Collision Conference 2019 Review and Is Going to Conferences and Networking Overrated?

Tomiwa (me) at Collision Conference 2019

At the beginning of May my coworker mentioned she had extra tickets to Collision Conference, the “fastest growing tech conference in North America” and asked if anyone would be interested. I messaged her and said yes. So first, I want to thank Jessica for getting me free tickets to the conference. Second, I want to share some of my thoughts on Collision Conference specifically and Conferences and Networking in general.


  • Strong Opinions Weakly Held Disclaimer
  • Are Conferences Overrated?
  • Is Networking Overrated and a better way to Network
  • Why I Respect and Disagree with Ev Williams

Atila Startup Pitch that Won $3,000

3 weeks ago I participated in a pitch competition for Atila hosted by Propel at Western University and LEAP at Fanshawe College.

Here is the pitch for Atila that won us $3,000.

Huge shout out to the team for all their help:

Aurorita, Jotham, Lea and Val , thank you so much.


2018 Year in Review

In Jeff Bezos’ 2016 Annual Shareholder Letters for Amazon, he talks about measuring Amazon’s success as a function of experiments run. Essentially, instead of looking at net income or revenue as a way of tracking progress, you can use the number of new things tried. I think in 2018, I ran the most experiments in my life.

  • In 2018 I finally had the guts to “drop out” of University.
  • Then I decided to come back to University and finish my degree.
  • Started an interview podcast series called Atila TV
  • Travelled through 5 European countries in 10 days
  • Worked an 8-month internship at Properly
  • Started a Youtube channel about software engineering, programming, business and self-improvement

Big Ideas and Lessons Learnt in 2018

The biggest thing I learnt in 2018 was the nuances of human nature and how irrational we can be. I sort of knew that humans can be irrational but seeing how people react in the face of contradicting evidence and how they can create narratives to support their worldview was a bit surprising. Though, in 2019 I would learn that creating these narratives is actually a very important part of human progress, but we’ll get to that in 2019 year in review.


Bain Consulting, RBC Investment Banking, Ivey Business School and Why he declined Goldman Sachs: Paul Okundaye — Atila TV 006

Tomiwa + Paul

Paul is an incoming management consultant at Bain and Company. Before that he was an investment banking summer analyst at RBC after declining an interview at Goldman Sachs and founder of a food delivery company called Dine Easy. He is currently in his final year in the honours business program at the Ivey Business School.

In this episode we talk about why he chose investment banking and consulting and if he was chasing prestige or doing what he genuinely enjoyed. We talked about how he feels when people say “you only got an opportunity because you’re black or because you’re a woman”, why he left banking to join consulting and much more.

Full interview at


  • “You’re doing banking and consulting, the two most stereotypical, cliche business school careers. How much of that is your genuine passion versus doing it for prestige/clout?” — 32:25
  • How do you feel when people say “you only got that because you’re black” or “you only got that because you’re a woman”? — 14:15 [highlights]
  • Why he turned down Goldman Sachs and Moelis interviews to work at RBC — 14:00 [highlights]
  • How he got an investment analyst internship at Scotiabank after just first year in university — 9:36
  • Why he moved into consulting and left banking? — 20:40
  • Banking being a good old boy’s club, having to conform and leave his identity at the door — 20:00

Best Books I Read in 2018

2018 was a very eventful year for me. I also read some interesting books that provided me with a lot of new perspectives. I think 2016 and 2017 were more transformative years in terms of new ideas gained from books. Without further ado, here is a list of the best books I read in 2018 and key takeaways and big ideas from each book and a bonus section on new blogs, podcasts, youtube videos I enjoyed in 2018.

Best Books of 2018

  1. Crushing It, Gary Vaynerchuk
  2. Principles, Ray Dalio
  3. Influence, Robert Cialdini
  4. Bad Blood, John Carreyrou
  5. Leonardo Da Vinci, Walter Isaacson
  6. Programming Collective Intelligence, Toby Segaran
  7. Ogilvy on Advertising, David Ogilvy

What I Learned from Teaching Two Kids How To Code

Jami, Tomiwa, Atharv - November 2018
Jami, Tomiwa, Atharv – November 2018

In early November 2018, a family friend messaged me on Whatsapp asking me to send links on a trading algorithm and website which I built. I was curious why she asked, but decided to just play along and send her the links without asking any further questions.

A few weeks later she messaged me again asking if I would be willing to teach her son how to code. I agreed to do so and also tutored one of her coworker’s sons. We moved at a very fast pace of 2 hours/day, twice a week since I had to leave for a trip to Europe very soon. Over the course of those sessions and even though I was the teacher, I think I learnt just as much from them as they did from me. Here are some of the most important things which I learnt.


5 Things to do in Barcelona, Paris, Monaco, Nice, Madrid and Lisbon

Tomiwa in Lisbon, December 2018
Tomiwa in Lisbon, December 2018

5 Things to do in Barcelona, Monaco, Nice, Madrid and Lisbon

I just got back from a 14 day blitz of London, Paris, Nice/Monaco, Barcelona, Madrid, and Lisbon. It was an amazing experience, if you are going to any of these places here are somethings I think you should try to do.

Note: You should also read my post 7 Tips For Travelling to France, Spain, Portugal or Anywhere in Europe. The two posts together contain a lot of helpful tips for anyone travelling to Europe.

Eat a Paella and Tapas in Barcelona

Spain is known for their famous dish called Paellas and Tapas. If I had to give an analogy you might understand, Palleas is basically rice stir fry with seafood (or meat or other vegetable) and Tapas are essentially appetizers. The analogy doesn’t do the food justice (google it to get a better idea) but they are really good and I recommend you try them, also a good rule of thumb is to eat the local cuisine of wherever you visit.


7 Tips For Travelling to France, Spain, Portugal or Anywhere in Europe

We arrived at the Louvre with 30 minutes left and the admission fee was 15€. I asked the lady if we could get a discount since we could only look around for 30 minutes. Now, I don’t speak French and she doesn’t speak English so that negotiation didn’t go too well.  

Me: “Val let’s go. Why pay €15 for 15 minutes”  

Val: ” Says something about it being a once in a lifetime opportunity and some Drake lyrics”  

Long stay short, he was right, it was worth it and we end up having a fun time (thank you Val).


Principles by Ray Dalio: Book Review, Summary and Key Takeaways

Principles by Ray Dalio – Thumbs Up inspired by Ben Nadal

Note: If you don’t have time to read this whole article, skip to the Key Takeaways (or The “Do This” List). Its short, sweet, very actionable, and to the point.

Ray Dalio is one of the most successful investors of all time with a net worth of about $18.1 billion. The company he founded, Bridgewater is the world’s largest hedge fund with over $124.7 Billion in Assets under management. But that’s not the point.

The point, is that the hedge fund industry is one of the most secretive, competitive industries in the world. So when one of the most successful people in such an industry, is giving a glimpse into how his brain works and how he built Bridgewater, we should all try and see what lessons we can pick from his story and apply to our life.

This essay is a review of Ray Dalio’s Principles. I will split this essay into 2 parts: a review and high level summary of what the book is about and some actionable, key takeaways on things you can start or stop doing after you’ve read the book.


Getting into Medical School Without a Degree, Advice for Pre Med Students, Work Life Balance and Self Care – Emily Chen – Atila TV 001

Emily Chen and Tomiwa

Emily Chen (IG:em.chenn) joins us on the first episode to talk about how she got into U of T medical school without a degree, advice for students studying pre med programs and the importance of work life balance and self care.



Listen on Spotify

Listen on iTunes


What type of high school student were you – 1:10

Cold Calling Professionals in grade 10 – 2:37

McMaster Health Science Rejection and wakeup Call – 4:09

What if I I don’t get into medical school – 5:00

Biggest life jumps and importance of self care – 8:12