I am an experienced pre-sales/sales engineer with a successful track record of winning bids with converged MPLS based global network solutions.
I have knowledge and experience of gaining an understanding of the business needs of customers and ensuring all the key components of any technical solution have been identified and their costs understood.
Specialties: SIP based voice services, MPLS WAN, integrated Internet, service management wrap, SLA regimes, bid responses
2013 - Present
Solutions Consultant / Vodafone
Working in the Global Markets team
Sales Engineer / Level 3 Communications
Providing Sales Engineering support in the roll-out of a new large project win. The customer has over 100,000 employees delivering mission-critical services to government and private clients in over 30 countries. Directly involved in SIP based voice services over MPLS WAN connected sites.
Pre Sales Consultant / Orange Business Services
I work in the new business team with the principle responsibility of designing the network architecture in our bid responses and subsequently presenting the solution to key decision makers within the prospective customer’s organisation.
Network Specialist / Anixter International
Providing pre-sales support for Europe focusing on wired and wireless networks.Designing network solutions including parts list for order placement, tender evaluation and responses, assessing feasibility of proposed solutions, performing competitive analysis against alternative vendors and arranging vendor assistance with tender responses where appropriate
Software Engineer / Alcatel Networks
Developing and testing real time datacomms software in MPW Pascal and Motorola assembler for the Mainstreet 3612, 36125 and 3660 multiplexers
Software Development / Nortel Technology
Real time telecommunications development for the Nortel DMS100 voice switch.
You don’t need to be an expert in theology to know something is not quite right with Islam today. If I walk past a house which has a huge crack in its wall and is leaning heavily I don’t have to be a chartered structural engineer to know something is wrong.
There is something not right with the theological model of Islam today. We have people who strongly believe that severing a persons head with a knife, blowing up a train full of commuters and killing worshippers in a church is in full compliance with Islamic scripture. They’ll proudly quote the relevant scriptural verses as justification for their acts.
These interpretations of Islamic scripture have gone unchallenged for far too long. An insidious change has gone unchecked and has resulted in the acts of violence we experience today.
Religious material in Britain is sourced from authors that have grown up in misogynistic and violent patriarchal societies. They have as result, either consciously or unconsciously, absorbed the values of these societies and it comes through in the material they produce. To make matters worse UK mosques are led by committees of elders who don’t understand British society and its values. As a result the mosques don’t offer any meaningful value to young Muslims.
There is a pattern used by the extremists when promoting their views. They’ve memorised select verses in their original Arabic and they drop the odd Arabic phrase into the sentence when speaking in English. This adds gravitas to their views and gives them an air of authority they don’t deserve.
An alternative to the message of violence and hatred is needed. One that focuses on equality of women with an emphasis on love and kindness. Muslims must become part of the fabric of British society and not social misfits. We must respond much more strongly to the darkness being spread by the extremists in our community.
The Taxpayers alliance have created a list of policies which reduce government spending to 35% of GDP by 2020.
If achieved it can result in lower taxes, less government debt and faster economic growth.
There are two options; the first has 24 policy measures and the second adds a further 17 policies that will also enable a single income tax to replace the current complex and cumbersome system we have today.
The set of policies will not be agreeable to everyone. I wouldn’t abolish the Equality Act 2010 and there are mixed views regarding scrapping of HS2 both of which are required to achieve the spending reduction targets.
It makes interesting reading but it is unlikely that any political party will include these measure in their manifesto pledges as they are all focused on populist policies.
The Community Security Trust (CST) has released figures that show anti-Semitism has reached the highest level ever recorded. The CST have linked this rise with Israel’s attack on Gaza last year.
Anti-Semitism is abhorrent and so is any attack on people of other faiths. I can still remember the mosque I attended in the 1980’s having steel mesh grills fixed over all its windows for security. The steel entrance door with burn marks around the letter box from repeated attempts to burn the building down. Synagogues are not the only places of worship under constant attack. Politicians should condemn verbal and physical violence against all faith groups.
I can see an alarming trend here. There is a concerted attempt to equate criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism. A precursor to a culture where we will not be allowed to raise our voices against Israel’s brutality.
For decades there has been no-one to speak up for the Palestinian side of the middle east conflict. In recent years British Muslims have becoming more articulate in highlighting the injustice being perpetrated by Israel against the Palestinians and this is causing alarm amongst Israeli supporters. The response from the pro-Israeli lobby is to use anti-Semitism as an excuse to stop anyone speaking out against Israel and that is deplorable.
I’ve been replacing these G9 halogen bulbs on a regular basis. I accept light fittings being fitted with the cheapest sub-standard light bulbs the manufacturer can get away with. It keeps their costs down and is no different to printer manufacturers supplying ink cartridges that need replacing sooner than one would like.
So I wasn’t overly concerned when the 22 odd bulbs around the house started blowing out. I replaced them with Diall G9 halogen bulbs from B&Q. Over the next few weeks, one by one, they too started failing.
I switched to bulbs from ‘Opus Long Life Lamp company‘. Perhaps long life has a different meaning in Guangzhou because they’re no better than bulbs made by Diall. I’ve discussed these G9 bulbs with an electrician over the phone and popped into two electrical wholesalers. Experience of G9 bulbs seems varied with some using them with no issues whilst others complain about premature failure. It might have something to do with the length of time they remain switched on. Halogen bulbs run very hot and perhaps prolonged heat is causing the filament to fail.
I’ve now fitted three Osram G9 bulbs. They cost twice as much as Diall and 3.5 times the price of those from Opus. I’ll see if they last any longer.
The terrorist attacks in Paris has got the analysts and politicians out in force. As a Muslim I feel my very faith has taken another hit as the perpetrators have used Islam to justify their acts of murder.
Muslims have been given a binary choice. To either support the Charlie Hebdo publication or the terrorists. I support neither those who murder journalists nor this vile racist publication.
The French Muslim community has endured generations of institutional and societal racism. They have been excluded from participation in mainstream society. Denied the opportunity to better themselves they are stuck in abject poverty. In this deeply racist society you have little prospect of getting a decent job if you have an Arabic name or a brown complexion. Charlie Hebdo has been instrumental in the persistent dehumanisation of the Muslim ethnic minority carried out under the guise of right to free speech. A right that does not actually exist as many accused of anti-semitism have learnt to their cost.
I didn’t use the #JesuisCharlie hashtag for this reason. I don’t stand with Charlie Hebdo.
Racists and Islamophobes have predictably capitalised on these attacks to target the entire Muslim community.
Condemnation from representatives of the Muslim community has been clear. There is still a tendency however for Muslims to go off topic and start lamenting about the injustices being suffered by the Muslim world. This only serves to dilute the condemnation.
It is important for Muslims to ensure the key message of condemnation to an act of terrorism is not lost in amongst our tendency to lament about the injustices Muslims face around the world.
As Muslims when asked about an incident such as this we should keep our response simple. Reference only the specific event in question and ensure that as a Muslim you stand clearly on the right side of the moral divide. Murder must be condemned in clear and unequivocal terms.
This is vital in the immediate aftermath of the incident. There’ll be plenty of time to do the root cause analysis in blog posts, radio, tv and the print media in the coming weeks. As Muslims we have got to stop reacting with emotion and emptying all the baggage we carry. Yes these are hard times for us. More Muslims have been murdered by Muslim extremists than any other group. We are victims of current and historical injustice but wisdom and restraint is required when we are asked about a specific event.
Muslim extremists are given far too much space within our communities to spread their hatred. Their interpretation of religious scripture that justifies the murder of innocents must be challenged head-on.
The Muslim perspective that I share is covered by Nouman Ali Khan in his thoughts on the Paris shootings. The video below is his sermon delivered to a Muslim congregation. We need more people like Nouman to counteract the extremism that is poisoning our world.
I attended a corporate MindStore personal development course 18 years ago in Kensington town hall. My manager at the time felt I’d benefit from it and I certainly did. I still use the general principles of Mindstore today and will read through the book every now-and-then to recap.
So when a recent email asked me if I’d be interested in attending a Wellbeing course I quickly replied back with a yes please.
The course focused on health and nutrition including the importance of sleep. As an exercise to help us put things into practice we were asked to select 3 things we would do immediately after the training. An interesting piece of advice that I read from Oliver Gray’s book ‘Energise You‘ is that if you’ve resolved to do something 80% of the time you’ll experience the benefit. You don’t have to hit a 100% target to make it worthwhile.
