Saturday, January 28, 2006

Rediscovering the Gibson

In a surprising turn, last night I had a lengthy dream in which I paid a visit to the home of Mel Gibson and engaged him and his oldest son in conversation on various topics, something which seemed to go on for hours. Gibson informed me of the death of his parents, and having told him that I would pray for them and for his family, I woke up feeling like I had truly bonded with the man. Keep in mind that I know nothing more about Mel Gibson than anyone else other than by viewing his films, nor have I been impressed with his more wacked ecclesiology. Anyway, by the end of the dream, I discovered that I was not actually present at the Gibson estate, but rather that I had watched the whole thing on an extended episode of "The Tonight Show" with Jay Leno. Gift, or curse? ;)
Teaching Through Tragedy

I was 7 1/2 when the shuttle Challenger exploded during its launch 20 years ago. I lived near Omaha, Nebraska back then, and I remember watching it on television, not knowing quite what to think about it. I think that I and every kid I knew back then had wanted to be an astronaut when we had grown up.

Here's an article published in the Santa Maria Times about the experience of a recent aquaintance of mine, Jerry Loomer, who was one of the Teacher-in-Space finalists for that ill-fated voyage. Today he teaches Physics and Chemistry at my former high-school in Santa Maria, CA.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Pi = 3.(...) and other wild adventures

For you C programming nerds and nerdettes, one of the more interesting ways to calculate the value of Pi...

And see all the cool things the preprocessor can do for you to solve the infamous towers of hanoi... (Dump the assembly code to prove it!)

...and other code selections courtesy of our good friends at the International Obfuscated C Code Contest.

Can you theologians out there tell me whether esoteric theology is like esoteric computer science...? hmm.. well I realize that might make no sense... but this is all cool, just the same...

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Deus Caritas Est

Pope Benedict XVI's first encyclical:

Deus Caritas Est

Opening paragraph:
1. "God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him" (1 Jn 4:16). These words from the First Letter of John express with remarkable clarity the heart of the Christian faith: the Christian image of God and the resulting image of mankind and its destiny. In the same verse, Saint John also offers a kind of summary of the Christian life: "We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us".
Read it! It is here for all of us... don't let it pass you by. I intend to go through it more thoroughly this weekend when I have more time, but what I have read so far is very good, and I find it to be very easy to read. Truly our modern, misguided notions on the nature of love could be said to lay at the root of social evils.

If you're interested, Jimmy Akin mentions an mp3 version of the encyclical (17MB), which is probably best listened to with the actual text in front of you.


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