Khaled rambles technology, tea/coffee, consumer rights and other interest from Saudi Arabia

April 25, 2010

Arabic discussion about intellectual property

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , — Khaled A. @ 3:00 am

Good timing especially after the unfortunate things that happened here (Arabic post) but not here (English version).

The issue of Arabic content and intellectual property is serious. We Saudis will never understand or come to terms with copy rights or intellectual properties because we were never taught that in school (thanks Essam). It starts with copying a homework.

That original issue should be resolved by simply saying “this is a quote” cause it’s a full quote from my post. Looks like “through SaudiMac” is enough. kbo.

Anyway, Jassim has started a public discussion in Arabic on his blog about intellectual property. Feel free to join the discussion.

April 24, 2010

AlEqtisadiah newspaper publishes a plagiarized article (Now Deleted)

Filed under: General — Tags: , — Khaled A. @ 6:52 pm

Update (26 April 2010): AlEqtisadiah has removed the article, nothing more. You can still find it if you searched for the cached version. Search for: cache: .

Update 2 (24 May 2010): AlEqtisadiah finally admitted and published a note about it here.

It is disappointing to see stuff like this. A well known Saudi newspaper published a plagiarized article.

Here’s the original post on March 18th 2009 titled “طعم النجاح.. خاطرة” and written by Muhammed Al-Saqaf.

Here’s the duplicate article on AlEqtisadiah newspaper on March 22nd 2010 titled “طعم النجاح” by Abdullah Alodaim. Adding a screen-shot:

Notice that most of the comments on AlEqtisadiah’s website has been censored!

April 21, 2010

Gitex Saudi Arabia 2010 in Riyadh

Filed under: Events — Tags: , , — Khaled A. @ 1:22 pm

The next Gitex Saudi Arabia in Riyadh will be from 25 to 29 Apr 2010.

Gitex Riyadh 2010 will be held for the second year at the new Riyadh Exhibitions Company. Gowalla location here.

Don’t expect it to be good. I am sure it will be a STC vs Mobily expo as usual.

April 18, 2010

UAE suspend Lexus GX 460 sales, what about the Saudi distributor?

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — Khaled A. @ 8:28 pm

Apparently there is an issue with the Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) in the 2010 Lexus GX 460. The distributor of Lexus and Toyota in the UAE, Al Futtaim Motors has suspended sales of this SUV and are contacting all of their customers. As reported by Arabian Business.

The Lexus distributor in Saudi Arabia, Abdul Latif Jameel Co, hasn’t announced or did anything regarding these issues with the car until now.

What consumer rights? Why am I not surprised.

April 10, 2010

iPad in Saudi Arabia and some rambling

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , — Khaled A. @ 2:14 am

OHAI, I didn’t see you there. I guess I was still laughing. I have been extremely busy with a lot of stuff including SaudiMac of course. I guess I have a few things to ramble about:


I got my Apple iPad finally. Bought it from the Apple Store and shipped via MyUS. A word of advice: don’t choose DHL when shipping, try FedEx.

I like the iPad, it’s exactly as advertised. Reading on it is pretty good (I have no experience using an e-ink device). Thamer was interested in getting one, that’s good. Yeah I named it SaudiPad.

Update: Oh look, a website for SaudiPad.

Make sure to read Mazen’s review of the iPad, I can proudly say that it’s the first iPad review in Saudi Arabia: Apple iPad: Bigger Than Life.

Flash and Apple

It’s hard for a Flash developer to write an objective article about the issues between Apple and Adobe (no Flash on iPhone, Apple blocking Flash CS5 iPhone app builders). The result will be expected, it’s like asking a Mac user to compare a Zune to an iPod.

Claiming that the town hall meeting mentioned here is a “Press Briefing” is just a lie.

I highly recommend reading this: Why Apple Changed Section 3.3.1, it raises a good point and provided an excellent example:

Consider, for one example, Amazon’s Kindle clients for iPhone OS and Mac OS X. The iPhone OS Kindle app is excellent, a worthy rival in terms of experience to Apple’s own iBooks. The Mac Kindle app is a turd that doesn’t look, feel, or behave like a real Mac app. The iPhone OS Kindle app is a native iPhone app, written in Cocoa Touch. The Mac Kindle app was produced using the cross-platform Qt toolkit.

It’s Scary how it ends implying that some people are considering blowing up Steve Jobs with a suicide bomber… This article is supposed to be funny, a parody … I say we Arabs are still behind in that too. All of it is link bait and that’s why I’m not linking.

April 2, 2010


Filed under: General — Tags: , , — Khaled A. @ 3:09 pm

#onlyinsaudi is a twitter hashtag for tracking everyone’s observations of us Saudis ;). contributions are accepted!

I will try to post them here at

Disclaimer: the info posted with #onlyinsaudi may be not 100% accurate or exclusive to Saudi Arabia. This is supposed to be fun. Ya hear me? FUN. Don’t take it seriously. Please!

March 28, 2010

From STC: 100 megabyte fiber? wait, MEGABYTE?

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — Khaled A. @ 3:33 pm

This is downright ridiculous. Another press release with STC lying to their customers once again (example: STC announcing they are the first to have HSPA+ and we saw no HSPA+ devices from them until now!).

