The filtering had three primary rationales, according to the report: politics and power, security concerns and social norms.
The report said: "In a growing number of states around the world, internet filtering has huge implications for how connected citizens will be to the events unfolding around them, to their own cultures, and to other cultures and shared knowledge around the world."
Restriction of information leads you to know what they want you to know, and leaves you in constant frustration or perpetual ignorance.
Global net censorship 'growing'
Posted by grapeshisha at 1:39 PM
Prof. Richard Wiseman said: `This simple measurement provides a significant insight into the physical and social health of a city. The pace of life in our major cities is now much quicker than before. This increase in speed will affect more people than ever, because for the first time in history the majority of the world’s population are now living in urban centres.’
Surprisingly, London ranked outside the top ten, suggesting that many in the capital prefer to live life in the slow lane compared to Copenhagen and Madrid who proved to be the fastest European cities, whilst the Middle East tended to have the slowest pace of life.
The Pace of Life Project
Posted by grapeshisha at 2:44 PM
Posted by grapeshisha at 12:20 PM
Just now, police in Iran are busy with their annual spring campaign against “bad hijab”, prowling parks and stopping traffic to enforce dress codes. This year's drive is the strictest for a decade. Thousands of women have received warnings; police cars have been parked outside shopping malls, scrutinising every customer; vehicles with improperly clad ladies at the wheel have been impounded. The crackdown, which also targets men in short sleeves or with extravagantly gelled hair, marks a reversal in a relative relaxation of dress codes which had occurred under President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's regime. The manteau, or coat, which women are supposed to wear to hide the shape of their bodies has been getting shorter, as have the trousers underneath; and some women have sported jeans and lipstick under chadors covering their upper body.
Whether the current campaign will have any enduring effect on the determination of Iranian women (and fashion designers) to interpret the rules creatively remains to be seen. But there are many Muslim countries where rows over headgear have already taken a toll in blood.
The article from the Economist gives a good overview of what is going on all over the world with regard to hijab.
Economist - The meaning of freedom
Posted by grapeshisha at 11:49 PM
"The sheikh asked me: 'Why is it taller - are people there smarter than you?'" says Mohammed Alabbar, the official and head of property giant Emaar. "That's why I made sure our project was the tallest by far."
I love these detailed interviews with the great man.
FT - Drilling minds By Roula Khalaf
Posted by grapeshisha at 2:09 PM
During my time in the UAE, I realised that the Indians had superior math skills. I just thought this as a trait of the race, but some argues that teaching by rote was how they became so good. Ram Charan would probably argue that the Indians have superior street skills. One evening, when venturing into the alleys of Mina bazaar, I got chatting to a trader who gave me the low down, when I inquired on his mastery of math. "Well, it was drummed into me." "Aha, rote! But then he ventured further. "I also know Trachtenburg." I felt as if I was missing something. "Trachtenburg taught me some secret rules, so I could do some very difficult sums quickly". Who was Trachtenburg and why didn't he tell me of these secret rules? Why didn't my school teach me this way?
I recently started looking into "The Trachtenberg Speed System of Basic Mathematics" and was stunned at some very simple tricks that one can do to compute some large sums pretty damn quickly.
I'll give you a basic example:
To multiply by 11
e.g. 635 X 11
take the last digit as the right hand number (5)
each successive number is added to the number on the right (3+5), (6+3)
And the first digit becomes the left most digit(6).
so you get: 6985
OK, so you can multiply 6350 by 19 and add 635, but this is the most basic example.
For example, for multiplying by 12, you just double each number in turn and add the neighbour. So 413 (or 0412) becomes 4944. Can you see? And it goes on, for long multiplication, long division, squaring, square roots etc. etc.
Forget timetables, this would have helped me huge. With my mind as it is, I don't think I could get to a level to compete with the Mina bazaar shop keeper. Where's my calculator gone?
Posted by grapeshisha at 4:24 PM
Take the example of the UAE. While there are a small number of regular bloggers who discuss the various issues in the country, there is probabably a thirst to try and understand what is really going on in the Emirates. There are obviously a lot more bloggers in other countries, but the voice of the UAE bloggers now have a reputation for sane view of the news, and general goings on.
To realise the extent of how far this has got, I was particularly impressed that the Financial Times had reference to the online voice of the UAE. The story of how Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai's ruler, ordered an end to work on the Umm Suqeim beach and the online petition was featured in yesterday's FT. The fact that the FT referenced this as a voice of reason and not of power says oodles about the leadership of the UAE can use alternative forms of information separate from the normal channels.
Further more there was specific reference to SD, which deserves a huge pat on the back:
"The decision had looked arrogant and greedy - let's grab the last land while we can," says the author of Dubai's best-known expatriate blog, Secret Dubai Diary.
The authorities should take note. By inhibiting the public and the world to minimal amount of information in the free information day and age, sources of information have begun to be sourced elsewhere. The more you close down the channels, the more other channels open up. The more you close them down, the more UAE will be seen as closed. This example is a victory of free speech, not just for the UAE, but for all over the world.
FT article: Dubai's ruler turns tide on development of public beach
Posted by grapeshisha at 12:15 PM
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