Ashi Dashi Notebook Knee High Socks

Bored of your pencil socks but still want to make a statement about your commitment to writing using manual implements? Sock Dreams have you covered with these lovely Lined paper inspired socks. They even had a red margin! How cool it that!

1,001 Arabian Blogs

This is my 1,001st blog post, I thought I’d do a quick retrospective. I’m not sure why I started blogging, I remember back in 1998 a friend told me that they had set up a blog for themselves and I thought to myself “what the hell was the point in that”, they were posting a diary online, probably on live journal or something like that.

A few years later I bought ohmz.co.uk among others (I’ve also been the proud owner of watermelons.co.uk…), but I never used that because I didn’t know what the hell I wanted to do, so that domain expired. At some point I bought ohmz.net, and I installed php-blog, a really simple bit of software that allowed me to post crap to my webspace. Back then I was working as a stage technician and I had dreams of being a music blogger. I blogged about my experience backstage with whatever bands I was working with, usually at King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, it was really poorly written and really boring I think 3 people read it in total. I stopped blogging there after a while and forgot about it, until I got an email from my web host saying that my blog had been closed down because it had been identified as a spam center. Apparently there was a flaw in the blogging software I used that allowed people, or bots, to email people from my blog and they were spamming the bejesus out of the internet.

I un-installed the blog software I was using and installed Drupal, played around with it for a while, didn’t like it and settled on WordPress.

My blog lay dormant for some time, I’d post the odd bit of crap every now and then, but I wasn’t really that interested. I had a minor spike when I posted a picture of my birthday cake a few years ago:

But then my blog went dormant again for almost a year…

Recently I started using my blog as place to post random cool stuff I found on the internet, art, gadgets whatever, I wasn’t expecting anyone to read it, it was just so I could remember that the stuff existed. One particular post involved an image of someone with make-up that made them look like a drawing by Roy Lichtenstien:

It didn’t get much attention at the time but a year later I saw a huge spike in my visits:


I had a whopping 40 views in one day to that post, so I wrote a follow up post with some more examples, those two posts remain some of my most popular posts… I was getting up to 100 views a day due to having posted some pop art make-up, and I was happy…

Then something strange happened… I’m not entirely sure what the catalyst was but in the past two months my views have sky rocketed:

I went from a little over 300 views in Oct 2010 to over 33,000 in February of 2012, and there is still time left today for me to get more. I appreciate that the spike in October was due to people looking for ideas for Halloween costumes, I’d expected a spike there, but then the hits continued to ramp up, I got a big boost by posting some geeky Valentines day cards but people are actually looking at the home page rather than just hitting individual blog posts. I think I may be experiencing my 5 minutes of fame…

I actually find it reall amusing that having published my 1,000th blog post yesterday and my views yesterday were 1,337, a number which I think is dear to geeks around the world:

So what have I been blogging about aside from posting random links to stuff I’ve found online? My amatuer photography, my rubbish writing and various story ideas including my NaNoWriMo efforts (Check “writing” link at the top of this page if you want to have a look), Some tribal art I put together a while ago:

A tribal dragonfly

I’ve taken a stab at writing my own web comic creatively titled Blip and Blop:

I’ve also written various film reviews and rants. I think in the future I’m going to try and post more original content to balance out the stuff I’ve posted that just links to other peoples work. I’m not going to stop posting links to other stuff I’ve found, just supplement it with origianal content that you can only find here, that is until someone else reblogs it elsewhere (I’m under no illusion that will ever happen…).

Anyway I just wanted to say thanks for reading my blog, I hope you continue to enjoy it.

Omar

P.S. In case you were wondering about the title, I am aware that none of my blog posts have been in Arabic but I am an Arab (or at least half Arab) and I felt the title worked so I went with it.

P.P.S. If there is anything that I’ve blogged about in the past that you have found particularly interesting or you just want to comment on the style of the blog/give constructive advice or abuse feel free to mention it in the comments. I may get a lot of views but not many people comment on my blog, and it’s cold and lonely in cyberspace…

 

Dream Journal: Software engineering nightmare…

I’ve been workign a bit of over time lately so I decided I’d reward myself with 15 minutes extra sleep this morning. I know that doesn’t sound like much but to me it can make all the difference.

In this 15 minutes I had a weird dream, I was in some nebulous education state between university and school and I was working on a project with a guy i went to elementary (primary) school with. The project was to develop some software program, we were really close to the deadline and we had an exam that morning, but we hadn’t done very much work. I ended up putting together the project to an acceptable-ish standard.

