Maria farooq

Maria is a rock star QC engineer on the Computan team.  She’s a half-detective, half-exterminator.  In this installment of Behind The Coding, Maria shows off her knowledge of Korean culture, the emotions surrounding her thesis, and the scientists that fascinate her.

Hi Maria! How are you?

Hi Sajeel.  I am good, thanks, and you?

Good thanks! Are you ready?

Yes, I am.

Ok. What are the last three things you Googled?

The first thing I Googled was the Cricket Asia Cup schedule and venues

I didn’t know you were a cricket fan!

I am a HUUUGE cricket fan. 

That’s amazing!

Yeah, I watch all the matches and play all the time, especially with my school friends. 

Do you watch any cricket or just the big matches?

Any kind, any league.  If it is broadcasted somewhere, I will watch it.

That’s so interesting, Maria.

Yeah, I will even arrange watch parties with family and friends for the games too. Cricket fan. School friends were into cricket. Crazy into cricket

Well, besides cricket and the Asia Cup what else did you Google?

Let’s see. I also Googled shoulder patches

Was that because of muscle pain from cricket?

I wish! I actually get a stick neck and back pain a lot from sitting too much.

Oh no!

Yes, this is the bad part of working in our field—a lot of sitting.

You can take more breaks, Maria! Health is wealth.

Yeah, I am trying to get better at taking breaks.  Right now, I only know I need a break when I start getting pain in my neck and shoulders!

What else have you been Googling?

Korean Pop and Korean Dramas

Are you a fan?

Yes! Huge fan of both. Are you?

I have heard a little of both! I have heard of BTS, and my wife watched a show on Netflix with a South Korean and North Korean couple or something.

BTS is famous, and I like their music. Crash Landing is the name of the show you are talking about.

Yes! Crash landing.

Did you know that couples got married in real life?



Wow! When was the last time you worked after hours to solve a hard problem?

After joining the Computan team. 

Why would you have to spend extra hours when you were starting?

We have a rigorous QC process here, and I had to spend extra time learning that system and method.  

We certainly do! Who are 3 people you'd like to have dinner (dawaat) with simultaneously, and why?

My sister Fatima for sure. 

Tell us a bit more about Fatima. 

She’s my younger sister and a medical student.  We are best friends.   

That’s nice, Maria. Who else would be there?

My parents.  But on this special dinner I’d pay the bill.

Do your parents never let you?

No way! My father never lets me. 

What kind of food would you treat your family to?

Traditional Pakistani food, for sure! Mutton/lamb Karahi.

When was the last time you cried tears of laughter?

After defending my thesis.  

After defending your thesis? What’s so funny about that?

Well, I was crying and stressed a lot before presenting it. 

But the question is about tears of laughter. Not tears of sadness. 

Yeah, yeah, I know! After I passed it, my friends were teasing me, and I was laughing with tears in my eyes! 

That’s an interesting answer! What do you love about QC?

It fuels my nature.  

What do you mean by that?

I like finding bugs! I like finding things that are out of place. I love looking for problems!

When was the first time you saw a laptop/computer?

I was 8 or 9 years old.  A teacher took us to a computer lab. 

What did you do there? 

We played a game.

What game?

No idea! I l also never had a plan to be in technology.


Nope.  My parents thought I might like the sciences. But I was always intimidated by chemistry. 

Did chemistry intimidate you?

Yeah! Chemists are always interesting to me.  Mixing the right chemicals and making sure they don’t react badly! 

Did you like chemistry in school?

I like it! But I am not good at it.

That is nice self-awareness, Maria, hahaha.  What is something your teammates don't know about you?

When I’m at work, my face is usually emotionless. My face is always blank.  

What do you mean?

When I’m working there is not a lot of emotions in my facial expressions! They don’t know if I understand something or not!