10 States in 10 Days

This is a throwback story. I have been trying to do a write up of my journey to North America ever since I came back from the States 4 years ago. But commitment constraints, it is only by today I am happy that finally I managed to finish this. Though it might not be the same travelog experience that it should be, at least I still have the entry on the moments that I have spent my time at the Midwestern state of United States of America. And the journey that we have made was to the east coast of the country.

Let me try to sum up my journey of summer holiday in 2015 from the state of North Dakota to Virginia which covering about 10 states in between.

My journey might not be the same as other travelers because I am traveling with my family consisting of 5 persons (2 adults and 3 children aged between 6 to 11 years old). So, I do hope that what I have written here won’t be compared to those who made a solo journey.

May 31, 2015:

It was a lovely morning when I already knew that the rest of my family is coming to USA. I have been living in North Dakota for the past 3 months with my one and only young exuberant kindy boy who attended McKinley Elementary School during the Spring Term. School holiday had just begun 3 days ago. Whilst, his two other sisters and father are on their way from Kuala Lumpur via Doha, Qatar and Chicago, IL before disembarking at Fargo International Airport, ND. I have been waiting for their arrival since 36 hours ago and had been following the flightradar report on their sky journey. Anxiously. They made it at last.

We rented a Chevrolet Impala. The latest edition I guess. Some car brand that never made it to Malaysia. But it was indeed a great experience that we could hire it.

I have prepared them some Nasi Berlauk for the meal on their arrival though they said they would prefer western dish since they were already from Malaysia. We had a couple of Malaysian friends coming over our place to welcome my small family. Had a welcoming chit chat and managed to find some additional groceries for their needs & necessities from the nearby Walmart in West Fargo.

June 1st, 2015:

It was my first daughter’s birthday. We went to celebrate it at Red Lobster in the city of Fargo. We were yet to do any travelling at this time because I was still bound to finish my task at the Computer Architecture Lab, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering of North Dakota State University. My visit at this country was as a visiting scholar and most of the time I was spending my time at this lab. So, I left my family to wander about around the city and the campus.

June 3 to 4, 2015:

I was officially on holiday starting today. A day earlier, I met my supervisor, thanking him for all the help and works that we have done for the past 3 months. Saying farewell to my lab-mates and other research teams that I have been working with.

Today, we went to two major attractions in the city of Fargo and they were the Red River Zoo and Bonanzaville. Like any other zoos, we enjoyed watching all kinds of animals not found in Malaysia. Especially the American Eagle of course. And the wolf was huge indeed. The peacock was beautiful and there were rare birds flying around here and there. Bison was indeed their major appeal.

Whilst, Bonanzaville is the depiction of earlier settlements of people in North Dakota. From a house that was made of logs, to the first locomotive ever connect them from rural areas transporting their crops and goods and the local pride in mobile, telecommunications and airplane inventions.

This has led us to visit Fargo Air Museum on the next day to find many real fighter planes that were exhibited at this center including the Global Hawk, Duggy, Wright Flyer and other War Transports. We took an early rest to prepare for our journey to the East on the next day.

June 5, 2015:

We changed our Chevy Impala to Chevy Malibu for easy drop off at the next Hertz station in the city of Minneapolis. Our luggage was packed in the car, I signed off the rental agreement for the apartment that we have been living for the past 3 months. Saying goodbye to our neighbors. Quite heavy to let go but we do hope to make a come back.

We took the route of I-94 and I-494. Its the major motorway and road from city of Fargo, ND to Minneapolis, MN. Just before arriving terminal, we made a quick stop at Albertville Premium Outlets just at the outskirt of the city. We reached the city of Minneapolis by night. The journey from Fargo to Minneapolis was about 5 and a half hours including the 2 hours of lay-over at the premium outlets. We retired at Country Inns & Suites, Bloomingtoon, Minneapolis, MN.

June 6, 2015:

We woke up rise and shine. Feeling energetic after a good night rest. Today, our plan was to spend the whole day at Mall of America. The Mall located just on the other side of the motorway opposite to our hotel. We took a shuttle bus to go there as it was provided by the hotel all day long. There was an indoor attraction of Nickelodeon Universe. A huge one with all kinds of roller coaster, rides, games, water rafts and ferris wheel. My children had moments with Nick characters including Dora the Explorer, Diego, SpongeBob, Patrick and Paw Patrol. We took time off to dine at Bubba Gump Shrimp. Enjoyed the seafood dishes at the premise and highly recommended. We continued window shopping around the Mall until the nightfall. We spent a second night at the Inn.

June 7, 2015:

After Fajr prayers, we checked out of the hotel, took a taxi and headed for St. Paul’s Train Station. We were heading East by the rail this time. We embarked on Amtrak Empire Builder Railway System. Had a long journey of more than 8 hours bounded for Chicago, IL. Stopped at major train stations including Milwaukee, Wisconsin. We even had a chance to watch somebody was giving Sunday sermon nearby the La Crosse Station, WI when the train made a stop there. The weather changed quite significantly that I started feeling unwell. We managed to arrive in Chicago, IL but we were lack of energy to enjoy the scenes. Perhaps due to our diet of Halal, Kosher and Vegan meals, it has affected our enthusiasm of exploring the states.

June 8, 2015:

The journey for this one was quite challenging. After we hanged out at Chicago Train Station for the past less than 8 hours, we embarked on another train serviced by Amtrak Lakeshore Limited. Today, we were bound for New York. This journey was almost tripled the time taken from Minneapolis to Chicago. More than 20 hours we were seated in the car train. I got different people seating next to me, come and go.

At one time when the train was in the state of Ohio, there was this guy came and sit at the empty seat besides me. Got tatoos all over his body, but I was OK to whomever wanted to sit besides me. It was already night time and I hardly seen what he was doing by my side. But it seems that he was trying to find a friend to talk to. Maybe due to the long journey, but his accent was not familiar to me, I hardly understand. I just nodded to whatever he said. I only managed to hear him saying that, he preferred to sit next to people like me (an Asian woman that wear scarfs) because he knew that we would sit at our own boundaries. We won’t bother our neighbors and he could enjoy taking a nap at his own seat too. He also told me that he has been on this train for the past 3 days from Seattle, WA and was taking the whole course of West to East train for this trip. It took him 5 days to reach NY. I was astonished by his story but then, I dozed off.

The journey from Chicago, IL to New York, NY had its course via three other states i.e. Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The stops also include major towns and cities between these 5 states. When we arrived New York-Penn Station, we had nothing much to think about except to bump on to a nice bed and have a good rest. We took the NY yellow cab from the station to Queens where our hotel located, named Ramada Inn, Flushing. Empty stomachs indeed but unlike Fargo, when I searched for Halal outlets by using Zabihah apps, there were more than 180 restaurants it has returned. This time, we settled with chinese food as our supper.

June 9, 2015:

This is the starting day of our 3 days 2 nights package tour of NY-PA-NJ-DC. We engaged with Taketours Bus provider. Early morning we checked out of the hotel and waited for our tour bus just a block away from the inn. For the next three days, it was expected that our trip would be upon scheduled and we just follow its course. From Flushing Queens, we ran down the Flushing Meadows where the movie IronMan3 was shot. We enjoyed the ride on the Queensboro Bridge overlooking the Harlem river and beneath us were networks of road quite complex to our eyes. We entered Manhattan to view the metropolis and all of the major buildings on this island including the World Trade Centre and Broadway Theatre. We made our way towards New Jersey by coursing along the Holland Tunnel underneath the Hudson River. We were greeted by the scenic view of Statue of Liberty on the Liberty Island once we were already in the state of New Jersey. We continued our journey passing by all of major cities in this state. The bus took a quick stop nearby Turnpike, NJ. We were heading to Philadelphia in the state of Pennsylvania.

In less than 2 hours, we arrived at the Independence Hall in Philadelphia. Our guide gave us about two hours to explore the areas around this Hall. There was also Liberty Bell at the field-side of the Hall, historical boards here and there and electronic boards to display the related stories behind the monuments that we were facing. We hardly got the chance to enter the Hall because of the long queue so we have decided to take our morning break at the nearby food outlets.

Our trip continued to the south. From Philadelphia we went to Washington, DC and to get there we had a scenic journey through the state of Maryland. The city of Baltimore was quite a distant sight to be seen from our course. Once we have arrived Washington DC we were brought to Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. Like most of other museums, the exhibits were prototypes and meant for historical facts and figures. Educative and enlightening especially in the areas of outer space and airplanes. History of war and fighter transports were also depicted as part of its narrative.

Other than the Smithsonian, we went to Madamme Tussauds Gallery of Presidents, US Capitol front view from the Union Square photo taking area, The White House, The Washington Monument (memorial to George Washington) and Lincoln Memorial. We stopped at each monuments and pictures were taken for memories. The drawback to our visit this time was the fact that it was summer holidays. Thronged of people here and there with school excursions and children from all over the States were coming for their educational trip too. You just cannot get a decent photo without having someone else photobomb into yours.

By the end of the day, we were quite exhausted. We departed the bus to our next destination but able to see the scenic view of Washington DC as a whole and the Potomac River. The bus tour took us for dinner at one of the Chinese Restaurants by the highway, but we hardly took any. Fortunately there was a small pizza parlour outside the restaurant and we took away a couple of vegetarian and seafood pizza. We met an Indian Muslim while buying the food and learned that there was a nearby Masjid from where we stood. He just came back from his Maghrib prayer and the population of Muslims in this state was about 400+ people.

The bus tour stopped for an overnight at The Garden Plaza Hotel of Hagerstown, MD.

June 10, 2015:

From Hagerstown, MD, we headed North. We were bound for Niagara Falls in the state of New York. We stayed in the bus most of time because the journey from MD to Niagara Falls was about 7 hours. We made a quick stop at the following attractions though; the Corning Museum of Glass and Watkins Glen State Park. Both were in the state of New York. We did nothing much at the two attractions except following the course. The Corning Museum was meant for exhibits of corningware and glass making. Whilst Watkin Glen State Park was a beautiful gorge and waterfall attraction with 500 steps that we made from the top of the park until its rendezvous area. This park was founded by Samuel Watkins.

At the end of the day, we arrived at the city named Buffalo, NY and we spent overnight at Comfort Inn University.

June 11, 2015:

This is the major attraction day of our tour package. A visit to Niagara Falls. This place located in the city of Buffalo, New York and is bordered by the city of Ontario, Canada on the other side of the Falls. We entered the Niagara National Park in the morning after checking out from our lodge. The place was thronged with people and children coming with school trip. There was a Hard Rock Cafe Niagara Falls that we made our stop to buy memorabilia. Prior to visiting the Falls, we were brought to the area of Niagara River where some tourists had taken the ride of Whirlpool Jet Boat. Later of the day then we had the chance to enter the Niagara Falls Theatrical Hall to watch the historical and legendary facts of the Falls. We managed to enter the Falls at midday by riding the Maid of the Mist. The experience was amazing, the Falls was certainly a wonder, the volume was astounding, the ride was overwhelming, nothing compares to this nature. Priceless. The visit was worth every second of it. It made us appreciate about water, nature, environment and life ever more.

By late afternoon, we took our lunch and ready to head home to New York where the trip had started since three days ago. Another 8 hours journey by bus via Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Once we arrived in New York, we stayed at Radio City Apartment on 49th Street W.

June 12, 2015:

After a good night sleep, we woke up healthily today. We have just one more day to spend in New York city before our flight bound for Kuala Lumpur. Early in the morning we took the Subway MTA from 49th St to Rector St. We disembarked at this station with the intention to have a glimpse of Statue of Liberty. We thought to get a ride on the boat to Ellis Island, but it would take the whole day to really enjoy the scene. We ended up watching the statue from Downtown Manhattan in the area of Battery Park. We saw the World Trade Centre building too from this area. After a quick stroll at the Battery Park, we went back to Times Square for souvenir shopping and checked out from the hotel. It was a sweet but short visit. We hope to come back to NYC for more. We have yet to visit hundreds more places around this city and state. We rented Ford Escape Titanium from Hertz and headed south to DC.

From New York, NY to Sterling, VA, it was a 4 hours drive with several stops including Maryland and Delaware. We arrived at a friend’s house in the neighborhood of Vienna, Virginia. Fron dinner to supper till late night we were chit chatting. We forgot to check in our reserved hotel. So we just stayed a night at their place.

Just 13, 2015:

It’s our departure day bound for Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia today!! But before going to the airport, we made our last quick stop at Leesburg Premium Outlets, Virginia. We spent a couple of hours here shopping and strolling around this area. By noon, we went to a nearby Turkish Diner to feed our empty tummy. It was a nice meal combination of the Turks and Greeks managed by a Muslim Greek. After the lunch, we headed for Washington-Dulles Airport, Virginia. It was in the late evening that boarded the plane to Kuala Lumpur via Istanbul, Turkey on a Turkish Airlines.

We are grateful for each and every bit of this journey, from the beginning to its completion, from its initial effort of coming to the States through J1 visa of my role as visiting scholar to the North Dakota State University until the graduation of my PhD. Everything is as sweet as it is.

Some quick facts:

For the past 10 days of travelogs,

From Fargo, ND to Sterling, VA.

10 states + DC were involved.

2 types of car rentals were used.

2 rail systems were occupied.

1 tour bus was engaged.

13 attractions were visited.

2 premium outlets were visited.

Prior to that, more than 100 days of lifelong learning experience were embraced while we were in Fargo, ND.

It won’t stop there.

And I am thankful to be given this opportunity. I am delighted to see people inspired by this journey too and would encourage anybody to follow suit.

May you find the answer to your life journey too!

Take care dear readers.

How Does an eProfiling System for Malaysian TVET Instructor Work?

Prior to this post, I have written at least 3 entries about TVET in Malaysia. The first entry was about its framework in comparison to other ASEAN countries, the second entry was about Malaysian TVET Landscape, and the third entry was about the ministerial conflict in managing TVET in comparison to other major World players. For this entry, I am going to write on the most crucial resources and asset in the area of TVET, i.e. human capital and a system that register its details called eProfiling.

agensi terlibat eprofiling

EProfiling is an online system located at the URL of http://eprofiling.ciast.gov.my/ . It was built and governed by one of the renowned TVET institution known as Centre for Instructor and Advanced Skill Training (CIAST). CIAST has her historical timeline that it has been the leading institution in the area of Capacity Building and Train-of-Trainers. This is not only for the institutions in Malaysia but also internationally recognised especially to those countries participated with JICA’s Third Country Training Programme (TCTP) and Malaysian Technical Cooperation Programme (MTCP) managed by Ministry of Foreign Affairs (prior to this, it was managed by Economic Planning Unit (EPU)).

The training approaches came in many range, and were known in many names, e.g. (i) Pedagogy, (ii) Andragogy (for adult learning), (iii) Cert IV (Australian method), (iv) Train-the-Trainer (TTT), … and many more. All with the same aim of certifying the teachers or trainers to be able to deliver training and conduct teaching for their subject matter. All to accredit the instructors that they have the ability to teach and train others in accordance to their area of expertise.

But with vast training institutions and high volume of training providers, it is crucial to administer and register the details of the trainers to a centralised system. This is what the initiative that has taken by CIAST. Having more than 18 agencies to participate in this system to date and to target for about more 30,000 registered instructors by the year 2020. It is certainly contributing to the big data of the instructors and require meticulous management on the system. Hence, continuous research should also complement it.

Due to this fact, I have taken the step to find the opportunity to do presentation on this system abroad. And I feel honoured that one of the international conferences on academic and education development forum had accepted our request to join their serial journal publication. It will be in March this year in Tokyo, Japan. But in preparation to that conference, I am writing this post to introduce to the readers on the overview of this system.

This system is to leverage the following items:

(i) There would be a centralised system that register and contain the details of all available technical and vocational trainers in this country (Malaysia).

(ii) There is a centralised system for searching the instructors with specific abilities and competencies that they do not limit their teaching delivery within their own institutions rather it can be shared and borrowed.

(iii) Transfer of Technology. Transfer of Knowledge and Expertise. Whence there is one a centre that creates pool of details for skilled teachers, it would be easier to find required master trainers to train others from the same discipline too.

(iv) Providing the instructors with the right Industrial Training Attachment. Once, the system was able to identify the instructor’s ability, competencies and industrial sectors that they are capable, upgrading their skills should be simplified to the areas within the gap and within their specific discipline and specialisation.

(v) Further research on training methodology, skill upgrading, technical ability requirements and technology updates should be able to be identified from this system. It is through these researches that TVET training is hoped to be aligned with the latest industry analysis and market needs.

instructor tvet bertauliah 30k - 2020

It is a commendable system indeed to have the pool of trainers registered at one server. Agencies from different ministries including Ministry of Human Resources, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Rural Development, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Home Affairs, … and most of TVET and skill training centres in this country has participated in providing their resources and human capital strengths.

It is with the hope that through this strengths that we are able to build better nation, with better people, community and better socio-economic development.


Computer and Humanity

For the past one month, it happened that I had attended and delivered series of talks on the topic of Industrial Revolution 4.0 particularly in human capital development and the projection of the workforce in Malaysia. Though debates have been actively highlighted that we are yet to be at that revolution level, the interest among the governmental agencies as well as the manufacturing, production and computer-based industries had been contributing to the healthy discourses and practical implementation in this country.

For the past couple of talks that I have done, my children had followed suit. They said, this is one of their favourite slides that I have presented that they enjoyed on the significance of its existence. You see, the children’s opinions and feedbacks are of equal importance to me because the revolution is for them and the projection of future generation is certainly for their better life. So, I took upon their comment to publish this particular posting about the explanation behind this picture.

About Computer and Humanity.

Because today’s generation was born with an environment that every physical thing is connected by one another if not more than two, at least they saw most of their computer-aided systems are just around the corner in their houses. They had missed the fact that the origin of those words were not actually coming from the computing world. For example, ‘thread‘ in a social media application is actually an adaptation to the ‘thread‘ that connects two pieces of clothes when we do sewing. Or the word ‘viral‘ which is also mainly used in social media applications is actually originated from the ‘viral‘ that may cause diseases in health sciences and medical studies. And perhaps, one last example is the word ‘meme‘ which was not originally English rather a greek word for showing an imitation, had evolved to be of a thing within the Internet media users. The Internet ‘meme‘ means an image, video, piece of text, etc., typically humorous in nature, that is copied and spread rapidly by Internet users, often with slight variations (Google Dictionary).

Computer and Humanity

Back to the picture shown in this posting. Those are among the adapted English words that have different meaning from its original areas of study but had evolved to something new in the computing and Internet World. Though to some people, this development is quite disturbing, it is in fact inevitable because of its nature of quickly being spread over the Internet. The trend-setters were sometimes unintentional. But once it has been used by more than one community, it was accepted as a universal terminology in the World of Computers.

  1. Cognitive is the study in the area of Psychology. Cognitive is about the brain and how it works in a human body in determining the good and the bad thing of an action or reaction to the problems encountered. However, the basis of this process had been taken that, that is how the computer works too. The computer imitates the brain of a human to process logic, truth, false, right or wrong in a decision making consequences.
  2. Cloud is a meteorological thing. It is in the sky. At least that was what we have been taught at schools. But for current generation, the cloud is something you use as a storage to your big data and other media and documents which is quite handy and less space taken in spite of the use of multiple flash disks or external hard disks. I guess, that is why the word cloud was chosen. You can see but you cannot touch. It is accessible where ever you go provided that you have the account settings and host servers.
  3. Heuristics is from the area of Psychology too. It is about how we perceive things when we receive the news. Different people measure different kind of news according to their experience and understanding. This is perhaps another reason on why the word was chosen in this particular study of Human Computer Interaction (HCI). Through social media, a photo worth a thousand words. Different people interprets the meaning of a friend’s picture in many angles. That is the heuristics study in computing world.
  4. Neural Networks is a study within the Biological Nervous System. Our nervous system works as a coordinator from one signal in a body part to another for action and reaction. The neural network is another part of our function that works on how to do decision making when our body is facing certain conditions. Because of this function, the same application goes to the computing world. That the neural networks is adapting on how our body’s coordinator makes decision to our actions in the aspects of physical, emotional and rational of a cause.
  5. Ontology is created by philosophical people in the area of metaphysics. The ontology is the study on relationships. In metaphysics, one entity is connected to another by a factor. The relationship might be of mutual, cardinal or existential. This is a complex process of study. However, it has evolved to be of an important study in computer programming and knowledge-based representations too. The computer had translated the ontology in terms of its logic and the calculus of relationship from one entity to another.
  6. Semantics is from the area of linguistics. It is how people communicate and how to ensure that the interaction is perceived as per it was meant. It is not an easy task because the sender might mean something else but the receiver did not get the gist of the sender’s diction. This is how the semantics came into the limelight. Semantics is also emphasizing on how one item is connected to another and the predicate that explains it from its source. The study of semantics had begun to be rigorous since most of the computer-based applications need to understand the human needs in order for them to yield the expected values.
  7. Sentiment is a psychological study in human development. It imitates on how the people’s feelings particularly from visual images that they perceived. It is of importance to create a healthy sentiment in order to project a healthy development within a message. However, the viral messages and threads within the social media are mostly came from the negative sentiments among its users. Still, this kind of sentiment had been studied on what had caused the community to react in such a way to things that were unnecessary.
  8. Web is from the study of living thing. It’s a spider’s home. Easy to remember and perhaps easy to relate. Why it has been chosen as an Internet thing? Certainly because of its structure that connects from one point of to another and amazingly built with more than one level, a complex of spider threads, and quickly constructed, that is why the word Web was chosen to visualize the use of Internet.

