95 Youth Conferences Projects

The Baha’i world received a great news earlier this year; there will be 95 Youth Conferences around the world! The youth in different cities and nations around the world are excited and thrilled to hear this news. The conferences revolve around the messages from the Universal House of Justice, the supreme administrative body for the believers of the Baha’i Faith, on how to best utilize core activities to promote the well-being and growth of human civilization.

The Universal House of Justice expresses the purpose of the conferences as an opportunity to make a contribution to humanity; stating:

To every generation of young believers comes an opportunity to make a contribution to the fortunes of humanity, unique to their time of life. For the present generation, the moment has come to reflect, to commit, to steel themselves for a life of service from which blessing will flow in abundance.

With the dates of the 95 Youth Conferences being announced, and website properties in the realm of social media being managed by a number of volunteers around the world, projects are starting to bloom to build the momentum (and sustain the momentum) of the goals and plans of the 95 Youth Conferences.

The items below are links to notable projects, and social media pages, relevant to 95 Youth Conferences:

Social Media Pages

95 Youth Conference Facebook Page

95 Youth Conference Facebook Group

95 Youth Conference Twitter Page


JY+Us (Juice)

If there are more projects or social media pages that you are aware of, drop a comment or let me know at @abehjat

The Forum – Nature and Universal Law


Every other week, I hold a gathering in my house called “The Forum.” The purpose of my gathering is to engage in dialog and consultation on developing the framework of action with the goal of promoting the betterment of mankind.

The gathering revolves around the Abdu’l-Baha’s “Some Answered Questions” because I felt the topics were rich with meaning, approached the matter with logic, and conveyed the message in the spirit of learning.

Even though this may seem like a deepening session, the gathering is open to all to gain a better understanding on the Teachings of the Baha’i Faith, and underlining the universal purpose that humanity has in this world.

Nature and Universal Law

To understand the basic principles of existence, Abdu’l-Baha explains what natures consists of, and how nature is governed by conditions that allows it to grow, expand and live. In Some Answered Questions, Abdu’l-Baha states:

“Nature is that condition, that reality, which in appearance consists in life and death, or, in other words, in the composition and decomposition of all things. This Nature is subjected to an absolute organization, to determined laws, to a complete order and a finished design, from which it will never depart—to such a degree, indeed, that if you look carefully and with keen sight, from the smallest invisible atom up to such large bodies of the world of existence as the globe of the sun or the other great stars and luminous spheres, whether you regard their arrangement, their composition, their form or their movement, you will find that all are in the highest degree of organization and are under one law from which they will never depart.”

Abdu’l-Baha’s definition of nature, and the things the nature is influenced by, resonates very well with a concept in the field of Physics regarding string theory; a sub-quark element that is responsible for all the forces that a mass is influenced by (weak, strong, and electromagnetic). Edward Whitten, a renowned Theoretical Physicist at Princeton University, can the following statement about superstring theory, which is a derivative of string theory:

“Superstring theories provide a framework in which the force of gravity may be united with the other three forces in nature: the weak, electromagnetic and strong forces. Recent progress has shown that the most promising superstring theories follow from a single theory. For the last generation, physicists have studied five string theories and one close cousin. Recently it has become clear that these five or six theories are different limiting cases of one theory which, though still scarcely understood, is the candidate for superunification of the forces of nature.”

Humanity is a part of Nature; however, what distinguishes humans from other bodies, organisms and elements on the earth is the fact that humans are intelligent beings that are able to promote the progress of their community and society; break the barriers of knowledge through innovation, experience and discovery. Abdu’l-Baha explains further:

“But when you look at Nature itself, you see that it has no intelligence, no will. For instance, the nature of fire is to burn; it burns without will or intelligence. The nature of water is fluidity; it flows without will or intelligence. The nature of the sun is radiance; it shines without will or intelligence. The nature of vapor is to ascend; it ascends without will or intelligence. Thus it is clear that the natural movements of all things are compelled; there are no voluntary movements except those of animals and, above all, those of man. Man is able to resist and to oppose Nature because he discovers the constitution of things, and through this he commands the forces of Nature; all the inventions he has made are due to his discovery of the constitution of things. For example, he invented the telegraph, which is the means of communication between the East and the West. It is evident, then, that man rules over Nature.”

Abdu’l-Baha’s proof of intelligence is also agreed upon not only by scientists, but also laureates, other religious bodies, and scientists. Reflecting on two short quotes that relay such understanding:

“The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.”

– F. Scott Fitzgerald (author of The Great Gatsby)

“The senses, they say, are great. Greater than the senses is the mind, greater than the mind is intelligence but greater than the intelligence is He.”

– Bhagavad Gita (Sacred Hindu Scripture)

It is clear and evident that humanity has reigned over Nature since the start of time. However, the greater question that arises is what intelligence developed Nature? For anything that has been created, whether an atom or a mountain, an intelligent source is needed. In the realm of science, we utilize the basis that it is through chance and chaos that such a wonder was achieved. Yet, even numbers show elegance and uniformity that it cannot merely be chance, but a very well calibrated design, a design that enables us, and Nature, to live and foster. Abdu’l-Baha sheds light on this matter:

“Now, when you behold in existence such organizations, arrangements and laws, can you say that all these are the effect of Nature, though Nature has neither intelligence nor perception? If not, it becomes evident that this Nature, which has neither perception nor intelligence, is in the grasp of Almighty God, Who is the Ruler of the world of Nature; whatever He wishes, He causes Nature to manifest.
One of the things which has appeared in the world of existence, and which is one of the requirements of Nature, is human life. Considered from this point of view man is the branch; nature is the root. Then can the will and the intelligence, and the perfections which exist in the branch, be absent in the root? It is said that Nature in its own essence is in the grasp of the power of God, Who is the Eternal Almighty One: He holds Nature within accurate regulations and laws, and rules over it.”

In addition to the clear and logical message presented here by Abdu’l-Baha, I decided to venture online and find out if any other figures and entities from the past have shed light on this idea. And it was amazing for me to see the universal agreement, spoken in different tones and languages, to describe what Abdu’l-Baha mentioned about what governs Nature, and of the essence of God.

