Shit Ezra Says

by Ezra 'God' Olubi.

Achiever. Thinker. Wanker. Cofounder and CTO at Paystack.

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Candid

It’s amazing how I have managed to garner a reputation for always being angry in certain social circles. Particularly on Radar, I have been referred to as a terrorist, someone who prides in mindlessly bullshitting (or attacking) other people’s ideas, amongst other things. I have in not so many words been blamed for some people abstaining from sharing their thoughts or products for fear of being judged. Some have even gone as far as looking forward to the failure of things I lay my hands on just so they can have a good laugh - I know this because this sentiment has been expressed to people who happen to be friends of mine.

Wow.

Sometime in 2009, I wrote a casual blog post titled Celebrating Mediocrity which basically expressed my disgust with the low ambitions of most web services created by Nigerians. This sentiment hasn’t changed much. What has become even stronger is how much people

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That night on Santana Row

So I had been home for at least 7 days straight now, besides going out for the obligatory Tuesday evening dinner. Now this can be considered awesome. Working from home with only three destinations to really be bothered about - the bed, the desk, and the kitchen. Okay, maybe occasional trips to the bathroom. However, things can get a little awry quickly. Like running mad from all the monotony. It doesn’t help matters that I live in a secluded part of town.

A couple of weeks back, while in a little conversation with the lady driving the uber I was in, I asked about what fun stuff to do in town and she mentioned this outdoor mall in San Jose with a number of bars and outdoor happenings in the evenings. This sounded great. Afterall, It’s high time I started making friends around here. Ope and I decided to head there last night. The plan was simple - relax, have fun, and knock ourselves out

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Going live

As a developer, the most exciting moment about your product can easily be when people start making use of that shiny new code you pushed, and everything hums along just fine. Or not. For some reason, I tend to prefer the latter, because you see the problems right away, and get to work fixing them which eventually culminates in that additional sense of pride in your work.

We promised the world we would move Paystack to public beta back in December. As a matter of fact, we raced towards making this happen between December 7 and 11. Rhyme not intended. These were nights without sleep for me, well partly because my clock also hadn’t fully adjusted to Nigerian time as I found myself sleeping more between the hours of 11am and 6pm. Then the slow downs began. It was like finishing 98% of the work, and then taking your sweet time to do the remaining 2%. There was one excuse or the other for not

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Crudcast: A holiday special

I did promise I would publish my writings more frequently in the new year, but perhaps writing a new post immediately after the last is only going to raise expectations. I’m fine with that. :)

Earlier today, we recorded a new episode of the show. The concept was put together less than 24 hours before the recording began, and the unintended guest only 3 hours prior. I had a brief Skype conversation with Tolu earlier today where she was forming Spanish babe - a language she has been forced to learn due to her ongoing sojourn in Chile. I told her about the episode and what we had planned for it and that was it.

I have to say, it wouldn’t have turned out to be as fun as it did without her on the show, and I’m glad we had that call. We played a game around places we have been to, companies we have worked with, and programming languages we have written in. Uzo’s choice to marry PHP still

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2015 roundup

I’m not much for reflection, but I feel compelled to write something this time around. Maybe it’s from the need to write more often in the coming year and beyond, or just plain boredom. Or maybe I am actually amazed at how far I have come in the past few months, who knows?

In many ways, this was probably my worst and most depressing year ever. Personally, I was a mess. My financials was pretty much below zero. My career was as good as non existent. Physically, I was withdrawn from almost everyone. I think I also got a little angrier than normal. There were days I would be driving home from work and literally just start shedding tears. I didn’t want anybody to tell me it would be alright. No. I just wanted everyone to stay clear, and in more appropriate terms, fuck off.

My fantasies became my escape. I love gadgets. But I couldn’t afford to buy myself the things I wanted. I could only

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You shall not pass!

Eyowo was a service that made it easy for people to accept payments online. Its appeal, and primary unique selling point at the time was that it managed to consolidate the various possible means of electronic payments run by different companies into one interface. This greatly reduced the barrier of entry for potential e-commerce players in terms of cost and ease.

Soon enough, we identified opportunities to do interesting things with the service. We could determine people’s spending patterns based on what they buy, websites they buy from, and how often they shop online. Best of all, we can have this information available to the shopper. A bonus surely wouldn’t hurt. Right? Thing is the users had to login to view this information. How do we get them to set their passwords? An early implementation of the Eyowo payment page had a login/register interface that comes up before payments (the

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What the fuck was I reading?

This time last year, I visited my mom for the holidays - like everybody else. It is customary for us to have bible readings and then pray before retiring for the night.

On one of those nights, what was read was about some king that sent for a prophet. I think that prophet was Elijah. Anyway, the king sent a commander of some fifty soldiers to go get the prophet. Note that this wasn’t an arrest, regardless of how it sounds. The commander walked up to the prophet and went

“Thou man of God, the king requests your presense”.

Well, guess what - the prophet responded saying

“If I am a man of God, let fire come down from heaven and strike you and your army”.

And that happened.

The king sent commander #2 and his own fifty soldiers. Same thing happened.

I’m like dude, we know you are a man of God. That’s why we called you man of God. Why are you still trying to prove to us that you’re a

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