Author: digitaleagle

April Fools 2016

Each year, I enjoy the jokes that the companies put out on the Internet.  Here’s my list…

Google Cardboard Plastic

I think this is my favorite joke:

Google Cardboard Plastic

Useless Light Switch

I need to get this light switch for the boys since they are always leaving the lights on.

ThinkGeek: Useless Light Switch

Useless Light Switch

Open Table Taste

You can try a restaurant before you go now.

Wonder Paw

Teach your dog to code!

Duolingo Pillow

You can learn a new language easier now:

Duolingo Pillow

Duolingo Pillow

 

Redbox Kiosk Ambassador

Redbox has new job openings!  Check out their website.

Now Hiring: Kiosk Ambassadors!

GMail Mic Drop

It sounds like the Mic Drop is an example of how you have to be careful with April Fools.  In my opinion, an April Fool’s joke should be obvious.  It should make someone laugh, not feel stupid or irritated.  As with any joking or rough housing, it’s always easy to get carried away even unintentionally.  Google didn’t mean to, but they seem to have caused problems by adding this joke to GMail.

Official GMail Blog

Sony’s Proton Pack

Now you can catch your own ghosts!

Groupon Cat Reader

Need a coupon to hire someone to read to your cat?

Groupon: Groupon Reads to Your Cat. Mystery Sitcom Star Available.

Prysm Infinity Aerosol Display

Just spray and display!

Prysm Infinity: Simply Spray and Display

Waterpik Shower Belt

It’s better to be safe in the show.  Check out the new shower belt.

Sources

Where’s Bin Laden’s Faith?

I came across this article the other day:

Fox News: Bin Laden claimed $29M fortune, wanted it used ‘on jihad’

This quote caught my attention:

“If I am to be killed,” he wrote in a 2008 letter to his father, “pray for me a lot and give continuous charities in my name, as I will be in great need for support to reach the permanent home.”

One would think that a leader of such an organization would be pretty sure of their ways.  If Bin Laden had supposedly accomplished so much for his religion, why did he need people to pray for him or give charities in his name to get to heaven?  Where is his faith?

As Christians, our faith is different.  There is no doubt or hoping.  We don’t need people to pray us into heaven.

Jeremiah 17:7-8  Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.  For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

One of the best examples is the story of the thief on the cross.  The thief deserved to die on the cross and did not dispute that fact.  Even so, Jesus says the thief will be in heaven that day:

Luke 23:43  And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

When Jesus was on the cross, He declared His work was finished.  He had completely paid for my sin so that I could get to heaven:

John 19:30  When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.

So, I am not depending on a person to help me get to heaven after I die.  Jesus completed everything, and that is what I am relying on.

Great Link: Supersonic Sub

I ran across this article talking about technology being developed to attempt to take subs at a supersonic speed.

Engadget: Supersonic subs look to cross the Pacific in under two hours

This sounds really cool and all, but what happens when you hit a blue whale at supersonic speeds?  Airplanes have enough to worry about with birds.  Thankfully, they probably mostly only have to worry about take off and landing.  When they hit their top speeds up in the air, they are probably flying above the range of birds.  I am sure that pilots are very glad that ostriches don’t fly!

I am guessing that we can’t say the same thing about subs and whales.  Would a whale be able to move out of the way of an object moving that fast?  Would a sub be able to detect a whale in its path soon enough to maneuver around it?

Great Link: Growable Bike

I ran across this really cool idea of a bike that grows with you.  It starts as a walking bike to teach the kids balance.  Then, you can reassemble it to make a regular toddler bike with peddles.    Check out the article and pictures:

Engadget: As your kid grows, this bike will transform to fit them

So, the bike handle the kids physical changes, but what about their emotional changes?  The bike needs Elmo or Veggietale decorations.  As the kids get older, you need to be able to switch that out for Spiderman or Barbie!

Thoughts on Robin Williams

The Internet news has been a buzz with the news of Robin Williams death.  My heart goes out to his family and I pray that God gives them comfort in this time of tragedy.

The news is reporting that Williams’ suicide was largely due to depression:

A despondent Robin Williams spent 18 hours a day sleeping inside the darkened bedroom where he committed suicide as he spiraled into a fatal depression.

I saw one article at least that seemed to focus on the depression factor that lead to his suicide.

Instantly, we recalled other artists who followed the same tragic path, a lengthy list that includes painters, poets, writers, musicians and designers: Vincent van Gogh, Ernest Hemingway, Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath, Kurt Cobain, Alexander McQueen to name just a few of the famous creatives who suffered from depression and committed suicide.

But is there a proven link between creativity and mental illness (which, strictly speaking, is not the same as being mad)? This is still a matter of hot debate.

I wonder if the article had the wrong focus.  According to the Hollywood Reporter, Robin Williams has struggled with drug addiction:

He struggled with cocaine and alcohol abuse in the early ’80s, after his rise to fame on Mork & Mindy.

Apparently, Williams had gained some victory but relapsed.  Hollywood Reporter:

After 20 years of sobriety, though, Williams relapsed in 2006.

 

This situation has called for a heightened awareness of depression and mental illness.  But, what about a call to beware of the dangers of drug abuse?  I found several articles confirming that depression and dug abuse are linked.

For example, ABC News says:

There is a very close relationship between depression and substance abuse in adults. The two conditions are highly comorbid, which is to say that they occur together in an extremely high percentage of individuals.