To clarify, God is not merely a man in the sky, nor an entity to which we can comprehend and grasp. It is best to consider it as an Intelligent being that is beyond our realm of comprehension, yet present. A better example of this is the value and concept of infinity, which is beyond the realm of comprehension in our mind. However, it provides the answer to missing links and questions in Mathematics, especially in mathematical series.

Among some of the individuals who have discussed this matter include Max Planck, where he shares a fundamental message in the realm of Quantum Mechanics:

“As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about atoms this much: There is no matter as such. All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particle of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. This mind is the matrix of all matter.”

Derived from the lecture, ‘Das Wesen der Materie’ [The Essence/Nature/Character of Matter], Florence, Italy (1944). Archiv zur Geschichte der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Abt. Va, Rep. 11 Planck, Nr. 1797.

Previous religious Holy Writings, from Quran and Bhagavad Gita, gave their interpretation of Intelligence and essence of God:

It is He Who brought you forth from the wombs of your mothers when ye knew nothing; and He gave you hearing and sight and intelligence and affections: that ye may give thanks.

– The Quran, Surat Al Nahl (The Bee), verse 78

When a man puts away all the desires of his mind, O Partha (Arjuna), and when his spirit is content in itself, then he is called stable in intelligence.

– Bhagavad Gita (Sacred Hindu Scripture)

And finally, Isaac Newton, in the Untitled Treatise on Revelation, under “Rules for interpreting the words and language in Scripture”, which was one of Newton’s writings and research dedicated to understanding and how to correctly interpret the Writings of Bible, states in Rule 9:

“It is the perfection of God’s works that they are all done with the greatest simplicity. He is the God of order and not of confusion. And therefore as they would understand the frame of the world must endeavor to reduce their knowledge to all possible simplicity, so must it be in seeking to understand these visions.”

“If I were a Baha’i”

Egypt is a wonderful country. Its people are hospitable, rich in history and are blessed with many wonderful talents, laureates, and notable figures that have brought a positive impact to the world.

Unfortunately, in the past few years it has faced many difficulties. Egypt went through a difficult period of history where injustice, prejudice, war, intolerance and poverty were prevalent. Among those suffering from such calamities are the Baha’is in Egypt. An example includes how Baha’is were not provided with the Egyptian national ID because of their Faith. The IDs are similar to the Social Security system in the United States, which is essential for its citizens to register their children to go to schools, getting medication, and having access to government benefits.

There has been progress in Egypt for the Baha’is; however, it marks a small step to the many steps needed to bring forth true justice. Recently, news circulated that Egypt’s Minister of Education publicly announced that the Baha’is will not have access to education in Egypt. In addition to Baha’is, members of the Coptic community are fleeing the violence, and women are facing the challenge of defending themselves from being sexually abused due to lack of security. Egypt has to strive to seek justice; a justice that is all-encompassing.

What lead me to write about the Baha’is in Egypt? My father forwarded me an email that caught my attention, and I decided to share its content here. To give a brief background, a prominent Egyptian intellectual and author, Dr. Tarek Heggy published an article in Arabic that was first noted to be posted in “Civic Egypt” website, and titled “If I Were A Baha’i”. The article covers the tribulations the Baha’is faced; placing himself in the shoes of those who face such hardship and express their wishes. The following is the English translation of the article I linked above, and various translations are available online, too:

If I were Bahá’í: I would have brought to the attention of all the great personalities and the intellectuals of the world the respect and regard with which their peers in Egypt received ‘Abdu’l-Bahá (Son of Bahá’u’lláh) during His visit to this country in the early 20th. Century, and with what filth and disregard today’s pretentious personalities and false intellectuals of Egypt smear the fair name of Bahá’í and the Bahá’ís.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the concourse of Justice in the world on the subject of the Al-Azhar Establishment and say to its honourable Ulamá: How could you decide today that Bahá’í is not a religion when the Superior Shar’ia Tribunal of Beba/Souhag ruled in 1925 that “Bahá’í is an independent religion.”

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the concourse of Justice in the world on the subject of the Al-Azhar Establishment which with all the mosques, mesdjids and kettab schools at their disposal in Egypt, have found it necessary to disown the Bahá’í Community of their main Centre building to use it for a Qur’ánic school.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the concourse of Justice in the world on the subject of the imprisonment of some 92 Bahá’ís–men and women–aged between 2 and 80 years. They were arrested between midnight and dawn from all over Egypt and transferred to jail in Tanta; then falsely accused of treason, misconduct and espionage, far and wide in the media, for no other reason than because they are Bahá’í.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the concourse of Justice in the world on the frequent arrest of Bahá’ís, men and women, their incarceration in jail for days, weeks or months for interrogation. The courts have never found them guilty of neither crime nor fault, but they were Bahá’í.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the concourse of Art in the west and in the east, to the case of one of the greatest and most admired artists of Egypt, Hussein Bikar, who was arrested in his home and driven to jail with other renowned Bahá’ís for days of interrogation regarding his and their Bahá’í Faith.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the concourse of Art in the west and in the east, and would say to them: Hussein Bikar, one of the greatest and most admired Artists of Egypt had no Identity card at his death at almost 90 years of age. The Egyptian Authorities refused to issue one with “Bahá’í” mentioned in the space for religion.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the world Organizations of Law and Justice and of Human Rights, government and non-government alike, and said to them: imagine that in Egypt of the 21st. Century, individual Identity Cards have to include the binding indication of the religion of the individual?

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the world Organizations of Law and Justice and of Human Rights, government and non-government alike, and said to them: imagine that in Egypt of the 21st. Century, individual Identity Cards must include the binding indication of one of only three religions notwithstanding the individual’s wish or faith?

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the world Organizations of Law and Justice and of Human Rights, government and non-government alike, and said to them: in Egypt of the 21st. Century, the sons and daughters of Bahá’ís are issued individual Identity Cards with a dash (–) for religion while their parents are refused identity cards: WHY? Because the Egyptian State does not recognize Bahá’í marriage! O people of the world: come and take stock of administrative excellence!

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness all the Ministers of Education of the world and informed them that: the Minister of Education of Egypt has declared that he will refuse admittance of children–yes children of Bahá’ís to the government schools because the children are Bahá’í!

If I were Bahá’í: I would have informed the world that the new Egyptian Constitution contains the necessary elements for the elimination of the Bahá’í minority in Egypt.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have informed the world that burning the homes of Bahá’ís takes place with impunity in Egypt.

If I were Bahá’í: I would have taken for witness the world Organizations of Mass Media, of Law and Justice and of Human Rights, government and non-government alike, and informed them that in Egypt, inciting to kill Bahá’ís, through TV and speeches is normal and is done with impunity!

In spite of all this:

If I were Bahá’í: I would have said to those in authority in Egypt: I am loyal to my country, I love my country, I strive for the success and progress of my country and I consider the children of my neighbors as my children without consideration of religion or creed. How wonderful would Egypt be were you, who are in authority, to follow in this same path.

The Elegant System: Neither Capitalism or Communism

Whether communism, or capitalism, both systems are flawed and unsuitable for this time and age. It is time for a new Keynes, Marshall and Adam Smith influential economist to develop a new, global model.


There are three solid observations:

  1. No human is perfect, thus immoral and irrational matters occur.
  2. Neither system will work at all given the foundation of both systems, which assumes humans are rational and morally sound.
  3. Both systems assume the outside world is in a constant state that we can assume to be ideal, and that the foreign relations are stable. Reality is that the world is more random. Like a nth sided dice, where “n” is the different factors that affect the world beyond borders: Nature, education, wealth, resources, politics…etc

Despite the popular idea in the West to decentralize all institutions, Government has an important role to play in the development of economic standards of a nation. Government is needed for any case, regardless of any system. But I’ll leave that to some PoliSci genius to identify a new form of administration that breaks away from the Greek Senate system that is old and outdated, or the British Parliamentary system, which is like a massive party rather than a governing body.

Given such observations, it is evident proves that neither system is valid for this time and age given the infrastructure and foundation present. A better model requires to be devised the focuses on empowering and encouraging people to act morally and rationally; leading to the development of economic standard and transforming society to practice trade and economics effectively and efficiently. So far, we have a system that gives people negative points (black points in driver’s license, three-strike law, criminal records…etc). Therefore, the question holds, why not create a reward system?

My opinion is to develop a new economic model that encompasses a global perspective on things, while standing on the foundation of resolving economic problems through moral initiatives and endeavors.

International Trade in Classical Models vs. Reality

Capitalism and Communist Economics express matters in a microeconomic scale limited to a single nation. And when International Trade is integrated to this matter, it focuses strictly on scenarios and events that occur at the port of the local nation of which the microeconomic principles are in play. Based on such assumption, the model limits the transaction to a system that extends as far as the borders of the nation, and anything beyond that border is considered “ideal” or “in constant state”.

Therefore, in an ideal scenario, Capitalist nations should work strictly in promoting their own interest and the Communist nation follow the same suit, too. These measures/ideologies are introduced in the form of tariffs, quotas, trade barriers, or even embargos (extreme case).

In the realm of Economics, Noble Prize winners Heckscher and Ohlin introduced Heckscher-Ohlin Theory, which explains how two countries can get greater gains from trading with each other if they have different resources. This model is independent of Communism/Capitalistic model. Even though this model only focuses on resources, it is a good step forward to proving the foundation of how unity in trade is the key to progress. In 2000’s, Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz paved way to the power and benefit of globalization, and breaking the barriers of Capitalism and Communism by supporting more freedom in trade, more transparency, and great equivalency (this is like a mix of capitalism and communism if you think about it).

Anyhow, utilizing the latest information we gained from the new wave of Economics, and merging the growing field of Behavioral Economics, I think we are capable of providing a solution.

Role of Government

In Economics, the government’s duty is to ensure fair play of businesses in the field. Their task is to provide protection, guidance, and assistance when in need. Small businesses strive through Small Business Incentives provided by the government to grow and develop, while corporations have their rights protected by the legal clause given by government (such as patents). And in return, of course, government needs income through taxes and what not to maintain such complex legal and judicial system. But you already know this 😉

As for government controlling business, I can think of three ways:

1) Protection Against Monopoly: The traditional biological rule is survival of the fittest, and so the weakest company will die off in the cut throat market. I don’t support this model of thinking, but this is the current environment. Let’s assume the battle goes on until one company survives. Based on microeconomic principle, a monopolist can abuse its position to get the most profit from individuals. Not to mention, making it extremely difficult for new businesses to arise. And so far, this isn’t limited to Monopoly, but we can also say Oligopolies and Duopolies are as bad, too. Government limits such practice to protect people from such abuse.

2) Free rider problem: In the context of businesses, suppose there is a street, on which 25 people live, and which suffers from a litter problem. A weekly street-cleaning service would cost $2,500 annually. Suppose that each person is able and willing to pay $100 or more for the service. However, it is possible that some people on the street will refuse to pay, anticipating that the service will be undertaken regardless. It is possible that if enough people refuse to pay, the service will not be hired; an example of market failure. This is where the government has to step in and mitigate this problem, since again, people are extremely irrational.

3) Promoting National Interest: Sometimes, government control a business to push their own agenda, and this is visible in the field of agriculture and technology. For example, military/defense industry receives far greater funding than any other industry due to US government’s interest. As in terms of trade, the United States places trade restrictions on foreign fruits and goods not only because of environmental problem, but also to eliminate the competition of food within the United States and promote farming in the USA (otherwise, who the hell would farm. It’s very expensive to farm, which explains the need for subsidy). However, if utilized properly, this method can assist the government to focus on matters that are in great need of attention, such as encouraging medical research, developing new industries, transforming older methodologies and leading a progressive civilization.

Whatever it may be, In the end, I just wish to see myself going forward with innovative ideas and not feel afraid to let go of old models if it is deemed broken. And I feel that we are there, and we can all accomplish great things.

Looking forward to your insight and comments, and feel free to share your thoughts, too.

Simple Science Tricks – Clouds in a Bottle

Clouds are beautiful! You look up to the sky and you see them in different shapes and sizes. What’s even more amazing is that they have different names for the different shapes; like CirrusNimbostratus, and Cumulus. Though, the biggest question we had when we all saw those beautiful clouds (or sometimes sad clouds) is how are they made?

A cloud is a large collection of water droplets, very tiny ones, or ice crystals. Since the droplets are super small and tiny, they can float up in the air.

Actually, all air contains water to be practice. However, when we are near the ground level, or sea level, water is usually in the form of water vapor, which is invisible to us because of the distribution of water molecule in the space provided (imagine a pea in a football stadium and you are seeing the stadium from a helicopter).

When warm air rises, it expands and cools due to changes in the atmosphere itself. When the water vapor gets cold, the water molecules come together slightly closer and form tiny droplets; just like how we cuddle with someone when we get cold ourselves. This process is called condensation, when air molecules condense due to cold and slowly form into a liquid. When billions of these droplets come together, yet they are spaced not too far from each other, they become a visible cloud.

How does condensation work?

Condensation forms when water changes from a vapor (or gas) to a liquid. Consider the water molecules as people. For people to go around, hang out and meet with friends, they need energy. In the presence of heat, there is energy for things to happen (not extreme heat, of course).

People cannot stand extreme heat; otherwise, this place would have been packed!

So water molecules party it up and rock out everywhere in the air because of decent heat. However, as the water is cooled and there is less heat energy for the individual molecules and particles to move around, it then condenses. Just like cuddling. Therefore, condensation happens because of change in temperature.

How do clouds float?

Clouds are heavy. The water in a cloud can have a mass of several million tons. So, how do they float?

Cloud droplets are also about 1000 times heavier than evaporated (gas) water, so they are much heavier than air. However, they do not fall, but stay in the air, because there is warm air all round the heavier water droplets. You can imagine the warm air being bullies pushing the water to be together into a droplet.

When water changes from gas to droplets, this makes heat. Because the droplets are very small, they “stick” to the warm air. And thus, they float.

The Experiment

The Summary

Make some clouds in a bottle.

What you need:

  • Tea spoon
  • A 2-Liter bottle and a cap
  • Matches/Fire
  • Piece of Newspaper


What’s going on?

As the video mentioned, the increase in pressure and decrease in pressure is increasing the temperature (remember how hot it is when using a bicycle pump?). This phenomena is better explained by this glorious formula, ideal Gas Law:

PV = nRT

No, we don't measure gas with those moles. Nor the moles on your body!

Where the volume (V) is constant because your gas is in the bottle of volume 2 liters, and there is a constant amount of gas (n) measured in moles, R is the ideal, or universal, gas constant, equal to the product of Boltzmann’s constant and Avogadro’s constant. And finally, T is temperature. As pressure changes often to higher pressure on average, it increases the change in temperature, leading to higher temperature (since the original temperature is constant).

Given the increase in temperature, change in pressure, and presence of water molecules in the bottle, clouds are formed satisfying the conditions and explanations mentioned above!

Dispelling the Myth: Firearm is more dangerous than Drunk Driving

After seeing all this debate about gun control and comparing it to drunk driving, I decided to find the facts out for myself. If there is a strong principle that I advocate whole-heartedly, it is this:

Independent investigation of Truth

And so, I set out to investigate the numbers on my own using the sources available to me by the Department of Justice and Center for Disease Control.


More people die or get injured by Firearms annually than drunk driving. According the the Bureau of Justice statistics for period of 2005-2010, the average annual death/injury/terrorization by firearm is 155,250 victims (Source: http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/vvcs9310.pdf – Page 7, Table 9)

According to Center for Disease Control, the 2010 statistics alone for drunk driving lead to death of 10,228 in 2010 alone (source: http://www.cdc.gov/Motorvehiclesafety/Impaired_Driving/data.html)

For both cases, further control and regulation reduced deaths in each scenario.

Myth: Busted

Extra: Mental Health and Gun Violence

Data about Mental Health vs. Non-Mental Health that committed crime:

According to the Bureau of Justice, nearly 1 in 5 violent crimes are done by someone considered mentally unstable (whether psychological, drug based, or alcohol). Based on 2006 research, they found:

“Female inmates had higher rates of mental health problems than male inmates—in state prisons, 73 percent of females and 55 percent of males; in federal prisons, 61 percent of females and 44 percent of males; and in local jails, 75 percent of females and 63 percent of males.”

The cause behind such mental problems are:

“When compared with other inmates and probationers, the mentally ill inmates and probationers reported higher rates of prior physical and sexual abuse and higher rates of alcohol and drug abuse by a parent or guardian while they were growing up. Among mentally ill state prisoners, nearly a third of men and three-quarters of the women said they had been physically or sexually abused in the past. More than 40 percent of the mentally ill inmates said their parents had abused alcohol or drugs. More than half said a parent, brother or sister had also been in prison or jail.”

And finally, to dispel the firearm matter when it comes to mental health:

“Use of a weapon did not vary by mental health status

Convicted violent offenders who had a mental health problem were as likely as those without to have used a weapon during the offense (table 9). An estimated 37% of both State prisoners who had a mental problem and those without said they had used a weapon during the offense. By specific type of weapon, among convicted violent offenders in State prisons who had a mental health problem, slightly less than a quarter (24%) had used a firearm, while a tenth (10%) had used a knife or sharp object.”

Source: http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/mhppji.pdf

Gun Control Economics

Today, twenty children and six adults were killed in a shooting in Newton, Connecticut [BBC Link]. Among the killed was the killer, who took away his life after committing his massacre. In 2012 alone, there has been four mass shootings. Among them include the shooting in a mall in Oregon, in a movie theater in Colorado and a Sikh temple in Colorado. Despite the numbers of death caused by guns, there are few who are adamant to bring the gun control issue up.

Before I resume, I would like to state that I am completely against guns, as I find its purpose is to kill. A purpose that lacks any moral and logical foundation, and is poison to our community and society. A human invention that has led to the death of people all across the world.

Gun Control – The Challenge

As mentioned before, there are individuals in our society who are adamant and unwilling to let go of certain opinions that promote and endorse the distribution of weapons to society under the banner of defense and freedom. Whenever the issue of Gun Control arises, those who advocate for it face many challenges. Among such challenges include: Lobby groups such as the NRA, the 18th Century Amendment in the United States Constitution, and lack of education and awareness by the public. Based on those factors, utilization of a legal policy to minimize gun usage, or implement gun control, through law alone is insufficient. Therefore, a different method should be utilized to address this matter.

Economics of Gun Control

Given the delicate situation, the medium I suggest to mitigate gun related crimes is through economic penalization and economic reward. How would it work? Let’s start with the fist of law:

Economic Penalty

At every crime scene, it is easy to determine the weapon and bullet used that inflicted injury or death of a person. With every casualty, whether death or injury, the institutions supplying such weapons and bullets will be penalized significantly. A good example can be as follows:

27 people died in this incident, with over 100 bullets were shot during the killing spree. For each casualty, it’s a $500,000 per body and for each bullet it is $1000/each bullet fired. The total would be $13.5 Million for deaths alone, and over $100,000 for just bullets alone.

The disadvantage of such process that I’m sure will arise in Congress is the value of life. Can life be really worth $500,000? How do we determine the potential capacity lost? It is a very sensitive subject, but it requires to be addressed.

The proceeds of such financial penalty will be devoted for the families who have lost their loved ones, the medical attention they need, and for the emergency team that have devoted their time and efforts to bring calm and peace to their community.

The increase in the cost will provide a pinch to the gun suppliers and producers. Promoting for the push for stricter rules to be implemented to minimize losses and finding an optimum point where cost and benefit balances (unfortunately, I don’t think gun organization view humans as beings but rather as an economic resource to which they wish to sell guns to).

Economic Benefit

The benefits that will be provided for a company whose weapons are not found in crime scenes, or have minimized the number of their weapons in the market, is getting better access to gun bids for government defense contracts, gaining a better stature in the public light. That’s about it. No monetary benefit or discount. The goal is to enstill a better sense of community and human nature in those institutions to view each casualty as a loss for the community, and the world.

This may be need to be revised, but it is a proposal I would like the world to know of, and I hope it is for the best.

In the meantime, I would like to share this prayer for the children who have passed away today in the world:

“That beloved child addresseth thee from the hidden world: ‘O thou kind Mother, thank divine Providence that I have been freed from a small and gloomy cage and, like the birds of the meadows, have soared to the divine world—a world which is spacious, illumined, and ever gay and jubilant. Therefore, lament not, O Mother, and be not grieved; I am not of the lost, nor have I been obliterated and destroyed. I have shaken off the mortal form and have raised my banner in this spiritual world. Following this separation is everlasting companionship. Thou shalt find me in the heaven of the Lord, immersed in an ocean of light.’”


Halloween Experiment – Risk Tolerance of Children

This Halloween I decided to be creative. It is a Wednesday, the Giants are celebrating because they won, and I have nothing better and cannot do much because of work. It finally dawned on me that it is Halloween; a day where children with their parents come knocking at your door to get a bite of that sweet tasty chocolate or candy you have in store.

I decided to conduct an experiment!

While I was doing my work, I realized what a wonderful opportunity it is to have those volunteers be part of my little experiment to test their behavior. There are many research in the world regarding behavior of customers and consumers when deciding on what risks to take. However, what about risk tolerance of kids. Are kids more risk tolerant than their adult counterparts? Do they even know what risk means? I can’t express how excited I was!

The following is the PowerPoint presentation of my experiment, and I hope to create a template in the future so we can test this experiment across the globe.

California Prop Analysis

Because of all the spam and bombardment of crappy information and confusion out there. I decided to write my own version analyzing all propositions as simply as possible, while at the same time, maintain a neutral status. I hope you enjoy this post as much as I do, because I believe voting is a very essential element for our democracy.

Below are the propositions that myself and my friend, Ariana Faustini, aggregated and edited to explain all the propositions to help California voters, like Ariana and I, to decide more efficiently and effectively.

Prop 30

Temporary Taxes to Fund Education. Guaranteed Local Public Safety Funding. Initiative Constitutional Amendment

A proposition that uses increase in taxes to fund university and education programs in California. Those in favor say it will help provide budget for California’s Education system. Those against it state that it is more important to streamline the current infrastructure than to put money in a broken system.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • You will support increase in sales tax from 7.25% -> 7.5%
  • Increase of income taxes for families that get more than $250K/Year for seven years. If you are less than $250K, you don’t get taxed
  • Puts tax revenues for 89% of highschools and 11% on community colleges
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 31

State Budget. State and Local Government. Initiative Constitutional Amendment and Statute

A proposition that aims to revamp and transform the method on how the government takes into account their operations. Basically, it provides a more “business-oriented” rather than “bureaucratic-oriented” perspective of balancing budget and taking financial statement into account. People who support this prop declare that this helps in improving government spending and bring into account their activity, whereas those who oppose it states that this will add further bureaucracy, because in the end, someone has to implement it and take this bill into account legally.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Establishes two-year state budget cycle
  • Prohibits Legislature from creating expenditures of more than $25 million unless revenues or spending cuts are identified
  • Permits Governor to cut budget unilaterally during declared fiscal emergencies if Legislature fails to act
  • Requires performance reviews of all state programs
  • Requires performance goals in state and local budgets
  • Requires publication of bills at least three days prior to legislative vote
  • Allows local governments to alter how laws governing state-funded programs apply to them, unless there is a veto in play the refuses them so
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 32

Political Contributions by Payroll Deduction. Contributions to Candidates. Initiative Statute

In simple terms, this proposition bans corporations and unions from funding a local or state candidate during elections; otherwise wise known as special interest money/funds. Those who support this proposition state that this will help bring out the voice of the residents of California and place emphasis on residents rather than special interest groups; on the other hand, those who oppose it express that this is not expanded for Super Political Action Committees (PACs), which are the main source of political funding, and state that the legislative rule gives Super PACs political immunity against this bill, making it easier for candidates to receive funds from corporations and unions via Super PACs.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Ban both, exclusively, corporate and union contributions to state and local candidates
  • Ban contributions by government contractors to the politicians who control contracts awarded to them
  • Ban automatic deductions by corporations, unions, and government of employees’ wages to be used for politics
  • Super PACs and other political affiliations are “NOT” bound by this prop, and have permission to fund candidates
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 33

Auto Insurance Companies. Prices based on Driver’s History of Insurance Coverage. Initiative Statute

