I’m Simon. I love technology, new ideas, design and people, along with any excuse to talk about those topics. Broadcasting, writing, professional speaking and design enable me to do so.
I currently guide product strategy and design at BitX and serve as an advisor to 22seven. I host a weekly technology show on 5FM and a new podcast called Binary. I also co-host Take back the Day with my friend Sam Beckbessinger in which we swear and talk about doing stuff better.
In the past I used to be technology editor at Finweek magazine and co-founder of Split Infinitive – a new media broadcasting company. I’ve also co-founded several other organisations including Deathcard Media and Reshare.
I’m regularly asked to Speak at events, where topics include innovation, design thinking, technology and business trends, emerging markets and other ideas that I find exciting. This is perhaps my most favourite thing of all, since it involves traveling, meeting people and discussing ideas.
In the past I’ve been a columnist for a selection of technology, business and lifestyle publications including Brainstorm, PC Format, Africa Telecoms, SL, SA Computer Magazine, PC Format and Stuff. I wrote a chapter on Mark Shuttleworth for the book South Africa’s Greatest Entrepreneurs and worked as a communications consultant to technology firms including Google, Oracle, The Shuttleworth Foundation and others during my time at Hypertext Media Communications.
I was also a presenter on Talk Radio 702 from 2008 to 2010 and my first job in radio was while studying at the University of Pretoria where I worked as a DJ, station manager and programme manager at Tuks FM.
I don’t put much value in awards, but for what it’s worth I won the Classic Business Journalist of the Year award in 2011, was listed in the Mail & Guardians Top 200 Young South Africans and received the Highway Africa New Media Award in 2010.
I do value meeting interesting people, however, and in my travels as a technology consultant and journalist I’ve had the honour of meeting with several leaders in the field, including former IBM CEO Sam Palmisano, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, former joint-CEO of Research In Motion (BlackBerry) Jim Balsillie, and many more.
I believe that most of the world’s problems are really just education challenges with design and technology as key components of their solution. As far as I’m concerned, smart is not something you are, but something you do.