Leave them alone 2

Although, I am glad they are [going to leave kids alone and use robots|http://mostafa.foolab.org/node/71]. Take a look at the robotic jockey. [It is finished and ready for racing|http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/07/0715_050715_robot_jockey.html].

But look at it from another perspective. Something looks terribly wrong, evil and sick. I don't accept the idea of controlling living things with a remote control for leisure.

The democratic singularity

;:A technological singularity is a predicted time at which technological progress accelerates beyond the ability of present-day humans to fully comprehend or predict.

'''from the [Wikipedia|http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity]'''

I don't know if the political climate before the technological singularity have ever been discussed. But I am sure someone did and I am probably not aware. Which in itself means that we are still far from the singularity.

I speculate that today's democracy (in the world, I am not talking about Egypt) would be pushed towards an extreme form of [direct democracy|http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Direct_democracy]. Direct democracy basically means citizens would be able to vote on every law being passed. And that citizens could start initiatives and almost write their own laws. And that they can recall the politicians with petitions and the like.

We can see you

[They can beat us|http://www.manalaa.net/the_bastards_stole_my_laptop]. [Steal our cameras|http://mostafa.foolab.org/node/96]. They can be as savage and mean as they want.

But we will never stop using technology. And technology will never stop improving. Innovations that empower and enable us will eventually converge.

[Wifi Digital Camera's exist|http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml?pq-path=9/19/6433&pq-locale=en_US]. That allows you to instantly email your photos or videos.

A day in Sokhna

Yesterday, I went with Ihab to Ain Sokhna to inquire and make contacts with boat owners for a long awaited fishing trip we wanted to organise. Previously we had plans for Hurghada, but the distance and expenses would not make it an easy thing.

We met Rayes Alala, in [Sadat Beach|http://maps.google.com/maps?q=N29.78775+E032.43873&spn=0.080235,0.111872&t=k&hl=en] (30Km north of Ain Sohkhna). We struck a fine deal with him. We will be paying 200EGP for a boat that can carry 7 persons for a whole day. Later on, we found out the Rayes Alala's deal is the best. After the negotiations Alala offered us a trip right away, with a reasonable price, if his customers were late.

They didn't show up early enough for him. So we managed to ride with him. Unfortunately, 30 minutes later they called on his mobile and we had to get back. Disappointed, both of us, we headed back to a small beach in Ain Sokhna.

The bastards stole my camera

Some plain clothes police (they had a walkie-talkie) stole my camera and four or three of them dragged me from my shirt violently in the streets. They did the same to my friends. We were no directly upseting them we were just taking photos of another one of my firends being dragged and beaten.

I feel humiliated. They are so mean and invincible.

This happened infront of the Ministry of Justice and after almost everyone left today's protest. When a few wanted to walk back home and pass infront of the Ministry of inTerror.

No smoke without fire

As a fresh university graduate. It is without a doubt censorship, lack of free speech and security interference exists and is sinking the whole academic fleet of public and private universities.

More than once, in the first two years. When I didn't know about the laws regulating the universities. I was prevented from entering the main campus of Ain Shams University with my medical school ID. And the security at the gate reply was that I have the medical school campus only for me to enter. When I was trying to get to the library. And almost every time I try to enter to get to the university library, bank or administration I get into a heated debate with the security as how they are not allowed to prevent me from entering.

And I have witnessed numerous times how candidates for the student union elections were hand picked and how it was a big game. And heared about all the Amn el Dawla profiling for those candidates.

Google Maps: Cairo

Forget the lousy [egymaps site|http://mostafa.foolab.org/node/47]. Google maps expanded to include several cities around the world. And by far this is the most detailed satellite imagery available freely for the public. Your loved and hated [Cairo in amazing detail|http://maps.google.com/maps?q=cairo,+egypt&ll=30.044861,31.225891&spn=0.079823,0.117588&t=k&hl=en] probably 1 meter resolution.

Ok, let us do some google sightseeing.

  • [The pyramids|http://maps.google.com/maps?q=cairo,+egypt&ll=29.976883,31.133194&spn=0.009978,0.014699&t=k&hl=en]
  • [Egyptian museum| http://maps.google.com/maps?q=cairo,+egypt&ll=30.048015,31.233444&spn=0.004989,0.007349&t=k&hl=en]
  • [Azhar Park|http://maps.google.com/maps?q=cairo,+egypt&ll=30.040247,31.263238&spn=0.004989,0.007349&t=k&hl=en]
  • [The Citadel|http://maps.google.com/maps?q=cairo,+egypt&ll=30.028778,31.260020&spn=0.004989,0.007349&t=k&hl=en]

The state of Fabraka

I found [this editorial on SciDev|http://www.scidev.net/gateways/index.cfm?fuseaction=readitem&rgwid=2&item=Editorials&itemid=160&language=1] about the state of science and research in Egypt. The first half of the article is a little bit optimistic but if you read on, this is probably one of the few articles that clearly outlines the obstacles facing science here. I took some notes and listed them:

  • Lack of funds (poor equipment and diminished journal subscriptions)
  • Low political priority
  • Academic quarrels
  • Research as a ladder for higher academic positions
  • Bureaucracy
  • Lack of science journalism
  • Language

I would add Plagiarism and recycling papers to the list.

However the article dismisses any lack of brain power. I agree with that, but I would add that there would have been more brains. If education was any good.

Release Mohammed Sahfik NOW

Yesterday I was outraged to know that Dr. Mohammed Shafik ,a fresh medical graduate and a House Officer in Ain Shams University Hospitals, was [arrested on Tuesday for distributing Kifaya pamphlets|http://www.reuters.co.za/locales/c_newsArticle.jsp;:42b18bd6:bb367fd8b95b4f?type=topNews&localeKey=en_ZA&storyID=8812508].

Mohammed Sahfik is a colleague and works in the same place I work and train in.