You see, most of the applications in a computer system imitate the needs of a human development. It was once invented to help people in simplifying their tasks and problem solving to some daily complex systems. Computers in the house, in the office, in a laboratory, in governmental agencies, in manufacturing plants, in hospitals, in schools and many other buildings. To the extent that it is feared that these innovations might affect our next generations to be much dependable on the machines rather than their own judgements.

That is the main concern for this revolution and need to be addressed by us all. Together !

The STEM, Keywords and Career Choices

We know STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. But not many know on what options do we have out of its knowledge and skills that it offers. This infographic might be simple and less details. But to some, I believe it would give so much meanings and direction to the much debated STEM abbreviation.

This is STEM from my point of view. This is especially for the young generations seeking the meaning of their education and subject matter streaming. I believe you are going to  wander more by just looking at this simple graphics.

STEM Diagram

Science is the fundamentals that hold stories about the basic things in life and living creatures.

Technology is the applications to the science and engineering that makes life easier and provision of facilities.

Engineering is the formulations to the scientific theories and provides support to most of living necessities.

Mathematics is the rules of logic that promotes common senses in making life a better living from one phase to another.

World Civilization and History of Technology

What makes our development of technology today is a yield of historical value of human kind ever since they have existed on this planet (i.e. Earth).

  1. Sumerian Civilization (3500 B.C. to 2000 B.C.), in the Middle East between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. It is the world’s first civilization where people lived together in a city-state. Invented a written language, developed science and mathematics to a high degree, developed a 12-month lunar calendar, invented wheel and made vehicles, and invented the plow and sailboat. The notable prophet to live in this era is Adam (A.S.).
  2. Babylonian Civilization (2000 B.C. to 1155 B.C.), located on the Euphrates River. It is the birthplace of a devised code of laws known as Code of Hammurabi, ability to study astronomy, and created beautiful gardens of Gate of Ishtar and Hanging Gardens of Babylon. The notable prophet to live in this era is Idris, Noah, and Ibrahim (A.S.).

    Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 5.46.44 PM
    Image source:
  3. Assyrian Civilization (1600 B.C. to 612 B.C.), in Northern Mesopotamia. It created the first library, built a system of road, ruled their extended kingdom with appointed governors, the first to develop a standing army, and developed a mail service. The notable prophet to live in this era include Ishaq, Ya’qub, and Ayyub (A.S.).
  4. Hittites Civilization (1750 B.C. to 1200 B.C.), located in Anatolia, the ancient name for Asian Minor. During this time, people started using iron, signed peace treaties, and established a set of laws considered the fairest of the time. The notable prophet during this time include Ilyas, Ilyasa’, Dawud (A.S.).
  5. Egyptian Civilization (3100 B.C. to 332 B.C.), located along the Nile River in northeast Africa. It built the pyramids; the sphinx; canals; and temples, invented solar calendar with 365 days, made a paper-like material from the papyrus plant, used a loom to weave cloth, and invented a system of writing called hieroglyphics. The generations to live in this era was believed to be from the son of Noah (A.S.) named Yafith.
  6. Chinese Civilization (beginning 5000 B.C.), in the valleys of the Huang He and Chang Jiang Rivers in Asia. It has created silk, Great Wall of China, gunpowders, rockets, magnetic compass, book printing, paper money, and porcelain.
  7. Mongol Civilization (A.D. 1206 to 1368), in the Steppe region between Siberia and northwest China. It was the largest contiguous empire in world history, excellent horsemen, and fierce warriors. This era occurred after the death of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
  8. Indus Valley Civilization (2500 B.C. to 1750 B.C.), in the Western part of South Asia in what is now Pakistan and western India. It built dams and canals for irrigation, well-planned cities, one of the world’s first drainage and sewer systems for a city, among the first people to cultivate cotton, among the first people to domesticate animals.
  9. Minoan Civilization (2000 B.C. to 1450 B.C.), in Crete, a large island between Asia Minor and Greece. It is the first civilization in Europe, one of the first social cultures with social equality, built elaborate palaces and large homes for its citizens, and women were treated more fairly than in other cultures of the time. This civilization emerges after the era of Prophet Nuh (A.S.) and most probably from his son named Sam.

    Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 5.48.40 PM
    image source: https://slideplayer.com/slide/9745654/
  10. Mycenaen Civilization (1650 B.C. to 1200 B.C.), on the mainland of Greece. They have systematic administration with leaders, warriors and war. Excellent traders and craftsmen. The generations most probably originated from son of Sam son of Prophet Noah (A.S.).
  11. Greek Civilization (800 B.C. to 323 B.C.), on the mainland of Greece and surrounding islands influencing colonies around Mediterranean Sea. It has formed the world’s first democracy system, dramas, and arts, built magnificent buildings, statues, literature, poetry, scientific approach to study of medicine, write histories, plants classification, rules for geometry and other mathematical contributions.

    Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 6.00.36 PM
    image source: https://www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/ancient-greek-civilization
  12. Celtic Civilization (800 B.C. to A.D 200), in Europe. It produced skillful artisan, artists, and musicians, excellent farmers, fearless warriors, built roads to expand into other countries, and the first people in Northern Europe to make iron.
  13. Viking Civilization (8th to 11th Century A.D.), in Scandinavian countries known as Norway, Denmark and Sweden in modern days. They have excellent seamen, navigators, craftsmen, shipbuilders, traders, explorers, and great story-tellers which they represent in the form of sagas, many of the name of the days are from the Norse language. They exist after the death of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
  14. Phoenician Civilization (2000 B.C. to 800 B.C.), in West Asia. Invention of alphabets, and writing systems, greatest traders, talented craftsmen, techniques of glassblowing, excellent navigators, sailors and shipbuilders. This generation is believed to be rooted from the son of Noah named Kana’an and notable prophets to live in this era include Hud, Saleh, Lut, Ismail, Shuib, Zulkifli, Yunus, and Yahya (A.S.).
  15. Hebrew Civilization (2000 B.C. to 30 B.C.), in the Middle East. It is a highlight on the origins of religions believing in One God, other related creations are such as Ten Commandments and the miracle of Torah and Old Testament. The notable prophets to live in this era include Ibrahim, Ishaq, Ya’qub, Yusuf, Ayyub, Musa, Harun, Zulkifli, Dawud, Sulaiman, Ilyas, Ilyasa’, Yunus, and Zakariya (A.S.).

    Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 5.56.52 PM
    image source: https://ourladyofgoodshepherd.net/twelve-tribes-of-israel
  16. Persian Civilization (550 B.C. to 330 B.C.), in the East of the Fertile Crescent in the Middle East. It built roads and canals, divided the empire into provinces, and wrote Avesta i.e. Persian holy book of Zoroasterism.
  17. Byzantine Civilization (A.D. 284 to 1450), in the Europe on the eastern section of Roman Empire. It preserved Greek and Roman Culture and Law, great works of art including architecture, mosaics, enamel work, ivory carving, metal work. It is enhancement of the spread of Christianity. It is an era of post-death of Prophet Isa and the spread of Islam by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his followers.

    Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 6.02.18 PM
    image source: https://slideplayer.com/slide/1585394/
  18. Olmec Civilization (1200 B.C. to 100 B.C.), in Southern Gulf coast of Mexico to El Salvador. It built temples, monuments, and pyramids, developed first calendar in Americas, carved huge stone heads, built stone pavements and drainage systems, and had counting systems.

As an additional factor to the different creations and inventions of materials, machines and methods by the mankind, the following notable empires are distinguishing them from one another:

  1. Etruscan Empire (800 B.C. to 300 B.C.)
  2. Alexander’s Empire (336 B.C. to 323 B.C.)
  3. Roman Empire (500 B.C. to A.D. 1453)
  4. Ottoman Empire (A.D. 800 to 1923). Many science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education are based upon the findings during this era. It has one notable era known as Islamic Golden Age where names like al-Khawarizmi, Ibn Sina (Avicenna), Ibn Khuld, al-Jabar, al-Hazen, al-Kindi, and al-Biruni emerged. The technologies developed during this era include in metaphysics, astronomy, algebra, calculus, geometry, trigonometry, biology, physics, and chemistry.

    Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 6.04.51 PM
    image source: http://www.pearltrees.com/u/53944586-wikipedia-encyclopedia
  5. African Empire (2000 B.C. to present). It was believed that the generations that reside in this continent were originated from the son of Noah (A.S.) with the name of Ham. They have distinguished characteristics until today with many achievements and notable foundations.
  6. Mayan Empire (1000 B.C. to A.D. 900)
  7. Aztec Empire (A.D. 1200 to 1521)
  8. Inca Empire (A.D. 1100 to 1532)



  1. Blattner, D. “World Civilizations and Cultures“, Mark Twain Media Inc., USA (2012).
  2. Syauqi Abu Khalil, “Atlas Al-Quran“, Dar al-Fikr, Damascus (2006). (Translated by Muhammad Abdul Ghoffar, Penerbit Almahira, Jakarta, Indonesia).

Industry 4.0 vs Society 5.0

The other day, we had a meeting with a Japanese counterpart on the mutual collaborations that we might be having for the next couple of years, we mentioned to him about adapting the approach of Industrial Revolution 4.0 into our work ethics and the applications that we might be able to benefit out of this era.

That Japanese man laughed hard. Left us puzzled. Did we say something wrong about it? Isn’t the Industry 4.0 as the thing right now? After a while, he gave us a reply that the Japanese weren’t keen about Industry 4.0 because they regard that as something to do with Germany’s work lifestyle. Not theirs. Left us feeling guilty of bringing up the topic. Left us to be much more careful as to what kind of approaches that we should discuss with them the next time.

After a week time, I have attended a workshop organised by a Japanese organisation which was also accompanied by another colleague. During our chit chatting time, she unintentionally mentioned about Industry 4.0 again to the Japanese representative with the expectation on how to move forward with practical project that we could plan. The Japanese counterpart wryly had to answer saying that, the Japanese are not in favour with the theme. They are actually having another revolution that they saw as better than the German’s Industry 4.0. That has made us rolling our eyes. She said, the Japanese are now looking forward towards realizing the revolution of Society 5.0.

Society 5.0! Well, at that point onwards, I began digging the scopes of this so-called Japanese Revolution.

Image 20180809 154909

(image source: http://analytics-magazine.org/industrie-4-0-analytics-everywhere/)


(image source: http://www8.cao.go.jp/cstp/english/society5_0/index.html)

As a matter of fact, the similarities that can be concluded from the two revolutions are:

  1. Both have the themes of Internet-of-Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Smart Machines, Knowledge Management and Smart Web to represent their work connectivity.
  2. Both emphasize on how people communicate with the machines and other people via the available Intelligent Machines.
  3. Both have the strengths of doing multitasking via various kind of automated media and computational platforms.
  4. Both are stressing on the work demand in this era as no more a single-job per man-hour, but always proceeded with another processes or as a medium to another procedures.
  5. Both are stressing on the free movement of one process to another and less protocol needed to get the job done.
  6. Both promote sustainability engineering in the midst of progressive materially-proned technology by ensuring the preservation of nature and ecology are still at their best.

On contrary, perhaps the differences that can be observed from these two ideologies are:

  1. Industry 4.0 is emphasizing on how to let the job done. Where as the Society 5.0 is emphasizing on how to optimise the man-hour responsibility to get the job done.
  2. Industry 4.0 is highlighting on the effectiveness of using the automated machines. Where as the Society 5.0 is highlighting on the effectiveness of optimising the knowledge worker with the help of the intelligent machines.
  3. Industry 4.0 is about computerised communications by all means. Where as the Society 5.0 is meant for the harmonisation of work with the help of intelligent machines for the benefit of the workers.

Nonetheless, their similarities beat the differences that both are optimising the use of machines, networking and computational intelligence in their work ethics. What matter most, the eccentric values of the two revolutions are on the ways  that those ideals are carried out and the work culture embedded by the people of Germany and the Japanese which have defined the pillars of their differences.


  1. http://analytics-magazine.org/industrie-4-0-analytics-everywhere/
  2. http://www8.cao.go.jp/cstp/english/society5_0/index.html
  3. https://www.ibtimes.co.uk/mind-gap-industry-4-0-future-manufacturing-1665243
  4. https://www.japan.go.jp/abenomics/_userdata/abenomics/pdf/society_5.0.pdf