Kuwait lagging behind GCC in all fields

Posted by Mark

summary

The 2013-2014 ‘Global Competitiveness’ report ranked Kuwait the worst GCC country in:

1. Access to loans
2. Direct foreign investment
3. Government surplus/deficit
4. Financial services
5. Quality of primary education
6. Quality of higher education
7. Quality of math and science education
8. Procurement of advanced technology products
9. Intellectual property protection
10. Bribes
11. Governmental laws
12. Brain drain
13. Extent of staff training
14. Starting a business
15. Technology transfer

Ouch. [PDF]

via Kazima


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How to get Spotify and Netflix working in Kuwait

Posted by Mark

spotify

Spotify is my favorite digital music service and whenever I post about it on the blog people always ask me how I manage to get it working. Geek in Kuwait has put together easy step by step instructions to follow to get Spotify and Netflix working in Kuwait. So if you’re interested in getting those two services working, follow this [Link]

Note: I use StrongVPN to bypass blocked websites. Also with Spotify unlike Pandora, once you sign up you no longer need to use a VPN to use it.


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Blogging Revolution Comes to Kuwait

Posted by Mark

bloggingrevolution

While flipping through some old files I found this old article from Kuwait Times about blogging in Kuwait. It’s from 2004 and back then I had stopped posting on qhate.com and instead moved to moblogging photos (kinda like instagram). Back then the blogging community was really tiny, it’s crazy how things have changed since then. Check out the article [Here]

Note: The link to Qhate in the article is wrong, it should be http://qhate.com


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Printing Digital Photos

Posted by Mark

boushari2

There are a number of places to get your digital photos printed but my favorite place is Boushahri in Salmiya. I’ve been going to Boushahri ever since I was a kid when they were THE photography store/studio. Nowadays things are a lot different. They moved from their large location in the old Salmiya Salem Al Mubarek street into a building off of Baghdad street. They’ve even closed down their portrait studio and all that’s left really is a tiny store that sells a few Fuji and Leica cameras and a corner where they print photos.

boushari1

I like them cuz they’re conveniently located near my place, they’re not in a mall and they’re fairly quick. If I have a few photos they usually print them out while I wait and if I have a bunch like 30 or more I usually pick them up a few hours later. Their prices are pretty cheap as well, a regular small 10x15cm photo costs just 100fils to print while a larger 10x15inch photo costs KD1.5.

They open every day (except Friday I think) from 9:30AM to 1PM and then again from 4:30PM to 9PM. Here is their location on [Google Maps]


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Silkscreen printing supplies

Posted by Mark

silk1

This is just a quick post for anyone that’s interested in silkscreen printing. I found a small place in Shuwaikh that sells pre-stretched aluminum screens in various sizes along with squeegees and silkscreen ink.

silk2

The prices are pretty reasonable, I picked up a small sized screen with a squeegee for KD11. The screen alone was KD7 which is a bit cheaper than the KD7.5 I paid for my wooden screen of similar size which I had purchased from Dasman Complex. The inks cost KD5 per color but each can will probably last you forever since you only need such a small amount to print. They also had metalic colors like gold and silver but I think they were for KD12.5.

silk3

The store is called Bin Naji and their phone number is 24929993/4. They’re located next to the Shuwaikh police station and here it is on [Google Maps]


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New Start-up: Facile

Posted by Mark

facile

Facile in a new local web service that just launched. The service allows you to upload a document so they can print, bind and then deliver them to you. Kinda like an online version of Kinkos. They’re still in beta so if you have any comments let them know. It’s a simple idea and it’s not food related, check them out [Here]


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Life Expectancy in Kuwait

Posted by Mark

asiaranking

Fast Company released an infographic showing the life expectancy of nearly every country in the world including Kuwait. In Asia, Kuwait came in at 11th place with a life expectancy of 77 while Macau and Japan both topped Asia’s list with 84. Regionally, both Bahrain and Qatar performed better than Kuwait with a life expectancy of 78.

So where would you have to be born to live the longest? The answer is Monaco where the life expectancy is 90 years of age. Check out the full article [Here]

Thanks John


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Beer prices in Kuwait one of the highest in the world

Posted by Mark

cheapestbeer

One of my favorite news sources Quartz just published a list of the cheapest beer prices in the world as well as the most expensive. On the list of cheapest beer prices, Saudi Arabia came fourth which kinda makes sense since I know non alcoholic beer like Barbican are super popular there. Quartz also put up a list of the most expensive beers in the world and thats where Kuwait comes in.

beerinkuwait

According to their data, the price of 0.5L of draught beer is $6.48. Problem is I don’t know of any place in Kuwait that serves draught beer (that’s beer from a tap). Quartz assumes the reason the price of beer in Kuwait is expensive is because it’s illegal and link to a post of mine from last year in which I had published the prices of alcohol in Kuwait (taken from a newspaper). Problem is if the price was based on illegal alcoholic beer then Kuwait would top the chart. The price I had posted was around KD150-KD180 for a case. A case has 24 cans and KD150 is around $530. 24 cans x 330ml = 7.92L ÷ 0.5L = 15.84. $530 ÷ 15.84 = $33.4. So the price of 0.5L of beer in Kuwait is $33.4 which is a lot more than $6.48.

Anyway check out their article [Here]


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Best Video Games 2013

Posted by Patrick

2013 was a pretty good year for gaming consoles since there was a pretty large variety of AAA and indie games to enjoy. I’m generally not very picky when it comes to video games and I enjoy a wide range of genre’s but when one genre is over-saturated (like first person shooters), I tend to choose something that tries to offer something unique. My time was evenly spent between four consoles, the Wii U, the PS3, the 360 and the 3DS and picking my favorite game was not as challenging as I originally thought it would be. But, two games in particular stood out from the whole range of games that got released this year and both these games deserve more awards than any of the other games.


1 – The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

What’s not to love about this game? It’s Challenging, beautiful to look at and features a captivating world filled with secrets and dungeons.


2 – The Last of Us

A brutal, intense and emotional roller coaster. There really hasn’t been a game (in a long time, or really just ever) that has affected some of us like The Last of Us has. I used to just play it two or three times a week because I knew there was always something bad around the corner. You would find and pick up a journal entry or a note you to either read a great story of survival or a really sad story about death or loss. The amount of detail that went into the environments to support these stories were also impressive. This is one game I loved, but would probably never play it a second time.


3 – Super Mario 3D World

When the E3 trailer was revealed, most of us had written this off as a quick-cash in before Nintendo released the true successor to the Galaxy franchise, but since its release its been getting rave reviews. 3D World includes some of the most unique and entertaining level designs while pushing the series forward making it one of the most enjoyable gaming experiences of the year.

Read the rest of this entry »


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Elevation Burger at Hamra Mall got Robbed

Posted by Mark

I found out about this today and have managed to confirm it with multiple sources. Saturday early morning around 2:30AM an unidentified person walked into Hamra Mall and headed up the service elevator towards the food court. He then walked towards Elevation Burger which was closed at that time and jumped over the counter and pretended he was an employee cleaning the place. Four hours later the unidentified person took the safe and wrapped it in a garbage bag before putting it on a trolley before casually rolling out with it from the mall.

All of this was caught on CCTV and the police are currently investigating the robbery with the help of Al Hamra Mall security. Al Hamra Mall believe the unidentified person was an ex-Elevation employee while Elevation are denying that fact and instead believe he could have been an employee from any of the other places.

I’m trying to get my hands on the CCTV footage but no luck so far.


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