Razan Khatib's commentary on life on/off the web

Archive for April, 2009

Technology, going back…then going forward 1

I happened to watch this funny video earlier tonight about what the pilot of 24 would’ve been like in 1994…

Warning: video ID not specified!

the file is too big, its about 3 floppies!!

Then later as I was browsing I watched this video of Microsoft’s 2019 Future Vision Montage,

Warning: video ID not specified!

don’t you want to read your news papers like that?

I often think that one main reason I would want to live beyond the age of 75 was that I want to experience as many technological innovations as possible. Most important of which is my long time favorite “Beam me up. Scotty!”

Stories of/about love 0

Alma Khasawnih’s quest for love has been going on for a while, early on with the most active quest on Questler:

What is it about love that makes it the focal point in our lives? Any thoughts on love?

sometime later last year, during her residency in Ramallah (covered here)

I attest to the obsession with the subject Alma has had all this time. Its been mostly one of the greatest learning journeys I’ve taken listening to her talk about that story, that book…her fascination is overwhelmingly beautiful.

Alma now has a regular column with JO magazine on Love, you can read the first one (March 2009) here titled “Love: An introduction”.

The second one is in the April issue titled “Forbidden Love”, where she has a theory I for one, never thought of before!

I might be biased since Alma is one of my closest friends, but don’t listen to me, go read for your self :-)

Summer internships available @ Spring 0

are you bored of studying the whole year?

want to spend the summer training in the real world?

do you have a training requirement with your university?

are you a  student who loves to learn who to develop websites using PHP?

are you a great web developer in-the-making?

Come find out!

If you and your laptop plan to spend the summer in Amman, Jordan; all you need to do is send us an email describing your self, your hobbies, your interests, what you know and what you’d like to learn at hello[at]hellospring.net

If you know anyone who might be interested, please pass the word around!

We currently have two openings for a 3 month paid internship either Jun -August or July – September.

For more information go to http://hellospring.net

Murder in the name of Honour, a book by Rana Husseini 8

Taken from a press release I received from Rana Husseini sent on April 8th, 2009.

Rana Husseini‘s long waited for book “Murder in the Name of Honour” is going to be released in the United Kingdom on May 28th and in the USA on June 26th of this year.  The Arabic version of the book is going to be released in October 2009.

Rana Husseini's Murder in the name of Honour

As you all know, Rana has been advocating against this brutal practice for the past 16 years.  The book is an accumulation of cases she covered in Jordan as well as a documentation of the efforts and events that took place in the long process of combating this murder. The book is also a documentation of worldwide cases and efforts that were exerted by many countries, organizations and individuals to end this practice mostly targeted against women and their right to life.

Furthermore, the book includes a section on the social and medical aspects of this murder, it concludes with recommendations as to what can be done to end these crimes worldwide. One part of the book describes Rana’s efforts, among others’, in exposing the hoax Jordanian-American writer Norma Khouri and the effects her book had on this part of the world.

Rana hopes that this book will be another tool for raising awareness as well as a reference for human rights advocates locally and internationally. It is also a source for anyone interested in learning more about this issue from a credible and objective source.

The book is available on Amazon.com and other websites for pre-order.

You can reach Rana Husseini on her email: honorcrimes@ranahusseini.com

Been a long time fan of Rana and her great work, really excited to read the book from cover to cover!

There will be a book launch and signing event in Jordan at Readers at somepoint, will post when I know the exact date.

Freelancing + Jordan = Drama 4

Freelancing is great, we surely need more freelancers in Jordan and everywhere else. Designers, programmers, accountants, copywriters, translators, event managers…you name it; all companies need it.

There are numerous problems with freelancing in Jordan:

  1. Most people claiming to freelance have actually full-time jobs that prohibit it.
  2. The above will cause you delays by default, because as there jobs are demanding you will have to be put as a second priority and suffer delays in your job request.
  3. If they are actually 100% freelancers chances are they haven’t found someone to pay them for a full time job yet, and they will work with you until that dream job comes to life. Then, you get screwed over with delays and half a$$ed work.
  4. Companies look to save with freelancers, elsewhere in the world a freelancer/contractor gets paid very well for a contracting Job to make up for the lack of full-time employment benefits. Which is a fair deal.

I think there should be an initiative to make self-employment a valid choice in the country:

  1. Pay fair rates to freelancers while committing to pay on time.
  2. Freelancers to become more professional and committed in their engagements.

I think a time like now with the economical situation everyone is facing, freelancing can save lots of companies. Most of which are not confident about expanding their employee base for fear of stable revenues, can really use a professional freelancer network to still satisfy their current projects and not commit to a larger employee base if the economical situation worsens and they their revenue levels decline.

People who prefer a relaxed and personally managed time can use freelancing jobs to help create the lifestyle they seek, working for few months, then taking time off and so on.

Greed, the deadliest sin? 2

I’ve always thought that Greed is the deadliest sin of all 7 deadly sins. This video shows the spiral that created the credit crisis.

The Crisis of Credit Visualized from Jonathan Jarvis on Vimeo.

By far this is the best narrated visual explanation of the Credit Crisis I saw as of yet.

The most important aspect I learned before I decided to start a company was how to always calculate risk before taking it. To visualize the probability of the worst outcome, and how much damage it can do to me on all levels. If I am ok with it not being the end of the world then I can take the risk in hopes of the higher return of course.

You’d think the people on Wall St. would be a million times better at this, you have specialists in high risk investment for god’s sake. The moment that more than one bank started buying sub-prime mortgages; flags should have been risen everywhere. But I guess that’s when the financial system monitoring failed big time, everywhere. Because any person with little knowledge would know this to be the start of the end.

Yet, using simplified logic, one bank did it, then other banks thought why don’t we try it as well and mass hysteria started. The ability to fool your self, your own logic, economics 101 and experience is one great ability people have. And when greed takes over this ability becomes magnified. Happened in 2000 with the burst of the .com bubble as well.

What’s the next market? Alternative energy?

Note: Thanks TrippleM for posting this on Twitter.

Wordpress Plugin