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Dusting off

It has been a significant absence. Its time to dust off & prepare this place for some ink again.

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The city in charm

Its the first time I take the chance to tour the city walking. Avoiding the traffic jam I decided to pull myself away from the conventional means of transportation we usually use in Dubai i.e the car, after a somehow-fancy meal at Bazerkan in JBR (Jumeirah Beach Residence) the beach escape, hotel hub, and casual outings place.

The weather was the best it had reached this year. Lovely breeze, charming sunset, herds of people leaving the sands after a long tan, and blocked ways during the weekend rush hour. Enjoying the walk, I got this feeling I hadn’t got since I arrived to this city a couple of years back. I had the chance to witness things I never did, smell things I never smelled, and heard hints I never heard.

Usually driving the car makes the mind concentrated and avoiding getting shattered. The focus is all converged towards the destination and the main view is the road. Getting the chance to walk made me better discover the neighborhood; A variety of stores, restos, & cafes filling the corners, some of which have really warm-cozy settings. Smelling the different scents of food to freshly baked scones to just brewed coffee. But the thing that aroused my senses was astonishingly weird but yes: it was the  cars smoke. I dont know why but this (environment unfriendly) smell made me feel that I am engulfed with an adorable-alluring city-side which I had the chance to discover.

This vibrant city, which I love, had succeeded to replicate all the world’s wonders & vibes but unfortunately failed to improve its weather. Being all year round imprisoned in artificially conditioned offices, homes, & malls deprived us of discovering what this city would have been that its climate was a bit less hot, I mean a bit cooler.

GeekFestBeirut

February 5th, 2010 This is happening tonight. All the @’s are there. I am being tickled on twitter but I had no choice other than staying in Dubai sorting the many things taking place.

I know its gonna be an interesting event to be at, but I cannoe but wish all the guys there the best for the immense amount of efforts invested to make this idea come true.

Busy November

Jazeera acquires ART Sports Sweet November! Well that’s true so far despite the negative interpretation of my horoscope for this particular month of this year.

 Everything is moving as I plan it to always be: timely, smoothly, and on time. Many things took place in October 09 the biggest was the Al-Jazeera acquisition of our ART TV station where I work. The picture wasn’t that clear and justified in the beginning, but now we have a vivid interpretation of what happened; The takeover will be to our benefit; I am glad.

November then started with the huge scale media fuss; that’s on the professional level. On the other side, & at the personal end of my life, today Mom will arrive for a 1 month visit to Dubai. No need to express my feelings, everyone can take a measure from his/her side.

 Mid November, my close-to-the-heart and intimate cousin will arrive to Dubai as well coming from KSA. It has been pretty a long time since I had the chance to see her and have our long funny but serious dialogues. I am looking forward for this.

 November will conclude when I will be already packed and heading to Munich on the way to Amsterdam. Excited “YES”, looking forward “YES”, & adventurous “YES YES YES”.

 Before I wrap, one thing I discovered recently. It is my ability to bypass hangover effects in a pretty short period of time. Last night Sho Cho was on fire. I had an array of tastings, I was a bit wasted, but today I woke up earlier than usual, I feel energy in the veins. 🙂

 

Does Twitter Has Teeth?

 

twit-teeth

 

Don’t be the one to let this cute little blue bird reveal his teeth upon you.

Twitter, the social networking and micro blogging website is becoming the “hype” without any doubt. Enormous popularity is spreading in all directions across the globe to an extent it is pulling away  facebook’s immense flourishing it  has enjoyed in the last couple of years.

The tweeting phenomena is still vague to a wide stream of middle eastern audiences as well as to marketers. Lacking the know-how of  twitter’s operation, they are still hesitant to take a further forward step exploring it. The ad-free and clean page the website has in the Middle East is raising a lot of questions about how to make use of this new online technology. Will it be possible to acquire the rights to media-represent the website and sell banner ads on it? If yes, how much is the plain cost, what’s the profit margin, and how to follow up on the consumer behavior accompanied with such site where most of its users may have unspecified real names, addresses, ages, and tastes?

