Category Archives: Technology

Fadel Adib’s Wi-Vi (Wifi Tracker) And Ayah Bdeir’s Littlebits

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As you all know, two Lebanese have made their way to the “35 innovators under 35″ list issued by MIT to hightlight the most promising inventors of the years. The first one is Ayah Bdeir who founded Littlebits back in 2011 and has been named one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business and one of Popular Mechanics’ 25 Makers Who Are Reinventing the American Dream. She’s been also ranked the 9th sexiest startup CEO alive.

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The second Lebanese is Fadel Adib who’s originally from Tripoli. Adib has invented a technology for detecting the motion of people through walls by detecting WIFI signals. I think it’s a very interesting idea with a lot of potential.

One thing that caught my attention was how Adib felt shocked that he was able to focus all the time on research during his MIT years, unlike in Lebanon where he had to cope with explosions and violence during his AUB years. I think this pretty much sums up why so many Lebanese choose to leave the country to show their true potential and excel.

“In one of our projects, we were just making our Wi-Fi faster by maximizing throughput between nodes. Every once in a while, the system would get messed up, and we would stop getting good results. We realized that there was some person walking in the hallway, and that person’s walking was basically changing the channel.

“If I shine a wireless signal at the wall, a huge amount of this signal is going to reflect off the wall. A tiny part of that signal will traverse the wall, reflect off anything that’s behind it, and then come back. We realized that we can sense motion using these wireless signals, and that’s how we started working on seeing through walls.

“You can track people as they move. You can monitor multiple people’s heart rates and breathing. Retail stores that want to understand how people are moving in their stores can track when a person reaches out for a product, looks at it, and puts it back. The police could track if there’s a person behind a wall. One of the applications we’re thinking of: can you monitor the heart rate of a fetus in the mother’s womb without touching the body in any way?

“When I went home to Lebanon and I was talking to my grandmother about it, she was like, ‘So, for example, can I put it over here in my living room, and if I fall in the bedroom or in the bathroom, it’s going to going to detect my fall and send an SMS to one of my children? Please, make this a product and put it here.’”

DSL Is Down

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The DSL connections have been down for more than 3 hours now and I am unable to reach Ogero to figure out what’s happening. It seems they were performing some maintenance but it’s taking forever.

Update: DSL was back up on August 14th around noon.

Nokia Appoints Lebanese Ramzi Haidamus As President of Nokia’s Technologies Business

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Nokia appointed Ramzi Haidamus as President of Nokia’s technologies business and member of the Group Leadership team few days ago. Ramzi used to work with Dolby Laboratories where he helped the business grow from a USD 72 million private business into a nearly USD 1 billion thriving public company. He was featured on Forbes as one of the top 10 highest paid marketing executives.

Read the full story [Here].

PS: The story was originally posted on blogoftheboss

Did The Internet In Lebanon Really Slow Down Recently?

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Screenshot_2014-07-14-09-06-03-1 My Alfa 4G speedtest results

I’ve been told by a couple of people that the internet is really bad lately in Lebanon, but personally speaking I couldn’t relate to what they are saying as I haven’t been experiencing any unusual slowness. My Alfa 4G connection is lightening fast and I’ve consumed the whole 5GB last month before my cycle ended. The 4MB Ogero DSL connection I have at work is very fast and the only issues we had lately were with our router and Ogero who were doing some maintenance a couple of weeks back. The 1Mb Ogero DSL connection I have at my parent’s house is still decent but I still can’t upgrade it due to the old phone cables. Added to that, I upgraded my Touch 3.9G dongle to the 4G dongle (which looks very ugly by the way) and I’ve been using it in different areas without any issues.

I don’t know about other providers like IDM, Sodetel or Wise but I haven’t noticed any change lately. Of course there’s no more free night traffic but this should rather improve the connection than slow it down.

Don’t get me wrong as I am not saying the internet situation is ideal in Lebanon, but I haven’t noticed any changes lately which is a good and a bad thing at the same time.

Lebanese Amhaz Electronics Hit By U.S. Sanctions

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As far as I know, Ahmaz people were not really hiding their political allegiance, so they must have seen it coming. For those of you who don’t know Stars Group, they basically mobile phones to the majority of shops in Lebanon and always get the new phones ahead of others somehow.

As the Treasury Department announced today, the United States targeted a key Hizbullah procurement network by designating brothers Kamel Mohamad Amhaz and Issam Mohamad Amhaz; their business, Stars Group Holding, which is based in Beirut and has subsidiaries in China and the UAE; and certain managers and individuals who supported their illicit activities,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement.

Later on Thursday, a Stars Group manager denied the accusations in remarks to LBCI television, saying his firm had not yet received the sanctions decree in an official manner. “Hizbullah relies heavily on front companies such as Stars Group Holding, which continue to procure dual-use material for the organization to enhance its military capabilities,” the State Department said in its statement.

It accused Stars Group Holding of covertly purchasing sophisticated electronics and other technology from suppliers around the world, including “a range of engines, communications, electronics, and navigation equipment.”

No More Free Night Traffic For Ogero DSL Users

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According to this article, free night traffic is no longer be available for Ogero DSL internet users and will be replaced by a 2Mbps unlimited plan for 75,000LL (50$).

Given that the prices were slashed by more than 80% and the quotas were multiplied by 10 times for some packages, I don’t think taking out the free night traffic will affect a lot of users specially that there’s an unlimited option now for just 50$. In fact, it might improve the internet connection between midnight and 7am as the free night traffic was killing it. What remains to be seen is how this unlimited package works and how the fair usage policy will be applied.

Moreover, a lot of areas in Lebanon still can’t get more than a 1Mbps connection, which sucks and makes the new packages useless for them.

Over 3 Million Internet Users In Lebanon By 2017

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According to a study conducted by Madar Research & Development center, 69.2 percent of the Lebanese population will be using the internet by the end of 2017, as opposed to just 45.1 percent in 2012. That means we will reach 3.2 million users in 2017 and will have the 5th highest number of internet users in the Arab World, after Bahrain (87.4 percent), Kuwait (73.7 percent), Morocco (72.4 percent) and the United Arab Emirates (72.2 percent).

Of course what matters most is that we have an internet as quick and abundant as the ones in other Arab countries and it looks like we are on the right path.

via DailyStar