Friday, May 27, 2011

Ibn Khaldun on Google

I am very happy to see this lovely illustration of Ibn Khaldun on Google. Apparently May 27 was the corresponding Gregorian date of his birth.

Ibn Khaldūn or Ibn Khaldoun (full name, Arabic: أبو زيد عبد الرحمن بن محمد بن خلدون الحضرمي‎, born on Wednesday, 1 Ramadan, 732 AH, corresponding May 27, 1332 AD/732 AH and died Friday, 28 Ramadan, 808 AH, corresponding March 19, 1406 AD) was an arab historiographers and historian born in North Africa in present-day Tunisia and is sometimes viewed as jurist, Hafez, a mathematician, a strategic military philosopher one of the forerunners of modern historiography, sociology and economics.

He is best known for his Muqaddimah (known as Prolegomenon in English), which was discovered, evaluated and fully appreciated first by 19th century European scholarship, although it has also had considerable influence on 17th-century Ottoman historians like Ḥajjī Khalīfa and Mustafa Naima who relied on his theories to analyze the growth and decline of the Ottoman empire. Later in the 19th century, Western scholars recognized him as one of the greatest philosophers to come out of the Arab world.

-via Wikipedia

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Currently reading : Wuthering Heights

I started reading Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë right after I finished Jane Eyre (by Charlotte Brontë). I have no idea why I assumed their writing style would be somewhat similar, maybe because they are sisters and were exposed to the same literature. But it is drastically different. I'm only 5 pages in,  but I can already tell that its not going to be anything like Jane Eyre.

The cover above is a Penguin Classics Deluxe edition, jacket illustration by Ruben Toledo. Get it here.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Biblion iPad app - review

The New York Public library has just released a great app, available for free at iTunes store called Biblion. This first edition features material covering the 1939-40 New York World's Fair. Users will be able to turn over, zoom in and roam through hundreds of items. I've only been looking at pictures so far, and haven't read any articles but I am definitely loving the design & execution. Such a great concept! The screenshots above and below are from my iPad.

Wish we had programs like these back in school, would've made so many things easier and more enjoyable. Kudos to the NYPL, I was already a huge fan of the buildings and its collection, and this step is the sprinkle on top.

Click here to get the app.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Harvill Secker Young Translator's Prize (Arabic to English)

The Harvill Secker Young Translators’ Prize was launched in 2010 as part of Harvill Secker's centenary celebrations. It is an annual prize, which focuses on a different language each year, with the aim of recognising the achievements of young translators at the start of their careers. For the 2011 prize Harvill Secker has teamed up with Foyles, and the prize is kindly supported by Banipal. This year’s chosen language is Arabic, and the prize will centre on the short story ‘Layl Qouti' by Mansoura Ez Eldin.

I looked at the short story, available as a PDF download, and its only four pages. If only my Arabic were better! 
The winning translator will receive £1,000, a selection of Harvill Secker titles and Foyles tokens.

Deadline for entries: Friday 29th July 2011. Good luck to those who participate.

For more information click here.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Kuwait Little Theatre - Hairspray

I'm really excited that I got tickets to see a Kuwaiti production of Hairspray!! I really hope its decent, not too happy about driving all the way to Ahmadi but majorly hyped nonetheless!

To get your tickets click here. They'll email you the tickets and you can pay on site.

Friday, May 13, 2011

StriVectin and stretch marks (review)

I have no idea if men get stretch marks or not, but all of my girlfriends including myself suffer from them. Wether its weight loss, gain or pregnancy, those wretched scars have to appear somewhere at some point.

So when I saw that StriVectin revamped their packaging (and made their tube smaller) I decided to give it a proper go. I've used up two tubes , and now I'm on the third. Each tube has lasted me about a month.

I have been quite religious about it, and have been applying the cream every morning and night for two months now. The smell is kind of medicinal, but its pleasant. This is my feedback so far. Oh and my stretch marks are roughly 3 years old.

Week 1: I noticed that my skin was extremely hydrated. 

Weeks 2-4: My skin looked better, no improvement in terms of stretch marks but it looked and felt much smoother.

Week 5-8: My smaller stretch marks have kind of broken up into much smaller ones, and I can definitely say that they are less noticeable. I think (but I'm not really sure) that my more noticeable stretch marks are now shorter, but I can't say that I can see definite improvement.

It says on the box that by week 8 the stretch marks / wrinkles will be visibly diminishing, which is where I am right now. However it also says that results keep improving, so I'm planning to finish this last tube I have and then will probably buy two more. If I see no improvement I will stop, but so far I am satisfied.

Bottom line: I do recommend it only if you plan to be consistent (applying it twice daily). I remember using StriVectin back in 2007 once a day and sometimes I'd skip and I saw no improvements whatsoever. 

To buy StriVectin from the official website click here.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Canadian Visa for Kuwaitis


I want to apply for a Canadian visa, and as some of you might know it is done through the embassy in Abu Dhabi. You basically have to send them your passport and application and they will send it back to you once its processed.

I called a few courier companies today to see what are my options.

Aramex can send the passport and bring it back for KD 41.5, although you will have to drop the passport yourself in their main office.

DHL does the service for KD 55, and they can send someone to pick it up.

Fedex can do only if you have an account with them, and that entails having a copy of your credit card on file. However their price was KD 21.

I like that DHL can send someone over, and I know that their tracking system is clear and accurate, but I'm not sure who to go for. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

British Airways & summer tickets

It's that time of year when I have to book tickets back and forth across the Atlantic. I don't know if I left it too late, but BA's prices are sky high! Since when does a roundtrip flight to JFK on club world cost more than 2000 KD!

Even all the reward flights are sold out. I'd still rather travel on another class than fly on another airline.. But it's not much cheaper either. Boo!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, May 6, 2011

InstaDesk - a mac app

Lovers of iPhone's Instagram app rejoice - there's now InstaDesk for your mac. For US$1.99, the application lets you view your feed, popular pictures & tags and find new people to follow amongst other things. I liked the fact that you can view images in a slideshow and even download them.

Its worth noting that you cannot upload photos through this app, due to Instagram's policies.

Buy it here.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Collection Absolute Rose

I picked up a couple of these from Dean and Deluca NYC on my way back home to Kuwait. They are absolutely divine. Succulent thin squares of dark chocolate infused with honeysuckle, orange and Turkish rose.

Buy them here.