Archive for the ‘Society’ Category

Perception: The Joshua Bell Story

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

A friend of mine sent me the following email.  In today’s society we are “programmed” to think and act in certain ways.  We are often sold the package and not the product.  It it looks good it must be good.

Washington, DC Metro Station on a cold January morning in 2007. The man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time approx. 2 thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After 3 minutes a middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule…

4 minutes later:

The violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk…

6 minutes:

A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

10 minutes:

A 3-year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced their children to move on quickly.

45 minutes:

The musician played continuously. Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32.

1 hour:

He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a true story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people’s priorities. The questions raised: in a common place environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made…. How many other things are we missing?

This story reminds me a a book I read called “Acres of Diamonds“.  In a way this book has a tragic ending.  Here is a synopsis of that story.

There is a man who spent his entire life looking for riches.  Though he tried and tried he failed.  One day he learned of a new opportunity and he sold his home.  The new owner discover that on that property was a diamond field.  In fact it ended up being one of the largest diamond mine in the world.  The tragedy is that the man in the story died broke.  He had all the resources he could need yet was unable to see what he already had.

What treasure, opportunity, gifts do you have right now that you are not seeing?  Open your eyes and see the beauty that is around you.  God has provided you with all that you will every need.  You just need to receive it.

Additional Reading:

Video: Here is a RFID Microchip Advertisment for Medical Health Care

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

Under the cloak of medical assistance the social engineers want to promote a simple little RFID chip to identify and store medical issues. While on the surface it seem like a useful tool to assist doctors in medical emergency it does bring up other more horrifying scenarios. Most of us are familiar with the Bible passages in Revelation where we are warned of a mark.

He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name.
Revelation 13:16-17

Let me ask you this.  Once the chip is in place how difficult would it be to also add your financial information?  I formerly used a SpeedPass to purchase gas.  It was a bit strange to do in light of the Revelation 13:17.  By the way, did you know that the SpeedPass uses RFID technology?   The same exact technology touted in this video.

Now, let take it a step further.  The social engineers now want to create a universal health care system basically run by the government.   Keep in mind that the government creates the laws.  They could legislate that every man, woman and child must get this chip inserted into their body.  If you don’t you will be a criminal.  It is really all that far fetched that they would do that?

Believe me when I say there is a connection.

Health Link – Verimed

Britains War on Christianity Americas Future Fight

Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

*Originally published July 28, 2009

There is a war against the Christian today. This news item shows the trials that Britain is going through today. Attacked from many sides it is the weak and frail that get devoured. For a wake up call watch this video. Your comments and ideas are welcome.

Shared via AddThis

Abraham Lincoln Proclamation of Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

Proclamation of Thanksgiving
Washington, D.C.
October 3, 1863

This is the proclamation which set the precedent for America’s national day of Thanksgiving. During his administration, President Lincoln issued many orders like this. For example, on November 28, 1861, he ordered government departments closed for a local day of thanksgiving.

Sarah Josepha Hale, a prominent magazine editor, wrote a letter to Lincoln on 28, 1863, urging him to have the “day of our annual Thanksgiving made a National and fixed Union Festival.” She wrote, “You may have observed that, for some years past, there has been an increasing interest felt in our land to have the Thanksgiving held on the same day, in all the States; it now needs National recognition and authoritative fixation, only, to become permanently, an American custom and institution.” The document below sets apart the last Thursday of November “as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise.”

According to an April 1, 1864, letter from John Nicolay, one of President Lincoln’s secretaries, this document was written by Secretary of State William Seward, and the original was in his handwriting. On October 3, 1863, fellow Cabinet member Gideon Welles recorded in his diary that he complimented Seward on his work. A year later the manuscript was sold to benefit Union troops.

By the President of the United States of America.

A Proclamation.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled
with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies.
To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that
we are prone to forget the source from which they come,
others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a
nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even
the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful
providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of
unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed
to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression,
peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been
maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and
harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre
of military conflict; while that theatre has been
greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies
of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength
from the fields of peaceful industry to the national
defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the
ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements,
and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious
metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore.
Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the
waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the
battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consiousness
of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect
continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No
human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked
out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the
Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our
sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to
me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently
and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice
by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow
citizens in every part of the United States, and also those
who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands,
to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next,
as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father
who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that
while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for
such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also,
with humble penitence for our national perverseness and
disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have
become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the
lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably
engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of
the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and
to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the
Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony,
tranquility and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused
 the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in
the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three,
and of the Independence of the Unites States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln

William H. Seward,
Secretary of State

Video: Home Schooling – Tim Hawking

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

Here is a funny video from comedian Tim Hawking,  Subject: Home Schooling.

Video: Tim Hawkins – The Government Can

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

In this entertaining video, comedian Tim Hawkins explains what the government plans to do with your money.

Wesite Redesign – Silent Voices

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

I recently updated the look and feel of the Silent Voices website.  Here is a brief description of the organization:

Silent Voices is a ministry that provides services to women struggling with pregnancy and abortion related issues. Silent Voices provides care to pregnant women, single mothers and their children, as well as to women who had already had an abortion.  They offer pregnancy tests, abortion/pregnancy education, emotional, physical and spiritual support and post abortion support groups. While Silent Voices firmly believes in and advocates the sanctity of human life, all of our clients know that they are loved and accepted no matter what their situations, backgrounds or choices.

Here is a screen shot of the website before.

Silent Voices Web Layout Before

Silent Voices Web Layout Before

Sharon, the director of Silent Voices contacted me and wanted to get a fresh new look.  The layout was created several years ago she wanted to move away from the pink and blue theme.  As we we discussed the changes, she indicated that she would like to have brighter colors, more of a springtime feel to the site.  She felt that it would be more inviting.  It was at this point that I put my creative juices to work.  One thing that did help was she did provide me with examples of websites that she liked.  This is always helpful as a starting point.  I proceeded with creating three mockups in Photoshop for her and the board members to view.  Once we nailed down a design, I was able to further refine the design with additional revisions.  Finally, we had a new layout design had here is a screen shot of the final version.

Silent Voices-Home

Silent Voices Website Layout After

The conversion

For this project, my job was to create a new look to the website.  The existing content is the same.  I did add a couple of additional pages but nothing major. The old site also had a “splash page” and that was eliminated.   The previous site was built on a table style layout.  The new layout would be based on a tableless CSS design.  For many of my projects lately I’ve been using the Blueprint CSS framework as a starting point for my designs.  It is a good idea to have this in mind when creating the layout.  Blueprint does have a PSD with the Grids to help with the design layout.  The Silent Voices layout is 950px wide with 2 columns based on the 1/3 divisions.  The left column is 1/3 and main content is 2/3.  Blueprint makes it simple to make these divisions in the CSS.

The website is hosted on a Windows based server.  And all of the existing pages are static html.  The orginal site was created in Dreamweaver using the Template function.  Using Templates in Dreamweaver made the conversion of each of the html files very easy.  I don’t use this very often, but when I started maintaining the site I needed to learn how to use the templates.  What I did for this site was update the main.dwt file to the new layout and then convert the files.  It was quick and easy.

I’ve also started using  jQuery recently.  This is a javascript framework that is used to create some amazing effects.   There is a slide show that uses this technology and was easy to implement.

When the site was approved, I backed up all of the old files.  It is always a smart thing to backup when making a conversion.  Just in case there is a problem and you need to revert back to the old design.  Of course this was not the case.  The conversion when quite smoothly.  I only had to make a few very minor adjustments.

You can view the site at And finally, if you have an idea for a website that you want designed and developed please contact me.  I am available to help you with your online presence.