Archive for the ‘New in Town’ Category

Day Light Saving From 1st June

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Electronic Speed Detectors

ELECTRONIC SPEED DETECTORS ON 7TH AVENUE ISLAMABAD, originally uploaded by www.first-pakistan.blogspot.com.

Now people would probably slow down at the said spot to see their speeds .. I hope it gives birth to traffic mayhem on highway, Not!

Meet Mr. Sharky

Like dinosaurs, when it comes to Marine life … the only thing that sounds ferociously appealing to me is SHARK. And I definitely never thought that I’ll buy 1 kg of shark for Rs. 195 ;-)

Well not so fast we can now. Metro (yup Metro fever’s now down yet :~)) is letting you do that. last weekend when I went there the fish standing lying tall on the ice was definitely not Shark. When I passed the Marine corner today, wooohooo… Shark … a big big  shark was so aesthetically displayed. I  almost jumped at the sight and a pic of him (or her :D) with the kids was inevitable…. !

So here’s it for ya ….

Meet Mr. Shark and His Kids 

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I hope selling Sharks is not violating any rules … shark’s a shark … I dont think its a FARM FISH … any idea if its selling is legally just?

Meat & Metro

You definitely have read Fatima’s Marine experience a few days earlier. Finally, I ot the chance to visit Metro too … its huge and its interesting.

The bakery is lucratively enticing  … but then meat section is no less.  Its chilly considering the loadsheddings country-wide … seem like a heaven =)

The Goat and Cow anatomical charts a lot  looked amazing … nicely displayed … ideal for Eid ul Adhaa (Azhaa … if you wana read so).  So now you can know whats a Bong and whats Puth.
Clean, hygienic and  wrapped bakray were  a delight to watch =))  see for yourself…!

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13th National Ass-embly & the PM Race

Marking the increase in fuel prices, terrorist attacks,  declining state of a common pakistani … the 13th NA is all set to gather at Parliament house today to take their oaths.

The war on PM, hopefully, will catch some light today …  Who will you support for the chair of Prime Minister?

  • Makhdoom Amin fahim
  • Asif Ali Zardari-Bhutto
  • Yusuf Reza 3

More>> All Things Pakistan talks of Uncertainty too.

Wateen goes green with Google Earth

I was visiting Wateen franchise today in order to get a couple of things for my recently purchased Wateen WiMAX package, when I heard the lady behind the big glass-table asking the customer, “This is the road you are talking about, now tell me which street is your house in?” I was thinking if are they keeping some detailed map of the city or what? She turned the face of her LCD towards the customer to give him a better view of the map or whatever she was talking about. Out of curiosity I got closer to the screen. And she was actually pointing on a satellite image of the city hosted in Google Earth. I was like, woww!!!.

Before this, for me at least, Google Earth was just a cool application used by people to look at different places in the world from upside, at a distance of few kilometers, just for fun. E.g. I remember when it was launched how excited I was on locating a blurred image of my own house and then my school and my university and my workplace and ….
But it was all fun.

And today I just realized that apart from fun, how useful it can be for some serious business as well.

The guys at Wateen actually locate your house on Google Earth, get the coordinates (longitude/latitude), provide these coordinates to their own system, which then maps these coords to the their signal-strength map, and they are able to tell you if the your house is in their operating radius or not, and if it is, what is the strength of signal in that area. Also on receiving some complaint, they get your coords from their db, and check if something is wrong with the signals in your area.

Good use of technology Wateen guys. Keep it up.

P.S. Although my experience with the staff at franchise was not that pleasant as I expected it to be, and also if you call their call center they put you on an unusually long wait before somebody picks your call, but the connection is quite good. So if you are thinking about trying it, you can safely go ahead. I am using it for a month now, and I had no issues with it, AS OF NOW. Who knows about tomorrow :)

Hitchhiking Around The Capital

ImageView.jpgThis week a French traveller, Ludovic Hubler who is touring around the world by hitchhiking for 5 years arrived in Islamabad. He has traveled around 80 countries, all the American continent, Antarctica, some African countries, part of Asia and the whole Europe. Now after 54 months and 145,000 Kms traveling, he has arrived Pakistan.

His challenge, which started on January 1st 2003 from France, has consisted of completing a tour of the world using hitchhiking (cars, trucks, sailing-boats, cargos, ice-breaker, donkeys, camels, etc…) as his only means of transportation. Hitchhiking around the world is not only his personal challenge but it’s also in his opinion the best way to interact with the local populations.
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Entrepreneur Rises …

WHEN he started his software company, Faizan Buzdar and three friends worked from a spare bedroom in the home of another friend. Their view was inspiring: the lovely house of an entrepreneur who had made a mint from his own start-up. “We would look at it and say we would buy it when we succeeded,” Mr. Buzdar said last week.

We may have read similar tales, again and again, in forwarded emails and various articles. The success stories of Gates and Jobs aspires me and many alike amongst us … around us. But what makes you actually proud? Yes, when you achieve something sound, after reading the success lines of great names, whether it is a step towards major life goal or firmness of faith on thy capabilities. There’s one another thing, we Pakistanis, take pride in. YES, when the mere alphabets P.A.K.I.S.T.A.N get associated with the high fliers of this world – giving an identity to the country and rejuvenating the aims and targets of our youth. Moe Importantly, when the words get into real action.

Faizan Buzdar is the CEO of much heard Scrybe Corporation (Blog), which developed a personal information manager. Nurtured in soil of Islamabad, just recently it has received venture funding from Adobe Systems and L.M.K.R., an information technology services company based in Dubai and Pakistan.

Scrybe might have seemed a long shot to get even this far. Mr. Buzdar, 31, is based in Pakistan’s capital city, Islamabad, hardly known as a haven for software entrepreneurs. And Scrybe is trying to enter a well-established market dominated by Microsoft Outlook in the business world and by Google, Yahoo and a host of smaller companies on the Web. But Mr. Buzdar’s product, which is also called Scrybe and made its debut in a seven-minute YouTube video in October 2006, has drawn sustained interest. The reasons suggest he has figured out something fundamental about how we want access to schedules and related information.

I hereby finish off, en anticipation to find more and more Pakistani names crossing the threshold of pre-dominant western world. All skills and hard work; success written eternally.

Thanks to New York Times for the post summary. And Arsalan Haleem for suggesting the story.

A visit to the National Art Gallery

A few weeks back the National Art Gallery opened its doors to the public near the Parliment house. It has managed to attract quite a number of people.After seeing the advertisement in the newspapers and hearing about it from several people I decided to pay visit to the gallery.
It was totally different from what I expected. A you approach the entrance of the vicinity you are greeted by a sentry of seven large black statues of burqa-clad figures, haunting and dementor like. On close inspection it was found that they are made from fibreglass although from a distance they seem to be made from charcoal.
The gallery which took over more than two decades to be materialized now houses 600 works of art featuring 126 artists. Grouped in 16 exhibitions with each hall dedicated to a certain subject.

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Photogragh: Aamir Qureshi
There are several internees around the gallery who can explain to the visitors what the painting and the sculptures depict. Although most of the time I did not find them helpful. The room which was dedicated to love was perhaps the most controversial of the exhibitions( or may be the hall at the top floor) where some paintings displayed nudity. This was totally out of the blue for me and many other who would expect strong censorship.
I was totally taken by surprize when I saw a several paintings depicting homosexuallity. I wonder why the mullahs haven’t criticized yet? I was also appalled to see that the paint on the wall was already getting scraped off due to the water getting leaked from the ceiling in room of the miniatures.
Although the general effort in bringing all these pieces of art together at one place is very much appriciated and is a visual treat for the art lovers.
The Art Gallery opens at 11a.m. Theres no ticket from 11a.m to 2p.m and later when it reopens at 3pm there is some sort of ticket.
And do remember that when you go into a hall that has this sound which is quite irritating dont keep wondering what it is. The sound coming from the speakers is the sound of childeren reciting Quran mechanically in congregation. I found this later from a news paper.

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Photograph: Anjum Naveed/AP

Of buildings and nomenclature!

Welcome to boom town Islamabad. Yes, we are expand on all four fronts and have nearly encircled the city of Rawalpindi, only for it to become the Queens, Bronx or Brooklyn of the City of Islam.

centaurus1.jpgProbably the heat is getting to me, but I need to make a point about the poor nomenclature that has gripped the constructors and architects in Islamabad. The massive hotel/shopping mall/exposition center/landmark shown on the right and being erected smack in the middle of sleepville Islamabad has a name that is equally enigmatic as it’s proposed role in the future of Islamabad. The prefer to call it ‘Centaurus!’ Am I missing the connection here or is it supposed to be like this. A Latin name for a building in Pakistan? How can people relate to that? What is so Pakistani about it? What is so Islamabadi about it? OK, we had a Greek city planner a long while ago but still?! If naming a brand was anything but basic marketing…

dha1.JPGThe evil Defence Housing Society being constructed in the south of the city has another gem to offer to the commercial and financial world. Also being constructed by Emaar, a Dubai based construction consortium famed for their hotels and resorts in Dubai, they plan to build a World Trade Center in their Islamabad DHA scheme! Impressive idea at first, but didn’t some of us have some really bad memories attached to some other buildings with the same name? I mean if there was anything else that would incite the zealous and evoke the nightmares. Mind you, those buildings will be with in 15 Kms of our current Islamabad International Airport.

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