Despite the restrictions, Gaza continues to surprise the world with its brilliant talents. Mohammad Alhaulimy, an IT whiz, is yet another young Palestinian with great potential. In the playground, Mohammad might seem to be an ordinary kid, but behind his computer screen he is anything but ordinary.
At 7 he fell in love with Programming
Mohammad’s interest in programming became obvious at the very early age of 7. He was curious to know how the games that he played on the computer were made. Noticing his interest, his parents made sure to sign him up for the International Computer Driving License course. Completing the course with success, he became the youngest Palestinian to secure this global computer skills certificate.
From there, and with the continuous encouragement of his parents, Mohammad started a long journey of IT learning. He took courses in programming, design, hacking, robot programming and making apps. By the time he was 9 years old, he had already created his first mobile application to raise awareness about issues like pollution and wars. In 2014, Mohammad and a group of his friends, who called themselves “Progamers,” participated in Microsoft Imagine Cup with a game called “The World Savers” and they managed to reach the finals.
Invitations to International Conferences & Competitions Begin
Mohammad’s outstanding talent has attracted many and it wasn’t long before he started receiving invitations to participate in international conferences and competitions. In 2015, he was invited to participate in Consumer Electronics Shows in Las Vegas and Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Unfortunately, he couldn’t make it because of Israeli and Egyptian-imposed restrictions on travelling to and from Gaza. When Electronic Intifada asked Mohammad about how he feels about the fact that he had to miss many international competitions, he said:
“Sometimes you just have to live with being a Palestinian. I’ve been denied the right to travel many times. Recently, I missed a robot and artificial intelligence competition in Jordan.”
Steve Jobs is his role model
Mohammad is passionate about technology and he dedicates his time to polish up his skills. His love for coding has even pushed him further to learn more languages so that he can make use of the internet available content in different languages. So far the 12-year old IT whiz has learned English and Hebrew, and he enjoys using the internet content available in these languages.
Mohammad says that his role model is Steve Jobs, CEO and co-founder of Apple Inc. He tells Electronic Intifada about his goal saying
“My dream is to found a company that might change the world somehow. No Arab is mentioned globally when it come to IT. I want to be the first.”
With his determination and the support of his family, Mohammad has a real shot at being the next Arab Steve Jobs.
Don’t forget to share and leave a smile 🙂 !