Tomorrow is National Immigration Day, which I wrote about for our newsletter back in 2020. Reading it over, I realized I wanted to do a better job writing it. I will start with a quote which reflects my feelings on living in a city that has long welcomed immigrants: “It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.” – Audre Lorde
My immigrant story began when I landed at O’Hare at the age of 17. I knew two important words, “yes” and “no”, and they were the starting point for my English education. About two years later, I was presented with the opportunity of saving Chat Computers from going under. At that time, the company was bankrupt and inventory was being sold below cost to cover the bills. Here I am, many years later, with a goal of not just supporting your success but also educating others in our field to improve their services for their clients. One must learn to walk before running. Trying to learn English while saving a business from bankruptcy meant I had to start much further back by crawling my way out of catastrophe. Still, I had experiences so rich I cannot simply label them as good or bad.
One thing I can say with confidence is that my path has been much less painful than many other immigrant stories. At every step of the way, I met people of various backgrounds and ethnicities willing to help and give me a chance. Coming to America, I expected opportunities as the country has made a name for itself around the world on that promise. However, I never thought I’d feel welcome so early on. As a first year ESL student, I was invited to my very first Thanksgiving dinner at my teacher’s home. It was incredible to experience such trust and hospitality from a teacher whom I had just met. Breaking bread with my teacher, his wife, and other classmates while we could hardly speak to one another was a defining moment. No matter my background, skills, or shortcomings I was welcome here.
Arriving from a country with a lot less means and opportunity, I promised myself not to take things for granted. I mostly succeeded at keeping this promise. I’m thankful for the people of Chicago who made me feel welcome from the very first day I got here. I’m thankful for every opportunity that helped me challenge myself and grow. Most importantly, I’m thankful to have been able to build a comfortable enough life in which I can reach beyond my struggles and seek opportunities to help others. This is mostly a luxury where I come from.
I have so many people to thank for helping me get from working 18 hour days, seven days a week with broken English and questionable legal status to where I am today. Listening, learning, and growing with the people of this city shaped who I am. As a young man, I learned to stand up for equality, justice, freedom, the right to live with dignity, to have quality education, and to universal healthcare.
Us immigrants often have interesting stories. The challenges we face are unique and everything looks different from our optics as we take very little for granted. If you have not done so, I strongly recommend watching a few episodes of Little America on AppleTV. It will warm your heart, add to your perspective, and perhaps most importantly remind you of all the little things that makes this country great – some of which perhaps you take for granted.
– Burak Sarac, Team Lead
What is End-to-End Encryption
If you’ve read our past articles assessing the security of different apps, you’ve see the term “End-to-end Encryption” before. But what does it mean and how does it work? This easy to understand article breaks it down for you. Check it out!
National Breadstick Day is October 28th
Mmmm breadsticks… Warm, buttery, preferably topped with garlic and salt. Need we say more? You might be surprised to find out they can be easily made at home. That’s right – no need to visit olive garden ever again! Here is a copy-cat recipe to check out. Alternatively, here is a gluten-free version as well.
Essential iOS Update
Early this week, Apple released iOS 16.1, iPadOS 16.1, and macOS Ventura to all users. While new features are always welcome, there’s another reason to keep your iPhone and other Apple gadgets updated. This time, updating to iOS 16.1 fixed a dangerous security flaw that exploits Siri to record your conversations. Read more here.
National Checklist Day is October 30th
Checklists are beautiful things – completely customizable, entirely helpful, and potentially mood-boosting, we’re not surprised there’s a holiday dedicated to them. The best thing about checklists is that there’s no right way to use them: if they’re working for you, you’re doing it right. But if they aren’t working for you, check out this article on how to improve your checklist game!