Times of Oman

TEDxQu­rum hosts pre-event net­work­ing din­ner


MUS­CAT: TEDxQu­rum hosted a pre-event net­work­ing din­ner that was held at Zad Res­tau­rant, op­er­ated by NewrestWa­casco, in the Bank Mus­cat head­quar­ters build­ing. The guests in­cluded speak­ers that will be shar­ing their ideas worth spread­ing at the main event as well as TEDxQu­rum part­ners and lead vol­un­teers.

The in­de­pen­dently or­gan­ised TEDx event hap­pen­ing in Mus­cat on Novem­ber 11 at the Na­tional Mu­seum, was 119% over­sub­scribed for the lim­ited 100 seats granted via the TEDxQu­rum li­cense. The net­work­ing din­ner gave speak­ers and part­ners an op­por­tu­nity to dis­cuss the event and fu­ture en­deav­ours.

“When I re­ceived the li­cense for TEDxQu­rum, I never en­vi­sioned such over­whelm­ing sup­port from the com­mu­nity. I am truly hon­oured to be work­ing with so many part­ners and vol­un­teers. Ev­ery­one is com­ing to­gether and giv­ing their time and re­sources so gen­er­ously. We have es­tab­lished a TEDxQu­rum fam­ily,” stated Nas­reen Khalid, the lead cu­ra­tor of TEDxQu­rum.

The evening started with in­tro­duc­tions from Nas­reen Khalid and Lama Sam­man, the co-lead or­gan- iser. A TED talk by Sam Har­ris fol­lowed this, ‘Can we build Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence with­out los­ing con­trol over it?’ This topic seemed to quiet the at­ten­dants as it chal­lenged their be­liefs and their per­cep­tions. It was of par­tic­u­lar in­ter­est to Dr Amer Al Rawas, one of the TEDxQu­rum speak­ers, “As I lis­tened to the talk, I felt a lit­tle rusty on the sub­ject. The idea that Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence (AI) could re­place the hu­man conscience and con­scious­ness, that as Har­ris stated, ‘We could cre­ate God’; I couldn’t fully agree with the thought as I think AI will re­place hu­man cog­ni­tion but will not re­place hu­man con­scious­ness or emo­tional in­tel- ligence, at least not in the fore­see­able fu­ture. Nev­er­the­less, this is how TED talks have changed the world around us. Your per­spec­tives are con­stantly chal­lenged, and you are pushed to the edge of your com­fort zone. You may be shaken, en­ter­tained or en­light­ened. As for me, I hope to en­lighten the au­di­ence at TEDxQu­rum.”

Dis­cus­sions and col­lab­o­ra­tions con­tin­ued through­out the evening. Ques­tions re­gard­ing TED, TEDx, TEDxMus­cat and TEDxQu­rum were asked. “TEDx events are in­de­pen­dently or­gan­ised events. To or­gan­ise one, you must ap­ply to TED in New York, USA, for a li­cense. TEDxMus­cat is in no way con­nected to TEDxQu­rum. Our li­cense is com­pletely in­de­pen­dent,” said Zeenath Jaleel, lead or­gan­iser of TEDxQu­rum.

Part­ners could in­ter­act with the speak­ers and at one point, Fa­had Al Abri, ath­lete, ad­ven­turer, in­fuser and TEDxQu­rum speaker per­formed one of his fa­mous hand­stands. On Novem­ber 11, Fa­had will be ask­ing the au­di­ence to, ‘Al­low him to turn their world up­side down-lit­er­ally!’ Many of the other speak­ers were also present at the net­work­ing din­ner as well. Kam­ilya Al Lamki, an ed­u­ca­tor, en­er­giser, mother of four and an­other TEDxQu­rum speaker said, “It’s amaz­ing what we can do to­gether. The din­ner was the be­gin­ning point, re­in­forc­ing the spirit of TEDx, build­ing col­lab­o­ra­tive bridges be­tween the part­ners and the speak­ers. The vi­sion of TEDxQu­rum is be­ing im­ple­mented. We will be in­fus­ing imag­i­na­tions to in­spire in­no­va­tion.”

There were two other TEDx videos pre­sented that evening, ‘My phi­los­o­phy for a happy life’ by Sam Berns - TEDxMidAt­lantic and “I got 99 prob­lems…palsy is just one” by Maysoon Zayid.

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