Meet The First Voyagers Crew (Part 2)
Published on November 6, 2020

Last week we introduced you to the first group from our inaugural Voyagers crew.

Vonage Voyagers is a one-year program for developers who want to get their hands on new communication technologies first and be part of a community of like-minded peers who support and learn from each other. It’s an opportunity for us to reward and recognize the valuable contributors in our community.

You can become a Voyager by applying directly or nominating a colleague, friend, or another community member.

This week we’re highlighting yet another group of Voyagers and learning more about them and their interests. Please meet Joe McAlister, Michael Owolabi, and Henry Shepherdson.

Joe McAllister - Vonage VoyagerJoe McAllister - Vonage Voyager

Where are you based?

Joe: London, United Kingdom

Michael: I'm based in Lagos, Nigeria. The most populous state in the most populous black nation on the globe 😀. Yes, we have the best Jollof!

Henry: Johannesburg, South Africa

Tell us about a project you worked on recently

Joe: An online version of a piece of playable theatre. We integrated Vonage video calling, meaning participants could see and talk to each other throughout the show. We had people from 12 different countries join us over the two weeks of shows.

Michael: I like to take note of my daily/weekly activities. I mostly do this with pen and paper but it was becoming a headache as I lose my personal journal from time to time. So I started working on a simple web app called "My Diarium" to directly take account of my activities where it's safe and I can be sure of not losing it anymore. It's not completed yet but I'm happy to be doing this for myself.

Henry: A work project I am busy with is a web application built on Laravel. It is a property rental application for short and long term lease. I've used Laravel Nova for the backend as well as Algolia's search on the front-end. This project is a great example of what I love to do best—collaborate. We have a UX designer, a digital designer, and me (the developer) working on it. My experience has shown me that the best projects are collaborations and I generally cannot achieve on my own what I can do with a team.

Michael Owolabi - Vonage VoyagerMichael Owolabi - Vonage Voyager

What are you most looking forward to doing as a Voyager?

Joe: Meeting other developers working in this field and helping to create fun educational content.

Michael: Learning more about the various array of product offerings and their right applications by Vonage and learning from the experts behind these amazing APIs. I'm also looking forward to meeting and networking with other amazing Voyagers from around the globe.

Henry: What I am most looking forward to is learning more about the global developer community and creating content!

What do you think is an exciting part of working with communication APIs?

Joe: In my particular field of digital art/playable theatre communication APIs open up such a possibility for breaking down barriers between interaction and enabling people from all around the world to experience interactive shows which used to be geo-specific.

Michael: With the remote first culture becoming more popular and expedited by the pandemic, there are now endless opportunities working with various communication APIs and I am even more excited to be in on this with Vonage. Take for example in the education sector, as e-learning is becoming more popular so is the Video API. I can't wait to see what other levels of awesomeness will be unlocked as remote becomes more and more popular and I'm super pumped to get started now.

Henry: There is so much development that has to take place to build a communications feature in my applications, never mind keeping up with the latest technologies. The fact that I can plug into all of that already with an API is most exciting to me.

Henry Shepherdson - Vonage VoyagerHenry Shepherdson - Vonage Voyager

Tell us a fun fact about yourself!

Joe: I run 5k a day

Michael: I dance a lot in my head. I've got some next-gen dance moves up there but how that translates to my actual dancing is what I don't want to get into now 😂. I love adventure too.

Henry: I love domestic agriculture! I think that every household growing a significant portion, themselves, of the food they consume, would go a long way to improving the world.

Join Joe, Michael, and Henry by applying directly or nominating a colleague, friend, or another community member to become a Voyager. Stay tuned for more Voyager spotlights to come!

Myrsini Koukiasa

Myrsini is a Senior Community Programs Manager at Vonage. She helps the Developer Relations team support, engage and connect with developer communities where they are.

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