Thursday 21 September 2023



Our group award as presented to us by the director of Goethe Institut, Lagos on Friday, September 15, 2023.

Last week, I mentioned on my Facebook profile that I was going to defend my project about the Dùndún Talking Drum and the Yorùbá Language and how they relate to technology at the Dreaming New World technology pitch.

Honestly, at that time, I did not understand what was going on. I did not even believe that I would be selected for the long list as I was simply going around in a rigmarole about what could be a suitable project idea.

How does technology concern the talking drum and the Yorùbá language? 😀

Well, my personal project explains it.

It is titled:

This project was among the long list of twenty projects selected from the multitude of entries.

Here, I wrote about:

💢Speculative Futures for Indigenous Technologies

This refers to the multiple ways in which indigenous knowledge is used to improve the lives of humans and ancient practices that have existed in various parts of the world and are still relevant and prevalent today.

What is relevant today in my indigenous culture, is the talking drum and of course, the Yorùbá language, which is the primary language used to play this talking drum.

Thus, no matter the existence of AI, there are some things that AI cannot do yet like manufacturing a talking drum or creating beats from it.

💢An Evolution of Language in the Face of Emerging Technologies.

Technology expands indigenous languages by generating new words with them such as internet, emoji, hashtag, artificial intelligence, infographics, gifs, etc.

The Yorùbá language is a dynamic one which evolves according to the growth and improvement in technology.

For example, social media can be called AYÉLÙJÁRA in the Yorùbá language.

This word did not exist in the Yorùbá language twenty years ago.

So, the existence of AI in technology is to my advantage as a Yorùbá indigene because technology enriches the Yorùbá language with more words.

💢Ethical Approaches to New Technologies in Africa

Information generated from Artificial intelligence cannot possess intellectual property rights in many countries as they are reserved for human beings only.

Thus, restrictions to aid the protection of rights have been enacted in countries like the USA where, if a person must use AI to generate words to write a book, lyrics, scriptwriting, etc., it must be mentioned in the article that that content was generated using AI.

This is because the information provided by AI is pulled from online sources which have been uploaded by their copyright owners from all over the world.

AI does not seek the permission of these copyright owners before using these intellectual property rights from the sources of information which it provides to those who use ChapGPT.

Thus, artificial intelligence tools and the works generated by them need to be protected by copyrights and patents.

Therefore, as much as AI helps to make my creative process faster, I do not support that it should be used to create the sound of the talking drum as it is unethical.

Its use will steal from the intellectual property rights of the indigenous drum composers and rip off their daily bread as most of the indigenous talking drummers from the Àyàn families have no other means of livelihood.


Afterwards, the twenty participants were grouped into four groups of five each.
So, we had five projects from each individual in a group to choose from.

My group members chose to work on my talking drum idea by finding ways to improve its sound and features by developing a new prototype for it.

The following team members will be bringing on their expertise in the following areas:

Member 1: Directing, Film and Photography
Member 2: Design and Experiential Technology
Member 3: Research and Experiential Planning.
Member 4: Poetry and Storytelling
Member 5: Music, Linguistics and Research (Irawo)

So, we came up with the name for our group project; DRUMMING NEW WORLDS.

Out of the four groups, my team, TEAM 4, won the competition!!!💥💪😇

Below are our group pictures and my personal award:

My team and I as we accepted our award from the director of Goethe Institut.

Our Project

Brainstorming Session before our presentation

My shirt was designed by my first son who is a visual and applied artist

It is a pleasure to work with an amazing team. I look forward to the presentation of our exhibition in November. ✌

Musically yours,

DJ Irawo

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