Wednesday, April 14, 2021

One last post for the record books

This will probably be the last post to this blog. I have finally finished my PhD. It took me 9 years, 8 months, and 23 days (3551 days in total) between MA & PhD just to come back home and find out that everyone else around me has a PhD (yes, I'm talking about those who bought their degrees). So, my degree will probably go to waste... I just hope my expeirnece won't. Farewell.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

PDF won't open in Preview App after updating to MacOS 'Catalina' | FIX

I had this issue for a few days. I couldn't open PDF files in Preview App so here's the only solution I found on Apple community discussion that worked for me. [link]

Note that you will need to restart your mac after going through all the steps for them to take effect.

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Bye bye Xcite Alghanim, you will not be missed.

I’m writing here after a year long absence just to vent, even though I know for a fact that this post will probably slip into the internet history unnoticed. 

Usually you’d expect the best after sales from the largest electronics dealer/distributor in your region. However, that has never been the case with Xcite Alghanim. The more they grow into the market the less adequate their aftersales become. I can only imagine the number of their customers and daily service requests but that should never be a persistent problem.

I’ve been a loyal customer to Alghanim Electronics all my life. I would compare products and prices between other dealers and Alghanim yet eventually I go with the latter due to their reputation. So, a little background to my recent feud with their customer service should mark my loyalty departure, and hopefully a lot of other people would do the same.

It all started back in 2010 when I bought a 10KG Whirlpool washing machine for ~KWD160. Less than a year and the machine had a faulty bearing. It was fixed under warranty. Few more months after my warranty expired the machine had the same problem again. This time, with no warranty, it took them a few days to come pick it up, a little over a week to fix it, and an absurd maintenance cost of ~KWD100. Exactly three months later the same problem started all over again. Now long story short I wasn’t going to fix it for another 100 dinar and they refused to fix it under warranty. Thus, I went and bought a new washing machine, yet again from Xcite Alghanim, to my misfortune.

The new washing machine was a 10KG/7KG Daewoo washer/dryer which had all the praise from their sales people. I bought it for KWD179.900 and extended the factory warranty from 1 year to 6 years (1+5yrs extension) for KWD61, that’s a total of ~240 for the whole thing. The machine was perfect in all aspects and I had no problems with it until the day it went back to their workshop.

After a few years being used on daily basis it started to have some rattling noise so I called customer service and they took it to the shop. It stayed there for well over a week justifying that there were no spare parts. Later when it got delivered I was certain it wasn’t working properly. It sounded different, it operated weirdly and started to shake when spin drying. It kept working that way for about a year until the bearing started to get worn out. Another call, another delay on pickup/delivery, and another awkwardly fixed machine.

Now up until last month it was working with moderate noise just like the day it came back for its last visit to Alghanim’s workshop. Suddenly, you guessed it, the bearing became faulty again, for the 3rd time in three years! However this time it took them about two weeks to pick it up and it stayed at their shop for well over a week.

It’s a major appliance and not having it for a day is hectic enough not to mention a week. I called to inquire and they told me to come personally to the workshop to receive a compensation voucher since it cannot be fixed due to lack of spare parts. I went there not thinking much of it since I’ll just have to use the voucher for a new purchase. To my shock, I got a compensation of KWD110, claiming that there is a 35% operating fees. Even up until here I didn’t argue but when they told me my 5 year warranty will be void and I can only use these vouchers to buy the same exact washing machine model I was furious!

Imagine that, even with their worthless vouchers, I will have to pay another ~KWD100 more for the price of that new machine even though I know for a fact that will have the same problems within a year or so. Not to mention that’s even without extending the warranty!

I had to speak to some of their disrespectful employees who either claimed they are managers or truely are managers but their attitude didn’t register as one of such a role in company that big. There were two more customers who had the exact same problem as I did and no one had a resolution to solve the issue except shouting back and forth with those so-called managers.

I stormed out hopeless from their trashy service and absurd attitude, googled LG, went to the closest Albabtain store and bought a new washing machine.To conclude I just want to say the hell with your service and obvious attempts to pin your customers to your disgusting after-sales polices. You may have lost one customer but I definitely won’t be the last.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

iPhone 6 WiFi + Bluetooth interference

I have switched my data plan from VIVA to Ooredoo because the wifi download speed was miserable and to my shock, after signing a data contract with Ooredoo, the download speeds were even worse. I went to Ooredoo tech support and spent over two hours trying to figure out what's wrong with the data line to no avail. One guy suggested that the problem is caused by my iPhone which I doubted at the time because my phone line was also Ooredoo and I get download speeds up to 60mbps!

I looked it up online and there were many suggestions that it could be caused by wifi network settings in the privacy>locations pane. When I turned it off I got slightly higher speeds but nothing more than a couple of mbps, from around 1~3mbps up to 5~7mbps.

After a couple of trial and error attempts I turned off Bluetooth which has been always on paired with my Garmen watch and guess what, the speeds jumped all the way over 40mbps!

Now I can confirm that this interference is causing the problem because my wife's iPhone 6 also had the same problem and I was able to surpass it only by switching off Bluetooth.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Origin of "Banak"

There was a heated discussion going on the past few days between me and my friends regarding the origin of what we Kuwaitis call "Banak". A salty hard shell seed, brown from the outside and brownish green from the inside, that is used as snack. We often refer to it by its country of origin like Bulgarian, Turkish or Iranian/Persian Banak but that's about all we know.

Now I've done my research and I'm glad to say I have finally found the answer. Banak, also known as Baneh in Iran, is a seed from a tree called Pistacia Atlantica. A close relative to pistachio seeds but its nutritional facts are unknown because it's used extensively in the Gulf region only, especially in Kuwait and Bahrain. It is sold raw by weight and gets treated by boiling it in salty water.

You can learn more about the tree and it's seeds by googling its name. #pistacia_atlantica #PistaciaAtlantica #بنك# بَنَكْ

EDIT: For those still in doubt, you can find three videos on this youtube channel showing the tree, pre-treated seeds and post-treated seeds.