Headlines

Icon Art Production back in action filming remotely in UAE

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 23 June 2020 | Posted in , , ,

IMO News Service 

Dubai, UAE: To support the local and International film Industry, UAE based Icon Art Production (IAP) has successfully implemented projects with Remote Filming Solutions to all their International Clients, Producers and Production Companies.

The remote Direction Solution is also available for International Directors who cannot travel but can direct the filming and execute projects, including TV Commercials with remote monitoring.

According to Zakir, CEO of Icon Art production, “Following health and safety measures set by the local authorities and the Rules and Guidelines provided by Dubai Film and TV Commission, live concerts can be filmed in our fully equipped state of the Art Studio for broadcast and sound recording. We film indoor or outdoor Music Videos, TV Programs, Web Series and Online Promotional Video as our team understands the niche requirements of the industry and help assist Directors and Producers during these challenging times.”

Remote Auditions and Casting will be conducted remotely over video conferencing or by sending footage as a safety measure for Covid-19. A separate Make-Up Room and Wardrobe room is provided and the Cast is on Set only when everything is ready for Filming.

Producer Saurabh Kabra said, “In the current times where shoots are banned in India because of widespread of COVID-19, Dubai works as a good opportunity. The city has a good database of actors that can pass of as Indians or are of Indian origin. Hence we prefer to shoot here, it is convenient and cost effective. What the city offers is a world class crew that makes the process endearing.”

Instead of over 100 staff, the production house with minimized First Light and Art Team crew has managed to work with assigned call sheets and delegated their tasks in a progressive shoot ensuring only the required departments are on Set. The Direction team is directing remotely, with Client and agency totalling almost 15 to 20 people monitoring online.
Using this pattern for a few projects recently, Icon Art Production has worked seamlessly resulting in the same quality of filming as a full team. This is a revolution in the Filming Industry specially for TV commercials as Dubai has vast Talent and resources so people around the world can utilize this opportunity to make their projects happen remotely.

Icon Art Production specializes in the production of Feature Films, TV Programs, Music Videos, TV Commercials, Events Productions, Studios & Post Production and has a facility that can be customized and branded for magazine shoots, product launches and pop up events.

Digital Health Middle East highlights new approaches to healthcare

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 02 March 2020 | Posted in , , , ,

IMO News Service

Dubai, UAE:  Experts at Digital Health Middle East 2020 highlighted new approaches to healthcare that is set to reform the industry with preventive information and new care solutions using technologies to deliver the highest levels of safety and patient experience with the lowest cost in the future.

Dr Ramadan AlBlooshi, Chief Regulatory Officer, Dubai Health City Authority, said “In the past five years, the UAE Government has launched several strategies including the National Innovation Strategy, The Artificial Intelligence (AI) Strategy and Block Chain Strategy to empower change across industries. Disruptive technologies are offering effective tools to revolutionize the health sector by enabling innovative, cost-effective and patient-centred systems. Collaborations among health authorities across block chain are allowing us to have unified health systems and laying the foundation for new healthcare services such as telehealth.

Lina H Shadid, Healthcare Practice Lead at PwC, spoke on the New Health Economy focussing on digital transformation and the role of data and AI in the age of Trust.
Lina Shadid, Digital Health Lead at PwC Middle East noted: “The promise that data science and artificial intelligence (AI) hold for revolutionising healthcare is undeniable - from the way healthcare is delivered all the way through to how data is collected, assessed and used to benefit the greater good. But for AI to truly benefit the healthcare system, we need to see a concerted effort on the part of the entire ecosystem, an effort to cut through the hype and prepare for the changes and potential that emerging technology bring to the industry. This transformation requires a collective effort -- from providers, payers, patients and all the way through to regulators, data scientists and academics. The promise of big data and AI in healthcare is huge.”

Amit Sadana, General Manager & SVP AMESA at IQVIA spoke on how genetics will take digital health to a new level and decoding a genomic revolution. He highlighted on using genome sequence and big data to manage one’s health and how genetics will take digital health to the next level.

Atif Albraiki, CEO at Malaffi addressed the audience how besides the many breakthroughs in medicine, healthcare data vastly remains in silos and how this affects the provision of care. He highlighted how Health Information Exchanges connect healthcare and provides value to stakeholders.

Mr Albraiki added, “I am glad that HIEs are now an integral part of all conversations around improving healthcare through technology. We are happy to carry the flag for connecting healthcare, by also sharing our experience with Malaffi, which has already started to provide value for both providers and patients.”

Nadine de Clercq and Natasha Faizan of Amana Healthcare presented the case of using eye gaze technology to communicate with children of special needs.

Haytham El Sahat, surgical oncologist and Medical director at Mediclinic spoke on the role of AI in medicine and how digitization will change the distribution of personnel and leadership roles.

Blending Nordic experience with local excellence, experts at the conference hailed from Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and GCC. Dr. Sven Korner, NLP/AI/Deep Learning Researcher from Germany,

Anni Iso-Mustajarvi, Head of Business Development at Mehilainen from Finland spoke on the digitalization of patient journey and developing high quality services beyond traditional boundaries while Claus Nielsen of Data for Good Foundation from Denmark highlighted prevention and early intervention as a goal for improved population health.

Magnus Clarin, Dean - School of Information Science at Halmstad University in Sweden presented a case study on AI driven care in response to healthcare challenges with insights and results from the region of Halland.

Ben Furneaux, Global Head of Affordability at Cigna spoke on cost care and the need for affordable healthcare solutions while Dr. Sven Korner delivered a keynote on using AI for profitability and using semantic processing to interpret data to deliver real knowledge.

Guests also had access to exhibitors in the foyer that included PwC, du, Evoteq, Anker Innovations, Thuraya, Prestidge Group and IQVIA.

The event gathered 250+ peers from across the ecosystem, and 20+ speakers for a dialogue, vital insights and networking as this C-level hub facilitates knowledge exchange and game-changing strategies. Digital Health Middle East brings C-level attendees including executives and CXO’s, governmental department heads, hospital leaders, nurse leaders, regulators, technologists, futurists and entrepreneurs.

IoT Middle East 2020 focusses on Driving Innovation and Improving Sustainability

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , ,

IMO News Service

Dubai, UAE: An impressive line-up of partners and speakers addressed industry peers and stakeholders on utilising the IoT landscape to drive innovation at the 5th Internet of Things 2020, held at Armani Hotel Dubai.

The keynote addressed how AI has made business more profitable with Dr. Sven Korner and using semantic processing to interpret data to deliver real knowledge.

Marwan bin Dalmook, SVP, ICT Commercial and Business Development and Smart City Operations, du got in conversation with Dr. Muneer Zuhdi, Partner at Bell Labs by Nokia on digitization, redefining business models and 5G.

Jihad Tayara, CEO at Evoteq spoke about Smart homes, Office of the Future and smarter cities followed by Karl Feilder, Founder and Chairman of Neural Fuels presented AIoT cases on sustainable business models and mitigating climate change through technology.
Jassem Nasser, Chief Strategy Officer, Thuraya talked about the growing role of innovative applications before the panel discussions on monetizing IoT within ecosystems followed by Christophe Vloebergh presenting Daimler AG’s vision on the Future of Mobility.

Faraz Mehdi, Regional Sales head, eufy Security by ANKER spoke about the current challenges of home security, privacy of data, Ai in home security and ease of use with Smart Home Eco System followed by Fadi Hindi delivering a key note on the Future of the Workforce.

Markku Willenius, Dean of Dubai Future Academy concluded the conference with a keynote on how to harness new technologies for human good and progress and how UAE will play a significant role as a testbed for resource efficient and adaptive economies.

Other notable speakers included Brian deFrancesca, Ahmed Kawakbi, Danish Farhan, Janne Kilpelainen, Dr. Mohammed Al Awadhi, Richard Estephan, Balaji Nambi and Fadi Hindi.

The cross-industry C-level conference brought together forward-thinking experts sharing insights on business, technology and organizational transformation to leverage new business and new eco-systems with a focus on how to generate business out of IoT, AI, ML and Intelligent automation.

New tech like AI and ML needs the data of IoT to deliver accurate analyses and output. IoT adoption is hence expected to grow by two-digit numbers and reach $18 billion in MEA related IoT investments by 2023, as both governmental and private sector companies ramp up their digital transformation capabilities.

The 5th Internet of Things 2020 is a game-changing platform, attracting over 400 attendees yearly, addressing the business relevance of technology across multiple verticals.

5th IoT Middle East 2020 conference to be held at Armani Dubai on February 24

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 27 January 2020 | Posted in , , , ,

Armani Dubai to be the venue for talks on how to generate business out of IoT, AI, ML and Intelligent automation as the adoption of IoT is expected to accelerate over the coming years

IMO News Service

Dubai, UAE: An impressive line-up of speakers will be addressing how to manoeuvre the IoT landscape for higher profits at the 5th Internet of Things 2020, held at Armani Hotel Dubai on 24th February 2020.

The cross-industry C-level conference aimed at decision-makers in both the private and public sector focuses on the business aspects of digital transformation. The event brings together forward-thinking experts sharing insights on business, technology and organizational transformation to leverage new business and new eco-systems.

Attendees have the rare opportunity of networking with experts, discussing the optimization of company revenue, reducing costs, changing business models, opening up new services and markets for key stakeholders and disruptive new entrants.

According to Johan Ehrstrom, CEO of 5th IoT Middle East 2020, “Collaboration is the new competition and eco-systems will replace traditional industry boundaries. New tech like AI and ML needs the data of IoT to deliver accurate analyses and output. IoT adoption is hence expected to grow by two-digit numbers and reach $18 billion in MEA related IoT investments by 2023, as both governmental and private sector companies ramp up their digital transformation capabilities.”

“The 5th Internet of Things 2020 is a game-changing platform, attracting over 400 attendees yearly, addressing the business relevance of technology across multiple verticals. IoT Middle East 2020 is for all who are less interested in the tech-aspects, but eager to future proof strategies, grow the bottom-line impacts and set the direction for the new decade.”

Over 30+ international and regional speakers, including executives from PwC, Evoteq, du, McKinsey, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, London Business School, Cigna, Iqvia, Haltian and PTC will take the stage and highlight novel utilization of technologies designed to shape the foundation of the future success stories.

Participants can register on www.iot-dxb.com. Registration is now open for USD 745 for individual tickets.

First air travel prayer time calculator launched

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 09 April 2012 | Posted in , , , , ,

By Andy Sambidge


The world's first air travel prayer time calculator has been launched to help Muslims know their prayer times along the flight path of their journey.


Singapore-based Crescentrating has launched the application which also gives information on the availability of prayer facilities at airports around the world.


Based on the departure airport and time, as well as the arrival airport and time, the application calculates the prayer times along its flight path, Crescentrating said in a statement.


“This is the public beta release of the application. Once we have tested with as many travellers as possible, we will launch the mobile applications," said Fazal Bahardeen, CEO of Crescentrating.


Fazal Bahardeen, CEO of Crescentrating
"We also plan to add other features such as direction for prayers in the future release of the app,” he added.
Up until now, knowing the prayer times for a plane journey has been a challenge, Crescentrating said, adding that most Muslim travellers have had to make educated guesses.


With the Muslim travellers on the rise, there was a real need for such a tool, it added.


“From the very inception of Crescentrating, this was one of the frustrations of Muslims travellers that we wanted to find a solution for," said Bahardeen.


"It took us a bit of time, but we are now extremely excited to launch this application. We hope this will make life easier for those who want make sure that they do not miss their prayers while on an airplane,” he added.


Crescentrating's website includes Muslim traveller guides for hundreds of cities around the world.


Crescentrating, a Singapore based company, is focused on the development of the Halal friendly travel market segment worldwide.


Its core products include the rating of travel services based on the services and facilities they provide to Muslim travellers and its travel portal for Muslim travellers.


(Courtesy: ArabianSupplyChain.com)

How are Muslims contributing to the development of science?

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 12 December 2011 | Posted in ,

Islam and science are mostly perceived in the west as incompatible. However, the very revelation of the Holy Qur'an sets precedence 14 centuries before modern science through its many miracles that now have been proved scientifically.

Also, early Islamic history shows that Muslims like Ibn Sina, Al-Farabi, Omar Khayyam, Averroes, al-Ghazali, and Ibn Khaldum among many others, were pioneers of modern science.

Nature magazine, considered the most reputed science publication, states that the choice of Islamic parties to be responsible for backwardness and for “Muslim states having the worst measures of science and technology”However, Islam for centuries had led the world in science, arts, architecture and philosophy. Until this day, Arab scientists and mathematicians are still referred to as the founding fathers of modern science.


During the Golden Age of Islam (800-1000), Islamic intellectuals translated Greek, Indian and Persian texts, studied them, and helped to further investigations in the areas of math, science and medicine.

The Renaissance and the Scientific Revolution in Europe drew upon the discoveries and contributions made by the Muslims to the fields of mathematics and the sciences. Yet these accomplishments often remain unappreciated.

The likes of Al Jabr (algebra), Ibn Sina and Imam Ghazali (al Gazelle) were key protagonists to modern advancement, the fruits of their work continuing to benefit the world till this day.

Just as the shared faith of Islam and emergence of a unitary economy and a new tradition of religious pilgrimage meant that thousands of Arabs and other Muslims travelled to and were received in distant Muslim lands, there was also constant contact and interaction with non-Islamic cultures.

The first universities, graduation ceremonies and even basic literacy were at the forefront of Islamic culture. In this edition of the show we ask the following question: How are Muslims contributing to the development of science?

(Courtesy: Press TV)

7 Amazing Clean Tech Projects in the Arab World

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 06 December 2011 | Posted in , , , ,

By Tafline Laylin

Despite the mainstream news depicting nothing but political drama and violence, there are all kinds of great green projects ongoing in the Middle East. Take a look at 7 that might surprise you.

Most people who think about clean tech developments in the Arab World immediately think of Masdar City, since it is probably one of the most publicized projects in this region. But we have compiled a short list of 7 other noteworthy initiatives that are either being developed in or benefit the Arab World.

Step in for a look at everything from a small wind energy project started by a group of Turkish villagers disillusioned with their utilities provider, a 3D printer that makes objects out of Sahara Sands, to Egypt’s groundbreaking 150 MW solar-thermal Kuraymat plant 90km south of Cairo. You may be surprised to learn just how much green goodness we have to show off!

Saudi Gives Postage Stamp-Sized Solar Technology Project $10 Million

Even though Saudi Arabia is currently protecting its oil wealth at the COP 17 meetings in Durban, that isn’t to say that the Kingdom isn’t looking to maintain its energy hegemony in a solarized world. In addition to a 500 kilowatt plant on Farasan Island and other alternative energy projects, they have committed to helping this Canadian postage stamp-sized solar technology get off the ground. How does it work? For much less than it costs to produce photovoltaic panels or other solar technology, these sheets are painted with quantum dots that harvest energy from both regular sunlight and infrared light. Expecting it to become a game-changer in the solar world, Saudi has given it a $10 million confidence vote.

Egypt’s 1st Solar-Thermal Kuraymat Plant Feeds Clean Energy into the Grid

Just before the Tahrir protests flared up again, we recently traveled to Egypt to attend the Desertec conference and visit the 150 MW Kuraymat plant south of Cairo. This impressive plant operates at night as a combined cycle gas power plant producing roughly 110 MW of natural gas-fueled energy. During the day a 1,900 square meter solar thermal field filled with parabolic trough technology converts energy captured from the sun into steam-powered electricity. It has been feeding energy into the grid since July, 2011.

Abu Dhabi Prince Shames White House by Crowning Court Roof with Solar Panels

We never thought we’d see the day that oil-producing countries shame the United States, but that day came when HH Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan from Abu Dhabi crowned his court with active photovoltaic panels. The White House had an opportunity to return Jimmy Carter’s solar panels to its roof, but spurned it. This is just one of the ways in which the Gulf countries are outpacing America’s renewable energy promises. While the west complains about new regulations designed to reduce airline-produced carbon emissions, the Gulf has been piling up orders for fuel-efficient 787 dream liners.

Solar-Powered 3D Printer Makes Glass Objects from Sahara Sands

We may have a lot of political problems and water shortages, but one of the Middle East’s greatest assets is its ubiquitous sun. Markus Kayser took advantage of the infinite Sahara sun to test the Solar Sinter – a solar-powered system comprised of little more than a fresnel lens and a bit of computing that makes objects from silica sand. Reaching temperatures of up to 1600 degrees Celsius ( 2912 Fahrenheit), focused sunlight melts the sand to create 3D glass bowls and other objects.

Incredible SunGlacier Leaf Will Use Sahara Sun & Humidity to Make Ice

There’s more than one way to use the sun, and nothing proves this better than Ap Verheggen’s incredible SunGlacier Leaf. This solar-powered leaf has the potential to create a lot of ice and water – way out in the middle of the Sahara. How so, you ask? It’s actually not as complicated as you might think. The 200m2 elm-leaf shaped structure has a PV cell coated underbelly, which powers cooling condensers that in turn convert humidity from the desert air into ice. This technology is currently being tested in a shipping container that simulates desert conditions, and researchers have already created a 10 cm slab of ice.

Turkish Village Goes Off the Grid with a Wind Turbine

Maybe it’s starting to seem like the Middle East has got nothing but the sun to offer, but this isn’t true at all. Case in point: the Akbıyık village in Turkey went completely off the grid after the Turkish Electricity Distribution Company cut off the village’s electricity. Because the utility company wanted to charge the villagers an unreasonable pile of money for outstanding bills, they raised funds to install a wind turbine with 50 KW capacity. To date, the new turbine has enabled Akbıyık to pay off its electric debts and power a water pump that allows the village to stay completely energy independent.

Students Make Renewable Energy from Noise

Nothing makes our green hearts sing more than seeing our youth pick up the green baton, especially those from somewhat obscure parts of the world. These four young men from Sharjah, which is an Emirate located just north of Dubai, won a prestigious award for developing technology that harvests energy from noise! That’s right. Noise. Their device converts otherwise wasted mechanical energy, acoustic noise, and ultrasonic waves into electricity by using piezoelectric technology. Even though it won’t generate staggering quantities of energy, their device has an extraordinary range of potential applications, including tapping ultrasonic waves produced at aquariums.

(Courtesy: Green Prophet)

Start of year to see test run for 'Muslim Facebook'

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 05 December 2011 | Posted in , , , ,

Ankara: The start of next year will see the first test runs of SalamWorld.com, the so-called ''Muslim Facebook'', which is being set up in Istanbul and aims to draw in 50 million users over three years.

The target is a revised one and emerged during a presentation held today in Istanbul, where a previous figure of 100 million users - leaked two weeks ago - was halved. There was, however, confirmation that the social network dedicated to Muslims, "SalamWorld" (could be translated as ''Hi, World'') will aim to spread Islamic values among the young and will aim to avoid deviant input thanks to an ''ample team'' of ''moderators''.

Alongside these and added filters, it is hoped that users will also exercise self-discipline. According to the deputy chair of the promoting company, Dagestan-born Russian Akhmed Azimov, the main aim will be to promote awareness of the values sacred to Islam.

It was revealed last month that the platform's motto will be ''no politics, no bans, no limits'' and that apart from young Muslims, the network will be aiming to involve leading intellectuals and non-Muslims who are curious to learn more about the faith.

In practical terms, Salamworld will offer consultation about various Islam-related issues such as theology and the family.

Also planned is online teaching and applications enabling you to find a mosque or your nearest Halal shop.

As was stressed during today's presentation, the developers are attempting to create ''an online encyclopaedia, a kind of Moslem Wikipedia''. Presently, they are busy gathering ''vast resources'' of Islamic texts and documents to put online so that they can be accessed from the site.

The amount of the investment made by the group of Muslim businesspersons behind the project has not been revealed, but it would appear to be a huge amount as the entrepreneurs concerned are defined as ''important'', and from the fact that their deputy chair, Mr Azimov, today declared that: ''we have the money: there are no problems from that point of view''. Today's presentation indeed took place in the company's Istanbul headquarters amid what could be described as sumptuous surroundings.

As well as the central offices in Istanbul, the social network will also have 'antennae' in Moscow and Cairo, with ''coordinators'' in 30 countries. There would appear to be further offices in Dubai, London and New York, at least, this was revealed last month when it was also revealed that one hundred thousand people are already waiting for their chance to enrol on the network, which will be available in 15 languages.

(Courtesy: ANSAmed.info)

ENMAC MQ3500 – The ‘Quran Mobile’ Launched In India by Tolmol.com

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 23 November 2011 | Posted in , , , ,

An Indian company Tolmol.com, has made some serious efforts in designing a phone especially for the Muslim people, which boasts of special services like the Holy Quran recitation in the voices of five famous Quari(the singers). Along with this, the phone even has a translate option, using which they will be able to apply about 29 languages like Urdu, English, Bengali, Malayalam and Tamil.

Anuj Kashish, the co-founder and CEO of TolMol.com affirmed the launch of ENMAC MQ3500 mobile handset, and stated that the people using this device can access and hear Quran whenever they wish, and that too at a reasonable price. They are even pondering over the options to design other similar devices like Islamic eBook, Pen Quran and other Quran mobile models.

Features of this phone are -

• Provides a talk time of one and a half hour and standby period of four days.
• Can store upto 1000 entries in phone book having Call History, SMS, MMS, GPRS features.
• Equipped with WAP, FM Radio, Image Viewer, video player, voice recorder/player.
• Has got 2 inch colour TFT LCD screen and camera.

With a price tag of Rs.5499, the phone is believed to have got an interface in Arabic, English, Persian, Portuguese, Russian and Turkish. This phone was a combined effort with ENMAC Engineering also playing a valuable role. This phone will be available in the market in December, and could also be traded through an online portal. This may be one unique phone for the Muslim Community, as most of their needs have been attended to. But remember one and all: “Craziness” follows no religion, nor does “Engineering”!

(Courtesy: CrazyEngineers.com)

Exclusive mobile for Muslims

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 22 September 2011 | Posted in , , , ,

i786 comes with one year warranty with three months replacement comes at a price tag of Rs 2,999.

By Sandeep Budki

I-Tel, an unknown player in the mobile handset space, has launched India's first multimedia customised mobile phone for Muslims. Known as i-Tel i786, it comes integrated with special software for Muslims like Azan Alarms, Prayer Timings, Wallpapers, Ring Tones, Higri and Greogeon Calender, and Zakat calculator.

Talking to The Mobile Indian, a spokesperson of the company said, "We have started the customised mobile phone for Muslims having customised Muslim calendar, prayer timing schedule and Qibla directions and Muslim wallpapers.'

He added: "We have taken permission from the biggest mosque and leading Islamic scholars to sell this customised Muslim handsets to Muslims all over the world after intensive research."

The spokesperson further said that the company will give 2.5 per cent Zakat (a kind of donation given by Muslims for social welfare) on every sale of the handset to needy and poor Muslim children, and NGOs for educational purposes. Besides, i-Tel has also taken special permission to put the model i786 as this number is highly auspicious for Muslims as it means "we start in the name of Allah"

The i786 is a dual SIM phone which has integrated MP3, MP4 player and supports Bluetooth. It has a camera of 1.3 megapixel resolution as well. It supports English, Arabic, Hindi, Urdu, Persian, Turkish, Bengali, Burmese, Indonesian, Vietnamese and Thai language.

This phone comes with one year warranty with three months replacement comes at a price tag of Rs 2,999.

(Courtesy: The Mobile Indian)

Tech Museum rediscovers Islamic Golden Age of Invention

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 07 September 2011 | Posted in , , ,

Only West coast stop for touring exhibit featuring Muslim achievements in art, flight, architecture and more in videos, interactive stations.

Were Orvill and Wilbur the first to take to the sky? Was Leonardo da Vinci the first to describe "machines of the future"?

In fact, a thousand years before the Wrights took flight in North Carolina, Abbas ibn Farnas soared over the Spanish countryside in a one-man glider.

And in 1206 -- more than 200 years before Leonardo conceived of his technological wonders -- Al-Jazari penned the Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices. He detailed 50 mechanical devices with instructions on how to build them.

The Tech Museum presents these and other Islamic contributions to science and technology in in "Islamic Science Rediscovered," in the touring exhibition's only West coast stop.

The Golden Age of the Islamic World (circa 8th to 18th centuries CE) comes alive in 40 stations illustrating achievements in architecture, art, astronomy, engineering, exploration, flight, mathematics, medicine, optics and water control.

"It was imperative to bring this exhibition, which has cultural as well as scientific and technological aspects, to the Silicon Valley," said spokesman Roqua Montez. The museum expects to host the touring exhibition at least through the end of 2011, he said.

The San Jose museum throws open the doors to "Islamic Science Rediscovered" Saturday, Sept. 3.

The Tech Museum is located at 201 S. Market St. in San Jose. Ticket prices are $18.99 for adults, $16.99 for seniors over 65 and college students with a valid ID card and $13.99 for children under 18.

(Courtesy: RedWoodCityPatch)

Hauraa, A SIM Card with Islamic Content for Indonesia

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 09 June 2011 | Posted in , , ,

By Ratri Adityarani

There’s an intriguing new SIM card in Indonesia now, as PT Hauraa Arzuda Media introduces one that comes with Islamic content based on Sharia principles. This Hauraa SIM card, which will be made available through mobile operator XL Axiata, could potentially serve about 200 million Muslim customers in Indonesia.

Containing video clips and guides for practicing Islam, Hauraa is the first SIM card to receive approval from Majelis Ulama Indonesia, the country’s top Muslim clerical body. There are also verses of the holy Qur’an and Islamic books that can be downloaded through its data service.

PT Hauraa Arzuda Media, the SIM card manufacturer, has also been working with Muslim scholars and leaders in Indonesia for Muslim-related content. Part of its content distribution method also includes ‘SMS Ulama Nusantara,’ where famous Muslim clerics share Muslim-related knowledge with users via SMS.

CEO Hauraa Arzuda Media, Ann Gusnayati Thaib said that Hauraa will provide Muslims with a touch point of the Islamic lifestyle, based in Sharia law, through mobile technology. It is a nice (and somewhat rare) fusion between technology and religion.

There is a good chance that the SIM card will get a positive response given that majority of Indonesia’s population are Muslims. If influential religious leaders were to adopt Hauraa, many would probably follow suit.

(Courtesy: Penn Oslon)

Indian Scientists Deny the Existence of Higgs Boson

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 03 May 2011 | Posted in , ,

By Amar Kapadia


Indian scientists, B. G. Sidharth, Director of the B. M. Birla Science Centre at Hyderabad, and Syed Afsar Abbas, Professor at the Physics Department of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), have denied the possibility of existence of Higgs boson, also known as god particles.


The Higgs particles and its related mechanism were discovered by Theoretical Physicist Peter Higgs in the 1960s. The god particles is said to give mass to other particles in the universe, but it has never been found. Some scientists claim that the Higgs boson will give scientific answers to questions about the mass and expansion of the universe. They also claim that these particles will help humans understand what makes all things around us.


Syed Abbas said that many such claims were made in the past as well. These claims were unscientific and there is no evidence related to their presence.


According to physicists' Standard Model, the Higgs boson is an elementary particle that should exist. But no one has yet detected one and based on these evidences the scientists have said that there is no proof that such particles actually exists.


(Courtesy: News Tonight)

New Visual World a Dream Come True

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 25 April 2011 | Posted in , ,

By Syed Ali Mujtaba

We are living in a new visual world, a world which is different from the one that exists side by side but remains unnoticed. The new visual world actually shaped when the internet opened the gates of communication highway and the e-mails and voice-mails dominated the cyber space. This format is now being replaced by the new visual world.

In the new visual world communication is taking place through the webcams and in an array of activities its application is found. Whether its business, board room meetings, social networking, medical surgery, court room trials, every this mode of communication is gradually becoming popular.

The mobile telephone based on 2G, 3G and now the 4G is enhancing the speed of communication of the new visual world. As we are able to see one another on a more frequent using such technology, the new visual world is bringing world closer, catapulting a global society.

As we have started to live under the shadows of cameras, the new visual world is changing our life style. We cannot escape the eye of the camera, whether it’s a mall or a superstore, bus station, railway platform, airport or even traffic signals, we are under the vigil of the camera.

In a super store, Mother Merry cannot breastfeed her toddler, because the camera watches her act, and to some the images generated may be liable porn. Similarly, many offices have cameras to monitor the work their staff and in such a case, one may have to sit tight, because each member is under the surveillance of the camera.  