This proposition was a tricky read, but made more sense after I spent around 20 minutes to understand what the hell was going on. In essence, this prop provides car insurance company access to your historical records in driving and base the price of premium, and discount, on your driver history; which includes how long you had your previous insurance, how long you drove well, and what you’ve been charged in the past. Supporters of this proposition state that this will reward insurance buyers with discount because insurance corporation can determine a better price for you; however, opposition states that the penalty is greater than the reward as the insurance firms have a better grasp of your driving history and can harm you through increasing the cost based on only if you hadn’t have insurance coverage in the past five years alone.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Changes current law to allow insurance companies to set prices based on whether the driver previously carried auto insurance with any insurance company
  • Allows insurance companies to give proportional discounts to drivers with some history of prior insurance coverage
  • Will allow insurance companies to increase cost of insurance to drivers who have not maintained continuous coverage
  • Treats drivers with lapse as continuously covered if lapse is due to military service or loss of employment, or if lapse is less than 90 days
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 34

Death Penalty. Initiative Statute

This is a sensitive legislation regarding the banning death penalty in California. There are 725 people on the death row in California, and the passing of this proposition will change their sentences will be replaced with “life in prison without the possibility of parole”. Those who support it state that death penalty is intrinsically wrong and will save money through layoffs of prosecution officers and attorneys responsible for death penalties. On the other hand, those who oppose this proposition state that death penalty is a necessary act for society to bring order and justice into community for crimes that are beyond the realm of traditional jail sentence.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Repeal the death penalty as maximum punishment for persons found guilty of murder and replace it with life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
  • Apply retroactively to persons already sentenced to death.
  • Require persons found guilty of murder to work while in prison, with their wages to be applied to any victim restitution fines or orders against them.
  • Create a $100 million fund to be distributed to law enforcement agencies to help solve more homicide and rape cases.
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 35

Human Trafficking. Penalties. Initiative Statute

This proposition promotes the increase of penalties and funding for Human Trafficking initiatives and programs in California. Those who support the ballot state that this will bring further justice and increases the training of the Peace Enforcement Officers regarding human trafficking, sex slaves and sex offenders. Opponents state that the legislation does not provide a good financial plan of this program, and this program can be abused due to bureaucratic and inefficient components of the judicial system.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Increase prison terms for human traffickers.
  • Require convicted sex traffickers to register as sex offenders.
  • Require all registered sex offenders to disclose their internet accounts.
  • Require criminal fines from convicted human traffickers to pay for services to help victims.
  • Mandate law enforcement training on human trafficking.
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 36

Changes in the “Three Strikes” Law

This proposition re-examines and re-defines the “Three Strikes” Law rule in order to provide a fair judicial trial for those who have committed mild felonies, while at the same time, maintain or change sentences for individuals who have committed serious crimes. Supporters say that this will save the prison system financially and allocate proper justice to those who were convicted wrongly. Opponents state that this measure will make judicial system more lenient; thus, increasing potential crime due to leniency in the system.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Revise the three strikes law to impose life sentence only when the new felony conviction is “serious or violent”
  • Authorize re-sentencing for offenders currently serving life sentences if their third strike conviction was not serious or violent and if the judge determines that the re-sentence does not pose unreasonable risk to public safety
  • Continue to impose a life sentence penalty if the third strike conviction was for “certain non-serious, non-violent sex or drug offenses or involved firearm possession”
  • Maintain the life sentence penalty for felons with “non-serious, non-violent third strike if prior convictions were for rape, murder, or child molestation”
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 37

Genetically Engineered Foods. Labeling. Initiative Statute

This proposition requires labeling on raw or processed food offered for sale to consumers if made from plants or animals with genetic material changed in specified ways. Supporters of the proposition state that this will provide consumers with the right information about the food they consume, and that this initiative has been implemented all over the world except for few countries such as United States. On the other hand, opponents state that this measure will increase cost of agricultural services in California and supports special Interest groups.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Requires labeling on raw or processed food offered for sale to consumers if made from plants or animals with genetic material changed in specified ways
  • Prohibits labeling or advertising such food, or other processed food, as “natural”
  • Exempts foods from this proposition include: certified organic; unintentionally produced with genetically engineered material; made from animals fed or injected with genetically engineered material but not genetically engineered themselves; processed with or containing only small amounts of genetically engineered ingredients; administered for treatment of medical conditions; sold for immediate consumption such as in a restaurant; or alcoholic beverages
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 38

State Income Tax Increase to Support Education

This proposition increases income taxes of individuals earning $7,316 and greater starting from 0.4% to 2.2%. The purpose is to allocate more funding of the taxes to California K-12 system. Supporters state that this will help California’s education system go back on track and open the schools that were shut down by the government. Proponents state that this measure lacks financial credibility and accountability functions that are stated in Prop 30 (which is mentioned in the Yes section as “Prohibits state from directing new funds.”

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Increases personal income tax rates on annual earnings over $7,316 using sliding scale from .4% for lowest individual earners to 2.2% for individuals earning over $2.5 million, for twelve years
  • During first four years, allocates 60% of revenues to K–12 schools, 30% to repaying state debt, and 10% to early childhood programs. Thereafter, allocates 85% of revenues to K–12 schools, 15% to early childhood programs
  • Provides K–12 funds on school-specific, per-pupil basis, subject to local control, audits, and public input
  • Prohibits state from directing new funds
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 39

Tax Treatment for Multistate Businesses. Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Funding. Initiative Statute

The measure would only affect out-of-state businesses and not California-based companies or California residents. Currently, out-of-state businesses can reduce their California income taxes by not locating facilities or employees within the state. If passed, Proposition 39 would add possibly $1 billion to the state’s revenue and create approximately 40,000 construction and clean energy jobs, according to the non-partisan California Legislative Analyst’s Office. Supporters state that this will promote business and increase growth of California jobs by encouraging businesses to employ more Californian residents and base their businesses in California. However, opponents argue that this measure would increase business taxes and eventually lead to businesses to seek other states for business.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Require out-of-state businesses to calculate their California income tax liability based on the percentage of their sales in California
  • Support the elimination of the “three-factor” method (tax loophole) allowing businesses that operate outside of California to avoid paying taxes for California sales
  • Dedicate $550 million annually for five years from the initiative’s anticipated increase in revenue in order to fund projects that “create energy efficiency and clean energy jobs” in California.
  • Of the revenue raised by this measure over the next five years, about half would be dedicated to energy efficiency and alternative energy projects.
  • Of the remaining revenues, a significant portion likely would be spent on public schools and community colleges.
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

Prop 40

Referendum on the State Senate Redistricting Plan

Supporting this proposition states that you support a non-political organization be responsible in redistricting California State Senate regions. In essence, this ensures that the organization responsible for redistricting areas within California are non-partisan, its commissioners are selected via lottery, and maintain a diverse and objective break down of regions. Supporters state that this gives citizens the power to redistrict their areas rather than have politicians influence redistricting; opponents argue that this method decreases chances for fair elections to proceed due to redistricting.

