31 March 2010

Faking their fans

Wrestling is so fake that they can even fake crazy fans and make it seem believable.

I don't know why but this made me laugh.

I know it's fake.... but oh if it was real that kid was going to get pounded
(if your new here, you will likely never ever see another WWF clip again.)

30 March 2010

Crazy parents

The world is just too scared.   People are scared of shadows and have convinced themselves that the world isn't safe for anyone.

Today I ready this article by Lenore Skenazy over at ParentDish.com the basic story is this
The mother was at the library with her 5-year-old, the library where they go every week, in Rochester, New York....  They had only a few minutes before they had to leave to pick up Daughter #2 (age 3), giving the mom just enough time to run upstairs from the children's room to the adult room to check out her book..... [the mother retelling here story] "So I asked my daughter, 'Do you want to come with me or wait here for a few minutes?' 'Wait.' So I told the librarian, 'I'll be right back.' And the librarian said, 'Well ... okay. But I must warn you: the same dangers that are out on the street are here in the library.'"

I read the story and thought, wow people can be really reactionary.   I was mostly thinking about the crazy response from the librarian... "the same danger that are out on the street are here in the library"    Really?  So the same things that happen in the street happen daily in the library?!?
Now first I don't think the street is as dangerous as the nervous hoards would like you to think.  I'm not crazy I know stuff goes down.... In big cities like New York there are even shootings on the street, but not daily, not often or else you would never see people on the streets of New York.
But when was the last time there was a shooting in a library?   
How about a mugging?
Knife fight?
And this is not the dark alley version of a library, this is one that the family visits weekly.

So anyway.... I stopped my thought with the idea of the crazy librarian.....  

But then I started reading the comments......  so many of them all crazy parents aggreeing whole heartedly with the librarian.   "Never leave a 5 year old alone....not even for 5 seconds"    bla bla bla..... "What kind of a bad parent is she.

I couldn't believe my eyes.   She was going to run upstairs and check out a book.    The reaction was like she was leaving her infant in a den of lions.    People chill.   Nothing is going to happen.

Maybe I'm wrong...tell me so.   I'm not venturing back into the comment forum there, but would love to discuss it with anyone here.


 Lenore has posted some thoughts on the response on her blog... Free Range Kids.
It's amazing how readership comments differ.....wow

28 March 2010

Church Home

A few months ago I had written about trying to find a church.  I realized that I haven't filled in the gaps on where we have ended up.   The fact is that we have found a great church family at Gateway Worship Centre.  They have welcomed us and helped us feel at home.   They aren't perfect, but in all honesty, if they tried to be we wouldn't be there  There is no attempt to be something they are not and we don't have to be more than we are.  They love Jesus and care about the town they live in.   I have grown tired of congregations that try to present as having it all together; whether that means on a personal level or a institutional level.

Gateway is led by the Spirit.   I feel each Sunday that the service could go anywhere if the Spirit leads.   It is an amazing thing to hear a senior gentleman pray out with great emotion, not on cue or as part of the script, but because he is moved.  To have the band whisper to the worship leader, "you have to play that song you wrote" or the pastor cry out in emotion for the message he has.   I haven't experienced these things before, not in a genuine way.

I've watched a dear old senior walk to the front to serve communion, one pant leg half tucked into his boot.  I think many churches wouldn't let this type of fellow near the front with the suits...but there he was serving with a smile.  And each week he greets me and asks how the camp is doing and how we are doing.

They are so friendly.  I feel like we have gained friends, parents and grandparents in the people that are there.
Today they threw a shower for our family on the arrival of Greyson.   So many thoughtful gifts from people that are just getting to know us, but have adopted us as part of their community.  One older lady crocheted a whole blanket for him.... the type of gifts that grandmas give to grandchildren and it was given to our new son.

I'm not setting out to sell anyone on this church.  But I have to say that people are coming and it's not because they have the best program or the coolest technology or a slick whatever..... the love God and the love people.   Sure there are rough edges but I am becoming more and more convinced that this is what Christianity looks like;  a group of imperfect people loving one another, because Jesus said to love one another.  And then together joining to love God and worship him in the best ways that know how.   

On the off chance that you live in the Gravenhurst area and are looking for a church that will offer you love no matter what you state of being.... come and check out Gateway.  End of endorsement

26 March 2010

Extensions of the WHOLE man.