But first I have to show you this press release: STC Customers enjoy the Benefits of the 4G/LTE Network. This press release is probably from the future sent via the TARDIS. 4G/LTE plans from STC is behind Mobily and Zain. Now back to topic.

STC’s latest announcement (STC’s English news site hasn’t been updated since 2009) was titled “STC provides its customers with the highest Internet speed in the region (100 megabytes) through FTTH technology”. The press release talked about “package which secures the highest Internet speed 100 megabytes/second through the Fiber to the Home technology FTTH technology.” Yes, 100 mega bytes per second, so it’s 800mega bit per second.

The press release claims “for the first time in the Middle East and North Africa”, “for the first time” is something STC loves to say even if it’s not true. But these services are only available in 3 neighborhoods in Saudi Arabia and only one in Riyadh: An-Nakhil District in Riyadh.

UAE’s Etisalat launched their fiber to the home services in October 2009. It was initially available at 30mbps but it covered over have a million homes in 2008! STC only connected one neighborhood in 2009.

Wikipedia have a list of FTTH countries. Only UAE, Jordan, Kuwait and Lebanon are currently listed from the Middle East, no Saudi Arabia.

Please, STC, fix your weak DSL infrastructure and provide customers with better service. Mobily is already installing Fiber in a lot of neighborhoods in Riyadh!

Press release can be found here.

March 24, 2010

Earth Hour Saudi Arabia 2010

Filed under: Events — Tags: , — Khaled A. @ 8:00 am

Earth Hour is “a global event organized by WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature, also known as World Wildlife Fund) and is held on the last Saturday of March annually, asking households and businesses to turn off their non-essential lights and other electrical appliances for one hour to raise awareness towards the need to take action on climate change.”

Saudi Arabia is participating in this year’s Earth Hour officially for the first year! From Arab News: “Lights are expected to be switched off in major cities including Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam from 8.30 to 9.30 in the evening. A number of government departments and private sector companies are also taking part.”

Make sure to join the Facebook event! Residents of Jeddah should also check this event by What’s Up Jeddah. Finally I just discovered this Earth Hour Saudi Arabia Facebook Group.

March 3, 2010

Riyadh International Book Fair 2010, let’s try this again

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , , , — Khaled A. @ 11:04 pm

Apparently I was still used to 2009 I didn’t notice it on the old Riyadh Bookfair web site! They have finally update the page with a new design, tolerable design and actual content.

Riyadh Bookfair Schedule & location

It will be held at the new REC building (Gowalla location).

As for the schedule, the fair will be open from 10am to 10pm except Friday which opens at 4pm:

  • Wednesday 3/3/2010 For All
  • Thursday 4/3/2010 For All
  • Friday 5/3/2010 From 4pm to 10pm For Men
  • Saturday 6/3/2010 For All
  • Sunday For All but from 4pm to 10pm For Men
  • Monday For All
  • Tuesday For All but from 4pm to 10pm for Men
  • Wednesday For All
  • Thursday For All
  • Friday 12/3/2010 From 4pm to 10pm for Men

“For All” means “family” “men & woman”, ya know. And yes, no women only days.

Technical books?

There is no list of registered publishers online.

Issues with the website

Can I rant? I wanna rant!

I will visit it soon, I hope they have some good computer books.

March 1, 2010

Riyadh International (but not technical) Book Fair 2010

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , , — Khaled A. @ 10:50 pm

Update: Forget everything mentioned here, the fair site was from last year’s. Making a new post about this year’s one.

Riyadh Book Fair always have a new domain every year, before it was but they LOST THE DOMAIN?! seriously? How hard it is to renew a domain name? It’s not hard!

The new domain is but the website is horrible and hard to navigate and.

Please, visit the English site and have a laugh.

What I find disappointing is the lack of technical publications, the only publication company listed (list is in Arabic only, nothing on English site) with a technical name is “ثري دي كمبيوتر سنتر ” no need to translate, it is pronounced “3D Computer Center”!

I was expecting more technical books so this is a major disappointment (yet again). The US publishers listed are “school zone publishing” (kids books) “INTERNATIONAL TRADE LINKS” (I couldn’t even find a website for them) and “مركز مصادر المعلومات” wait wha?

Riyadh Book Fair starts tomorrow, I could go if I have any time to waste … if you spot some tech books (computers mainly, but if you find something interesting please post a comment).

Here’s the Riyadh International Book Fair 2010 Schedule listed here (apparently only men with Afros are allowed, and no women only days):

  • Tuesday 6/3/1430 3/3/2009 Inauguration ceremony
  • Wed 7/3/1430 4/3/2009 for all
  • Thurs 8/3/1430 5/3/2009 for all
  • Fri. 9/3/1430 6/3/2009 from 16:00 to 22:00 fro men
  • Sat. 10/3/1430 7/3/2009 for all
  • Sun. 11/3/1430 8/3/2009 for all, From 16:00 to 22:00 fro men
  • Mon. 12/3/1430 9/3/2009 for all
  • Tues. 13/3/1430 10/3/2009 for all, from 16:00 to 22:00 fro men
  • Wed 14/3/1430 11/3/2009 for all
  • Thurs 15/3/1430 12/3/2009 for all
  • Fri 16/3/1430 13/3/2009 From 16:00 to 22:00 fro men

And here is the exhibition location on Gowalla: Riyadh Exhibitions Company.

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