Breaking The Norm: Women In The Smart Cities Industry

September 13, 20224 minutesBlog
Breaking The Norm: Women In The Smart Cities Industry

I have always been interested in technology and found the smart cities industry to be interesting/challenging. It has always been an industry that I wanted to be a part of. Here is my story of 12 years of experience in the tech industry, and how I found my passion in backend development.

I've always been a shy kid and the wallflower in the room. I plunged myself into books and games. I grew up in an old classical city in Semarang, Central Java. The town has always mesmerized me, the architecture is the legacy of Dutch colonial history, and it shaped the city perfectly. Gives me nostalgic yet great vibes whenever I stroll around the city. 

I remember in elementary school, instead of waiting for my parents to pick me up from school, I chose to get public transport and stroll around the city. It was the beginning of my love for city architecture and landscape. I wondered how this giant system works, and at that very moment, I knew I would be working related to city development. 

Fast forward to 2010, I graduated in computer science. By that time, I'd be catching on to a career I hadn't realized I'd been passionate about since childhood. My passion for learning and studying naturally led me into education. Helping others discover knowledge is one of the most fulfilling things a person can experience in life. Overall, I'm pretty fulfilled. I started work as a researcher and lecturer at the university for 4 years. It was a quiet experience for me. 

I got to the intersection of choosing my path. Stays at being a lecturer or shifting my career to work in a vast industry. I chose the second option.

So I became a Backend Developer

Academia is highly research and discovery-focused, and much study is done for learning. The work in the industry is typically more deadline-driven, as teams work on the business-focused problem. I wonder if anybody has made the switch and if they've stuck with it or gone back to the industry. I thought I had made a good decision. Fast forward, I got a job offer as a backend developer in a software company in Semarang. I worked there for several years, and it was a fantastic experience. I experienced multiple roles, from backend developer to system analysis and design. It was fascinating because I found my expertise in system analysis and design, and working in the industry gave me so many opportunities to keep myself updated with current technologies. 

Witnessing The Evolution of Backend Development 

I'm pretty lucky because with 12 years of experience in the IT industry, there are significant changes I've observed in software engineering. For example, DevOps is a new thing. In 2019, all fast-moving tech companies will empower engineers to deploy. In return, they are on call, responsible for automated tests, monitoring, alerting, and operating backend systems

New languages are available such as Ruby, Go, and Rust. NodeJS. Existing ones here to stay: Java, C#, C++, Erlang, PHP. There is plenty of room to learn all the new languages and the old ones remain. 

My interest in the Smart Cities Industry

I remember I applied to Itsavirus because it focuses on smart cities. Without hesitation, I joined Itsavirus 2 years ago, and now I work on several projects on mobility applications. 

My main concern for working in this industry, besides my love for the city, is that our planet is dying. And I believe smart cities are the solutions to create a better world we live in. Smart city stands for a digital, technological, and ecological city that cares for its citizens and can answer them in any way they need to. I believe smart cities and Smart solutions are the future.  Smart cities offer better use of space, less traffic, cleaner air, and more efficient civic services, all of which increases quality of life. There will be integration on space, technology, function and flexibility. Flexibility will be the new currency of smart cities.  

I have desire to live in Aarhost, Denmark and consider pursuing my higher education there since it recently topped the European Union Digital Economy and Society Index. Working as a scientist in the field of smart cities is one of my dream.