Kevin Kelly has his thoughts on where tablets might end up going.  He states two things that will make them different than the average cell phone or computer/laptop, the second being:
The tablet window goes two ways. You watch; it watches you. Its eye can remain on all the time, watching you as much as you like. Brian Eno once famously said (in the pages of Wired) that the problem with computers was that there was not enough Africa in them. By this he meant that computers as we knew them could “see” only the wiggling ends of our fingers as we typed. But if they could see and employ the rest of our body, as if we were dancing or singing, we could express ourselves with greater finesse. This window tablet injects some Africa into computers. It overthrows the tyranny of the keyboard. Gestures are king. Swoosh your fingers to scroll, wave your arms as with a Wii, shake or tilt it. Celebrate its embodiment. The craftsmanship of this device will matter. We’ll spend hours holding it, caressing it, stroking its magic surface, watching it. The feel of its surface, the liquidity of its flickers, the presence or lack of its warmth, the quality of its build, the temperature of its glow will come to mean a great deal to all of us.
This is interesting to my Marshall McLuhan (somewhat) obsessed mind.  McLuhan always referred to technology as extensions of man (or woman) and here Kelly is pointing out that technology is going to feel better to us as it extends more and more of us.   McLuhan saw our actual nervous system being eventually completely extended by our technology.  Conventional computers have done a good job with sight and sounds... and maybe our thought...but now touch screens will start to take our whole body as extensions.  Causing us to move, to dance.   I think McLuhan would also see it as interesting that the newer innovation of touch screens and gestures overthrows the need to know the phonetic alphabet even more.  The keyboard isn't gone completely, but I think this is a move closer to not needing to know written language.  Which moves us farther from the visual to the oral community.  

It's also interesting to see how Kelly describes the romance between the individual and the technology.  The relationship is tangible to the user.   Kind of scary in a way.  You thought that people were already zealots about their Macs.... now their iPad is going to be their lover and best friend.   That might be more scary, I'd hate to see Apple fanboys more obsessed with something.

I think McLuhan would have loved this stuff.  I do too.... and I've only been thinking about it for a little while

25 March 2010

Good news for baldy

Going bald, cuts cancer risk
Men who start going bald at a young age are up to 45% less likely to get prostate cancer in later life, a study has found.
yeah win for me :)

The media

Saw this come through my feed reader  (found here)
Good point I thought

23 March 2010

That'll never work....even if it has

One of my favourite sites to read it TechDirt.... digging into the muck of copyright, patents and new business models etc.   
This is from a post of about whether you can use free content as a business model
It's really stunning to see people who obviously should know better continually insisting that content can't possibly be free to consumers. We've been seeing a lot of it in the news business lately, as newspaper execs who have built up an ad business for many years seem oblivious to the fact that consumers have almost never paid directly for news. And now that same sort of ridiculous thinking is showing up in the video market. Christopher Schneider points us to an article written by Dan Rayburn, who apparently is an analyst at Frost & Sullivan, but who appears to be wholly unfamiliar with network TV in claiming that video content can't possibly be free:
Frankly, I don't see where this idea of "free" comes from. Video content costs money to produce, to distribute and to consume. Yet even with those costs, many seem hell-bent on the idea that business models can somehow survive based on the consumption of free video content supported solely by an ad model. But in reality, that simply can't happen.
It comes from basic economics, Dan, combined with knowledge of how network TV has worked for many decades. In some businesses consumers pay for stuff. In others, third parties do it. In network TV, advertisers have always paid the freight. You would think that a big-time analyst would be familiar with that. But, of course, it looks like Dan doesn't get the economics right either:
If people are not willing to pay a content owner for their content, then it's not worth anything. That's the bottom line.
Dan, how much did you pay for the air you breathe? Ok. How much is it worth? Your "bottom line" is flat-out wrong. Value and price are two different things. Value plays into the demand curve, but price is set by the intersection of supply and demand. If something is priced at zero, it doesn't mean it's valued at zero.
 I'd also like to point out that good radio stations can make money providing content for free as well. 

12 March 2010

Introducing Greyson

Introducing Greyson Gordon Good.   Born at home March 11.   I'll try to keep the kid blogging to a minimum

10 March 2010

Nothing new?

From BW3
It has been said that what finally caused the Roman Empire to come crashing to a halt is that people were spending more money on chariot races, gladiator battles, and ever popular barbecuing of Christians, or throwing them to the lions than on necessities.  Soldiers no longer wanted to fight in far flung frontiers, investors no longer wanted to invest in foreign assets, they preferred 'out sourcing' (!), and obesity had taken over the elites that controlled 96% of all the wealth. Oh yes, and the Senate couldn't decide anything because legislators were in gridlock and they were on the payroll of major investors....... does this sound familiar????  

