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Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Blog moved

Posted by Jim Rector on July 14, 2011

I’ve moved this blog over to my web host at jrector.com. I will start blogging there from now on. You can access it at http://blog.jrector.com. Be sure and check it out.

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Thursday links I like – {6/16/11}

Posted by Jim Rector on June 16, 2011

Land of the Free? New York and California come out at the bottom of individual freedoms study
The “bluest” states, what do you expect? (New Hampshire, South Dakota, and Indiana ranked the “freest”)

Obama’s unconstitutional Libyan war
Obama to Congress: I Don’t Need Your Approval
Do you really think the narcissist cares about the rules? The Constitution is just an inconvenient bump in the road to his reign.

Massive Riots in Vancouver After NHL Team Loses Stanley Cup
Vancouver Fans Riot as Canucks Lose Stanley Cup
I thought Canadians were laid back.

5 Technologies We Wish Apple Would Adopt
I don’t know, I’m starting to get used to not having flash on my iPhone and iPad.

Lawmakers Get Involved In “Locationgate,” Propose Data Privacy Law
Another “solution” without a problem.

Obama Blames High Unemployment on ATMs, Media Shrug Off Gaffe
ATM’s have been around for what? 30 years or more? Media ignore the gaffe.

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Why do I like to blog?

Posted by Jim Rector on January 6, 2011

That’s a good question. One that I thought of yesterday. Do I really think people care that I visited my 91 year-old grandmother over Thanksgiving? Do they care that I had a son get not only engaged but married last year? Do they have any interest whatsoever in the fact that I’ll soon be 50 and will have even lost 50 pounds? How about the links that I often post? They’re just links that interest me. Ok, sometimes I post some for the sole purpose of getting a rise out of my liberal friends. (All three of them!) Has any link ever changed a single person’s political or spiritual beliefs or attitudes? Probably not.

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If I blogged only for the reasons above then I would be almost as narcissistic as Bill Clinton or Barack Obama. I’d be thinking that people were on the edge of their seat waiting for the next great word from Jim. I mean everyone should be interested in whether I like to talk on the phone vs. sending text messages. Everyone should care about what I think about healthcare, DADT, or taxes. Where I go on trips and who I visit should be of the utmost importance to all my “friends” in the cyber world. That’s some profound stuff there folks! I jest of course.

I think that I blog because I like it. I enjoy the exercise of writing. I like capturing thoughts and blogging them so that later (month, year, decade) I can go back and see what went on and what I was thinking. Another reason is I’m bad at writing and I think blogging helps me become a better writer. Like every other discipline the more you practice the better you get. It’s pretty simple, not earthshattering.

How about you? Do you blog? If so, why? If not, why?

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Text or Talk?

Posted by Jim Rector on January 5, 2011

Do you like to talk or text? Or maybe some other type of communication? I know that personally I’d rather just email someone than pick up the phone and call. Is this terrible? Am I anti-social? What can this mean? I’ve always thought myself a friendly person. I never thought that I was socially challenged. But bottom line is that I’d rather just communicate in writing.

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I think it started for me when I had a job from about 1985 through 1997 where my job was done exclusively on the phone. I was a System Controller for Houston Lighting and Power company (Now Centerpoint Energy) and spent my days giving switching instructions to personnel in the field or talking to power plant operators directing generation levels and gas burn amounts. After a day of that the last thing I wanted was to talk on the phone. I think I frustrated my wife (probably still do) when we needed information from someone because I would make her call. I hated calling, still do.

At work now I would much rather open Microsoft Outlook and write an email than pickup the phone and call someone. Even if it’s just a small request or question. I think a lot has to do with being so busy that I don’t have time for small talk. I just want to cut-to-the-chase and address the topic at hand. It’s easier to cut through the extra conversation with email.

So I guess technology is a two-edged sword. On the one hand it’s caused us, me a least, to forego verbal interaction for written communication. On the other hand this “social” communication has caused me to be more in tune with friends and relatives. Because of Facebook I know more about my family in Upstate NY than I ever did before. I’ve connected with childhood and teenage friends now as folks never did as few as five years ago. One area of face-to-face verbal communication I enjoy is Skype or "FaceTime” with my son and his wife (Even her folks!) in California. So while technology has probably stifled my verbal communication with others it has provided increased social interaction that I would never have had without it.

What do you think? Would you rather talk, text, tweet, Skype, or email? Do you feel more in tune with friends and relatives now or less?

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Random Links–{12/31/2010}

Posted by Jim Rector on December 31, 2010

ALGERIA: CHRISTIANS SENTENCED
Remember our persecuted brothers and sisters worldwide. Visit persecution.com.

Well, That’s One Way to Stop Your PC From Overheating
Overkill of the day.

New Year’s Resolutions That Will Improve Your Finances in 2011
Financial New Year’s resolutions from mint.com.

The Photos We’ll Remember: 2000-2010
Life shows some photos from the last decade that we’ll all remember.

Actually, Bush Vetoed Bill with ‘End-of-Life’ Provisions
Cal Thomas – She Told Us So
Yeah, she did.

For G.O.P., End of the Preordained Candidate
I’ve been hoping for this for years. Pass on the geezers and elitists. Get us a good candidate for once.

$5 Gas Predicted Under Obama — What, No Pitchforks?
Gas Prices Back Above $3, Networks Don’t Question Obama Policies
I’m sure Pelosi will be all over this. Oh, wait Bush isn’t in charge anymore. Never mind, be quiet.

Skype’s New App Brings Video Chat To The iPhone, iPad And iPod Touch
Cool! Although Facetime was working pretty good with my distant son last night. 3G performance will be interesting.

It’s No Accident You Live in This Time and Place
”If you earn $25,000 per year, you are the richest 10% of the world. You are rich. In fact if you earn $2,200 per year you are the richest 15% of the world.” Kind of puts things in perspective, don’t it?

Why I’m Reading the Bible in Ten Different Places
Lot’s of interesting Bible reading plans for 2011.

BofA Tries To Foreclose On Home Despite Not A Single Missed Payment
This is what happens when you’re “too big to fail.”

Make a Drain Declogger Out of a Plastic Bottle
Wow! Why didn’t I think of this? So simple. I just purchased a Zip-It from Wal-Mart two days ago.

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Random Links–{12/30/2010}

Posted by Jim Rector on December 29, 2010

AMAC – Association of Mature American Citizens
This will be the alternative organization to AARP that I’ll be joining when I turn 50 in a few days.

GOP Shifts on Fannie, Freddie Overhaul
They better stick to their guns or 2012 will be ugly.

Just 21% Want FCC to Regulate Internet, Most Fear Regulation Would Promote Political Agenda
Just what we need, more regulation. Keep your hands off my internet!

Census Totally Screws Dems…
People vote with their feet.

Obamacare is Already Unraveling
We all saw this coming.

More Than a Third of Americans Doubt Obama Believes in U.S. ‘Exceptionalism’
A globalist at heart.

Big “Nannies” of the Year
Just do as we say and be quiet.

As governments go broke, public employee unions must share the pain
Yeah, good luck with that.

Conservatives More Charitable than Liberal Scrooges
Of course we know liberals just like to spend “other people’s money.”

Palestinians reject interim peace deal
As in all war there’s only real peace when one side utterly defeats the other. So, there’s not been real peace since the end of WW2.

Arizona lawmaker set to ramp up fight against illegals
Wake up GOP, illegal immigration is a winning issue.

New Yorkers, stop complaining about the snow: City Hall is doing its best to recover from blizzard
But if you see somebody smoking in a bar I bet Bloomberg will have five guys there in a matter of minutes.

The woman language translator
It’s not too late for Christmas.

Morning Bell: Obama Will Make You Pay More at the PumpiGoogle - Google Chrome_2010-12-29_14-42-40
Funny how high gas prices were a problem for Bush, but what a shock, not a problem for Obama.

White House Plans to Push Global Warming Policy, GOP Vows Fight
The left loves to force their agenda via regulation when they can’t win at the polls. What a bunch of oligarchs.

Global Warming Grinch
The length the left will go. Bizarre.

How to Root Your NookColor to Read Kindle Ebooks
I guess the advantage being that there are tons more free eBooks on the Kindle than the Nook.

Posted in Democrat, Environment, Illegal immigration, Politics, Republican, Technology | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Random Links–{12/29/2010}

Posted by Jim Rector on December 29, 2010

Random thought before the links: If the Republican’s nominate Romney for 2012 they will lose. If they nominate Palin they will lose. If they nominate Gingrich they will lose. I think Pawlenty, Jindal, and Barbour all lose. So the message for the Republican party is cast off the “front runners” and find someone who can generate excitement and articulate the small government-low tax message. Oh, they have to be true believers in that concept also. We’ll see right through the pretenders.

John Stossel – Top 10 Politicians’ Promises Gone Wrong
Best political program of 2010 boiled down to 42 minutes.

Sotomayor Guides Court’s Liberal Wing
And here I thought the Supremes were supposed to be above politics.

GOP all set to wimp out on EPA?
They better do what we want or we’ll bounce them out of office too.

Home Prices Probably Fell, Showing U.S. Economy’s Weak Link
”..Probably…”? When it’s bad news for those in charge it’s difficult to be definitive.

Abortion stats infographic
”It would have taken about 342 Hiroshima type nuclear attacks to kill as many people as abortion has killed since Roe vs Wade.”

Some Friendly Advice for Church Boards: Give Your Pastor a Break
We do this at our Church and believe me, we reap the benefits.

Planning Your Menu for 2011–Reading the Bible by Genre
Our Church’s Bible reading plan for 2010.

Is There Any Actual Proof A House Was Robbed Due To A Facebook Status Update?
It would have to be one of your “friends.”

Get Better Privacy and Less Chat Annoyance with Facebook Lists
Guess this beats just setting your status to “offline” all the time.

The Death of the Grown-Up
Book review. Until the 1940’s there were only children and adults. No such thing as “teenagers.”

Zip Tie Snow Tires: The Cheapest Way To Blizzard-Proof Your Bike
For my crazy northern friends that like to ride their bikes in snow.

Postponing Eagles vs. Vikings: The ‘Wussification of America’
I think we’re pretty much way down that “Wussification” road.

Why I Ditched iTunes For Amazon MP3s
It’s all about the wallet.

Posted in Abortion, Environment, Family, Politics, Religion, Technology | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Random Links–{12/27/2010}

Posted by Jim Rector on December 27, 2010

Today’s random list of stories and articles that caught my eye.

Bundle Up, It’s Global Warming
Columbia, SC has first Christmas snow since records kept in 1887…
Atlanta’s First Since 1882
Another convenient excuse. Trying to explain away the obvious.

Total white out: U.S. East Coast travellers warned to stay indoors as airports, road and rail grind to a halt and ‘monster blizzard’ expected to last until tomorrow
NYC subway stalled for hours in snow drifts
Not a fun traveling day for sure.

In Congress, a harder line on illegal immigrants
Don’t get your hopes up quite yet.

Oil stays above $91 as OPEC signals no output hike
Obama’s “moratorium” chickens are coming home to roost.

Silly Products that Made Millions
Yeah, why didn’t I think of that?

Rendell Irate Eagles Game Was Postponed
Football Delay Outrages Fans: The Wimps Who Stole Christmas
I guess the NFL assumed that Philly couldn’t clear a road.

Know Which Apps to Remove From MSConfig with This Startup Applications List
For the “nerds.”

The Art of HDR Photography Part 1
A good primer for a description of “HDR” photography.

Shoot High Quality Black and White Photos
The 60 Second Portrait
MSNBC: Year in Pictures
Gotta have the photography links.

Posted in Environment, Illegal immigration, immigration, Misc, Politics, Technology | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Silly laws breed disrespect for laws – Wi-fi logs for 2 years?

Posted by Jim Rector on February 21, 2009

I read yesterday that a bill in both the Senate and the House will compel ISP’s and wi-fi users to keep usage logs for two years. There is no distinction between public and private wi-fi’s. Which basically means that I’ll have to keep traffic logs of my home network for two years. I don’t even know if that’s technologically possible with my wireless router.

This proposal is ridiculous and unenforceable. First, the shear amount of data that would have to be parsed would probably make it harder to track child predators than it is now. Second, since it covers voice over IP (VOIP) communicate it amounts to wire tapping without a warrant. I’m sorry but when “nanny-state” legislators pass laws that are perceived as unreasonable to the average law-abiding citizens, average law-abiding citizens begin to lose respect for the rule-of-law and their governing bodies. This is one of those unreasonable proposals. I can tell you right now that I won’t comply with this silliness.

Here’s a letter that I sent to one of my Senators:

Senator Cornyn,

About S.436. Are you serious? I would expect this feel-good, unenforceable legislation from the Democrats. But come on, from so-called conservative Republicans? Did the Republicans become “Nanny state” politicians while I wasn’t paying attention.

This bill will do nothing that it’s designed to do. Due to the vast amount of data it will only make it more difficult to track down child predators. Additionally, it will put more burden, and therefore, more costs on small businesses and individuals like myself who simply have a wireless router in my home. As far as I can tell there’s absolutely no provision in my wireless router to capture logs for more than a few hours let alone two years. I don’t like it and I’m angry with you for supporting this unreasonable legislation. When the government starts making silly laws the people start losing respect for the government and their laws. This is one of those proposals. Since this could be interpreted to cover “voice over IP” telephone communications it also amounts to illegal wiretapping.

Instead of putting the burden on me for crime fighting please just punish the ones committing the crime. Please reverse your course and come down on the side of the rights of the individual to be free from obtrusive government intervention and unreasonable record keeping.

Regards,
Jim Rector

We’ll see how he responds. I’ll report back when he does.

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Random Stuff

Posted by Jim Rector on November 25, 2008

Just thought I’d share a few interesting links. Some may interest you, some may not. One thing for sure, they do interest me.

Canon 5d Mark II should be in US stores today
Man do I have serious camera envy with this one. According to Ron Galbraith Shipments of Canon’s newest full-frame digital SLR should commence today. Announced back in September this is a ground breaking camera. It has over 21 million pixels, it’s full-frame (Image sensor the same size as 35mm film.), and 1080p video capabilities. The video samples are unbelievable.  Canon USA.

Self-destruct your laptop
Lenovo has come up with a unique way to foil laptop thieves. They’ve added technology to their Montevina laptop line that will allow you to text message a destruct code to your stolen laptop. The code will shut down the laptop and from there disk encryption will take over to protect your data. The only catch is the stolen laptop needs to be in a WWAN (wireless wide area network.) to receive the kill signal.

SBC: The widening divide
Tom Ascol has written SBC and Calvinism: Three events that widened the divide on the Founders Blog about three events that is precipitating the widening divide between Calvinists and Arminians in the Souther Baptist Convention. I won’t restate his article so head on over there and read it for yourself. It’s intersting no matter which side of the issue you fall on.

Find me the verse
Dan Phillps over on the Pyromaniacs blog has a good post Sanctification challenge: find me the verse. He asks four very direct questions looking for Biblical answers to these questions. His point is to:

(A) to make the simple and pointed still more simple and more pointed, and thus (B) better to serve those who serve the Body as pastors:

Civically Illiterate
Before things will get better in this country politically we must educate the masses. How to do that (You’d have to somehow go around the education system.) I don’t know. A post Civically Illiterate by Joseph Lawler at the American Spectator is telling and scary.

How can you vote responsibly if you don’t know the meaning of “free enterprise”?

That is the question posed in “Our Fading Heritage,” the survey on civic literacy released by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute Thursday at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. The report found that only 54% of college graduates can correctly identify a free enterprise system as one in which individual citizens create, exchange, and control goods and services.

Of course, this statistic reflects the civic understanding of college graduates. Those without a college degree fare even worse.

Most damning of all, perhaps, is that self-identified elected officials score lower on average than the general public. So not only are our politicians illiterate in matters of political history and economics, they are less knowledgeable than the already lamentably ill-informed average citizen. Fifty-four percent do not know that the Constitution gives Congress the power to declare war. They tested worse than everyone else in the subjects of First Amendment freedoms, international trade, abortion, and many more. “The blind leading the blind” has never seemed more appropriate.

Well, that’s all for now.

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