But as a tool so far, Twitter can be extremely helpful. Word-of-mouth advertising always proved to be a very efficient way in triggering consumer actions (trial, purchase, re-purchase). Recommendations and advices from other twitterers in addition to their own experiences may all add to support brands, especially those who are suffering in this harsh economic downturn and market lull. But not everything can do the job. I believe brands will be facing the same problem they do over traditional media: competition & clutter. Establishing a good market position and breaking the media clutter requires a lot of work among which are quality, favorable customer experience, & “creativity”.

We are living in a brand bubble these days. Millions of brands are competing against each other on a open-market global scale. Each and every claims to be the best in his category. If not price wars come to the front. Customers are no longer loyal to their brands who are losing credibility day after day due to substantial degrading in quality due to market shrinking or due to the availability of several other options claiming to offer the same benefits at a discounted price.

So, where does the chance lie? It lies first of all in being creative. Creativity raises customer awareness about the product. Its creates a favorable attitude towards it, triggers sales, and increases word-of mouth. Here where the potential with twitter comes. Nowadays everything outstanding is being tweeted heavily, driving retweets (RT), opinions, discussions, and debates. It’s all publicizing the brand. But the picture isn’t that smooth!!

With twitter, breaking news are streamed at the first place on the internet before it got broadcasted on TVs. This fast way of information dissemination is a two-sided blade. Any pitfall or mistake is really expensive at all levels. The word will be roaming the world in seconds. The trust will be shaken.

Climate Change & Resources-Populations-Relocations

I dedicate this post to the global cause of “Climate Change” as part of the Blog Action Day: www.blogactionday.org

Watching Climate Change

Time is running out, changes are evident & luminous, casualties in millions, resources depleted, temperatures rising, nature retaliating, weather patterns severe, climates unusual, ice melting, & the bell is still intact waiting for someone to ring it, hopefully soon.

The given is clear. The equation is set. The longer we decide to turn our backs, the worse the situation. Are we ready for a war for food? Can the world handle another war of a different kind? Can any country bear mass population relocations looking for better life and abundance in resources? I doubt.

It will be a war of different kind. A war for resources, a war for water, a war for existence, a war for well-being. You name it;

The incremental global temperature increase is not a theory anymore. It’s a fact. Polar ice is melting, desertification in progress, storms are strengthening, water supplies are drying out, food distribution is imbalanced, and people are suffering. Why? Let’s ask the G7. They have the answer; they have the solution; but they lack the will.

Whenever the issue is raised, the answer comes “It will affect our economy”. In this game of global economical competitions, no one seems to give way. If the emissions of green house gases cannot be controlled, then why not invest in finding green technologies to take care of this. Such technologies are worth investing in. Comparing the casualties and losses after a single hurricane, it will be profitable to divert some of the budgets towards environmental friendly manufacturing.

But will the environmentalists win against the capitalists?

Most of the global policies are governed based on the interests of capitalist moguls. Oil, metal, & gas are the largest investment sectors globally. They constitute the basis of all manufacturing. The conglomerates behind such companies play a significant role in policy making especially in the West. They work in accordance to their interests. Politicians always base their legislations and decisions on input they get from them.  Some reports were stating that the disappearance of the North Polar ice cap will create a new convenient & economical short cut for energy supplies from Russia and Northern America and specifically the USA, the highest energy consumer in the world. Instead of taking tens of thousands of miles from the source to destinations, the new path will be only few thousand miles.  

But what will happen to millions of people living on the coasts worldwide?

Reports say that a slight increase in sea levels will drown Florida, New York, The Netherlands & significant parts of Northern European low lands, Venice & province, Egyptian Delta (Egypt’s food basket), some of the Gulf, & most of Bangladesh.

