Month: December 2017

Finding your column ain’t easy

“Symeon selected a three-metre-high column in the Syrian desert near Antioch, and there he stood day in, day out, eventually attracting such a crowd that the noise caused him to build his column higher, bringing him closer to God and 16 metres off the ground. Symeon managed to live like this for 30 years, and many other monks began to follow his example so that a whole stylite movement developed which was still going strong …

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Grain counting technologies

“The truth, Scott proposes, may be the opposite. What if early civilization was not a boon to humankind but a disaster: for health and safety, for freedom, and for the natural world? What if the first cities were, above all, vast technologies of exploitation by a small and rapacious elite? If that is where we come from, who are we now? What possibilities might we discover by tracing our origins to a different kind of …

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2018 Tech

https://www.wsj.com/amp/articles/tech-that-will-change-your-life-in-2018-1514394043?__twitter_impression=true

Good advice

I recommend this whole post for people starting out in a creative venture or pursuing a lifelong passion as a vocation or for profit: Be humble, but always try to exceed expectations. When you accept an invitation to do a talk, or do a work for a commission, do something that’s a stretch, and then do it so well that it looks like it was easy. This can mean doing way more work in a …

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Bringing It All Back Home 2018 Edition

Robert Rauschenberg, Mother of God, ca. 1950 I’ve made a series of “Bringing It All Back Home” posts here over the last decade charting my attempts to reign in some of the content I so freely pour out all over the social web. Some of those attempts have been successful and some less so (looking at you, Twitter). However, I enter 2018 with a renewed sense of purpose and direction for how I see this …

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WordPress Plugin Supply Chain Attacks

These are pretty popular plugins in the SEO world… I imagine lots more of these “supply chain attacks” exist due to older but still popular plugins being sold or leased: If you have any of these plugins running on your site, we recommend that you remove them immediately and that you make sure that SEO spam hasn’t been injected into your site. Even though one of them, WP No External Links, has been updated to remove …

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Churches and nonprofits must explore income alternatives in 2018 and beyond.

American churches and nonprofits are in for an even louder wake-up call in 2018 and beyond. It’s definitely time to start planning for the near future to keep your church or nonprofit solvent, especially if you are smaller in size and rely on donors who make less than $75,000 yearly. Churches must begin to explore income alternatives with an expected decline in individual giving in 2018 from the pending tax reform plan, along with year-over-year …

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I don’t like Christmas Carols.

There, I said it for all of posterity to record and one day synthesize into the VR / AI Sam-bot that my great grandkids can chat with in real time… Dr. Thomas Whitley and the Rev. Sam Harrelson discuss nativity scenes, bad Christmas songs, Epiphany, the War on Christmas, and bad Apple (batteries). Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! via Thinking Religion Episode 134: Advent in the Minor Key

Episode 134: Advent in the Minor Key

Dr. Thomas Whitley and the Rev. Sam Harrelson discuss nativity scenes, bad Christmas songs, Epiphany, the War on Christmas, and bad Apple (batteries). Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! Support Thinking Religion Links: John Lennon – Happy Xmas (War Is Over) – YouTube The Christmas Shoes – YouTube John Denver: Please Daddy Don’t Get Drunk This Christmas – YouTube Paul McCartney – Wonderful Christmas Time – YouTube Johnny Cash – I Heard The Bells On Christmas …

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Googling Inside Your Church

Fascinating piece on Google Maps history and possible directions… So Google likely knows what’s inside all of the buildings it has extracted. And as Google gets closer and closer to capturing every building in the world, it’s likely that Google will start highlighting / lighting up buildings related to queries and search results. This will be really cool when Google’s/Waymo’s self-driving cars have AR displays. One can imagine pointing out the window at a building and being able …

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I’m excited about Magic Leap’s Lightwear

We’ve been working on this tech since the 1830’s and we’re almost to the point of mass adoption and use cases… Magic Leap today revealed a mixed reality headset that it believes reinvents the way people will interact with computers and reality. Unlike the opaque diver’s masks of virtual reality, which replace the real world with a virtual one, Magic Leap’s device, called Lightwear, resembles goggles, which you can see through as if wearing a …

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Building a website is cheap, but not protecting it is costly.

We use Wordfence as a default on all new WordPress client sites that we create for good reason. Here’s a scary reminder that while building a website has become quick, easy, and relatively cheap your company / nonprofit / church / community group should not take WordPress security for granted with cheap hosting and no one overseeing these sorts of things: This is the highest volume brute force attack we have seen to date. It may …

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Nonprofits, the smartphone, Facebook, and Google

Interesting thoughts here from the NY Times CEO on how they are shifting focus in relationship to Facebook and Google due to the smartphone revolution … much of this applies to how nonprofits and churches can do better marketing as well: It’s about how you think about the product and what you’re trying to do and what is the value you’re giving to users. The areas of weakness in the publishing industry have been not …

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It’s a 3 Screen Kind of Monday

Working from home with our son this week. He likes to contribute to my setup with various design inspirations. Left to Right: Google Pixelbook, iPad Pro, Samsung Chromebook Pro Why two Chromebooks? I’m using Chrome Remote Desktop on the Pixelbook to run Adobe Illustrator via the Windows desktop in my office and keeping notes on the Samsung. The iPad is there for renderings in Pixelmator and for Trello. I’ve got the Pixelbook Pen and Apple …

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Facebook Cracks Down on Engagement Baiting

What you see on Facebook greatly depends on what Facebook thinks you want to see. It’s a complicated algorithm of past behaviors, your own demographic info as well as what people who you interact with often are liking or sharing. “Likes” and “Shares” on a post can greatly amplify the number of people who see it. However, you shouldn’t be blatant and ask for likes or shares in a way that can be perceived as …

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Episode 133: Our Holiday Extravaganza

Dr. Thomas Whitley and The Rev. Sam Harrelson are joined by The Rev. Lauren E. Larkin, Prof. W. Travis McMaken ("McBacon"), and The Rev. Merianna Neely Harrelson in an extravaganza of epic proportions. They discuss Clash of the Titans, why you should write a book, gendered religious language, Ancient Aliens, Alex Jones, flogging, and hate watching the world burn. Special Guests: Lauren R.E. Larkin, Merianna Neely Harrelson, and W. Travis McMaken. Support Thinking Religion Links: …

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Episode 132: Is It Worth Selling Your Soul?

Dr. Thomas Whitley and The Rev. Sam Harrelson discuss the #metoo Revolution, amplifying voices, and whether anything is worth trading your integrity. Support Thinking Religion Links: TIME Person of the Year 2017: The Silence Breakers | Time.com A pastor’s #MeToo story | The Christian Century God’s Plan for Mike Pence – The Atlantic A Day of Reckoning and Sexual Harassment – Merianna Neely Harrelson

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