Monday, February 23, 2015

a thank you note

Alhamdulellah, I was recently awarded the Google PhD fellowship award. I'd like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to people who invested a significant time and effort in my career. Ordered by the date we met, and mentioning just one of the many things they did for me, I dedicate this award to:
  • Mama, Mabroka Ammar, who taught me empathy.
  • Baba, AbdelMottaleb Ammar, who taught me persistence.
  • Khaled Ammar, my brother, who made me a computer engineer.
  • Amany Shehata, my wife, who sacrificed her best interests so that I can pursue my passion.
  • Kareem Darwish, who transformed me into a curious researcher.
  • Noah A. Smith, who taught me writing and critical thinking.
  • Chris Dyer, who gave me confidence and great ideas.
While we are at it, and since this is likely to be the last award I get (I don't know how I got it in the first place :D), I'd like to also say thank you to each of: my daughter Salma Ammar who makes me smile; my role model ElDesouky Ammar; my loving siblings and relatives Khaled Ammar, Samia Ammar, Walaa Ammar, Mohamed Amir, Mohamed Ghazy, Hesham Ghazy, Mohamed Ammar, Ahmed Ammar, Ibrahim Ammar, Abdelrahman Ammar, Hassan Ammar, Ali ElTamalawi; my high school math teacher Mostafa ElShantoury; my professors Larry Wasserman, Ryan Tibshirani, Soheir Bassiouny, Lori Levin, Tom Mitchell, Mostafa Youssif, Salah Selim, Mohamed Nazieh, Mohamed Ismail; people who wrote me recommended letters D. Sculley, David McClosky, Kuzman Ganchev, Motaz ElSabban, Nayer Wanas, Tarek ElAbbady, Soheir Bassiouny, Kareem Darwish, Ayman Kaheel; my helpful (ex-)colleagues and ex-managers Ahmed Ramadan, Ahmed AbdulHamid, Mahmoud Refaat, Ahmed Morsy, Ahmed Sabry, Hani Salem, Kareem Darwish, Hamdy Khalil, Mohamed Ali, Nayer Wanas, Ayman Kaheel, Tarek ElAbbady, Ahmed ElShimi, Federico Garcea, Takako Aikawa, Arul Menezes, Kristina Toutanova, Hoifung Poon, Chris Quirk, Vikram Dendi, D. Sculley, Brendan O'Connor, Ali ElKahki, Walid Magdy, Swabha Swayamdipta, Lingpeng Kong, Chu-Cheng Lin, Dani Yogatama, Ankur Parikh, Daniel Golovin, Julian Grady, Lirida, Ahmed Hefny, Manaal Faruqui, Shay Cohen, Kevin Gimpel, Andre Martins, Avneesh Saluja, Hany Hassan, David Bamman, Sam Thomson, Tarek Hefny, Austin Matthews, Dipanjan Das, Jesse Dodge, Matt Gardner, Mohammad Gowayyed, David Pellow, Avi Dubey, Yan Chuan Sim, Eva Schlinger, Victor Chahuneau; my friends who made life more tolerable Ashraf Gamal, Mohamed Darwish, Ahmed Hefny, Ahmed AbouTaleb, Mohamed ElShatnawy, Taher Gomaa, Ahmed Mounir, Islam Gohar, Ada Iosif, Ahmed Abdelgawad, Hatem Kassab, Ezzeldeen Qasim, Osama Sharkas, Abdalla Musmar, Hany Hassan, Vikram Dendi, Ahmed ElBeshir, Justin Chiu, Yubin Kim, Prasanna Kumar, Meghana Kshirsagar, Wang Ling, Subhodeep Moitra, Leah Nicolich-Henkin, Kenneth Huang, Reyyan Yeniterzi, Shoou-I Yu, Amr ElAlfy, Mohamed Diab; and, of course, my lifelong friends Hesham Zakareyya, Mahmoud Refaat, Mohamed Saleh, Haitham Gabr, Amr Ebaid, Hani Desouky Ammar, Hany Abdelrahman Ammar, Mohamed Ghareeb, Mohamed Ibrahim, Mostafa ElMarasi, Mohamed Mokhtar.

P.S. You may find this hard to believe, but I actually am indebted to each and every one in this long list. I'm just worried I may have forgotten someone.

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