We all know that 90% of Egypt’s 80 million populations live around the Nile Delta. Most of the 100 million people in Bangladesh live on the coasts. What will be the result of mass translocations of around 1 billion person globally? How will the governments act to secure water and food for this massive trekking? It is important to ask.

The issue is escalating, we should not sacrifice the well being of millions for the benefits of a slight-tiny minority who are exploiting 80% of the global wealth & resources.

For the well being of humanity, animal kingdom, & the plant cover, I say ACT.

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The Great Ocean Conveyor Belt Shutdown

It would be fruitful and educative to start discussing the climate change process that if it continues to exacerbate, we will be witnessing tremendous physio-natural appearances that will turn our life upside down.

I would like to talk today about the valid possibility of the Great Ocean Conveyor Belt shutdown and the outcomes of such process if we succeeded to let it happen. I mean succeeding in the negative sense of the word.

The global climate is a process of heat transfer from area to area. Hot areas transmit their heat towards cold ones and vice versa. This is as simple as a word can say about the climate. Any change in the heat equilibrium will definitely mix the features contributing to the global climate.

The main heat transmitter on the Earth is the Great Ocean Conveyer Belt. It circulates all over the oceans, as seen in the above figure, and its takes about 10,000 years to finish one cycle.

Sun heat on the equators increases the surface heat and evaporation. Thus the water becomes warm and salty. This water moves North-West towards the Caribbean and then along the Eastern American coasts, deflects towards Western Europe, and turns to the north towards Greenland and then sinks down when cooled by the Northern chilly winds where it becomes cooler than the surrounding waters thus it sinks deep into the ocean. This movement prevents Europe from a veil of ice and snow by rising the temperatures there by about 7-8 degrees.

With the continuous global warming process, more and more evaporation will generate more precipitation. River run-offs will increase and melting polar ice will dump bigger amounts of fresh water into the ocean especially in the Eastern coasts of America. This will dilute the salty stream waters and thus will refrain it from sinking deep into the ocean to continue its journey. The result is the Conveyor Shut down. The thing here is what amount of fresh water is needed to shut the Conveyor down. Till now, scientists are not sure about it. Thus in the coming 100 years and with the 0.5 degrees global temperature increase per year will not supply the sufficient amount of fresh water into the ocean.

Latest reports about the Green House Effect are expecting a 1 degree celcius increase in the global weather in the coming few years, while CO2 and warm gases are still being emitted into the air with huge amounts without any global agreement to be set by the G7 Group.

Fearing economical traumas from decreasing production as a result of lower gas emissions should be justified. Natural disasters, especially weather-related ones, are causing the global economy billions of dollars in losses. What recently happened in the Philippines is just a sample to mention. Hurricane Katrina alone created mass destruction which was summed up into a couple of billions of dollars. Should such incidents not ring the bell for the Giants, then fearfully we are definitely triggering our global weather to retaliate, mercilessly this time.

 

Memory of the 2002

It was summer 2002, more preciesly on June 2002 when I used to work at Future Television at the Spears Street. I used to wake up early morning to get ready, prepare myself, and have a light snack. I used to zap to New TV, the local lebanese TV station where they used to broadcast the newly released Celine Dion’s “A New Day Has Come” song. Day after day and at the same morning time segment (7:30 am), I used to wait to watch it before leaving for the great amount of positive and optimistic energy it used to supply me with.

I used to live at Verdun St. next to Iwan Maktabi “Rug shop”. I remember I used to take the way walking since the weather at this time of the year in Beirut is tolerated still. Passing by the Concorde square, BLOM bank main branch, Sanaieh park all the way to the FTV offices, I used to murmer the song which became part of my daily ritual.

I dont know why I am recapping all this today, but what I know by now is that it has been whole 7 years since then. Time is moving on regardless of everything. We are growing older and older inspite of our wills. I wonder if I am taking benefit of every second of my yet young age “supposedly”. But what I wish, is to remain 27.

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