Selecting Yes Means…
  • Approving new State Senate districts drawn by the Citizens Redistricting Commission
  • If the new districts are rejected, the State Senate district boundary lines will be adjusted by officials supervised by the California Supreme Court
  • State Senate districts are revised every 10 years following the federal census
Selecting No Means…

None of the items in Yes will happen

The Tape

You miss someone so much as to wish your heart was made of water to forget and shift away;

staying up late to not sleep so you won’t dream of her, either.

You pray it’s just another tape that got accidentally played;

your mind scrambles around to catch the mischievous trigger.

It’ll be just fine, it’ll be alright.

And as time clocks away, things will get better.

The Courage of Malala Yousafzai

Who is Malala Yousafzai?

Malala Yousafza, born 1998, is an eighth-grade Pashtun student from the town of Mingora in Swat District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, known for being a children’s rights activist. Her little town was dominated and controlled by the local Taliban, whom they’ve shut down local school for girls in her area. During those periods, young Malala, under the pseudonym “Gul Makai”, shared with BBC Urdu of the experience of her little town under the order of the Taliban.

Due to her courage and advocacy for the rights of Children and Education, The international children’s advocacy group KidsRights Foundation included Yousafzai among the nominees for the International Children’s Peace Prize, making her the first Pakistani girl nominated for the award. South African Nobel laureate Desmund Tutu announced the nominations during a 2011 ceremony in Amsterdam, Holland, but Yousafzai did not win the prize.

Today, Malala was shot in the head while she was heading to school by a Taliban Militant. Different stories recount that she was waiting for the school bus to arrive as the gunman was searching for her. Fortunately, her injury was not severe, and by the decree of the Pakistani government, she was transfered to a better hospital to be hospitalized and receive care. In addition, security measures were put in place to protect her against the Taliban, as they waged their threat towards her.

Significance of her Work

“Education is the fundamental right for every child” – Malala Yousafzai

After the closing of the schools in her town, through the help of a local BBC journalist, she blogged about the condition of her classmates and her fellow residents under the military operation of the Taliban. The blogs were published on BBC Urdu, shedding light to the reality and horrors of the rule under the Taliban regime. Given her courage and strength, she was nominated for multiple Peace Awards, one of which she was awarded within Pakistan.

What is amazing for me is the fact that a 14 year old has taken the initiative to rise against the outrageous and venomous conditions of her community. And after the removal of the Taliban rule in Pakistan, she returned to her school and resumed her advocacy publicly.

These are stories of true courage, this is the story of Malala Yousafzai

BBC Report
Interview with BBC (November 2011)

Foursquare Badges

The Book Klub

The past few weeks I took a course on Coursera called Gamification

In simple terms, Gamification is the utilization of Game Design and Game Elements for a non-game context and objective. These objectives can be for Internal Growth (firm trying to motivate its employees), External Growth (firm trying to market a product and make it engaging), and behavior change (a government health institution aiming to improve its communities health). Of course, all to be done in a fun and voluntary fashion.

The following is one of the assignments we had to do, which was quite interesting and relevant to the current age of market needs. In addition to the question, I am submitting the answer I have provided for my assignment.

Now that you know the essential concepts about gamification and game design, it’s time to use them. For this final task, we ask you to bridge this gap as you meld creativity and structure to match peoples’ needs with technical feasibility and business realities.

You are approached by Cheyenne Kendrick, the CEO of Go Digital Press (GDP), a global publisher of electronic books for devices such as the Kindle, Nook, and iPad. She knows you are one of the top experts on gamification, which she has heard can revolutionize publishing. She asks you to present a proposal for a gamified system to take her business to the next level.

GDP concentrates on the trade segment of the book market, i.e. non-fiction publications that would traditionally appear in bookstores, rather than mass-market paperbacks. Approximately 50% of its titles are targeted at business professionals; 25% are educational resources on technical topics such as computer programming; and the remainder address a variety of different subjects.

As a pioneer in e-book publishing, GDP faces the challenge that many users, even in the U.S., do not yet own reader devices. As of April 2012, only 21% of American adults reported that they had read an e-book in the past year, although those numbers are increasing rapidly. Kendrick tells you that another concern is that the device manufacturers and their associated distribution platforms control the sales process, making it difficult for publishers such as GDP to obtain data or develop direct customer relationships. On the positive side, an e-book is a flexible digital asset, which can offer interactive features beyond any physical book. Kendrick asks you to propose a way to gamify the distribution or consumption of e-books, or both.

Provide a detailed description of your proposal, organized according to the design framework described in the lectures in Unit 7:

1. Define business objectives
2. Delineate target behaviors
3. Describe your players
4. Devise activity loops
5. Don’t forget the fun!
6. Deploy the appropriate tools

A summary of each concept is provided on the Gamification Design Framework page.

Go Digital Press (GDP) is a global publisher of ebooks for ebook devices. Cheyenne, CEO of GDP, is seeking a solution via a gamified system that can take her business to the next level. The challenges that are hindering GDP’s growth:

  • Small number of users own reader devices.
  • Sales process is controlled by device manufacturers and distribution platform.
  • Limited accessibility to customers.

Despite the challenges, Cheyenne noted that ebooks are flexible digital assets, which can offer interactive features beyond books.

Based on the information above, the objective of the gamified system is:

  • Increase in the sales and profits generated from ebooks sold.
    Justification: The ultimate goal of the project is to take GDP to the next level of growth in terms of business.

It’s essential to note that gains derived from the objective must benefit both GDP and its user base; otherwise, disregarding the demand of the user base and focusing on benefits for GDP will only lead to short-term progress.

Target Behavior:
The behavior the gamified system must promote within GDPs market segment is the shift to the use of ebook devices rather than hardcopy books. Through the increase of ebook device users, more readers will be motivated to purchase and interact with GDP products and services. In order to reach the greater market of users who have yet to purchase, or use, ebook devices, the system will utilize the power of influencer marketing, integrated with game elements, to bring aboard users more quickly. Influencer marketing is marketing focused on key individuals that have influence over potential buyers, such as friends, family and their social network.

Within the gamified structure, metrics and analytics will be put in place to tweak and improve the gamified system; leading to identifying ways of encouraging the needed behavior. Due to limitation of access to user data through the ebook devices, the data must be acquired through both the GDP ebooks and their website interface.

In order to build trust and respect users data, the privacy of users must be maintained and respected.

The Players:
GDP publishes and sells books that are:

  • 50% targeted at business professionals
  • 25% are educational resources on technical topics
  • 25% address variety of different subjects

The information provides us a good perspective of the players of the gamified system. To narrow it further, the players can be categorized into four groups in the order of significance:

  • The Entrepreneurs: They can be the CEO of a Forbes 500 company, or owner of a Laundromat in a neighborhood. Their demographics vary greatly; however, their psychographics share many common elements: Learning how to improve their business, being up-to-date with the current business practices in the industry, and lack of time to seek proper education in universities/seminars that provide business courses. They’re experienced individuals that can add tremendous value to the gamified system based on their feedback and contribution to the gamified environment.
  • The Explorers: They’re passionate and curious individuals that want to learn about the topic of their interest or discover other realms of knowledge. Their goal is to expand their knowledge and skill. Their passion is the key element to further promote GDP products if it appeals their curiosity and learning. They’re powerful influencer marketers that reach out to their circle of interest; whether it’s friends, family, colleagues or social network.
  • The Educators: Instructors of educational institutions seek titles that are suitable for their curriculum, provides their students with ample amount of information that can help them learn, and simplifies their work as educators (through online homework and quizzes, online forum discussion, etc). They’re very powerful influencer marketers as the books they recommend, or request their student to purchase, will lead to the increase in the purchase of ebooks.
  • The Embarkers: Individuals that embark, on the journey of learning or knowledge for the sake of completing a class/seminar, satisfying their employer’s request, or other factor that lead them to purchase the ebook. They’re only motivated through extrinsic means (salary, grade…etc). However, they have potential influence over their social network if they acquire intrinsic motivation; leading them to becoming loyal customers of GDP products.

Based on the categories above, it’s evident that demographics are highly variable. However, the goal is to target the demands of the users based on their psychographic needs (for example, “I want to learn about the new business practice in the field of gamification”). Through the deployment of the gamified product by GDP that carries extrinsic motivators, combined with the potential intrinsic motivation of learning within the players, GDP can successfully delineate the behavior they seek (purchase of ebooks and ebook reading devices), and satisfy their objectives (growth in sales/profit, gain access to users).

“The Book Klub”


The Book Klub is an online community that is integrated within GDP ebooks and website. Its purpose is to transform concrete non-fiction materials fun, sociable, and valuable. It encompasses elements such as points, badges (no leaderboard), and creativity forums. The elements devise activity loops, ensures fun, and aims in deploying appropriate tools (the three sub-elements are interconnected within the system) whose aims are to satisfy The Book Klub’s purpose and the business objectives of GDP.

The Journey of the Apprentice:

When purchasing a GDP ebook, the user will be prompted to either login or signup. Once they sign-up, an account will be made both online (The Book Klub website) and the front page of their ebook. The user will start as an Apprentice (level 1 user), whose journey is based on the skills they learn from the subjects they’re interested in. Depending on their path and journey, they will elevate to new levels for the title; such as Mentor, Consultant, Specialist, and Craftsman. The user’s profile represents a virtual shelf of the books and badges the user acquired from their journey. On the front of each title, they can see the progress bar of their reading and their total score for each title.

Utilizing progression loops, the end of each chapter of an ebook carries a mini-quiz. The quiz can be repeated infinitely, where the last grade will be taken into account. The purpose is to promote fun and motivation through performance-contingent rewards. If the user completes all quizzes (i.e. complete the book) with an average over a pre-defined score, they receive a special badge depending on the score and retain a special title in the Book Klub community.

Utilizing engagement loops, actions include:

  • Highlighting – When highlighting important point, the highlighted will go to the Book Klub community which will be scored based on community voting (one Like = +1). If the point was highlighted before, the user will receive the total score derived from the originally highlighted information. Such function will utilize “Achievement” methodology which surprises the user that they received a certain number of points just from highlighting a point. In addition, the power of crowd sourcing discourages improper use of highlighting.
  • How much you read today compared to past – Provides feedback to the user on how much more they’ve read compared to before; appearing as a pop-up after they bookmark the last page they read. This encourages the completion of the ebook faster, leading to purchase of other ebooks much more quickly, and encourages the habit of reading and using ebook reader devices. Special badges can be provided for those who read 25%, 50% or all the ebook in one instance.
  • Submission of creative content – Some individuals derive inspiration from the ebook, leading them to either generate notes, artwork, model systems, or create useful powerpoints based on the title they’re reading. If they publish the content to the online community, they receive points based on community voting and GDPs specification; special badges, prizes or awards can be provided depending on number of votes, uniqueness and author-provided badges. This action must be nourished as it’s the true form of fun and outlet of intrinsic motivation. Furthermore, it makes GDPs content human-centered, rich and fruitful; leading to increase of users purchasing GDP products to tap into the knowledgebase of the Book Klub community.

To maintain an exclusive status, the online community is only accessible by individuals that purchase GDP products (similar to Xbox Live). The more titles of GDP purchased, the more access the user will gain to the content shared by the community members of different titles. The exclusivity provides a sense of status and fosters a sense of learning. However, users can invite their social-network to join the community by encouraging them to purchase the titles. Such action can be rewarded through points or badges depending on the number of accepted invites.

GDP can hold online or regional events based on the findings they received from their user base to further increase customer loyalty, expand their customer base and increase customer satisfaction; such as talks by the author, or invitation of active members to discussion panels to improve the title (similar to Ebay’s Top Seller Conference), or a fun conference like Dreamforce. Badges and titles can be awarded for participation at these, making the players more reputable and recognizable among their online peers.

The system will foster a fun collaborative environment where value is derived from a fun social-oriented activity, while maintaining individual uniqueness and progress (both sparking intrinsic motivation). In addition, the system will guarantee the satisfaction of business objectives while ensuring that the users benefit greatly, too.