Someday archaeologists will be digging up the once great American landscape and they will find gigantic concrete sports stadiums, with all sorts of luxury boxes.  And then they'll find churches made out of plywood and press board and siding.  And homes made out the same thing.  And they will ask---- why did they spend more money on entertainment than on food, clothing shelter, and God combined?   And in the end----- who won??? 

9 March 2010

Rob Bell on Video Preaching

It's no secret that I am a fan of Shane Hipps, and I also appreciate the teaching of Rob Bell.   The latest Our of Ur has an excerpt of an interview with Rob about the Dangers of Video Preaching.
Your NOOMA video series has been popular. What do you think about the increasing number of preachers and churches using video technology to expand their reach?
It's powerful but there's also a dark side. Video is not church. You put images and music on a screen, and people will listen. But it's also dangerous. You're playing with fire. I think video technology deserves to be scrutinized heavily.
Go a little deeper. What makes video dangerous?
I don't think we know yet what the long-term impact will be on disciple-making. In 10 years we may discover what particular kind of Christ follower is formed by video preaching. I see warning lights on my dashboard. It's unclear what video may do to the ways we conceive of life together.
In the New Testament, there are 43 "one another" passages, and during a Sunday morning service you might be able to practice three or four of them. And as the service gets large, you can probably do fewer. A massive group setting is also dangerous. You can come, sit, listen, and go home and think, I've been to church, even if you haven't practiced any "one anothers." And with video that only gets more intense. I'm not sure that's the direction we want to be heading.

We want to be calling people to deep bonds of solidarity with one another. We may gather in a massive group, but from the stage I often say, "This is just a church service. Church is actually about caring for one another, and serving one another, and speaking truth to one another in love. Don't get the two confused."
It's great to see someone who has used video so well be aware of what it's dangers and limitations are.  I think every church needs to examine each technology - even when it seems to be successful, because it might be wolf in sheep's clothing.    It's interesting that over at Church Marketing Sucks they have an interview with Tony Jones about social Media.   Mr. Jones seems to be the other side of the spectrum, in that he seems to think that pastors (churches) should be on everything new that is out there.  Jones said:
There was a time when churches and pastors needed to decide whether they were going to wire the church for telephones. There was another time when they had to decide whether to bring microphones and amplification into the sanctuary. Those were decisions about using new technology to communicate. Social media is simply another step on that path--it's about communicating with people, and more and more people are using it, so churches need to decide how to engage that. 
He seems to spend little to no time on what the results of those choices were.   As far back as Marshall McLuhan there have been people pointing to what even microphones do for worship and preaching and community.  (I don't have my copy of the Medium and the Light so no direct quote here)
I think I like the way that Rob Bell and Mar Hill are approaching technology...  Others need to take notes (and read either of Shane Hipp's books)

8 March 2010

Um sorry about that

Over the weekend Ars Technica put up an article about why ad blocking software is killing good sights.  There basic premise is that it is my fault that they don't get money when I block advertising and that it stealing content.  At first I felt a little bad.  But you know what I hate adds....and sometimes they are annoying  (I toggled my adblocker off, looked at the site and turned it back on again)

Then Techdirt had a great article "Don't Blame Your Community: Ad Blocking is Not Killing Any Sites"
Essentially saying that if your Ads are driving people away you need to look at ads as the problem not the person leaving.  In fact there was this great quote:
Mike Markson recently wrote up a blog post for entrepreneurs, talking about how every entrepreneur needs to learn the lesson that, whatever doesn't go right is your fault. It's a tough lesson for people (especially entrepreneurs) to learn. If you can't raise money, don't blame the investors. You were the one who failed to convince them. If you can't make sales, don't blame the sales people. You either hired the wrong sales people or didn't put together a compelling enough pitch or didn't have a good enough product. It's your responsibility as an entrepreneur to fix things.
Which I think is a good reminder to everyone that likes to pass the buck, but really we should find a solution over someone to blame.

Ok, so what did I do?   I've turned off the ad blocking in my Google Reader.  So if your RSS reader has ads I will see them.... because in all honesty I want to support great sites like Ars Technica and TechDirt.    And when the ads get annoying I will just stop reading that RSS feed.  

1 March 2010

NBC's Tom Brokaw explains Canada to Americans

Tom Brokaw does a great feature on Canada.

EDIT:  Ok that was NOT the right clip.... YouTube seems to have it but is down right now....

Here try this... It will likely be taken down