Saturday, May 26, 2007

Would You Steal What You Believe Is Your Right?

Would You Steal What You Believe Is Your Right?: A question posed by Natasha in this blog entry that I felt is interesting to further analyze.

Personally, I would argue that it is okay to get what you believe is rightfully yours even by stealing it. The issue is diverse, but approaching the subject from several ways lead to the conclusion that, if you think something is yours, it is up to you to take it. Lets take a look at three different case scenarios: The first is stealing out of need, the second is Robin Hood theft, and third social rebellion.

Consider a poor person who does not have the money to buy food, so he steals that food. This is probably a humanitarian case. The social system exists to protect its members, and failing to deliver the minimum required amount of protection to the most basic needs for human survival, gives the person zero incentive to abide the rules of that system. To value the social system above the lives of its members is simply unreasonable.

Robin Hood theft is a redistribution of wealth concept where the money (allegedly stolen by the people in high positions) is stolen from the wealthy and given to the poor. It is based on the simple idea that, if someone steals something, then it not rightfully theirs, which legitimizes that the original owner to steal it back. Such reasoning is widely opposed where it is claimed that "two wrongs don't make a right", and that the legitimate way is to get your goods back through legal means, by reporting to the police or through the justice system. The problem arises when the social system does not grantee retrieval of whatever is stolen, as in corrupt systems. In short, if the system fails to get your stolen rights back, Robin Hood is your friend.

Consider social contractism, in such view, property laws among other laws are based on mutual agreement of the members of a society to abide the civil laws. If we consider these contracts as opt-in contracts, where the individual is given the choice whether or not to participate in those contracts, it seems that it is natural that disagreeing parties may rebel above those laws. Since most individuals are coerced by their peers to submit to social order, regardless of their agreement to its terms, it seems reasonable that breaking those laws is a natural consequence.

Social order is created through rebellion. Not necessarily through physical and\or violent rebellion, but rebellion in its most general sense is required to form social order. (Unlike what totalitarian systems tries to convince the people, that social order is achieved through obedience, when the fact is that rebellion is what creates social order.) It is known throughout history, that any failing system is meant to be abolished through some kind of revolution. The "slaves" fought for their freedom, no-one would come to a "slave" and hand them their (rightful?) freedom, they had to take it by their own hands. Thats how things work!!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Serious Plans To Establish A Blogs Aggregator (Updated)

Why a New Aggregator:
It has become clear to me that although the blogs aggregation for our small country (Jordan that is) is high, with numerous blogs aggregators serving the readers, there is still something that is missing. Respect. Most Jordanian bloggers started blogging with one reason in mind: To avoid the restrictive one-sided journalism, a free voice to speak up their mind with no censorship or boundaries. But it seems to me that none of the currently existing aggregators have had any serious policies that give the readers a grantee against censorship.

For this reason, I am planning one such aggregator that will actually promise its readers their right to know what goes behind the scenes. No blogs or posted entries will be censored abruptly. There might be some criteria to delete some posts, but all such criteria will be publicly announced. In the extreme cases where one post\blog has to be removed, that case will be announced publicly along with the reason for it. There will be NO silent removals while secretly hoping no-one will ever notice [like some have previously done!!]. The reader will have the right to know what material has been removed, and why it was removed... But my hope is that there will be no such removals to start with.

What Has Been Done So Far:
I registered my own domain and I am working now to configure an aggregator. I have installed several aggregation (content management softwares) and I am testing which one suits my vision best. In a few days, I will post preliminary links to temporary test aggregation attempts in order to ensure their suitable configuration. After I become satisfied with the result, that aggregator will hopefully go to wide-scale consumption and site feeds will be added.

Note: Updates on this project will follow in the coming days. Please provide my with preliminary thoughts whether or not you think I should go on with the project.

Please Tell Me What You Think:
1- Should the aggregator be strictly for Jordanians?! For Arabs?! Or multi-cultural?!
2- Should the aggregator have low requirements for inclusion?! Should new and\or mediocre blogs be included?! Or should it be picky with high requirements?!
3- Any other recommendations?!

Update: (May 19, 2007) An aggregator is setup and running. Please note that I am in the process of adding blogs as I am exploring blogs to find good blogs. The policy of the aggregator is not ready yet. Also note that, neither the site look or feature set are final. I am working on a completely new look and feature set, but this will take a while (maybe two months)...

