Re: [mauj:34] [:: Mauj ~ موج //] Awami Labs


I think what we could do is take a particular project/technology and build something around it. There are names for such things: 'intermediate technologies' (which may be lo-tech) and sometimes alternative technologies. There are some institutes working on these premises - we cd learn about how to get something off the ground from them. I know aga khan has introduced/replaced stoves in the noethern areas ...

Intermediate Technology Development Group (Small is Beautiful)

Engineers Without Borders



Awami Labs

Here is an idea that I came up with in 2001. But I never had the CPU cycles to start it. The idea is a sub-set of the types of things we are thinking of doing under Mauj. I am posting this just as an aside, I dont think that we have to team right now to delve into something like this.

Also, somothing I learned much later on, and to my disappointment, that it is much easir to pruduce neat technological solutions than to change old habits, social norms or culture. In our culture people just dont use tech. solutions (even when they exist) to solve day to day problems. It takes a humungus amount of effort to change their habits, than the effort required to come up with tech. solutions.

The resistance to change is much higher in third-world cultures. Why? I can only guess, but can't offer a comprehensive thesis on this.

So, here it is... for reading's sake only.


Awami Labs (theme paper) ..... by Amar Mahboob

The central idea of Awami Labs is to setup an organizational structure that is geared towards the improvisation and adaptation of modern science and technology so that the everyday life of lower class/poor citizens of Pakistan may become easier and less painful. The organization will comprise of a team of engineers and researchers who would design products (essentially low-tech in nature) that may be used by the people to overcome difficulties in basic life, and may even provide a means of livelihood.

This team of engineers will work in liaison with another team of field workers who would introduce these products to various communities and at the same time train them at using these products/ideas.

Some examples of the type of products that are in mind maybe:

- Solar water stills – these may be used to produce drinking water out of saline/polluted water.

- Low cost water purifiers.

- Solar water heaters and cookers.

- Utilization of farm waste for production of energy, e.g. Bio-gas, methanol etc.

- Low cost solar energy.

Salient features of the Organization:

- This organization will be registered as a trust, this is so that the original ideals and guidelines for setting up the organization may be protected.

- The aim of the organization would not be to itself go into commercial production of any of its products. It would rather that its products be mass produced by the communities themselves. This would create new means of livelihoods, as well as alleviate problems.

- The organization shall hold patents, copyrights and/or intellectual rights over the products it designs or produces. However it would not seek any royalty if

other parties were to mass produce its products. The patents would only be for the purposes of keeping other organizations from registering patents upon technology

produced by the Awami Labs and thereby stopping the general public from its benefits.

- The organization will be run professionally, having full-time staff being paid at prevalent market rates.

- The organization would receive grants, donations and community support for being able to carry out its work.

- The organization will also enter into consultancy services for private industry and business in helping them to adopt the technology developed by Awami Labs and to help these companies to mass produce this technology. However the total man-hours spent in consultancy shall not exceed 25% of the total man-hours spent in conducting research.

Organizational Structure:

The organization will have three functional divisions.

- A team of engineers responsible for developing the products.

- A team of field workers that will work with various communities in introducing the products, and making sure that the people are able to make the right use of the products.

- A management board that will be responsible for setting the direction of work of the organization. This board will comprise of full time management as well as engineers and field workers. It will also include people from academia and the industry, who will take part on a voluntary/invitation basis.

from Visual Delight blog


much better :)

What a relief! :))

test - image sending

image 170k attached with post by email

should we keep this one for a few days and then change it if everyone still doesn't like it?

i think i like it the way it is

i think it has the boldness of a 'mauj', and reminds me of both a human iris and a black hole... cool! :)


so what are the orders re background?

Welcome to the pirate ship!

Welcome aboard Amar!

Is'nt the background image a bit too explosive?


Testing 1 2 3

Testing 1 2 4

cool! :-)

email to blog not working

the email to blog post is not working
would i send it to

yeah, the email to blog post didn't work with me either...nameera


good stuff Yasir!

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email to blog post