…even Dr. AQ Khan plagiarizes


abdul-qadeer-khan

I doubted the the people who said that the father of Pakistan’s nuclear bomb, Dr. AQ Khan, stole ideas from a western country where he worked and then made his country a nuclear power. Later on, this fellow indulged in proliferation. Now he has become a newspaper columnist. However, the following letter published in The News seems to indicate that the Dr. plagiarizes majority of his columns. Interesting piece.

Careless neglect?

Monday, August 24, 2009
This is with reference to Dr A Q Khan’s column “Science of computers — part I” which appeared in your pages on Aug 19.

1. Dr Khan writes: “The computer is an essential part of 21st century life. Computer science is a fast-moving subject that gives rise to a range of interesting and often challenging problems. The implementation of today’s complex computer systems requires the skills of a knowledgeable and versatile computer scientist. Artificial intelligence — the study of intelligent behaviour — is having an increasing reference on computer system design. Distributed systems, networks and the internet are now central to the study of computing, presenting both technical and social challenges.”

Now compare this to the first paragraph of Undergraduate Prospectus 2009, University of Sussex(www.sussex.ac.uk/units/publications/ugrad2009/subjects/computing):

“Computing is an essential part of 21st-century life, and is an exceptionally fast-moving subject that gives rise to a range of interesting and challenging problems. The implementation of today’s complex computing systems, networks and multimedia systems requires the skills of knowledgeable and versatile computer scientists. Computer networks and the internet are now central to the study of computing and information technology, presenting both technical and social challenges. Artificial intelligence (AI) — the study of intelligent behaviour — is having an increasing influence on computer system design.”

2. Dr Khan writes: “How do we understand, reason, plan, cooperate, converse, read and communicate? What are the roles of language and logic? What is the structure of the brain? How does vision work? These are all questions as fundamental as the sub-atomic structure of matter. These are also questions where the science of computing plays an important role in our attempts to provide answers. The computer scientist can expect to come face-to-face with problems of great depth and complexity and, together with scientists, engineers and experts in other fields, may help to solve them. Computing is not just about the big questions; it is also about engineering-making things work. Computing is unique in offering both the challenge of science and the satisfaction of engineering.”

Now compare this to the first paragraph of Imperial College London website (www3.imperial.ac.uk/engineering/teaching/exploringengineering/computing): “How do we understand, reason, plan, cooperate, converse, read and communicate? What are the roles of language and logic? What is the structure of the brain? How does vision work? These are questions as fundamental, in their own way, as questions about the sub-atomic structure of matter. They are also questions where the science of computing plays an important role in our attempts to provide answers. The computer scientist can expect to come face-to-face with problems of great depth and complexity and, together with scientists, engineers and experts in other fields, may help to disentangle them. But computing is not just about the big questions it is also about engineering-making things work. Computing is unique in offering both the challenge of a science and the satisfaction of engineering.”

3. Furthermore, Dr Khan writes: “Computer science is an inter-disciplinary subject. It is firmly rooted in engineering and mathematics, with links to linguistics, psychology and other fields. Computer science is concerned with constructing hardware and software systems, digital electronics, compiler design, programming languages, operation systems, networks and graphics. Theoretical computer science addresses fundamental issues: the motion of computable function, proving the correctness of hardware and software and the theory of communicating system.

Again the University of Cambridge website (www.cam.ac.uk/admissions/undergraduate/courses/compsci) contains the following text: (First paragraph) “Computer science is interdisciplinary. It is firmly rooted in engineering and mathematics, with links to linguistics, psychology and other fields. […] (Second paragraph) Practical computer science is concerned with constructing hardware and software systems: digital electronics, compiler design, programming languages, operating systems, networks and graphics. Theoretical computer science addresses fundamental issues: the notion of computable function, proving the correctness of hardware and software, the theory of communicating systems.”

4. The second half of Dr Khan’s article (paragraph 7 onwards) can be found in ACM’s Computing Curricula 2009. Although he credits ACM but doesn’t clarify that he is directly copying sentences from a document. Also, in the beginning of his piece he does acknowledge one of his former colleagues, an Engineer Nasim Khan, for input for the article — however, it is not clear whether this input is the reason for the apparent plagiarism.

Fahad Rafique Dogar

PhD student, Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA, US

Let’s hope that the nuclear scientist comes up with a ‘confession’.

Comments
3 Responses to “…even Dr. AQ Khan plagiarizes”
  1. Najeeb Qazi says:

    What a hoot!

  2. nota says:

    “Let’s hope that the nuclear scientist comes up with a ‘confession’.”

    Well, it appears no confession is forthcoming. In fact, Dr A. Q. Khan has boldly and bluntly and without any sense of shame has repeated the crime in his latest column: Science of computers: Part II

    His response to the charges was merely to add:
    “(The information in this article is based on the available syllabuses of famous British universities.)”
    at the end of this piece, as if somehow that clears him of all guilt. BTW: It does prove Dr Sahib did read the response of Mr Dogar, admitted he plagiarized, but is unrepentant and continues with the same… What a shame!!!

  3. kamran says:

    a man of loyality and patriot whose laudable efforts emerge pakistan an undfeatable islamic state over the map of world…
    SALAM A Q KHAN

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: