Mudawanat: Blogging workshop in Qatar

by Shijaz Abdulla on 12.12.2009 at 19:30

Mudawanat: All About BloggingictQATAR, the Supreme Council of Information & Communication Technology in Qatar, conducted a workshop on blogging today at the Sharq Village Hotel, Doha.

Regional and International experts on blogging shared their views and experience on blogging. The event was attended by local and expatriate bloggers and blogger-aspirants.

The morning session featured keynote speaker Jeremiah Owyang and Ahmad Hamzawi, Head of Engineering for Google Middle East & North Africa. Regional bloggers also shared their experiences and tips for new bloggers.

The afternoon session was split into two separate workshops – one for new bloggers and the other for experienced bloggers. The event gathered good attendance, and the workshops were very interactive.

The speakers were great. I also got a chance to discuss with Ahmad why I think Google Adsense sucks, based on my previous experience – and suggested that Google should be more transparent on how they determine that an Adsense account poses a risk to their business. Of course, I wasn’t expecting a satisfactory answer and didn’t get one either 🙂

One of the many things I liked about Ahmad is that, despite being the Head of Engineering for Google, he runs Windows XP and Microsoft Office 2007 on his laptop, and not Google’s Chrome OS and Google Apps.

The Blogger platform was outshined by WordPress when members of the audience questioned about it and Jeremiah himself explaining why he moved his blog from Blogger to WordPress.

Moving on, I learnt a few important things in today’s workshop.

  • I realized that I was late in understanding the potential of Twitter.
  • I learnt that Disqus could do a better job with comment forms on my blog. Implemented it right away.
  • I need to explore more of Delicious & Technorati
  • I need to read more blogs, and comment on them – need to ‘network’ more with people rather than doing ‘broadcasts’
  • I got insight on the challenges that Arab bloggers face.

Almost everyone who attended got a free copy of the book “Throwing Sheep in the Boardroom” by Matthew Fraser & Soumitra Dutta.

Overall, it was an awesome event and I’m sure everyone benefited from it. If you were one of those who attended the event, please drop a comment!

Google’s Chrome OS “too cloudy”

by Shijaz Abdulla on 20.11.2009 at 23:51

I saw an article on Engadget (“Google’s Chrome OS Revealed”) about Google’s new “operating system”.

Google had a low-key event today to preview Chrome OS, its new operating system based on Linux and the Chrome browser. Things are still pretty early — it’s not even in beta yet, let alone on shipping products — but that’s the first official screen shot right there, and the big features are all roughed out. The entire system is web-based and runs in the Chrome browser — right down to USB drive contents, which show up in a browser tab, and the notepad, which actually creates a Google Docs document.

Looks like something that boots a netbook off an SSD (the OS doesn’t support hard drives) and starts a browser, everything else is “in the cloud”? Not very impressive for an OS, if you ask me.

One commenter on Engadget said it right: “Too cloudy”.