We went to hand it in and we were told by the people that we’d better get to the exam and that it would start soon, they also inferred to us that the exam was an open book exam which meant that we had to bring a computer program we’d already written with us and finish it in the exam. The thing is neither of us had done the pre work as we were expecting it to be just a regular exam.

On top of that we’d missed the bus in so we were having to walk the 30 minute walk into school. It was about this time I woke up thankfully due to my alarm going off.
I really hated doing exams…

Dream Journal: Chocolate Nightmare & T.E.D.

I had two very odd dreams last night:
The first involved me going to a black tie dinner party with my parents and soem friends of the family. When we arrived at the party the people running were very snooty, and insulted my friend, but not much interesting happened untill the dessert course was served.
Instead of a dessert course we were dropped into a dungeon of sentient chocolate… it was rather disturbing, the chocholate attacked us and we had to make our way through caverns to try to get out. I remember thre being little chocholate chicks that came out of chocolate eggs which then attacked us and I remember there being a huge chocolate fae on a wall that bombarded us with a tidal wave of chocolate. It was quite scary I don’t think I’m going to be able to look at a dairy milk in the same way for a while.
The second dream was set in some mashup of my old flat on byres road the house I lived in in saudi when I was 10 and my current house in Glasgow. It involved the same friends of the family that were in the previous dream, so it might have been a continuation, I think I’d woken up briefly between them though.
There was some commotion happening outside on Byres road, we looked out the window and it was total chaos. People were wondering about with billboards saying that T.E.D. had happened. I think T.E.D. was The End of Days but I’m not sure…
Anyway The TV was saying that there was no point in going to work because T.E.D. was happening, and people were panicking, I was unsure whether I should go to work or not, but it was too early to call in to find out what the company line was. The door bell rang and somone opened the door with a key from the outside, it was apparently somone fromt he government, who had a key because they were from the government. They handed me a pack of stuff to do with T.E.D. One of which was a pamphlet that told us what to do in the event of T.E.D. another was a card with my name and a barcode that had somethign to do with T.E.D. the reason that I was the only person in the house to get a pack was because I was the only registered voter in the house…
The pamphlet said something about invading France, and blowing up the eifle tower because it ws hiding large fuel reserves under it or some such.
The last think I remember was flicking throught he TV trying to figure out what was happening and not findign any info about T.E.D., looking out the window and seeing TV crews interviewing people about T.E.D. on Byres road and wanting to go down there to be on TV and find out what the hell was going on.
On reflection I think T.E.D. might have been The End of Dreams, as I think I had the last bit of my dream between waking up for one alarm and snoozing my alarm for 20 minutes, I think my subconscious was trying to find some justification for staying in bed and not going to work.
It didn’t work, I’m at work now…

Dream Journal: Attack of the Lizardmen

I had a really vivid dream last night where the last vestiges of humanity where fighting a losing war against a horde of Immortal Lizardmen from outer space.

The Lizardmen had some mechanism of turning people in zombies. And had created a zombie army of sorts. These zombies weren’t zombies int he trabditional sense they maintained a level of intelligence and could even speak but they were under the thrall of the Lizard me. I guess that means they weren’t realy zombies, more like I dont know partial mind control? Both the Lizardmen and the zombies had a an aversion to light and the zombies eyes glowed white in the dark, it was really creepy.

We’d managed to capture on of the Lizardmen and we’d discovered that they didn’t die. I’m not sure how we discovered this however we put it’s essence into a small Toy robot Lizard and we somehow managed to turn it to ourside…

The last thing I remember is a confrontation between a group of human soldiers and a lizard man standing in front of a large (20-30) zombies in a building, there was a sense that they were telling us that we would never win and the eyes of the zombies told us that they believed that.

I can’t remember much more than that I think I woke up shortly after that.

Story Idea: Judge Dredd Re-Imagined

I had the oddest dream last night, I was a super hero, who was a Judge, and I fought crime using Implements that a Judge would have. When I say a Judge, I’m not refering to a 2000 AD Judge like Judge Dredd I mean a regular Judge with a wig, robes and a gavel.

In fact the only thing I remember about this dream was that I had Gavel-rangs, which much like Batmans Batarangs were Gavels that I threw at villains and they came back to my hands.

The comedy nature of my dream made me think of the campness of The 60’s Batman TV series which is a “campification” of what is in actuallity a really dark and troubled character. I wonder if the same thing could be done to Judge Dredd? Or if “The Judge” with his Gavel-rangs will make an appearance else where.

I leave you with this thought…

Here comes the Judge, Here comes the judge, here comes the Judge…