Archive for the ‘Content’ Category

Areeb: A Free Arabic E-Learning Project Providing Video Lessons

| October 12, 2010 – 3:11 pm | comment No Comments

Areeb School is a new non-profit educational project for the Arab world, which aims to provide good education for all Arabic speakers, at different stages of their lives and covering various topics and natural sciences.

The site aims to  explain the various scientific subjects of mathematics, physics, chemistry and others in a simplified and easy to understand manner, all in the form of short video clips that do not exceed 15 minutes, that should be enough to simply deliver the information and get it across to the learners.

The goal of the site is to build and provide an extensive library of tutorial videos that cover hundreds of explanations and lessons in various fields of science; this is to facilitate access to information and clearly explain all these topics to a large number of people from around the Arab world, whatever their financial situation is or how advanced the  educational system is in their countries.


Free Booths For Startups At TiE GITEX 2010 Start-up Showcase

| October 9, 2010 – 10:35 am | comment 4 Comments

Dubai’s yearly GITEX Technology Week is just around the corner, taking place from October 17th to 21st in the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Plans for this year’s event are even bigger than previous years, and include a new really interesting track titled ‘GITEX Mobile Apps & Content World‘, which is focused on the sector of mobile applications and content, and aims to provide a high profile, dynamic framework for the mobile applications and entertainment market.

With a market worth an estimated US$30 billion, opportunities are immense, and there’s so much going on in this space as mobile operators and manufacturers scramble to open up their own apps stores as popular demand for apps to buy and download increases.


Abjad Hawaz 7o66i Kalamun, lost in the Markup

| August 5, 2010 – 1:00 pm | comment 3 Comments

أبجد هوز

An Arabic art gallery without some of the best crafted calligraphy holds no value. That’s a fact. Arabic calligraphy & poetry are forms of cultural pride and not just art. Going digital, we lose all that. From readability to interaction. It’s all gone. Bold? Italic? Underlined? Get yourself ten Arabic books. Open’em, read’em, do you find anything in Bold? Italic? or Underlined? No you don’t. But we do have all that on the Web. How come?

Some will debate this with Interaction & Readability unity across different languages–English that is but with all the author-ware software developers’ presence in the region there hasn’t been one solid negating report which gets us to a simple conclusion, not enough efforts, at least not as much as it deserves.

So with all the calls for Arabic content around and how much Arabic content is going to be important for the growth of Arabic users’ online experience and the Internet industry in general, the basics haven’t really been covered.


Dakwak: A Tool For Website Localization Into 60+ Languages

| July 27, 2010 – 11:12 am | comment 4 Comments

DakwakDakwak is a new startup that was recently launched from Jordan that aims to provide a solution for website localization into 60+ languages.

The site makes it easy for webmasters to integrate Dakwak’s localization and translation service right into their sites; instantly providing their visitors access to content in the language they’re most comfortable reading in.

All it takes is a bit of javascript code that needs to be integrated into the site pages, and to flag the content that needs to be localized/translated; and the rest is taken care of by Dakwak.

The service automatically detects the country a visitor is connecting from based on their IP address, and changes the language of the content to the visitor’s language, switching all the text without breaking the design of the page; unless the visitor chooses to switch back to the base language.


Online Content Bottlenecks in Arabia are loosening up

| July 25, 2010 – 6:07 pm | comment No Comments

Online Content Bottlenecks are loosening up

Looks like all are meeting at the content crossroads. Telecoms/ISPs providing higher bandwidth & speed, Media/Entertainment companies bringing the content online, and we users getting ready to use all that. I skipped Advertisers, let’s give’em a break.

The amount of direct online content piracy on Arabic websites could really shock you out if you weren’t the type that listens to Arabic music. You can download, stream, and do whatever you want with full albums of the latest titles for free, not on some obfuscated or hidden websites, torrent, or file-hosting, no, on proud flashing home pages. With all that around for years(showing the amount of interest) the only conclusion often heard was “Arabs like to get Music for Free when it’s digital” such a passive thing to say.