Notwithstanding the constraints, the new visual world has come to stay simply because the communication is now happening through touch screens and the keyboards. The visual technology is helping simulate the experience that a phone conversation or an e-mail exchange may not generate. In such mode of communication, one does not have to travel a distance to make the face-to-face appearance and such visual interaction saves time and energy.

It’s a life experience that’s happening and there is no escape from this reality. There are many who see this visual process a intrusion of the only remaining personal space in their lives and such people do not subscribe to this mode of communication. They are challenged by two sets of people, one those who are tired of every other form of communication and want to try visual options and other the young Turks who are growing with the changes and the new visual world is part of their life style.

The new visual world has thrown open a window of opportunities but it’s filled with challenges. It requires the basic skills of visual communication and if one doesn’t have the skills to face the camera, chances are to be dubbed as ineffective communicator. So in order to be an effective communicator and to make an impact, one needs to adapt to the requirements of the new visual world. One has to show maturity towards embracing the new technological changes. Those doing so alone can surge ahead; the rest may lag behind or fall by the wayside. Time and tide waits for no one.

The social impact of the new visual world is tremendous. Slowly a world of visual communicators is emerging, as one sees people of different cultures and backgrounds more visually and interacts with them more frequently. As more people see one another, and more direct contact taking place, the fears, inhibitions, prejudices, concerns, ignorance or other negative feelings are getting mellowed.

Whether there is a greater acceptance of diverse audiences and the new visual world is welcoming the visual differences is something debatable. However, the fact remains there is no escape from such a reality. This is definitely a sign of change.
 
At another level the new visual world is pushing the cart of globalization. As people get opportunities to interact among many cultures, a globally interactive society is emerging. In this endeavor the young Turks is taking the lead. After all, children are not born with a natural fear of likes and dislikes, they learn from the environment they live. The new visual world provides them their own experience to decide as those who look so different have so many things in common with them.

This brings us to the point that the more we see one another, the more we may understand each other and such interaction may bring us closer together, leading to a global society. In such case, the space for nationalism is shrinking, and globalization s surging ahead.

This is not to suggest that prejudices are disappearing and we are moving towards a perfect harmonious world. It’s only to underline the fact that the no matter what maybe the prejudices, one still have to interact with different people on a daily basis. The new visual world is making people to accept those people whose lifestyles and backgrounds those are different from their own.

Is the new visual world is better for our future generation or does it have negative influences on their minds that’s something being debated. There are many who are opposed to the ideas of the new visual world. They argue that children are exposed to pornography and other such vices in a tender age. Children’s creative activities are stifled as their attention is diverted in such unmeaning activities. A child has to have sound body and mind and the development of both is getting undermined by this new visual world.

The other arguments put forward are that every individual can not be visually appealing and the new visual world is creating a new divide that is based on looks and not on merit. One has to be over conscious all the time in terms of diet and dress to match the expectations of the new visual world.

Some are commanding to control this new trend. They say come on, where are we going, stop this highway to nowhere. However, there many who live by the slogan, it’s my life and I don’t give a damn to those who do not like the way I like.  It’s such kind of people who are making the new visual world’s dream come true.

[Syed Ali Mujtaba is a journalist based in Chennai. He can be contacted at syedalimujtaba@yahoo.com]

OPINION: Technology determines power status

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 30 March 2011 | Posted in , , , ,

By Dr Samiullah Koreshi

In modern times there is a clash of civilizations- The world is divided not only into countries but also into civilizations and races. This is a hard fact of international community. The more the world is advancing in technology the more the place of civilizations of the Whites, the Yellows, the Browns and the Blacks is drastically undergoing change. Today technology is determinant of power-status of countries/peoples – this is a hard fact of life, since countries are part of certain civilizations. The propounder or discoverer of this Clash of Civilization had his own classification but in a more simplified manner one can say that peoples can be divided into four kinds on the basis of their colour describing the groups more or less in different categories of technology – which determine their inter- power equations. This is not being racist but realist in understanding the game of power players . Sorry I am a hard eyed diplomat who was for four decades in diplomatic career, and still tries to understand the game going on and not get deceived with superficial slogans or sugar quoting on sinister dirty power- games like one going on by NATO crusaders in Libya. It is for starry-eyed inexperienced persons to get swayed by slogans. Not for“chocolate diplomats” to borrow a terminology from Bernard Shaw. He spoke of chocolate soldiers. I will come to it later also.

The point being made is that, as is well known, education or technology is a matter of survival. There are various levels of education, the elementary, the advanced and the creative- which means contributing to existing knowledge by discoveries- those working on the higher frontiers of knowledge. The level of knowledge in science and technology is the higher stage of education. Pakistan is most backward in science and technology. We in Pakistan are borrowers and not creative in technology – except in some defence- technologies, nuclear and missiles. Which only shows that Pakistanis are not backward, capable of research and discoveries under pressure. In case some cynic says that these are destructive avenues of technology let it be said here right away that these acquisitions have caused relaxation in Pakistan’s posture towards India. In pre-Nuclear days Pakistan was mortally afraid of India’s military might and searching for a “balancer” with India’s military might. The fear of Indian military power dominated our foreign policy planning, in our foreign policy phase upto 1998 ( when we in fact acquired N-capability) but after the nuclear explosion Pakistan has acquired confidence in its security related issues, and consequently changed its posture with India exploring co-existence through diplomacy and dialogue. This is why it wants to have its N-deterrence updated to keep its new self- confidence. This is a distinct land-mark in our second phase diplomacy in post N-explosion. There is little similarity in Japan and Pakistan in matter of dangers to the Nuclear installations. Japan is an islands country, Pakistan’s nuclear assets are not open to risks by Tsunamis. Few people have noted why suddenly from India centered confrontationist diplomacy, we shifted to dialogue diplomacy with India. No one asked why? This N-capability has removed from our concern inability to face India. This was to show the relation between technology and national power. But there is a second element of technology as national power which is missing. Because as Ghazzali has said in his book Nasihat-ul-Muluk, people bring to the market the merchandise for which there is demand. In the new political system in Pakistan the learned and the scientists are not in demand. Pattaey baz politicians who are not even graduates of universities are reaping all favours and monopolizing national main stream. Their cronies have taken over all the institutions. This accounts for assassination of technology, learning etc. In the Subcontinent the eternal competition is between Muslims and Hindus, if I avoid the words such words as conflict, rivalry for power, hostility etc- Even if the situation of belligerency is ignored for the time being – in a way this is true for today’s world – there is competitiveness between nations . Hindus are far superior to Muslims in every field except perhaps Nuclear capability There is not one single institute in Pakistan comparable to the five IIT ( Indian Institutes of Technologies); no universities like Calcutta, Allahabad, Madras, etc, My late friend General Ali Nawab an Engineer took a delegation of experts to India in early 90s to study their technical university education. He found the Indian professors far more dedicated to their profession than their Pakistani counterparts. Today go to any university, take a text book in any technology subject you will find that the text books used by our students were written by some Hindu expert. Where are Pakistani teachers? Do they not produce any work worthy of being taught in our universities? Go to any book exhibition in Pakistan. Whose text books in technical subjects are available for our universities, Indian!

We are very much backward compared to India in every branch of knowledge. We are going down, down, down. The question for Pakistan is what kind of existence it wants : equal or subordinate to India. This will continue to determine our relative position on global level. People who claim Pakistan has great respect in the world or even region are living in a make belief world.

Now look at the world. I will speak in a wider perspective. The Whites and Yellows are on the top of the ladder in higest technology. In US the technical industry is dominated by the Yellow and Indians experts. In UK even Indians are working at top positions in every technically field. Pakistani is far behind because he is far less equipped with technical knowledge. His degrees are no where equated with Indian universities’ degrees. There is competition between nations and races as part of clash of civilization . Because Muslim is not competitive with the Yellow races and the Indians, he has been elbowed out. Darwin was right in explaining this as “Survival of the fittest “ to described this situation. Muslims were not backward in education even in the days of decadence of their rule. William Darlymple n his book “The Last Mughal” says that at the advent of the 1857 Ghaddar “ Delhi had the largest number of educational institutions in this side of Eastern World and “ Delhi was in 1857 one of the largest, most beautiful and certainly the richest cities in Hindostan” ( p 311.) Muslms became perhaps backward after the British rule in post 1858 years.

Now look at the emerging scenario on the field of technology in the world. It is clear that the white monopoly is broken by the Yellow races, below them but quite up on the scale are the Hindus. The future seems to belong to them Down the ladder would be the Muslims and the Black lowest. White and Yellow will compete with each other followed by the Brown Hindus to speak in wider terms. They will compete with each other. The Black and the Brown Muslims are already marginalized. They will be at the lowest rung of the ladder of technical expertise. We will be sounding our trumpet that we are this and that and a great “democracy” as if the word was not coined in Greece but in South Pakistan..

It is time to clarify, since some readers have misconstrued my last column on Libya as a defence of Ghaddafi’s rule. Certainly Pakistanis had good relations with him, but this is not a material point in condemning NATO barbarian and highly condemnable , most deplorable military action and igniting local armed rebellion. It is for the people of any country to decide the fate of its rulers not for foreign neo-colonialist crusading NATO coveting Libyan oil fields under absolutely bogus claim of humanitarian mission, . transparently bogus claim. It is naked imperialism and one wishes that the Arabs would see it as such. If Arab solidarity becomes a matter of the past, then today NATO’s target is Libya, tomorrow whom. Arabs have only one shield , their solidarity. The Western sources have claimed that some Muslim countries are likely to join their slaughter of the Libyans. One hopes NATO does not find Muslim Quislings or neo Mir Jafar and Mir Sadiq. Such agents of neo-imperialism will be remembered in history as traitors , if any join them, and as part of a conspiracy to break the OIC entity as well as Arab solidarity. One hopes this will not happen.

(Courtesy: Pakistan Observer)

Greed to blame for Japan nuke plant woes: Chernobyl clean-up veteran

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 18 March 2011 | Posted in , , ,

By MICHAEL SHIELDS
VIENNA: Greed in the nuclear industry and corporate influence over the UN watchdog for atomic energy may doom Japan to a spreading nuclear disaster, one of the men brought in to clean up Chernobyl said on Tuesday.

Slamming the Japanese response at Fukushima, Russian nuclear accident specialist Iouli Andreev accused corporations and the United Nations’ International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) of wilfully ignoring lessons from the world’s worst nuclear accident 25 years ago to protect the industry’s expansion.

“After Chernobyl all the force of the nuclear industry was directed to hide this event, for not creating damage to their reputation. The Chernobyl experience was not studied properly because who has money for studying? Only industry.

“But industry doesn’t like it,” he said in an interview in Vienna where the former director of the Soviet Spetsatom clean-up agency now teaches and advises on nuclear safety. Austria’s environment ministry has used him as an adviser.

Andreev said a fire which released radiation on Tuesday involving spent fuel rods stored close to reactors at Fukushima looked like an example of putting profit before safety:

“The Japanese were very greedy and they used every square inch of the space. But when you have a dense placing of spent fuel in the basin you have a high possibility of fire if the water is removed from the basin,” Andreev said.

The IAEA should share blame for standards, he said, arguing it was too close to corporations building and running plants. And he dismissed an emergency incident team set up by the Vienna-based agency as “only a think-tank not a working force.“

“This is only a fake organization because every organization which depends on the nuclear industry — and the IAEA depends on the nuclear industry — cannot perform properly.

“It always will try to hide the reality. The IAEA ... is not interested in the concentration of attention on a possible accident in the nuclear industry. They are totally not interested in all the emergency organizations.”

The IAEA had no immediate comment on Andreev’s criticism.

Andreev said he understood all too well what the Japanese authorities in Fukushima were going through, and that creative solutions would be needed to contain the leaks.

