on our social media campaign and all who worked on the background. What a wonderful team we had, and we hope that you all accept our sincere appreciation.

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We thank all our sponsors and partners, Host sponsors iHub, Open Source Matters, Joomshaper, CMS Africa, Kenic and Kenya Web Experts, whom without their support we would not have succeeded doing this event.

We value your genuine support and partnership.