The Politician Flavor of the Month

tahir ul qadriIt is no surprise to see Dr. Tahir ul Qadri trying to crawl back into the hearts of Pakistanis with a new fervor but carrying the same old message. And it is typical of Pakistanis to watch his antics with awe and laugh at his actions. Yes, some of us will follow him whole heartedly, and join his futile attempts at whatever he proposes. I for one pity those followers.

To me he is just another Politician. No different from others. Just the flavor of the month. He will be forgotten with the same speed at which he is now being remembered.

I am quite surprised at his audacious questions that he asks his fellow politicians. He has committed the same crimes as others. He talks about transparency but he himself has an interesting past. He cries for Pakistan but lives in Canada. Rather, he is a citizen of Canada. He talks about openness but I would like to know who pays his bills for such a massive advertising campaign which is in millions of dollars. So what is the difference between Qadri and other politician? What has he done in the past (other than emigrate out of the country when the going was tough) that merits him to be above the rest?

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Spiritual Journey of Hajj

Hajis perform Rummy

Millions perform Rummy

Hajj is not just a religious duty, its a spiritual one as well. It is not just about performing Tawaf of the Holy Kaaba, its about evaluating your life and figuring out for yourself the meaning of life.

Its about understanding why we are here and what is the purpose of our lives. It is about understanding what we owe to our parents, our families, neighbors, friends and man-kind as a whole.

Hajj will guide us through our journey of self discovery and more; only if we think and ponder of why we are here to do Hajj. Only if.
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Here is to the crazy ones

Here is to the crazy ones. This Apple advertisement, as narrated by Steve Jobs, was one of the most profound reminders that statesmen, leaders and thinkers always stand out from the crowd. They may be ostracized by the general public, and will probably divide public opinion. However, when they perform their heroic tasks, they stand out and will be remembered for a long time to come. These people come from all walks of life and have varied backgrounds. However, they have one thing in common. Belief in their ideals and thoughts and making sure to live through them.

It is ironic that this video is narrated by Steve Jobs himself, who by sheer dent of his innovation on the IT front, now stands among the greatest minds of 20th century.

Here is truly to the crazy ones.

Pakistan in 1950s

Encyclopedia Britannica Archive

It is amazing to see how Pakistan has evolved since its independence in 1947 on one side and not at all in some aspects. We are still a rural and agrarian economy with 70% of our population living outside the cities. Literacy levels are better since 1950s but are still dismal as compared to international rankings.

Look at the video closely and you will notice that some of the tools used by artisans and farmers are no different from a thousands years or more. Yet, the artisans are extremely skilled and tend to work really efficiently with their bare hands. No electricity, no politics and no obstacle stops them. These are the people who actually helped create Pakistan for us to live in peacefully. It is our job now to take the nation to the next level.
YouTube

Apple’s Next Big Product Ideas

In today’s highly competitive market, Apple is still one of the most innovative companies in the world at this time. Considering that they are over 35 years old, their creativity should be waning like that of Yahoo, Microsoft, HP, Dell among others. Instead it is never been stronger. So what new products can come out of their product line based on what they have in store for us.

Based on the patents filed, product maturity and development, the following are most likely to be revealed in the next 12 months.

iPhone Nano

Nano iPhoneWould it not be great to use my Nano touch to make calls, and run some apps. Yes, the screen interface is too tiny but hey, the next version of Siri could simply make that voice operated. It would be much easier for most of us to wear our phone on our wrist than carry one in our pocket. For example, when we go running/jogging in the morning.

Sort of like the KITT watch from Knight Rider. You speak into it rather than type/touch the screen.

Siri is a problem today. It is not mature enough. But a revamped version is expected with iOS 6 later this year. Maybe that or a later version will bring us closer to reality of launching such a phone.

The only other downside will be battery life. Can a device this small last a whole day on one charge?

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Tour with Pakistan Cricket as a Fan

Pakistan Cricket TeamThis year (2012), Pakistan has almost exclusively played in the neighborhood. Most of their matches (barring a few) have been played England in UAE (Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi), Asia Cup in Bangla Desh and bilateral series in Sri Lanka. Later this year, they will take on Australia in UAE, T20 World Cup in Sri Lanka and a bilateral series with India in India.

At the same time, it is disheartening to see half empty stadiums and just a few scattered Pakistan cricket fans supporting our team against the best in the world.

