OAU Graduate Develops Yoruba Talking Watch

By: Dayo Fasasi

watchSoftware Engineer, Moyinoluwa Adeyemi has developed one of the rarest African inventions, an indigenous talking watch.

A graduate of the department of Computer Science and Mathematics at Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife (OAU), Adeyemi developed a watch app that tells time in the Yoruba language.

Not a novice to technology and software development, Adeyemi created a directory app for her students’ fellowship while on the campus of OAU and was among the 100 young Nigerians to receive the Ytech Award in 2015.

When asked about what necessitated her watch app, Adeyemi had this to say.

“I’ve been on an Android Watch Face creating spree of sometimes now. I created an analogue watch for Radar Community and then a digital one for a popular Nigerian company whose name is similar to that of the South African hero. One Friday evening after work, I looked at a clock and thought “What if it could tell the time in Yoruba?” I then asked questions on Twitter and Facebook and picked the brains of a few of my friends, especially Dayo Oluokun. There was also some other research centers I checked online.

I remembered a couple of lessons on semantics from my Natural Language Processing class in school. I put two and two together from all I had garnered and after 5 hours still on the same spot, I had a working prototype of a watch face that tells the time in Yoruba.

I didn’t even think too much of it until I posted the picture of the watch face on social media and people started asking what library I did the translations with, which were actually created by me from scratch just by studying the Yoruba patterns. I plan to upload it to Google Play and it will probably be the first ever indigenous watch face app on the store.”


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