Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Why you should recycle

Something useful I spotted in one of my campus shuttles the other day:

Recycling aluminum requires 95% less energy then extracting it from the ore.

If 1 ton of aluminum is recycled, it would power an American home for 15 months!

I guess it could potentially power a Pakistani home for double that duration, seeing how much power is wasted here.

If only we could somehow build up a healthy energy conservation infrastructure, so that so much energy which is normally wasted would be saved and more importantly, it'd go towards catering for the exponential growth in demand that we face nowadays. There is a way out of every crisis. All it needs is a proper and sincere effort!

Saturday, July 10, 2010


You gotta check out this awesome sci-fi series. Set in the future (obviously), it is based on the simple premise that we, as humans, may evolve and develop better technology over time but that doesn't necessarily mean than we will also evolve to become better human beings. So basically, in the future as well, we are plagued with the same problems that haunt us today - moral turpitude, poverty, greed, corruption et al. This is different from other sci-fi universes, most notably Star Trek, where humans have evolved to the point that Earth is akin to paradise; there is no poverty on Earth and humans no longer engage in currency-based economics. Both universes, although in stark contrast to each other, represent how the respective show's creators think about the future. And As a sci-fi fan, both are equally intriguing I must admit. If I were to pose this a hypothetical question to you, which future do you see most likely as the future for human race?

If you like sci-fi, and haven't seen this show yet, then drop whatever you're doing and go watch it! It was created by Joss Whedon (who also happens to be the creator of Dark Angel (Jessica Alba). But unfortunately, the show got cancelled after its first season and it was only when there strong uproar over it from the fans, and on the back strong DVD sales that Whedon n co. did a follow-up movie called Serenity, which btw was just as good. The main character in the series and the movie, Malcolm Reynolds, is played by Nathan Fillion. Nathan also has another great TV series on air these days called Castle, where he plays a mystery novel writer that helps solve murder mysteries with a cop played by the beautiful Stana Katic. Check out both shows. You are sure to like them!

Monday, July 05, 2010

Going back to Pakistan

This post has also been published on The Express Tribune's blog section here.

If you're a Pakistani student studying abroad (US, UK, Europe, Canada, Australia wherever) pursuing whatever degree, people automatically assume you're staying there for good. And by people here I'm referring to our fellow countrymen. When you meet them at a gathering or a get-together, such topics are often the subject of discussion. Telling them that you have plans of returning home will earn you looks of utter bewilderment, as if you've said something embarrassing. You come go back to Pakistan to visit family and friends, and everyone invariably asks you how you are doing abroad, so you tell them you're getting by OK ... which is almost always followed by something along the lines of `Good! Get a job / green card, and do not come back`.

I know things are bad, but this utter hopelessness is not going to do us any good. If we abandon our own country, when it needs us the most, what right to we have to call ourselves proud Pakistanis when we couldn't even bother to spend the prime of our lives living in it and working for its betterment? My mind tells me it's a foolish obsession that makes no sense, given the instability prevalent over there, but then my heart says: `No matter what the outcome. At least I would have done the right thing`.

The battle between my heart and my mind rages on.