Archive for September, 2008

World’s Largest Semantic Web announced – Web 3.0 Insight

September 19, 2008 Leave a comment

Cognition Technologies a Semantic Web company (wow Aleem Khan just think a ‘Semantic Web’ company – for those of you who don’t know Semantic Web was our final year project) is announcing the largest Semantic Map of English language. In simple words, they will be “enabling” search engines to understand what we have typed in the search box and retrieve contextually correct results.

The company is also going to fulfill one of my ambitions (to build a Semantic Web – Web 3.0 based search engine). So this is going to be advent of Web 3.0 hopefully.

References: on Cognition Technologies

ZDnet on the Topic

CNET News on the same

To view Semantic Web already in action check out: Cognitive Wikipedia


Pakistani(s) Contributions in Large Hadron Collider Experiment

September 15, 2008 7 comments

With reference to my previous post, my friend Adil Akhter Mir sent this informational email on Pakistani Contribution in the world’s greatest physics experiment – The Large Hadron Collider.

Here is the e-mail as is..

Large Hadron Collider is a Physicist’s dream come true. Being world’s biggest science apparatus ever built this is a show of science on how far have we come to in our mental and analytical evolution. Today with the LHC we are at brink of understanding the existence of ours from the very basic ground up.

This time we are not even looking at the DNA, neither we are exploring the fossils, we have even gone beyond all that. We are today finding how the Big Bang happened. And there especially to know about that first particle (infamously called, the God Particle) known as Higgs boson.

This LHC spans over an area of 27 KM underground setup spanning over the Swiss-Franco border, with support from thousands of Physicists, scientists and laboratories from over eighty-five countries. It is housed in the same tunnels which were dug in 1989 for Large Electron-Positron Collider, with of course some new specialized construction. With an estimated cost between €3.2–6.4 billion, this machine successfully fired itself up on 10th Septemeber 2008, whereas the full high intensity firing will be done by 21st October. Yet already it has made sensational news world wide.

With reports of people filing a petition against it, to an Indian 16 year old girl who committed suicide as she thought once LHC is fired it will bring end of the world (refer to as Doomsday), to continuous circulating emails and forum postings calling relating it with playing God, to finally sending death threats to some of the leading involved scientists. World has gone paranoid it seems to the frenzy the LHC’s elaborate marketing has caused. Doomsday prophets have suddenly popped out everywhere. Just only tragedy would be that majority of them don’t even know what are they talking about!

In order to help explain the whole process to the common people, perhaps even those who have gone paranoid, a scientist working at the CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) has even released her own rap! Honestly, if you follow it carefully it explains it way better than most of the texts you will find about it online.

Pakistans Contributon:

Coming back from a brief introduction to the LHC, lets talk about the contribution of Pakistan it. Its a matter of pride for me at least at the moment as a Pakistani is that LHC has been assisted in this by Pakistani wonderful scientists too. Pakistan has a long history of participating with CERN and has a long tradition of wonderful physicists who are working around the world.

A prime example would be Dr Abdul Salam himself who sadly was forgotten by Pakistan just because of his religious preferences. Dr Salam was the first man to be accredited with all the collaboration with CERN which continues till todate when he convinced CERN to give Pakistan stacks of nuclear emulsion exposed for further study of pions, kaons and antiprotons in 1960s.

In 1997 Ishfaq Ahmad (special adviser to the prime minister of Pakistan and former chairman of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission) was able to sign a contract between PAEC and CERN after elaborate discussions an in-kind contribution worth one million Swiss francs for the construction of eight magnet supports for the CMS detector.

In 2000, CERN signed another agreement which doubled the Pakistani contribution from one to two million Swiss francs. And with this new agreement Pakistan started construction of the resistive plate chambers required for the CMS muon system. While more recently, a protocol has been signed enhancing Pakistan ‘s total contribution to the LHC programme to $10 million.

Pakistan with all these efforts is already hoping to become an observer state at CERN.

All in all, Pakistan has contributed the LHC in numerous ways including some of the following in particular:

1. Detector construction

2. Detector simulation

3. Physics analysis

4. Grid computing

5. Different mathematical software developments

6. Manufacturing of mechanical equipment

7. Alignment of the CMS tracker using lasers

8. Testing of electronic equipment

9. Barrel Yoke: 35 Tonn each feet made in Pakistan

10. Assembling of CF Fins for the Silicon Trekker’s TOB

11. Out of the total 300 chambers of CMS 245 were made in Islamabad , out of which 226 are already installed at CERN.

I wonder how many Pakistani news channels picked this positive news coming from Pakistan ? Did you know at least? Why not tell others why you feel proud as a Pakistani on it?


Secrets of Universe Machine – Large Hadron Collider is on now..

September 11, 2008 Leave a comment

Wow, it sounds amazing. The Large Hadron Collider has started working, and there is no black hole yet :), and world is still intact and we are alive. Read the details here and watch the video on working here.

This is no ordinary machine or experiment. It’s world biggest, and most costly experiment ever, costing around £ 5 billion. This experiment will help in creating almost the same conditions as that were just after the Big Bang.

This historic experiment can help in understanding of particles that made the matter. This experiment can help in understanding the universe, the darkness and why everything looks like it is. So eventually it can help in understanding the theory of everything or the commonly called string theory. This experiment will help in demystifying most of the mysteries about creation of universe and earth.

This experiment is also expected to find Higgs Boson. The only sub-atomic standard model (god’s particle) which is not yet observed , which gives any matter it’s mass. So the great Professor Peter Higgs is also expected to win a Nobel Prize as a result. But legendary Professor Stephan Hawkings doesn’t think so and he has put up his famous bet also (they both has a rivalry over the matter:)). Stephan, though claims that if any small black holes are created out of the experiment then he himself may win the Nobel Prize as his theories will be validated then.

But whatever we get out of experiment, it’s sure it will increase our understanding of universe and that’s for sure.