The three changes I selected were:
Drink a glass of lemon water first thing in the morning
Go running twice a week
Replace the mobile with a clock on the bedside cabinet
The lemon water has proved to be the most difficult as we don’t normally have lemons in the house. So I had to use orange squash instead. Overall these changes have made a positive change to my well-being.
Under the Skin by Michel Faber has been turned into a film that I’m looking forward to watching. Its on my blu-ray rental list.
The book is a page-turner that becomes more creepy as the story unfolds. I really wanted to know what happens next? what was the lead characters plan?
A story written in this style builds up the reader’s expectation that all the mysteries will be solved in the resolution at the end of the book.
So does the story end satisfactorily? I am afraid not. I felt it ended rather abruptly. I expect activities at the farm featured in the story will continue much as before. Many questions remain unanswered and I just felt the book ended with the story unfinished.
The war against the Taliban has cost Britain just under £40 billion and 453 lives.
A £40 billion investment would make a huge difference if invested in education, healthcare, infrastructure and many other areas that are suffering from underinvestment.
So what do we have to show for the 13 years of military action?
Afghanistan today is ranked the third most corrupt nation on earth. Opium production is at record levels and its infrastructure remains as broken as ever. Schools remain closed and teachers are threatened if they even think about teaching girls. Afghanistan remains as primitive, patriarchal and misogynistic as ever.
Its not through want of trying. At its peak, in 2010, we had 9,500 military personnel based in Afghanistan. Most of them in the Helmand province. Supported by over 20,000 US troops who arrived to help out in 2009. They’ve been trying to setup and train an in-country security force to self police the country and bring about a degree of stability that is needed to help people develop. Sadly the Afghan forces remain incompetent and corrupt. There is little hope that they’ll be able to retain control of the country for long. It is highly likely that Afghanistan will go back to the rule of warlords within a year or two.
Unlike the Iraq war the intervention in Afghanistan did have some sensible objectives. The 9/11 Al-Qaeda attacks were planned from their base in the Tora Bora mountains of Afghanistan. The Taliban gave them sanctuary and refused to hand-over Osama Bin Laden. The initial objective of military intervention was to dismantle Taliban control of the country and degrade Al-Qaeda. All this to ensure our future safety here in the Western world. A worthwhile objective in my view.
The expansion of the initial set of objectives turned what should have been a short sharp military intervention into a 13 year war. This ‘scope creep’ resulted in additional objectives being added such as:
Providing education especially for girls
Removing the power base of religious extremism
Creating social and economic stability
The additional objectives are all admirable but you can’t change a nation externally. People have to want to change themselves. No amount of external intervention is going to bring permanent change. There is no desire within the Afghan people to change the way they have lived for centuries. This is ultimately why they will slip back into the social patterns that have always existed.
Comments from Lord Freud, the Welfare minister, has brought back memories of the old Conservative party. The ‘nasty party’ that treats the poor and disadvantaged members of society with contempt.
George Osborne has been fixated with rapidly reducing the budget deficit. A policy that has resulted in a ‘slash and burn’ attack on the welfare bill. A task that Ian Duncan Smith has turned into a personal crusade. A culture of hatred towards welfare recipients has been engineered with the media creating an image of lazy freeloaders who can’t be bothered to find work.
I am all for reducing the welfare bill and targeting anyone who abuses the system. The budget deficit also needs to be reduced to build a stronger economy that can withstand future economic storms. Its how we achieve both of these and the approach taken by the Conservatives that I find troubling.
I’m not a Labour supporter. I would have voted Conservative at the last general election had my flight from Prague arrived on time. As it happened the polls were closing as the taxi taking me home drove out of Heathrow that night. So I couldn’t cast my vote. Recent events however have made me question whether I ought to vote Conservative in the upcoming elections.
What I find particularly distasteful about Lord Freud’s comments and those of Sam Bowman from the Adam Smith institute is the dehumanisation of people. Reducing the worth of a person to an economic asset. Their unrestrained capitalism will take us to a cold heartless society where the value of a person is expressed as a monetary figure.
If we follow Lord Freud’s line of thinking do we arrive at a point where a decision as to whether a medical procedure is made not on the basis of need but whether it would be economically viable to do so. Much in the same way that a car owner might decide against replacing an engine part if the car is old and worth less than the spare part itself.