AnaZahra, 32-year-old Zahrat Al Khaleej gone online? Or is it a step in conversion?

| July 21, 2010 – 9:25 am | comment 2 Comments

Abu Dhabi Media Company(ADMC) is “the” pioneer in the digital publishing space in the Middle East, hands down. New digital platform? They implement n’ use it before anyone else. A media company that techno-geeks love to love. Apart from owning some of the best performing titles in print they’ve been busy going digital as fast as they could and in full steam. - أنا زهرةAnaZahra is ADMC’s latest addition to their digital/online portfolio of titles. AnaZahra was introduced as Zahrat Al Khaleej’s branch online, or the Online version of the same magazine? It could get one confused as ADMC introduced a new business unit headed by celebrity Zoya Sakr. It was launched with Zahrat Al Khaleej’s brand used as an endorser and a sister brand, even AnaZahra’s branding borrows from Zahrat Al Khaleej, but then once you go online, print content and online are worlds of differences.


Video: Twtrtales Collaborative Story Writing Through Tweets At DemoCamp Dubai

| June 30, 2010 – 2:20 pm | comment 2 Comments

twtrtalesTwtrtales is a new project that was launched out of the UAE, which aims to enable collaborative story writing through tweets.

Users would basically get to start a new hashtag for a story, and then they’d start contributing to writing the story one tweet at a time by appending that hashtag. On the site, readers would be able to say whether they like a specific contribution or not, and through that decide what goes into the story and what doesn’t.

So in essence, it’s a new kind of publishing platform that hopes to unite tweeters/writers of all kinds, to create and tell stories, which could be general stories or written for a specific cause.


Revisiting Arabic Social Bookmarking And Content Discovery

| June 23, 2010 – 12:00 pm | comment 2 Comments

Social BookmarkingA bit over two years ago, I wrote a post about the Arab social bookmarking services out there, listing the existing options, how good they looked and how well they seemed to be doing, identifying the top ones at that time.

If anyone were to pull up that same list today and go check on each one of the sites, they’d find that some have shut down, others have become useless and spam ridden, some others have become pretty much inactive, and only one or two are still holding on. What’s clear though is that these social bookmarking services never caught on with Arab web users, and never achieved their founders’ initial dreams for them.

However there are some new kids on the block, who are here to take another stab at social bookmarking and facilitating content discovery for users in the Arab world.


Music Video Service Vevo Plans To Launch In The Middle East

| June 10, 2010 – 9:23 pm | comment 1 Comment

VEVOVevo, the music video service, that was founded by Sony Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group, in partnership with the Abu Dhabi Media Company (ADMC), has plans to launch the service in the Middle East in the first quarter of 2011, according to The National.

Vevo was launched in the US in December 2009, and now ranks fourth in terms of the number of viewers watching videos, behind Google, Yahoo! and Fox Interactive Media, attracting 43.6 million viewers in April, according to comScore.

The version to be launched in the region, which is provisionally being called Vevo Arabia, will most probably have broader content than the US version, including Arabic, Bollywood, Filipino and Chinese music to appeal to the different tastes of consumers in the region.

Vevo is estimated to have 85% of all music videos on its platform, largely because of its position as a Web platform for music giants Sony, Universal and EMI, who provide the website with licensed videos of their artists.


Zoofs, The Most Talked About YouTube Videos On Twitter

| May 3, 2010 – 1:14 pm | comment 1 Comment

ZoofsZoofs is a new simple and pretty fun service, offering users a destination where they can start to discover the YouTube videos that are proving popular with people on Twitter. So basically what the service does is scour twitter to find the most tweeted videos, ranks them according to popularity, and serves them up for users to enjoy.

The project is yet a new offering from TootCorp, the Jordan based company that brought us the video-sharing portal Ikbis and micro-blogging service Watwet in the past.

Visitors to the site can browse through videos by category, and also filter videos to show only the freshest (ones that were uploaded to YouTube in the past 72 hours only). The Zoofs team also mark some of the videos they really like as “Zoofs Picks” to highlight them for users.


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