Prepared by Lucia Valente, Founder, Loss of Generality (LoG)
Most of the people I know have travelled to many countries and experienced many different cultures. None of them have been to Palestine, however, and so, many of our views are shaped by media which is often scare mongering – at least that’s my opinion.
Many of us do not know the real situation in Palestine and what we know is, typically, not so good. Really, though, we are not well informed and what we do know, can be inaccurate. With that view I made the decision to visit our team in Palestine, to meet them in person and get a better understanding of life in that troubled land.
LoG has a small team in Palestine who we trained in Wolfram Programming Language – Mathematica – over the last few years. The training is being done virtually using communications vehicles such as Skype or ‘JoinMe’. We are so proud of their work and, for the LoG team, it is wonderful to see that bright, well-educated Palestinians – working from Palestine – are developing educational modules with Professors in Canada, the US and Ireland and hopefully, soon, Nigeria.
In August 2017 we had the opportunity to meet one member of the team – Khaled – who came to Ireland for advanced training in specific areas of Machine Learning, advanced training in Mathematica, solvers in prosthetics. However, we had not met the other members of the team.
After spending a few days in Kuwait, visiting Dr. Talal Abdulkareen Al Arab, Chairman of the Board, Kuwait Society for Student Support (KSSS), in early February I went to Palestine to meet the team.
The main purpose of my trip to Palestine was threefold – meet the team, discuss how KSSS is providing support to them and attend classes at local high schools where two of our team members teach. Our team members use modules that they developed for Professor Mary Ann Kelso, Olympic College, Washington state. Professor Kelso provided permission for her work to be translated to Arabic and used by our team members.