Celebrating Black Tech: Following History Into The Future

Photo Credit: Jopwell Collection

Black people have contributed to technological and scientific advances for centuries.  Their contributions have made our lives better in immeasurable ways.  One such person was Benjamin Bradley (also known as Benjamin Boardley).  Born a slave in 1836, he learned to read and write. Through self cultivated skills, he created a steam engine out of scrap metal among other materials.   His exceptional talents landed him a job at the United States Naval Academy.  Though still a slave, he earned a salary for which he was able to keep a small percentage.  Through his learning at the Naval Academy and perseverance, Benjamin Bradley invented a steam engine powerful enough to drive a warship.  Ultimately, he was able to use savings from his salary, and money he earned from selling this invention to buy his freedom. 

In celebrating black history month, we honor the contributions and accomplishments of Benjamin Bradley (Boardley) and other black innovators.  Unlike in centuries past, today’s black innovators are better positioned to reap full benefits from their creations.  Benjamin Bradley like other black inventors of the time were excluded from obtaining patents.  Yet whites were able to utilize their inventions to amass fortunes. 

Reaping the benefits from one’s creations allows for expansion and continued growth over time.   In this post, we review technological applications by black developers that can:

  1. Save you money,
  2. Make you money,
  3. And save you time as individuals or business owners.  


Some of the following are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This means at no cost to you, Shop With Leslie will receive a commission should you use the advertisements in making a purchase.

Doly is an app building platform to help you build apps for IOS and Android devices.  It is user friendly and offered at several price points.

Incluzion is a platform to find Black, Latinx, and Female pre-vetted freelance talent across 85+ different skill sets.  Examples include advertising, content creation, sales, and web development.  You can sign up to hire talent or find freelance work. 

SCHOLLY (advertisement) is a scholarship and academic development app. Scholly helps one find college scholarships that fit their personal profile. In addition, it comes with an editor to aid in writing scholarship and other types of essays. Scholly Math (advertisement) is a tutorial program that provides detailed information in helping you to understand and solve a variety of math problems.

Solo Funds is a peer-to-peer loan program that allows you to lend and make money, or borrow money on your own terms.  It has many bank partners to facilitate transferring and receiving funds. You can make and receive loans of up to $1,000.00.  They examine financial records to create a “solo score” that looks at more than just the FICO score to determine one’s creditworthiness.  Borrower fees are designed to be fair and NON-predatory.


On a larger scale, Lending Club is a company that links borrowers with investors.  You can apply for business or personal loans, auto refinancing, and patient care loans.  Apply online and receive loan options in minutes.  Then select the loan that works best for you.  Upon confirmation, funds are quickly delivered into your account.  Soft inquiries regarding your credit health are made such that your credit score is not affected.  You can borrow or become an investor. 


Vyllage is an app designed to end porch piracy by neighbors helping neighbors. You can make money by signing up to be a Vyllager, and accept packages for others in your community.  There is an initial processing fee, and a small yearly renewal fee.  Vyllagers go through a background check and must keep packages in a secure location.  Charges for the customers vary depending on the size of the package. 

Ride Share APPS

You can make money as drivers with these ride share companies. 

Moovn charges drivers 15% of the fare.  Safety is a priority.  There is a phone number for passengers to report safety concerns, the app includes a built in panic button for emergency notification, and there is an extensive driving record and criminal background check on drivers. 

ScoopM pays drivers 10 – 15% more than Uber, and driver benefits include auto repair/maintenance plans.  Safety is a priority as drivers undergo a mandatory FBI screen and random drug tests.  There is a dash cam stream, emergency panic button, and 20 safety features in the app. 

In reviewing these APPS from black developers, I hope you find one or more that work for you. 

Happy Shopping!  Happy Black History Month!

ALSO, Shop With Leslie offers a Premium Content section with Buying Guides and Sales Information.  You will find 1000+ inexpensive and fabulous items for $25.00 and less from black owned companies. That is 300+ items for $10.00 and less, 200+ items from $10.01 to $15.00, and 500+ items from $15.01 to $25.00.  Great sales at 50% off are also posted.  We do the legwork so you don’t have to!  You can sign up HERE for the low cost of $4.95 per year.  Or, consider the following. 

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  1. Black Inventor. “Benjamin Bradley.” http://blackinventor.com/benjamin-bradley/
  2. Johnson, Shontavia. “America’s always had black inventors – even when the patent system explicitly exclude them.” 14 February, 2017.  https://theconversation.com/americas-always-had-black-inventors-even-when-the-patent-system-explicitly-excluded-them-72619?xid=PS_smithsonian
  3. Wikipedia. “Benjamin Bradley (inventor).” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benjamin_Bradley_(inventor)

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