Next big thing: Dumbphones smart enough to access the internet

by Rashmee

Posted on January 7, 2015


Dumbphones just smart enough to access the internet will probably be the next big thing. Microsoft has just announced a new entry-level mobile phone bearing the Nokia brand and it’s a steal at $29 before taxes. If I were in the ‘global south’ – Haiti, the Domincan Republic, Afghanistan, India, parts of the Middle East … Continue reading “Next big thing: Dumbphones smart enough to access the internet”

Read More

Jordan tries to tell a story that militates against Islamist narrative

by Rashmee

Posted on January 6, 2015


“Killing every single extremist is not an option, What we really need is to weaken their ideology.” Marwan Shehade, an Amman-based expert on Salafism, quoted by OZY, is indisptuably right. But, it’s hard to fight a beguiling narrative. Jordon is apparently trying to do this with powerful words, as part of a national anti-extremism policy that … Continue reading “Jordan tries to tell a story that militates against Islamist narrative”

Read More

Life in Abu Dhabi: The Lack coffee table is 35 years old and going strong

by Rashmee

Posted on December 29, 2014


I looked at my Lack table(s) here in my Abu Dhabi flat and remembered a fragment of its unremarkable history. “The Lack coffee table first graced the pages of an Ikea catalogue in 1981,” writes Jessica Contrera in this Washington Post piece on the ubiquitous item of furniture. It was the year President Reagan was shot … Continue reading “Life in Abu Dhabi: The Lack coffee table is 35 years old and going strong”

Read More

Life in Abu Dhabi: Why I went to Yas Island to buy an Ikea Lack table, again

by Rashmee

Posted on December 28, 2014


When I moved to Abu Dhabi, I bought an Ikea ‘Lack’ table. Again. Despite three houses of furniture in other parts of the world and warehouses full of ‘stuff’, I had to turn to the ‘Lack’ and other Ikea staples (the ‘Ingertorp’ dining table, ‘Terje’ folding chairs) to fill my bare flat. That’s why it … Continue reading “Life in Abu Dhabi: Why I went to Yas Island to buy an Ikea Lack table, again”

Read More

#Sydneysiege: There’s Uber rage for every outrage, but is this necessary?

by Rashmee

Posted on December 17, 2014


There’s an Uber for every outrage. Just consider the story that started trending during Monday’s #Sydneysiege, as Muck Ruck reported: “’@Uber, which is price gouging during AU hostage crisis. What sad sorry clowns,’ tweets Seth Mnookin in the wake of another Uber PR disaster: briefly charging downtown Sydney users a minimum $100 to flee an armed hostage crisis, reportedly the result of ‘automatic surge pricing … Continue reading “#Sydneysiege: There’s Uber rage for every outrage, but is this necessary?”

Read More

As with the Mafia, starving jihadi groups of money is not at all easy

by Rashmee

Posted on December 16, 2014


Speaking of the Mafia’s skillful financial management, as detailed by The Economist seven years ago, the BBC’s new study on jihadist groups muses on the crucial nature of funding. This has always been known, as it quotes Cicero’s wise observation that “the sinews of war [are] a limitless supply of money.” The BBC writes that … Continue reading “As with the Mafia, starving jihadi groups of money is not at all easy”

Read More

Ugly Sweater Day can be replicated, even here in Abu Dhabi. But why?

by Rashmee

Posted on December 13, 2014


So yesterday, December 12, was Ugly Sweater Day. In the US. But you can do it anywhere. Here in Abu Dhabi, you could just wear an ugly linen shirt. Or a really hideous summer dress. Or a dreadful abaya. As Quartz points out this seasonal onslaught of bad fashion is catching. Today, December 13, is the … Continue reading “Ugly Sweater Day can be replicated, even here in Abu Dhabi. But why?”

Read More

What’s the state of the www by country? Tomorrow, we should know

by Rashmee

Posted on December 10, 2014


Or at least we’ll know how it is in 86 countries, including Haiti, Mozambique, Myanmar, Ukraine and Sierra Leone. The Web Index launches tomorrow (December 11), the third year there’s a country-wise grading of the World Wide Web’s contribution to social, economic and political progress. Tim Berners-Lee, who invented the web, founded the World Wide Web … Continue reading “What’s the state of the www by country? Tomorrow, we should know”

Read More

Abu Dhabi: Wrapped in the flag on the UAE’s 43rd birthday

by Rashmee

Posted on December 2, 2014


Today is the UAE’s National Day, the 43rd since six small states decided to join together in one union, with a seventh following soon after. Abu Dhabi is bedecked in red, green, white and black, the colours of the national flag of the United Arab Emirates. Everywhere, there are expensive cars sporting decals of the … Continue reading “Abu Dhabi: Wrapped in the flag on the UAE’s 43rd birthday”

Read More

Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK