Thursday, January 22, 2009

Remata is out!

My flashcard program, Remata, is now out and available.

On and off for the past few years I've worked on a flashcard program to help with my Greek studies. I found a spreadsheet which I upgraded for my own needs. Problem was that I couldn't carry a computer in my pocket and my PDA could not handle the spreadsheet macros. I thought of writing a windows application, but learning all that stuff is complex. I made a web based program, but my PDA browser could not handle the web code either.

Finally, in October, I heard about the new Android operating system for phones. I was looking for a new phone and PDA and bought the T-mobile G1. I also learned that Android was open and that is was relatively easy to write programs for Android. I've been working on my program since then. You can check it out in the Android Market or look at it's web page.

I'm excited -- the first program of my own that's gone commercial. Already people have downloaded it, commented and I've even received a donation!

God's Speed, Mr. President

My wife intently watched the inauguration and all the associated hoopla. I, on the other hand, am not that interested. I did, however, make an effort to catch Barack Obama's speech. I wanted to hear what he had to say. I liked it -- I hope we can come close to living up to what he called us to.

In the months since his election I've come to realize something. I voted for McCain. I saw things I liked about both candidates and also things that scared me. McCain seemed to me to have less downside. I missed something huge -- hope. Obama has energized this country with hope. Hope can be a powerful force for good.

I am somewhat cynical. I believe even the "most powerful man on earth" is limited in what he can do. The government machine is too big. Perhaps even more, the inertia of people is massive. It really doesn't matter how brilliant our president is, nor how good his ideas, nor how hard he works if we people are not behind him. I'm now thinking that's probably the biggest reason Reagan was so effective. Perhaps FDR too, although that was before my time. It seems like Obama comes in with this same ability to instill hope in a large portion of our population.

I came away from Tuesday's events encouraged. Encouraged by what Obama said. Encouraged by the huge turnout. Encouraged by the hope he seems to have instilled. I pray that he and the rest of us can live up to the promise.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Intolerance and ignorance? Or love?



Despite the ignorance, smart enough to appeal to American sensibilities.

So the Prophet Muhammad is the father of civil rights? This is the same guy who wants everyone that disagrees with him to be butchered and beheaded and wants to kill all the "Juice"? Obviously these people don't know English very well. Not only to they not know the word "juice", they also don't have a very good handle on the meanings of "civil right", "truth", "justice" and "love".

Perhaps they should read something other than the Qur’an once in a while. How about the Bible? Last time I checked it is supposed to be a holy book for them. Matthew 5 comes to mind. Here is an exerpt starting at verse 43:

You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

I'm also reminded of 1 John, Chapter 4, verses 7 - 11:

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.