By now, all #betterbreeders know we are huge supporters of the “Just Start” doctrine. We insist on this because it is what we ourselves apply in our daily work. As such, we know the start is confusing and scary. Just start, yes. But, with what? This is where skill comes in. Think of it as baking a cake. If you have no idea what to do, you do not just stand confused in your kitchen (at least we hope you do not). You start.
You start, not with breaking eggs but with googling; “How to bake a cake.” Three months and many failed attempts later, you may decide you much prefer cupcakes. You would have this insight because you made that first egg-shelled filled cake attempt. We implore you to start, because as the Steve Job’s quote goes: “You can only connect the dots looking backwards.” Now, we ask, how will you look backwards if you do not move forward now?
We promise you will fail; we promise it will feel terrible, we promise you will move. In the spirit of walking our talk, our youth of the month is one who is starting and solving the problems he sees with his skillset. We present to you, Musi Max Muma.
1) Tell us a bit about who you are.
Musi Max is a master’s student in the Faculty of Engineering and Technology specializing in Power Systems at the University of Buea. I am an electronic engineer with a strong focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and low-cost innovations, a drone pilot and part of Cameroon Flying labs. I have worked with “Will & Brothers” a local nonprofit. Also, I am a python programmer with intermediate skill in AutoCAD. I design traffic control surveillance recognition systems. As you can tell, I am passionate about robotics.
2) You built an automatic sanitizer dispenser. Tell us about the journey to birthing this idea and what the behind the scenes process of developing the machine was like.
Well basically I observed that the guards posted at the main gates of the University of Buea had to manually sanitize those coming into the campus. The process looked exhausting. So, I started thinking of how I could make it more efficient while reducing the risk of infection. This brought forward the idea of building an automatic sanitizer dispenser. With the idea in mind, I headed to my uncle’s carpentry workshop where I developed the design and made the structure. After obtaining the sensors and accessories, I programmed and assembled them in the structure.
3) What challenges did you face in the course of your work?
Purchasing equipment was not very easy as most of the sensors needed were not sold in Buea. Hence, I had to order them in from another town. This considerably increased my expenses.
4)What specific problems are you addressing with the dispenser in your local community?
The specific aim of the dispenser is to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the University of Buea. Given the large student population, this could help limit the spread in the community at large and even the country.
5)What should we look out from you in the future?
Engineers solve problems. I would love to keep doing that. Also, I plan to establish a hub to train kids. The two areas I want to focus in on are waste disposal and power stability. I would like to manage our waste disposal problem through its conversions to biogas, and work to solve electricity outage in my locality and country at large.
6)What current plans/projects are you involved in which our readers should know?
Traffic management system with the aid of Artificial Intelligence for Buea.
Smart security system for school attendance and protection.
Smart hybrid incubator for eggs
7)Tell us about some of the achievements you have had as an engineer and as an individual which you are proud of.
As an engineer, I am proud of my ability to design traffic control surveillance recognition systems and pilot drones. Also, the fact that I was able to train kids on how to pilot drones and their uses during a boot camp for UNICEF under the “Drone Africa” is an experience I appreciate.
8)What do you think our Cameroonian youth need to know/do to be the Better Breed?
Three things I always remind myself of which I think other youths should keep in mind to be the Better Breed are: