Archive for July, 2010

Some More on Apologetics

In my last post on the subject of apologetics, I argued the true spirit of apologetics should be focused on laying out the place of Christian beliefs within the context of the life and community of faith.  Instead of trying to “convince” non-believers about the “reasonableness” of the historicity or phenomenology of some point of doctrine, I suggested that the “reasonableness” of Christian belief can only be fully realized in the articulation of these doctrines as emerging from the experience of the faithful themselves.  In this way, then, beliefs about the Incarnation, resurrection, etc. are not “truths” that necessarily exist independently of the profession of faith of the community of believers, but rather find their truthfulness and meaningfulness from the mission and identity of the body of Christ within the kingdom of God in the world.

I suggest that the purpose of apologetics was never intended to be about converting others to one’s way of thinking through logic and argumentation.  Rather, to recall the famous Petrine passage, Christians are to give an answer “…to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (I Peter 3:15).  The words in bold are important, for they frame the course More >

Farewell Napster, Hello MOG

For about 4 years now, I have had a premium membership with Napster (no, not the Napster that you remember from college…:)).  My $15-odd dollars a month granted me access to millions of songs that I could stream over the internet, or download for quicker playback on up to 3 personal computers.  Additionally, I could sync tracks to an MP3 player (up to 3 of them), allowing me to take my music on the road…it only required an annoying license-refresher-sync every month or so.

This worked pretty well for me for a long time.  I was too cheap to buy an iPod, , so the 5GB (?) Creative Zen that I mooched off my little brother was the perfect fit.  Then it broke (sorry Jared).  And then Vista started hating the Napster software.  And then all my favorite songs started showing up as only available in 30-second clips.  And then I got my iPhone which, of course, isn’t compatible with most of ANYTHING that Napster does.  It was time for a change.

So the other night I came across on article on Mashable about the launch of a brand-spanking-new app, a gateway app to the MOG music service.

Well, this was the first I had More >

Some Thoughts on Apologetics

Recently, I’ve been visiting a variety of apologetics-focused blogs and forums (super exiting, right? :)).  During my readings and interactions with the bloggers associated with these sites, I’ve started asking some hard questions about the usefulness of apologetics within the life of faith and mission or the Church.

Given my background (B.S., Pastoral Ministries, M.A. Theological Studies), I’m definitely no stranger to the “logic” of apologetics.  Based on the famous Petrine passage, the ultimate purpose of apologetics, as a discipline, is to “give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (I Peter 3:15).  From 2nd century Justin Martyr’s Apologies, to McDowell’s famous Evidence That Demands A Verdict, to Strobel’s Case for Christ, there is a long, varied, and rich tradition of apologetics within Christian theology.  While motivations and level of expertise have varied in the execution, the ultimate goal of each work has been, I think, to show the Christian faith as something “reasonable,” to defend the faith on intellectual grounds.

While this is in itself a noble goal, I think something that is far too often overlooked is the interplay of philosophy, theology and biblical interpretation that happens between the apologist More >

HTML5 Web SQL: Versions

As mentioned in my last post about Web SQL databases, each Web SQL database consists of a unique name and version.  Each database, however, can only have a single version at any given time, so there’s no possibility of older and newer versions running concurrently.  To quote the spec, this is provided to “…allow authors to manage schema changes incrementally and non-destructively, and without running the risk of old code (e.g. in another browser window) trying to write to a database with incorrect assumptions.”   In other words, instead of trying to manage the hassle of temporarily offloading data, rebuilding the data structure from scratch, and then reloading data when code changes, versioning allows for the detection of the client’s current db version, with the option of programmatically upgrading them to a different (read “new’) version of the database schema.  Of course, you could conceivably also use this to detect old versions and point to different code entirely, but that would be a lot of code to manage…

My idea on this is to use the versioning as a way to push incremental database schema changes in a systematic way.  For example, you could easily define a complex series of schema More >

Quick Update

It’s been a few days since my last post.  It’s partly because I’ve been busy at work, but also because I’ve been working on a super-sweet demo for a new post, which I hope to publish tomorrow.

While you’re waiting, why not check out the season premier of Psych?

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More Random Thoughts on Final Fantasy XIII

A few days ago, I shared my *official* thoughts on Final Fantasy XIII.

Not having touched it since then, here are some additional random thoughts, in no particular order or meaningfulness 🙂

  • Final Battle Blues: The final battle (was it 3 or 4 obligatory boss forms?) was WAYYYYY too easy.  It could be that I simply leveled up too much in my aborted attempt to complete all of the beast “marks,” but I took out the final baddie (Orphan) without breaking a sweat.  In fact, besides the necessarily non-lethal “Judgement” strike in the next-to-last form, all my character’s HP stayed well above half.  Of course, that means that I had much more time for slicing and dicing, making quick work of him.  Even the dreaded “doom” that was cast on my party in Orphan’s final form was no big deal whatsoever.  I annihilated him so quickly that I didn’t even have to think about trying to get around certain death.  Pathetic.
  • The End of Big Hair?: A hallmark of FF games is big, spiky, crazy hair.  From Cloud’s lethal spikes to Wakka’s cone-dome, big, flashy hair has been a certainty.  And yes, although we all realize that such hair is, on the basis More >