Not sure if we were the first to introduce this, but it sure feels good to see it happen. Besides organizing our own projects, we sometimes play supplementary roles, continuously or ad hoc, to other programmes in and around KL. One in particular was having traffic issues. Here’s the background..
Majlis Ta’lim Darul Murtadza, is a weekly Friday night gathering of knowledge (Majlis Ta’lim) led by a scholar of admirable manners (adab) – a reflection of his knowledge, Habib Ali Al-Hamid. It was a few years ago in his flat in KL, that was less than 900 square feet in size with a handful of attendees. Sometimes only one person turned up.
Then it grew beyond the flat size, and moved to a nearby surau until it reached almost 1,000 attendees on average. Partly due to the traffic congestion and parking issues the attendees were responsible for, they then moved to a mosque on Jalan Jelatek, Muaz bin Jabal Mosque, next to Setiawangsa LRT.
The class kept growing and again parking spaces was a brewing issue. As we were already attendees of this class, we spoke to them in April 2012 on improving a few areas including parking. And that was to introduce a practical carpooling week-on-week system.
It started with both a prototype on GoogleDocs format and iFrame in Facebook. Discussions about security as well as SSL coding issues came about. Finally after a hiatus due to other commitments, slight redesigning work were made on G Docs and handover was done. From there, we were glad to see their team take it away to develop and test Khidmatus Sayyara (BETA), before launching it in November 2012.
In essence, the idea was not just to solve traffic and parking issues. It was also to officially introduce this concept to the active Muslim community and have them self-organize with us only facilitating. What we hope to see happen is to build relationships amongst the students of this open class, to enable more people to be part of it conveniently, and of course to do what little we can in managing the environment.