Would it not be great if Pakistan Cricket Board announced a tour package for the fans. A package that includes basic amenities like:

  • Visa for the country where the games are played
  • Travel tickets through the air lines (preferably a local like PIA, Air Blue or Shaheen Air)
  • Hotel options where we can choose to stay
  • Tickets to the games (we can choose how many we want to see)
  • Pick and Drop from the airport. It could be cheaper if fans band together in one bus.
  • Local sight seeing and shopping options. Places like Sri Lanka, Dubai do offer great opportunities
  • And a chance to have a dinner (paid of course) with the team during the tour

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Karachi in 1942 – A Rare Video Footage

Karachi was the original city of lights. A peaceful port city with all the modern amenities of its time. The video footage shows that there were street trains for mass transit. The building architecture was Victorian with massive structures built to support the running of the government.

Maybe one day, we will stop quarelling among ourselves in Karachi and build the city for what it is worth.

Bulleya Ki Janan PM Kaun?

Bulleya!Bulleya ki janan PM kaun?

Na voh momin vich maseetan
Har vari kare kufr dee reet aan
Na voh paakaan bus vich paleet aan

Shaid voh numrood o Firaon
Bulleya ki janan PM kaun

Awwal aakhir Asif noon jaanan
Na koi dooja hor pichana
Asif toon vadh na koi sayana
O’ Bulleya o’ Bulleya

Bulleya ki janan PM kaun

Na voh Paki na voh Khaki
Na voh tabdeeli na voh Leegee

Bulleya ki janan PM kaun

With due respect to Baba Bulleh Shah and Junoon.

Can Politicians hijack PTI from its honorable goals?

Javed Hashmi and Imran Khan

Javed Hashmi is now a PTI politician ditching PML in their favor.

I am a bit concerned about the mass influx of traditional politicians from PPP and PML into Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI), an upcoming political party run by the venerated Imran Khan.

Veterans like Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Makhdoom Javed Hashmi, Shaukat Tareen, Awais Laghari and others have been in politics longer than the somewhat new democratic process begun after the death of General Zia ul Haq in 1988. However, none of them have contributed significantly for the improvement of the the democratic process, providing justice to the people or controlling corruption in the country. Heck, most of them enjoyed VIP privileges when ministers for PPP, PML and even willingly served under the leadership of a military dictator.
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Apple’s Next Big Act

AppleEven though Steve Jobs has declared that we live in post PC world. But it is still a fact that majority of worlds computers run Microsoft Windows. A staggering 85% of world’s computers run Microsoft Windows. Having said that, Apple has not dominated the desktop space since early 1980s. Since that time Microsoft has only grown its lead and mercilessly crushed all opposition in the process.

Today, the space has little competition barring a few million Macs (5%) or a meager Linux (1%) install base. This can all change in an instant if Apple decides to change one thing. Offer their OS X Lion on PC Platform.

Already, Hackintosh (Bootlegged Macs running on PC hardware) are a craze among the underground community. Hackintoshes have shown the way that the hardware and software can work wonderfully together. It is just up to Apple to officially support it.

If Apple does decide to offer its Operating System for non Apple hardware, there will be a huge paradigm shift. A large number of computers, especially in the corporate world, will switch to Macs. And here is why:

  1. Better, stable and reliable Operating System than Windows.
  2. Viruses do not work/affect Mac as badly as they do on Microsoft Windows offering better security.
  3. Mac OS offers better quality products (app store, iLife, Facetime etc) that people will love to have on their PCs.
  4. Cheaper than buying a Mac hardware
  5. Steve Jobs stamp on the Operating System
Apple has never tried to sell just the Operating System. It has always thrived in selling a complete user experience coupled with out of this world innovations. Which is great but in today’s highly competitive world, selling the software in large numbers is the key to winning the race. Innovation can take you so far and sooner or later competitors catch on. Like Android did with iPhone. Like Windows did to Macintosh in 1980s. Now imagine, if Apple allowed its software to be available everywhere through HP, Dell and other hardware manufacturers, it will gain tremendous advantages. Here are the following advantages:
  1. Adding millions of new machines without needing to ramp up production within Apple factories. A cheaper and faster proposition
  2. Allowing even a larger number of computers access to its highly lucrative App store. The billions of downloads could simply become trillions in a matter of months.
  3. Allowing it to compete better with Google (with its ChromeOS and Android) and Microsoft  operating system
  4. With more users experiencing the power of Mac operating system, it will enable them to sell even more iPod, iPhone, iPads and even its hardware (Macbooks etc). Thus creating a hypergrowth in their various product segments.
  5. Sell the dream of Mac everywhere
Finally, Apple can once again be the king of its kingdom that it single handedly created in 1977 by inventing the PC. This strategy will help it compete better with Google on one side and Microsoft on the other. Otherwise, Apple will always be a niche hardware/software manufacturer which will die off once the innovation machine stops.