Karachi’s very own OS and more Pakistani contributions

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Adnan Siddiqui’s put together an excellent set of contributions of Pakistani companies to highlight on the 14th of August.

Featured are things like Arfa Karim, the world’s youngest MCP, the first computer virus, some prominent open-source projects, Scrybe, PostAmazers, and more.

If we did list down all of the Pakistani contributions to the global technology field, it would be a drop in an ocean but a fairly significant drop. Companies like PixSense and FiveRivers are also working to make their marks in the world.

Too bad not every Pakistani company wants to tell people they’re from Pakistan because they know that will hurt their business opportunities worldwide.

Read the whole post on Adnan’s blog — good job putting it together.

Facebook comments:


  • Hey Osama,
    You quite rightly mentioned PixSense and Five Rivers Technologies. But let us not forget Mixit Technologies whose software is running at the NY Stock Exchange and various other stock exchanges in the US including Chicago and Philadelphia. Then there is Alchemy Technologies who have an amazing Risk Management Software that they have sold well locally and are now closing their first sale in the Far East. Techlogix who have expanded into China, Boston, Dubai; Etilize who have overtaken CNet as the leading content management company; Netsol that has hit US$22 million in revenue and have offices in China, the UK, Australia and the US; Ultimus whose work flow management software runs all round the world, Systems Ltd whose mortgage solution is used by the leading banks in the US; – i could go on and on.

  • Pakistan has lots of misguided talent. I personally know very good chaps who are being wasted in typical software houses and making old GL,payroll and other ancient systems.

    Few years back, nobody in Pakistan wanted to learn LAMP(linux,apache,Mysql,php). In 2000, php was something very new for employers.

    There is no venture capital concept in Pakistan. Most of famous IT products were came into being due to VC. Google is one of them.

  • Jehan, that’s what I meant. I could have written down all of those copmanies in detail but I was being lazy.

    Even the startups like Orgoo and Ooober and others are doing interesting work.

  • Yes exactly. I often feel that some of us do not appreciate the kind of work that is already being done in this country. We need to highlight our successes much more. The new website that P@SHA is working on will highlight successess of Pakistani individuals (both in Pakistan and overseas) and Pakistani firms and products. If anyone is truly impressed with the work that a company or an individual has done, send it to P@SHA so that they can recognize the effort and promote it. They are working in voluntary capacities but doing a lot nonetheless.

  • Everyone — go submit Green & White’s every article to P@SHA :)

  • didnt know where pakistani people actually stand till i read these blogs….amazing man..

  • Its great to know and read about these companies. A very good source of motivation to other startups like us :)

  • Adnan Siddiqi

    I have updated my entry and have added the achievements by Safi Qureshi, the founder of AST computers, the PC manufacturing company. Safi’s achievements are more than anyone else yet by any pakistani in IT industry. Even his recent company working on very innovative technology to transfer video content wirelessly to ANY device including TV.

  • @Adnan: It’s still hard to find good PHP guys here.

    @Osama: What exactly FiveRivers do?

  • FiveRivers started out as an embedded system design outsourcing shop acting as a dedicated offshore development office for one, then three clients, but this was fairly high-level architecture type of work.

    Now they’re doing quite a bit of things, including making Pakistan’s first PDA for Rs.6000, working on their own embedded OS, building GPS phones and more.

    Will write about them sometime.

  • I know somebody there, so was just curious 😉

  • When was the last time PASHA did something for an average disillusioned IT professional again?
    Perhaps the biggest irony to this nation is not even the bigots sitting on chairs they don’t belong to at top levels or the lack of resources but actually living with a manufacturing mass-production mindset in a world of individual-services mindset.

    And again, has PASHA’s friends and affiliates running short of ideas and products which no one uses that it has to ask from people about their work? I, for one, would hate to be represented by the likes of PASHA and PSEB. But then again, PASHA or PSEB never claimed they represent design studios anyway.

  • @Osama – Now they’re doing quite a bit of things, including making Pakistan’s first PDA for Rs.6000, working on their own embedded OS, building GPS phones and more.

    FiveRivers Technology has developed few Alpha versions of there PDA, Sirius. I had written a special report about Sirius in April 2007 issue of COMPUTING. These Guys are doing excellent job.

  • Opps! I just forgot to mention that I have just received a CD of KarachiOS from Tariq Farooqi (Linux Pakistan) today. Thanks you Boss! I will surely post my review here after using this CD.

  • Regarding KarachiOS.

    Guys, I am a bit confused here. What’s the big deal about KarachiOS? According to the “creator”:

    KarachiOS is the result of countless hours of devoted study, work and bug fixing.

    Based on Debian sources, current release KarachiOS 1.0rc1 contains the following features:

    * Linux Kernel 2.6.21
    * X.org 7.2
    * KDE 3.5.7
    * KOffice
    * Adept Package Management tool
    * GnuPG 2.0 5
    * Support for printers, scanners, digicams and webcams
    * Wink
    * VLC Media Player with native support for WMV files
    * Amarok audio media player
    * Support for legacy Windows Application via Wine
    * LAMP Stack
    * Apache 2
    * MySQL 5.0.44
    * PHP5
    * WebERP for accounting
    * Pre-release version of Badar Sami’s Urdu keyboard for touch typists
    * Fonts for Arabic/Farsi/Urdu
    * Adobe FlashPlayer 9
    * Experimental support for wireless modems
    * KPDF and KCHMViewer for viewing documents
    * digiKam for digital camera and photo gallery management
    * KOpete for Instant messaging with Yahoo and MSN Webcam support
    * Skype 1.4beta
    * Secure Remote Desktop access support using NX technology
    * Viki (Onscreen Accessibility Keyboard)
    * kbfx (Next generation KDE Lauch Menu)
    * K3B for CD/DVD burning
    * Builtin StartCom certificates

    So if you take an open source software remove a few modules and release under a different name, it’s an achievement? Well may be for a 16-year old who wants to get his hands dirty in technlogy but it’s nothing more than that.

    Correct me if I am wrong here, because I fail to see the ‘achievement’ in KarachiOS (unless it’s done by some 16 yr old).

    The thing is its not even “new”. It’s based on Debian. If they had built something from scratch, or they had something like their own windowing sytem with some cool innovations then I’d say WOW, but as it is right now, it’s just compiling, recompilng, compiling , recompiling and spending ‘countless hours’ dong that – so nothing to be proud of basically.

    I appologize if I’ve offended anyone.

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