The article goes on to say that it is possible that the drug addiction can cause or contribute to the depression:

Cocaine tends to elevate people’s moods, but when they come off it, they often experience a crash into depression. And there is a whole long list of other frequent drugs of abuse that also can lead to depression either during the time when the individual is intoxicated with the drug or during the withdrawal phase.

The Net Doctor says it this way:

There are certain chemicals in the brain (called neurotransmitters) that are key to the way we feel – in other words they control our emotions.
It’s the levels of these chemicals that are altered in depression. Recreational drugs also affect these chemicals. This is why drugs alter the way we feel.

May I suggest that we take this moment to remember that drug abuse is dangerous and can have serious impacts?

 

In another twist, I saw on the US Weekly Magazine that:

Actor Rob Schneider has blamed his good friend Robin Williams’ tragic death on a drug he was taking to combat the early symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.

The same article goes on to mention that:

“Robin’s sobriety was intact,” his wife wrote in a statement earlier that day. “And he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety, as well as early stages of Parkinson’s Disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly.”

So, maybe we can’t place all the blame for the suicide on the drug abuse.  There were definitely other things at play.

Then, I ran into this other article alleging that Cocaine can lead to Parkinson’s

For years, Williams had openly discussed his battle with depression and also with substance abuse. Board-certified neurosurgeon Dr. Russell Blaylock believes that Williams’ substance abuse — specifically his use of cocaine — was at the root of his Parkinson’s disease. In fact, a major study has found that cocaine users are at much higher risk for the brain illness.

The article states that the cocaine could have led to the Parkinson’s even though he wasn’t currently battling the cocaine addition:

Still, alcohol and depression were constant battles, although his wife said he was sober at the time of his death.

However, the heavy cocaine use of his past may have already done its damage, setting up Williams to develop Parkinson’s in the future, said Dr. Blaylock.

The point is that drug abuse, whether or not it directly led to Robin Williams’ death, can have serious affects, not only on your current health and life but also on your future health as you age.

 

Not matter the cause, this suicide is deeply person for Robin Williams’ family and friends.  It’s not right to callously use his situation as a case study or propaganda.  I don’t want to loose sight of the pain that they are going through  At the same time, I did notice that the tragedy of another friend is one of the things that caused Williams to fight the addiction.  Hollywood Reporter:

“The Belushi tragedy was frightening,” Williams told People. “His death scared a whole group of show-business people. It caused a big exodus from drugs. And for me, there was the baby coming. I knew I couldn’t be a father and live that sort of life.”

I can’t claim to know Robin Williams’ personally or even to be much of a fan, but with that said, could I guess that he might want the same thing said of his life?  Would he want it said of him that he helped to trigger an “exodus” from drugs?

Is it possible that Williams’ death will spur someone help and fight the addiction?  While respecting their grieving, is that the story we should be telling?

Sources

Response/Bible Study: Digital Tattoo

I ran across this article describing a digital tattoo:

Engadget: You can now unlock your Motorola phone with a ‘digital tattoo’

For those of you who know your Bible, does this scare you?  Does it sound like something from Revelation?

Revelation 13:16  — And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

So, we should just make sure that we don’t put the “digital tattoo” on our right hand or forehead, right?  Could this really be the mark of the beast?  Well, first of all, the mark is not a swirly mark.  It is the name of the antichrist or his number:

Revelation 13:17-18 — And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.  Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

I think that the most important part about the mark is that it is an act of worship of the beast or the antichrist.  It seems that every time the mark is mentioned, it is mentioned in conjunction with worshiping the beast.

Revelation 13:15-16 — And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.  And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

Revelation 14:9 — And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,

Revelation 14:11 — And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

Revelation 16:2 — And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.

Revelation 19:20 — And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.

Revelation 20:4 — And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

So, is the digital tattoo wrong?  I would argue no.  It has nothing to do with worship.  Instead it is a convenience and security feature.  It makes it easier to unlock your phone.  In fact, it helps you make it so that you are the only one who can unlock your phone and access your sensitive information.

I’ve met some people to refuse to get credit cards and fear this technology that has any hint of the “mark”.  I think this is the point they are missing: the mark of the beast is an act of worship.  It’s not just a technology of convenience.

The “mark” probably will be given in the guise of convenience though.  The Bible does say that the people will receive a delusion and will get tricked into taking the antichrist’s side.  If you don’t choose God now, don’t think that you will choose him when the end comes.

II Thessalonians 2:11 — And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

Revelation 13:14 — And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.

Still, I think that God will make it clear that those taking the mark are making a choice.  It will be a choice between God and the antichrist.

With the progression of technology, we can see how these marks might work though.  It makes sense that the “mark” will include some sort of RFID technology.  The Bible says that you will need the mark to buy and sell.  The NFC chip in the Google phone is a perfect example.  You can simply swipe your phone across the credit card scanner to make a purchase tied to your credit card.  So, it makes sense that the mark might have similar technology.

Revelation 13:17 — And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

The chips embedded in pets are an example of how such technology might be embedded into a living thing for tracking purposes.  So, all of the technology is available.  What remains is the component of worship.  Thankfully, there is no cause to use this technology as an act of defiance against God yet.

So, use your technology, and enjoy it.  Let’s just make sure we use it for God and to further His kingdom.

Great Link: Exploring Underwater

I across this link today:

Engadget: The Big Picture: Filming 360-degree video of the Aquarius underwater Reef Base

The cool part is that Time has a video that you interact with.  It’s a 360-degree video and you can scroll around and control the viewing angle as the video plays.  It’s a unique way to present and engage viewers.  You can view the video here:

Time Website

You can also read more about the content: