Me on my way to Juan de Fuca trail! (still in Vancouver here)

Tiny bit of history

My name is Baraa Orabi. It’s an Arabic name (براء عْرابي), which is pronounced /baraːʔ ʕraːbi/. My family is Damascene but I was born and raised in Jeddah. I liked to think of myself as both Damascene and Hejazi.

I speak Damascene Arabic as my mother tongue. I have (very) modest knowledge of Turkish. I am most comfortable when I can code-switch between Arabic and English (with some Turkish vocab added for fun).

After finishing high school, I went to Bilkent University in Ankara, where I had my B.Sc. in Computer Engineering, and my M.Sc. from Simon Fraser Univerisity in Metro Vancouver, where I was supervised by Dr. Cedric Chauve and Dr. Faraz Hach.


I am a PhD student at the University of British Columbia computer science department, supervised by M.Sc. supervisors, Faraz and Cedric. I am also part the Hach Lab at Vancouver Prostate Centre where I spend most of my time.


Computer science and biology

I am working on computational cancer genomics. This involves using very large computers to manipulate 4-lettered alphabet (aka DNA). It’s a lot of fun, and I get to feel good about what I am doing 😁.


I am quite interested in analytical philosophy. As an undergrad, I took a whole bunch of philosophy courses as part of my (aborted) minor in philosophy. Before that I used to read philosophy with my amazing friends in beautiful bookstore/cafe in Jeddah called Jusoor (shutdown by the Saudi Govt. because we were “too political” 💔).


I’m an addict 😐. Please help…