Thursday, May 17, 2007

My Simple Pleasures

Upon, The Arab Observer's request, I am asked to list "10 Simple Pleasures"... So here we go:

  1. Physical pleasures, including: masturbation, sex, massaging, and hot bathes.
  2. Sleeping.
  3. Thinking alone in bed.
  4. A drive in a car.
  5. Delicious foods, including: Pepsi, Ice-cream, Chips, Shawerma.
  6. Simulation (open-ended) games, like "The Sims 2" my current favorite game.
  7. Relaxing music, including: Oud (3ood), instrumental, Enigma, Fairouz.
  8. Being with friends.
  9. Being drunk.
  10. Interesting chat, including: heart-to-heart talks, mind-to-mind talks, and bad jokes.

Lets just note that, pleasure is the most important aspect in life... No matter what we do, lets just work towards a happy life... No matter how serious things might seem, there is always time for laughter and pleasure :)

Monday, May 14, 2007

Keeping Myself Alive Through Your Empathy

Keeping myself alive...
Through your EMPATHY (Slipknot - Skin Ticket)

Begging is an art. Sure we all get annoyed by those nuisances who get in our ways in public places asking for our money. But from a different perspective, they have learnt some lessons in life that an average person wouldn't know: The human fragility, ego, sympathy and empathy.

Humans express a wide range of emotions, and being able to interact with those emotions is an art. Consider this little girl, dressed in a nice modest-looking dress, selling a small white or red flower for at some overpriced rate. Guess most of us have seen her one time or another.... A classic, we've all heard bedtime stories about a princess with a flower in her hand... So boom, there goes that girl shattering all that you know as child, asking for your "generosity"... Can you resist the temptation?!.... So, how much of an effort did that girl put to come up with such a brilliant idea?! It needs an expert psychologist to figure this one out!!!

In some cultures, parents would not give their daughters to a man for marriage if he didn't get out begging for at least a week. They believe that a man who cannot beg is not worthy of their daughter... Why is begging so important in such a culture that it can make a difference between a worthy husband and an unworthy one?!

It is true that in many cases a nice word or a simple gesture, can achieve more than hardship. Maybe this is the lesson that beggars understand better than anyone else. Maybe we can have a new requirement for certain jobs to get a "begging tour". Jobs like customer care, or maybe sales representatives (practically, "sales" is "corporate beggary") can make use of experience gained through begging.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Language Acquisition - Part 7: Possible Applications For The Investigation

Language is the way of communication, so studies in the field of language can be very useful in the field of communications, especially the protocol part of communication. Protocol encryption is very similar to communicating through a foreign language, and protocol decryption is very similar to the process of acquiring language. Someone who is working to decrypt a message, is like a baby trying to understand what his parents are talking about. Currently humans are communicating with their direct environment, the earth. If human ever reach inter-galactic space, they would need advanced techniques for protocol decryption in order to communicate with alien species -if they existed-. So "practicing" communication with alien species by trying to communicate with animals is a good exercise, I hope research would come up with good results in this regard.

As a practical side to a 7-parts article, here is a list of four possible applications for this proposed investigation:
  1. Revolutionized encryption: Deep structure hypothesis suggests that all human languages have common trends. In message decryption routines, statistical analysis is used to find patterns in streams of data. With enough information and processing, messages in any language and with a wide-range of encryption methods can be decoded using computer programs. In order to make even harder encryption techniques we need more knowledge in coding schemes. New ways of language would mean one such revolution.
  2. In order to discover new ways of language, we can investigate the languages of non-humans. This has the double effect of better understanding of coding techniques and leading to better encryption, and better methods to decrypt foreign messages.
  3. Maybe, and only maybe, aliens are already sending out messages in their own views of language in the universe. If we can identify such foreign messages, they might help us locate alien species.
  4. Implementing Artificial Intelligence that has language recognition capability. If a machine can learn human language just like human babies can learn their parents' language, this would be a revolution in the AI field.
  5. Extra-Sensory Perception (ESP): Some researches claimed positive clues to the existence of ESP in the human brain. Some tests show that some people have been able to use "Telepathy". If humans had such capabilities then it is their lack of understanding of communication are unable to unlock these parts of the brain. Better understanding of language may help humans unlock ESP - if it existed.

In this series:
Language Acquisition - Part 1: General Discussion
Language Acquisition - Part 2: The Influence Of Physiological Formation
Language Acquisition - Part 3: Deep Structure Hypothesis
Language Acquisition - Part 4: Ambiguities
Language Acquisition - Part 5: The Problem Of Representation
Language Acquisition - Part 6: Linguistic Determinism Hypothesis
Language Acquisition - Part 7: Possible Applications For The Investigation