Month: January 2010

Electric Vehicles

Today, I saw a couple of articles on electric vehicles.  These have always fascinated me; maybe one day, it will make sense for me to own one!

Engadget: Mavizen’s electric bike hits 130 MPH, ships with Linux and WiFi

The idea of any vehicle with Linux sound cool to me!  I wonder if it starts automatically as I saw on this other car?  The $41,000 price tag kind of limits my interest too much.  I don’t see that in my driveway any time soon.

Engadget: Tesla pulls in $465 million government loan to build Model S electric sedan

The Tesla vehicles have been interesting for a long time.  This Model S looks like it is closer to reality.  Even if I can’t afford it, I wonder if it will shake up the market and bring new innovative features to other vehicles trying to compete.

Oh well.  Maybe one day, but now, it is time to hop in my environment unfriendly vehicle and head home!

Fun New Gadgets

Here are a couple of links that caught my eye:

Cell phone car starter

I would love to me able to start my car from inside the house or from a distance, but living in Florida, it’s not worth paying for.  Why can’t all the cars just run Linux, and I could code a little hack to let an App on my phone start the car?  This cell phone idea is a little over the top for me though — the telemarketer thing is a little too realistic!

It pays to play video games!

I bet that if they studied programmers, they would find programming does twice what video games do.  You can never have too many studies that say to spend more time with electronics.  Just kidding.

Food printer???

I have always been interested in robotics in the Restaurant business, but this is above what I would have imagined.  It should would be convenient to not need to cook.  Then, can we get wireless support and email the food to work for lunch?

Wireless Charging

Cordless is great, but you still need power some how.  Sometimes keeping batteries charged is more annoying than having the tool wireless.  If wireless power works, that would revolutionize the wireless world!

Bible Study: Balaam

Our Sunday School lesson this past week was about Balaam.  Here are some of my thoughts about this person of the Bible.

Bible Passage:  Numbers 22 – 24

Here is my MIT (Most Important Thing) to communicate to the kids (Can you have two things?):

1.  Obey the first time: While Balaam did technically obey, he asked God multiple times to do something that he should not have done.  When you ask for God’s will you should want what God wants; you should not want God to want what you want.

2.  Peer-pressure: There are people out there who want to destroy you.  Balak did not foil the Israelites with the curses of Balaam, but he was able to succeed by tempting them to voilate God’s commands.  God will protect us from evil attacks from robbers and those who seek to destroy us physically, but we have to watch for the “friends” who sneak in and cause us to destroy ourselves.  Actually, God will protect us from those, too, if we let him (1 Corinthians 10:13).

One thing I noticed about the account in the Bible is that they left out a number of things.  I guess God included only what he thought was important.

  • Balaam’s Origin: Numbers doesn’t say much about where Balaam came from.  I guess I am supposed to know where Pethor is.  But, it doesn’t say how Balaam came to know God since it implies he was separate from the people who came out from Egypt.
  • Balaam’s Response to the donkey: I find it odd that Balaam just replies to the donkey as if it is normal to talk to a donkey.  Did God leave it to Sunday School teachers to have fun imaging this interaction?  Was Balaam surprised when he heard the voice?  Did it take a few minutes to find out it was the donkey talking?  Numbers 22:21 says that he went with the Princes of Moab.  So, what did they think about the donkey?
  • Balaam’s instruction to tempt Israel:  Revelation 2:14 says that Balaam taught Balak how to be a stumbling block to Israel.  But, our account in Numbers here doesn’t really describe that.
  • Balaam’s death:  In Joshua 13:22, the Bible says that Israel killed Balaam.  Again, that is not covered here in Numbers.

Treating Animals

While mankind definitely comes first (Gen 1:26 — dominion over all the earth) and the creation never comes before the creator, God still expects us to treat animals properly.  Maybe I am stretching the application a little bit, but God could have communicated about the Angel to Balaam differently.  Instead, he allowed the donkey to defend himself after getting hit those three times.  Remember, Jesus knows even when the sparrow falls (Matthew 10:29).

Nugget of Gold

He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob, neither hath he seen perverseness in Israel: the LORD his God is with him, and the shout of a king is among them. — Numbers 23:21

Remember Jacob is the trickster.  Even after God did all of those mighty works in Egypt, the Israel still complained and forgot God.  How can God say he hasn’t seen any perverseness?  Israel was His chosen and redeemed people.  He cleansed them from their sin so that he no longer even saw their faults.  In the same way, he can clean us.  All he asks is that we put our trust in Jesus, and he will wash us from all our sin — that is called Mercy!

Resources

Wikipedia: Balaam

Lessons from the New Born

Just taking a minute to reflect on some of the things that we have learned through the birth of Clay.  Here are some of the thoughts:

  • Everyone/Every pregnancy is different
    • We heard horror stories from others (we probably told a few ourselves), but it is important to remember that those things aren’t guaranteed to happen to you.
    • We liked the book What to Expect When Your Expecting because it offered suggestions for symptoms, etc. that you might see for each month, but they were just suggestions.
    • Even between siblings, the pregnancies were different.  Problems we had with Kent we didn’t have with Clay.
  • Enjoy every moment
    • Despite the frustration and annoyances, time flies faster than you think.  Things change fast.  You don’t want to let the wishing you will get past the annoying parts make you miss the fun parts.
    • I believe God knew what he was doing having infants sleep most of the time.  If they came out running around getting into everything, we wouldn’t be ready.  But, they slowly ease into that stage.
  • Don’t forget Google.
    • I had co-workers asking me if we had checked the Internet for solutions to problems we were going through.  I would say that sort of thing isn’t out there, but sure enough they would find tips and tricks.
  • Family, Church, and Friends are invaluable
    • I don’t know what we would do without all of the help that we have had.
    • Talking with others who have just been through the same thing always helps.  Everyone has a different perspective, and you can glean ideas and take what works, leave what doesn’t.