Category Archives: Internet

>a new year’s changes

>This blog is just over three year’s old. Since starting it I had also joined FaceBook, and then Twitter. Life continues, of course, in its typically unpredictable way and I have become drawn towards unplugging myself somewhat from the online life. I have deactivated my FB account and deleted my Twitter account. I also plan on posting less here, though I won’t quit entirely.

The reasons are many and have been just below the surface for some time. In short it is just the need to de-clutter my life and get on with other things. There are many things I would rather do than fritter and waste my life looking for distractions. I can’t predict that by unplugging more from the Internet (and other things) I will finally write that book I’ve always wanted to write, or get in shape and climb a mountain, but I can say that maybe, just maybe I will spend more time with my wife and kids. Maybe I will find more and more little ways to be productive rather than merely receptive.

The fact is, when I look at my life, and I look at those things I most am proud of, they always seem to be things I’ve very consciously done, things that took effort, commitment, even a little obsession. I have a list of things I want to do, or characteristics/talents I want to develop, and I know that to do so means simplifying my life and removing distractions. I am tired of constantly wishing to do things and then finding instead I’ve wasted a couple of hours online (or a couple of years!).

There is so much more value in talking over beers with a friend at a local pub than there is in “connecting” via any social networking site yet created. There is far more value in taking my kids camping or skiing than checking Google Reader for updates. And, of course, spending more time with my wife doing the hard work of living “as one” rather than just two hard working people moving along parallel paths is invaluable. Each of us sitting at our own screens surfing or blogging or updating our profiles just doesn’t quite cut it anymore (it never really did).

Fortunately I am not the only person seeing these things or choosing to declutter. Now, this doesn’t mean I’m giving up my online life entirely, but I hope to be more focused elsewhere.

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>Happy 40th Internet!

>40 years ago today the first two nodes of what would become the ARPANET were interconnected between UCLA’s School of Engineering and Applied Science and SRI International in Menlo Park, California. ARPANET was the birth of what we now call the Internet.

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>server down – time for a cute message

>What is it with these “cute” messages when a web site is down or unavailable?

Is the cuteness supposed to make me less frustrated? The monster has escaped? The ice cream cone says it can chill?

I’m sure there is some well documented psychological studies behind this kind of thing, but I am not placated. I am not!

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another jesus

If you search for images of Jesus on the Internet you will find an unending supply of everything from the serious to the comic, pious to the sacrilegious, realistic to the saccharine. Jesus has always been an appropriated figure by different Christian groups, but now it seems everyone appropriates Jesus for any reason, group, or perspective. Or, to put it another way, Jesus is increasingly seen as a non-religious figure who can be anything you want him to be. I think this can be seen as both a bad thing and a good thing.

Bad because Jesus was and is who he was and is. Any other perspective or viewpoint is not true. That would hold true for our perspective of anyone. But it’s good because so many traditional images of Jesus are just as wrong headed as the many non-traditional. It is a good thing to have our assumptions challenged, and to be reminded that we may not know as much as we think we do. If we don’t take Jesus seriously then, I suppose, anything goes. But if we do take him seriously then it makes sense to find out who he really was – and is. I would expect non-Christians to have fairly limited knowledge of Jesus but, ironically, many Christians do as well.

I saw a lot of politicized images of Jesus. One of the biggest debates going on today (consciously and unconsciously) is whether Jesus was a political figure with a political agenda and whether that political agenda was conservative or liberal. I am inclined to think Jesus was more of a political figure than I have been taught, and I am inclined to see the more liberal side of his politics. However, I think his politics were far more radical than either left or right.

As for those images, here are some of the least offensive, but still non-reverent, images I found in just a few minutes:

The not-meek, not-mild Jesus. Sure he’ll die for your sins, but he’s still as tough as a Chevy truck.

No comment needed – except – reminds me of the ‘who would Jesus bomb’ slogan.

The kind, teaching non-non-violent Jesus.

The Jesus for whom there will be no cross, I suppose. Lookout Romans, it’s smackdown time.

The radical leftist Jesus. “After fasting for forty days, Jesus put on his beret and returned to the collective.”

The twitter gospel Jesus. But why does “sins” have to be spelled with a “z”? It’s not any shorter or easier to type on your blackberry.

The Rastafarian Jesus (I suppose). Is he actually looking at anything?

The astronaut Jesus. He’s in orbit and he’s coming back!

And ironically, maybe the most scriptural of all, the un-dead Jesus. He lives!

Now I recognize how goofy these images of Jesus are, but so are classic Victorian ones like this:

And yet, we have this one in our house and I like it. Hmm.

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Filed under Art and Faith, Christianity, humor, Internet, religion

>Christmas video roundup

>I just can’t quite let Christmas go just yet. Here are a few Christmas videos picked with the utmost of randomness:

Christmas in Bethlehem:

The Pope enters St. Peter’s for midnight mass:

CNN’c coverage of the Pope’s Christmas mass:

Bill Johnson plays exerpts from his Christmas album:
(I don’t know who Bill Johnson is.)

51 things some guy got for Christmas:

This Christmas message from Iranian President Ahmadinejad
was broadcast on BBC Channel 4 on Christmas day:

How To Apply a silver Christmas makeup look

The Queen of England’s Christmas speech:

Tuba Christmas from Japan:

The Christmas special from World Chess News:

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>facebook church

>The following cartoon is from my friend Dan.

It’s really what church is all about, isn’t it.

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>TechnoGander: Photosynth


If you are like me, you’ve grown up in an essentially visual world, and you probably think visually more than not. One of the reasons I started blogging was because I could include images and graphics in my blog as well as design the look and feel of the whole thing (practically – I am using Blogger after all).

Where is this post leading? I have seen and experienced first-hand the great changes in photography – really from photography as we used to think about it to imaging as it is today. I cut my teeth on caustic emulsions and techniques born in the 19th century and then, in what seemed like no time at all, changed into a digital technology user and quiet fanatic. I was using Photoshop from version 2.0 and scanned in my prints to create desktop publishing documents – the scanner has now been collecting dust for some time. I am still amazed almost every day by what people are doing with current technology and what other are doing to create new technology. Take, for example, Photosynth. If you have not heard of Photosynth, or have not seen what it does and how it looks, take a look at the videos linked below

Videos: Blaise Aguera y Arcas: Jaw-dropping Photosynth demo at the TED conference and the Microsoft promo video of Photosynth.

So this post is not really about movies, but it’s related in a way, and I have to say, Photosynth is cool.


Filed under Internet, media