“It is a situation of quiet panic. I know this situation,” he said. “Discipline is the main thing in the industry but the emergency service requires creativity, requires some kind of even fantasy and improvization.” (Reuters)

Iran vying to reach peaks of Science production

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 15 March 2011 | Posted in , ,

IMO News Service

Addressing the 1st National Congress of Nano-medicine in Iran's Southwestern city of Ahvaz, Chancellor of Tehran University's Faculty of Pharmacology Rassoul Dinarvandi said Iran is determined to and will "rank first in terms of science production in the Muslim world in the near future".

Referring to Iran's speedy trend of scientific progress in recent years, Dinarvandi stated, "Given the current trend of progress, the country is moving to a higher rank each year, and at present Iran stands the second in science production among the 51 Muslim states."

"As acknowledged by international bodies and organizations, the rapid trend of growth in science production in Iran will narrow the gap between Iran and the leading countries," he stated.

Earlier in October, Iranian Vice-President for Science and Technology Nasrin Soltankhah said that Iran is the leading Muslim country in the field of nanotechnology, while standing among the 15 top nations in the world.

"We rank first in the production of nanotechnology and nanoscience in the region and the Muslim world and we have gained the 14th standing among the world countries," Soltankhah said at the time.

Soltankhah also announced that Iran is among the only three world countries which have compiled a National Nanotechnology Plan.

Indonesians embrace new media for old debates

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 17 December 2010 | Posted in , , ,

By Arlina Arshad

Jakarta: To most Indonesians, Ahmad Mustofa Bisri is an influential Muslim cleric and a respected figure from the country's biggest Islamic organisation, the moderate Nahdlatul Ulama.

But to his 7,000-odd followers on Twitter, the 66-year-old is "Kyai Gaul", or the Trendy Cleric, who thumbs daily Islamic greetings on his iPad and Blackberry.

Bisri is among a number of Islamic leaders -- conservative and liberal -- who are turning to the Internet in the struggle for the hearts and minds of the faithful in the world's largest Muslim-majority country.

"I set up an account last month because I like to make friends with everyone. I don't position myself as a mufti, a religious authority. I only share what I know," said Bisri, who is better known as Gus Mus or "Brother Mus" -- short for Mustofa.

"It's important for those who understand the faith to spread the word. Those who don't know, but say they do, may mislead," he added.

Besides microblogging site Twitter, he has been preaching religious tolerance and moderation on social networking site Facebook, where he has 2,600 "friends" and 62,000 "fans".

Islamists from hardline groups like Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia and the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) also have a Web presence, using the modern medium to advocate ancient capital punishments like stoning for adulterers.

The battle for Indonesia's Islamic identity is just one way the Internet is shaping and transforming public debate in the country of 240 million people, where Web usage has exploded in the past five years.

With its booming economy and burgeoning middle class, the archipelago has rapidly become one of the world's biggest Twitter users, according to online research firm comScore.

Of 41 countries surveyed, it had the highest percentage of Internet users at home and work accessing Twitter in June 2010, or more than 20 percent of its 45 million people online, comScore said.

No one who wants to be anyone -- not even the stick-wielding, fringe-dwelling religious fanatics of the FPI -- can afford not to have a Twitter account and a Facebook page in Indonesia.

And almost inevitably in a country as diverse as Indonesia, questions of faith consistently top the list of trending topics of debate.

Twitter "wars" are being waged on a daily basis between liberals who promote pluralism and religious tolerance, and conservatives who advocate a stern interpretation of Islam and strict moral values.

Some of the old elite are uncomfortable in the brave new world of instant communication and user-generated content.

Scandalised by the release online of a local rock star's homemade sex videos earlier this year, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono warned that the Internet "frenzy" was a threat to the nation's moral fibre.

But blogger Purwaka, known online as Blontank Poer, says the more open flow of information and opinion is good for a country that emerged from the tight grip of military strongman Suharto only in 1998.

"Twitter wars are good wars," the 42-year-old said.

"The winner is the public. They gain a better understanding of Islam and can make their own conclusion after hearing different opinions from experts on the faith," he added.

From homosexuality to atheism and the treatment of minorities, Indonesians are finding they can talk about subjects online which they would be reluctant to discuss in their offices, classrooms and around their kitchen tables.

Communications Minister Tifatul Sembiring, a conservative Muslim, is one of the nation's most prolific and controversial Tweeters and boasts 120,000 "followers" -- or other users who subscribe to his comment stream.

He drew international ridicule with a post describing how, as a pious Muslim, he had reluctantly shaken hands with US First Lady Michelle Obama at a state reception in Jakarta last month.

One of his critics, liberal Muslim scholar Ulil Abshar Abdalla, Tweeted to his 35,000 followers: "Enough, enough, from now on, shaking hands with non-mahrams (those unrelated by marriage) is allowed."

"It's halal (permissible) if it's the level of Michelle Obama," he added.

Gus Mus advised the minister to "calm down" and put his beliefs in perspective.

"Calm down, sir. God is too BIG to supervise your handshaking with Mrs. Michelle," he commented.

Sembiring later clarified his position in a series of Tweets, which only generated more howls of embarrassment from his liberal opponents.

"I'm fine as long as there's an open debate and people convey their messages politely, without curses and insults," the minister told AFP.

"I'll usually talk to them but if they continue insulting me and refuse to act in a civilised manner, after two to three times, I'll block them."

IT researcher and free-speech advocate Donny Budi Utoyo said that while Muslim leaders had different views, those engaged in social networks shared an ability to cope with criticism and the cut and thrust of the new media.

"Both the liberal and conservative leaders who have joined Twitter so far seem to be open people who know how to smile. If they're attacked, they respond in a positive manner," he said.

"This reflects the maturity of mind that is needed for any process of dialogue to be effective."

(Courtesy: AFP, December 17, 2010)

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