Gadget of the Week - Ahmed's Clock

Gadget of the Week - Ahmed's Clock

If you were anywhere near social media, public radio, or a TV within the last week, you probably heard about Ahmed Mohamed, a Texas 14-year-old arrested by Irving police for bringing a homemade clock to school. According to Buzzfeed, Mohamed, who is Muslim, brought the clock to school, showed it to his engineering teacher, and was told to put it away.

But, when the clock went off (as in, the clock alarm sounded) in his English class later that afternoon, Mohamed’s teacher reported the device to school authorities, who then called police. Mohamed, dressed in a NASA t-shirt and thick glasses, walked out of school in handcuffs and faced interrogation at a nearby juvenile detention center.

If anything, the frenzy that followed this afternoon demonstrates the power of gadgets. Not only did Ahmed’s clock and arrest invite support from President Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Mark Zuckerberg, it also heated up already hot conversations about Islamic identities. It also brought out the nerds.

The takeaway from all of this, however, isn’t only a matter of right vs. wrong. Ahmed’s clock is a gadget that presents us with a cultural mirror and illuminates how humans define and engage with technology. And, in that unique respect, it’s our Gadget of the Week.


Jason Finn

Founder & Chief Geek

Jason has nearly 20 years of consulting experience, predominantly in the technology space. Most recently he was the COO and Director of Technology for Rich Casto & Company, a national training and consulting organization in the real estate industry.
As a consultant for IBM, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Envision Consulting Group (now IMS Health), Jason has served clients of all sizes, including Big Pharma, Fortune 500, and Global 1000 companies:

  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • AOL (America Online)
  • Astellas Pharmaceuticals
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ford Motor Credit
  • Wockhardt USA (formerly Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals)
  • Norwich Union
  • PNC Bank
  • Reynolds and Reynolds

Sarunas Budrikas

Creative Director

Sarunas is a web design and development expert with hundreds of successful projects in his portfolio. He is passionate about delivering extraordinary user experiences for every client and consistently goes above and beyond everyone’s expectations. As an SEO expert and strategist, he can optimize your website, or app, to get the most out of it, day in and day out. Sarunas holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kaunas Technology University, in Lithuania. Sarunas now lives in Chicago, and calls it home.

Alexandra Olsavsky

Client Experience Specialist

Alex specializes in content generation and social media promotion for Geek | Chicago clients, helping to solidify their presence in the online community. This includes blog writing, graphic design, co-ordination and design of weekly newsletters, and active engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Outside of Geek, Alex is a classically-trained soprano who professionally performs around the city of Chicago (most recently with the Chicago Baroque Band, and with the Rolling Stones for their "50 and Counting" tour).