Saturday, March 05, 2005

Picture Perfect: I.T.K.G.

It's been a very long day... Although, on several occasions I've made it very clear to our CEO that I'm not one bit satisfied with the guys I'm managing, and as I still don't have hiring and firing powers yet; I'm constantly finding myself in Hell Just to paint a perfect picture here (as well as amuse you and myself). Imagine the deepest pit of hell where demons torment you constantly by prodding your sensitive areas with fiery pitchforks and guffaw wildly at your screams of pain… Now add the incessant chatter of a bunch of pathetic, moronic losers who wouldn’t know cool if it walked up and slapped them right in their face! If the torture and pestering isn’t quite enough, you may as well add the fact that you’re expected to engineer software masterpieces of unparalleled functionality and precision, as well as manage a department (of kids I might add) that constantly falls into folly. I need a new team…Or perhaps a vacation… Maybe the later, I’m getting too cranky! Anyway like I said it’s been a long day, should probably hit the gym then go home and sleep. Yazan out

Friday, March 04, 2005

Deviriginizing my imate PDA

To all engineers matter in this vast universe can be analyzed, categorized and placed into one of these categories:

  1. things that need to be fixed
  2. things that will need to be fixed after you've had a few minutes to play with them.

My iMate Pocket PC Phone Edition fell into the second category this morning, I woke up and decided to listen to our latest jam. Tired, looking & acting like a zombie I ended up hooking the wrong earphones into it, and they broke inside, leaving me with a phone I couldn't make or receive calls on (as it was under the impression it still had the earphones stuck inside) Unable to send it off to a repair shop, as I had purchased it from Dubai and wasn't willing to mail it and wait a week for it to be returned. I decided to fix it myself. You wouldn't believe just how hard it is to crack open the case, it took approximately 25 minutes to do so. First off, You will need to backup of your device as the backup battery might deplete during the course of this.. then you will need to take off the back cover and remove the battery. Underneath it you will see 4 slot small screws, and 2 TROX screws (6-point star shaped pattern), one of which is concealed under the void sticker (removing this screw will void your warrantee), then you gently have to remove the black back cover (near the camera) by gently pulling it and pushing it outwards toward the SD slot, underneath you will find the built in antenna, which is mounted by another set of TROX screws. After unscrewing those two, you will need to gently separate the back and front part of the case.

The fixing part didn't take a very long time about 4 minutes as I had to sharpen one of my screw drivers to fit in the small opening between the ends of the soldered jack. Having done so I realized how similar this is to having sex with a virgin, you have to take it slow and be ever so delicate, it might take sometime; but it’ll be fairly easier the next time, and she/it will never be the same.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

A very uninspiring post

I find myself utterly uninspired today. (I hear the uproars "what about the other days?") But anyway! Spring has sprung; the past two days have been too hot and too hectic for my taste! Jason Kottke decides to quit his job to blog and live off donations, the kilogram gets out of style. And once-again I find myself swamped in work. I guess we all are, Hanan came into my office today and turned into an adorable little kid, singing “mary had a little lamb”, “the itsy bitsy spider”, “three blind mice”.. Job Stress? Or pure insanity? No one knows! We have the rest of the week to figure that one out. Hmm, whatelse.. I started a diet today.. it's really simple:
  1. No Meat: Beef clogs up arteries, fish has mercury, pork has parasitic worms, and chicken simply because I don't like it.
  2. No Drinking: Soda is bad, so is coffee. Bottled water isn't as good as we thought because there are contaminants. Tea is good, but too much tea isn't. A glass of wine never huts, red is better than white though.
  3. No White Stuff: No bread, rice, milk, cottage cheese, yogurt or licking the center of an Oreo.
  4. No Fat: Fat is a "no-no".. however all bodies need a little fat, so must have some fat.. but not too much fat that I get fat.
  5. Foget about the carbs As with the fat, bodies need some carbs.. just not so much that you have no calories left to eat the fat
  6. No Salt: Bodies do need a litte salt however, so eat some salt not so much salt that it junks up your carbs & fats.

Simple, ey?

Kilogram: Out of fashion?

The Kilogram (as with the meter*), the basic unit of mass in the SI system, equal to 1000 grams or 2.2046 lbs is moving towards a new definition based on a universal constant. The intention of the scientists working on this is to switch the kilogram from being defined by a physical model to a constant. A paper released on Monday proposes redefining the unit via fixing the values of one of two well-known universal constants. Avogadro’s Constant Matter is made of molecules, which are the smallest division that share all the chemical properties of the bulk material. Those molecules are made of atoms that are comprised of protons and neutrons. To a very good approximation, protons and neutrons have the same mass which is one AMU (Atomic Mass Unit). Since atoms and molecules are built from these protons and netrons, their masses are expediently measured in these units. Simply put Avogadro’s number is nothing more than a conversion factor between AMUs and grams. Planck Constant Planck constant on the other hand states the mathematical relationship between the frequency of an electromagnetic wave and the energy in that wave, and is often used to explain the sizes of quanta, which are tiny electromagnetic packets. Planck is represented by the letter h and has a value of 6.63 × 10^−34 J-sec. The combination h/2π, denoted by h (called “h-bar”), occurs frequently. So what’s wrong with our current model? In 1889, a cylinder of a platinum-iridium alloy was declared the international standard of measurement for the kilogram. It's kept at the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures in France, and several copies were distributed around the world. It's unclear if the principal cylinder's mass is increasing or decreasing, scientists said, because it is the object used to measure others. Still, this poses a concern. Another worry is the possibility of the main model's destruction, come a natural disaster So the idea is to have some kind of definition to be able to construct the kilogram just given this information, without an object. Interesting. You can read more about it http://www.iop.org/EJ/journal/Met --------------------------------- * Back in the days when the meter was a pair of lines on a bar kept in a box in Paris, the speed of light was a number that was measured. When it became clear that our distance standard (the physical bar) was limiting the precision with which we could measure the speed of light, we changed the standards to something more precise and repeatable than the use of this physical artifact. The first change was to specify a certain number of wavelengths of a particular transition frequency, but this defintion was found wanting. So eventually the meter was defined in terms of the speed of light, because that allowed for the most precise and repeatable definition of the meter.

Round 2: Middle East Peace Fantasies

With utter respect to American Minuteman's convictions, following are a few facts to keep in mind. Since his blog doesn't allow anonymous postings, you're strongly encouraged to comment here (if you happen to be a casual non-blogging browser).
  1. Till the early 1900s neither Palestine or Israel existed as countries. Palestine harbored Jews at a certain point, so did the rest of the world, even our present day extremely Islamic Saudi Arabia did have a Jewish population at some point. Chronologically speaking, those very Jews converted to Christianity or Islam overtime, some didn’t, some migrated, some stayed. Towards the beginning of the 1900s there were approximately 80,000 Arab Jews (or Arabic speaking Jews if your prefer) in Palestine.
  2. The existing Palestine-Israel conflict has it roots in World War I when Great Britain allowed the Jewish to settle in the Palestine territory in order to get Jewish support fighting in the Middle East (Belfour Declaration), resulting in a massive change of population on this relatively small area.
  3. Following the massacres commenced by Hitler and his regime, Jews and Zionists gained the sympathy of the entire world. However no one wanted them on their land, so they moved to the Palestine territory, the great tension between Arabs and Jews at that time, resulted in Great Britain pulling out from Palestine in 1948, and thus creating the state of Israel.
  4. It’s curious that he described Israelis as attackers and invaders in his comment “Many Arabs stayed in Israel and fought against the attackers during this invasion”. I’m tempted to conclude that he does understand where Arabs or Palestinians are coming from. This very exact feeling has been carried over the decades. That won’t stop until peace dawns upon us.
  5. In 1948 my grandparents fled an attack on Javo (Yafa), and settled in Jordan. True there are several Palestinian Refugee Camps, since most of the economies aren’t strong enough to accommodate them. If you take a look at Jordanian population you’d find that approximately 80% are Palestinians, living ever so prosperously.
  6. Zionism’s acceptable (at least to me) goal of wanting to find a home for Jews/Israelis, led to the desire to establish sovereignty; paving way for the indiscriminate razing of houses, and creation of settlements for Jews, in order to make the country as Jewish as England is English. The lack of media coverage from a Palestinian perspective, and Palestinian leaders unable to utilize it, led to the world’s belief (and yours) that nothing of that kind ever happens.
  7. With regards to Massacres, I suggest reading on Dair Yaseen, Areeha & Aqsa Massacre and many more. Of course Israel would state these actions are against their policies, in order to keep the world sympathetic. If their statements were true, it’s tempting to think “Israel had no hand in this, as Palestinian leaders have no hand in suicide bombings”
  8. Religious tolerance is one of the root principles of Islam by the way, its prophet co-existed with Atheists, Christians and Jews, and only fought against the oppression Muslims were suffering back then. It’s conquerors feared praying near a church so that his followers wouldn’t raze it and build a Mosque instead. Unfortunately extremists convey a completely different picture.

I find it amusing that “Philistines” a name dubbed by the romans thousands of years ago still holds the very same meaning for the population. Like him; my thoughts are unbiased, given the fact that I’m a secular Muslim (more of an Agnostic actually) and have never even stepped foot on Palestinian Soil (Filesteen In Arabic).