Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Feel Free to Ignore this Post. :)

DISCLAIMER: There is no structure with this.  There is no goal.  I am just typing away to get my fingers moving.  It has been a while since I was able to type for long periods of time without cross-checking my facts or googling a potential argument every few seconds.

What should I rant about?

School?  That's overrated and stressful.  Paris?  Many have done it and quite frankly, I feel no empathy.  I rarely have.  I am upset that ISIS Daesh has the nerve to claim to represent Islam, but other than that, I feel indifferent.  Indifferent is a strong word.  It's not that I do not feel terrible to what has happened to the citizens of Paris, but rather I have lots of things I must worry about myself.  So, I'll nod and say "oh, that's terrible" and get back to work without missing a beat.

I feel alone.  Dumb.  Outclassed.  And yet, today, of all days, I have a tinge of "I can do this".  No pep in my step, but rather this steely resolve to see my semester through.  This is good.  This is a step in the correct direction.  I am happy about this.

Perhaps I'll swing by the Killam to print a few pages of motivational stuff to put up in my room.

I do feel sad for one thing, though; I lost my Bose earphones. :( I was rushing between classes and they must have slipped somewhere.  I have retraced my steps all over campus to no avail.  On the bright side, Black Friday is coming up so I might be able to score a new set for a more palatable price.  I need to submit my hours, though.  Every time I have attempted to do just that these past few weeks, no one has been at the office.  I've e-mailed Yashar asking for the best times someone will be there.  Hopefully he'll give a straight answer.  I need the cash.

I need to get started on my second ethics essay.  I'll probably do peer-to-peer.  It is something I have at least a vague idea on what to write on.  I don't know jack about Canada's Copyright Laws and quite frankly, the document looks like a pain to read, and I would really much rather be able to read that before I write on the topic.  Don't worry if my sentences don't make sense.  This is more me talking to myself more than anything else.

I also need to try and put up a good set of slides for my presentation with Aqeb this Thursday.  We will present on wearable technology.  I still have trouble locking down the flow of our presentation.

So far I plan to talk about:

  1. a brief history of wearables.  I found a neat little infographic to use.
  2. Definition of modern wearables
  3. Types of wearables
  4. Where do wearables come short
  5. Where can wearables go from here.
OOOH that gives me an idea....  Type out the potential script and then divvy it up.  Woots.  I've forgotten how cathartic writing is.

If you've made it this far, congratulations and thank you for reading.  :)

Thursday, September 17, 2015

To Live in Fear

If by some extraordinary circumstance, you have not heard of Ahmed Mohammed and his arrest over his homemade clock, here is the article from CNN; http://www.cnn.com/2015/09/16/us/texas-student-ahmed-muslim-clock-bomb/index.html

Now that you're up to speed, I am writing about this because it precisely this Islamophobia that makes me fearful of posting anything remotely related to Islam on my more public social media sites.  No matter how peaceful the message, I fear for my safety every time I post something that even mentions Islam.

Why?  Because even an American-born Muslim is arrested for showing his ENGINEERING teacher a homemade clock over fears that it is a bomb.  I fear that some government organization may be watching and deem my post 'sympathetic to extremism' or something equally nonsensical.

I legitimately live in fear.  This past week, I added a classmate on Facebook and he immediately noted, "oh, you're Muslim." Disclaimer: he did not mean it in any harmful/offensive way.  He himself is Muslim and just had not picked up that I too was a Muslim.

It is not a crippling fear; I still wake up in the morning without worrying about it.  But I do frequently catch myself being fearful of sharing certain types of posts, etc.

It is not the fear of having my faith challenged, rather it is the fear that some of my acquaintances and classmates will see that and be biased towards me.  I do not want to be reaching into my bag to pull out my computer only to be jumped by an Islamophobic student screaming that I'm trying to kill my classmates.  Sometimes I laugh at my own seemingly irrational fear, then I read a story of how an intelligent young boy tried to show his teacher a homemade clock only to be arrested and charged with making a hoax bomb.

In Hong Kong International Airport, I recall being stopped right before I boarded the aircraft for a random passport check.  I did not think anything of it but it certainly did feel like I was singled out because the name 'Muhammad' popped up on the screen.  In that particular instance, am I right to feel singled out?  Perhaps not.  After all, if the security crew can prevent any sort of tragedy, aren't they obliged to do so?

Your digital life does affect your physical life.  For example, if your Facebook has nothing but photos of you at wild parties, you can be sure that employers will be reluctant to hire you.

Same goes with my fear of facing discrimination.  Alhamdulillah, so far, it has not happened.  But that fear is always there.  What if something I post on Islam is misinterpreted despite my best interests.  What if there is actually an Islamophobe amongst my acquaintances?

I've prattled a lot without bringing up any good, objective arguments.  My ethics professor would probably flip but oh well.

Perhaps, one day, I will no longer live with that fear at the back of my mind.

I guess that's all for now. Au revoir