Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Cell Phone Simulation

Monday, June 28, 2010


Thursday, June 24, 2010


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Lightning strikes twice

Lightning stories are fascinating to us. Monday added yet another story to my portfolio - the blow out of the invisible dog fence (must mean it is now visible) and garage electrical receptacle. I'll bet you have had a "brush with lightning" also.

I decided to find out the frequency of lightning strikes (see picture). Florida has a "Lightning Alley" where there are 50 strike per sq. mile per year. My favorite visual of lightning is while driving at dusk near Dallas, Tx - absolutely beautiful.

Lightning always precedes thunder. Count the seconds between the flash and when you hear the thunder. For every 4.6 seconds the lightning is a mile away. Since you can only hear thunder up to 12 miles - suffice it to say, the lightning is close regardless.

I've always said the sound of thunder is God talking - so the sight of lightning is ........

Monday, June 21, 2010

I need a Charge

Whoever solves the power dilemma of rechargeable batteries will be the next Bill Gates. I can't think of anyone that is satisfied with their rechargeable batteries - cell phone, laptop etc. Yes there is that irritating symbol on the phone or laptop of battery strength - but the reality is most of us don't pay attention to it before it is too late.

Add to this, that most recommendations is to allow the battery to fully drain for optimal battery life. The memory of the last charge creates an ever decreasing life (or so I understand). I've finally come to the realization that my laptop battery will work approximately 10 -20 minutes. I just keep it plugged in continuously - day and night.

And what about all those clunking AC adapters. None are standard and all sit around a house plugged in draining so small amount of electric power continuously (what a waste).

I've given up trying to re-charge AAA, AA, C and D batteries at home. What we really need is ubiquitous plugs for all our power need everywhere.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sunday Nap

On a hot June day (in fact Fathers Day), the afternoon "power nap" can be the best gift a father can receive.

Apparently one third of Americans nap - so I am in good company. They are more common among men and the poor. A study (Jan 2008) in the journal of Nature Neuroscience found a 90-minute daytime nap helped test subjects remember things better.

It worked - I got up from the nap an remembered to call my dad and wish him a Happy Fathers Day.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

What's great about America

Today I challenged Jenna and her friends to submit their essay (500 words or less) to the Enquirer answering the question - "What's Great about America?" For any of them that get published, I will give them $100 a piece. That's what's great about America - the competitive spirit!

Of course I will contribute an entry also and it may include that theme. I heard once that in the DNA of the USA is Entrepreneurial spirit. The rich stories of inventors, implementers, ingenious engineers, and inspiring leaders. America attracts these individuals from around the world.

A nation of immigrants. Risk takers willing to do what it takes in the pursuit of happiness. America is the collective weave of it's people, processes and principles aspiring to be good - delivering great.

Friday, June 18, 2010

106 Billion and Counting

106,456,367,669 is Carl Haub's (Population Reference Bureau 12/2002) estimate of how many people have ever lived on Earth. With the estimate, he is clear to state all the critical assumptions - and the most sensitive of all is the start date (50,000 B.C.)and growth rate assumptions from 8000 B.C. to 1 A.D.

I discovered this trivia as I was researching Heaven. I'm sure the statisticians like me are thinking about bell curves and what proportion of people are in Heaven.

Father Domnic (a Trappist and strict Cistercian at St. Josephs Abbey in Spencer, Mass) believes that all of us are a whole and that unless we all go to Heaven, no one will (pg 137 of "Heaven" by Lisa Miller). Wow - that's an interesting belief with lots of side questions.

The Mission to Empty Purgatory ( is asking for prayers to assure that at least one prayer for ever 1000 souls ever created is said and as of May 31, 2010 there are still 50 million to go.

With 6.8 Billion people on Earth today, they could change the goal to be one prayer per 16 souls if we could get the word out to everyone.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


We are FIPs said KC at lunch yesterday. Formerly Important People. As we both reflected on our successful careers, it was evident that those days were behind us - and relatively unimportant in a number of ways. It's not that I am negating history, or not valuing the experience and activities of my career with Accenture. No, in fact, those years of growth created who I am.

Identities are critical to each of us. You first meet someone and after the exchange of names there is the verbal dance of investigating commonality. Where do you live? What do you do? Who do you know? Where did you go to school? Where are you in the hierarchy?

KC said, "It's not about what you've done ..... it's about what you are doing now." Yesterday is just another addition to your inventory of experience - available to help you in what you are doing now and next.

So for all you FIP's, use today to be a CIP - Currently Important Person.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


What's the fine line between constructive discussion and criticism?

This morning it was all about the discussion of the burning of "Touchdown Jesus"- the 62 foot foam and fiberglass statue at the Solid Rock Church. Wow - the criticism was burning higher than the flames on Monday evening.The comments about spending the money more appropriately; creating graven images; etc. kept the critical ball bouncing continuously in the air.

Critics are really judges in disguise. People who feel the power of right and absolutism in an issue over others. When does opinion become critical. Susan tells me it is about tone, style and deliver. Some critics are smooth and can disguise their critical comments in sarcasm, humor or even benevolent tone.

Did you hear the one about the critic. He was in the aluminum boat with two other people discussing "Touchdown Jesus" when a lightning storm hit. I know just how to handle this, he said as he stood up and raised his hands to the sky. "HERE I AM LORD, LET ME HAVE IT". Needless to day, God delivered. The other two passengers survived with minor burns.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Heaven Board

I've decided to create my own Heaven Board. It started with the Wednesday Men's Fellowship discussion of what was our vision of Heaven. That combined with S.B.'s comment in Vistage that she was creating a "Goals" Board. So I determined that I would do some research and begin my own "Heaven Board".
Actually, this is not a new project. Many years ago after watching "Heaven Can't Wait", I wanted to compile a video of the many movie depictions of Heaven. So I am in the process of rewatching the many movies with some connection to Heaven or the after life - Made in Heaven, Ghost, Heart and Souls, Heaven (Diane Keaton's documentary) etc.
I am also reading selective books on the subject. Yesterday I picked up the poster board with the background of clouds and clear blue sky. So the design process has begun. This project will take a while - I intend to let the process linger.
Heaven Can Wait :)

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dead Batteries

Sunday, June 13, 2010

If you have to ......

Watched Russell Crowe in the 2010 version of Robin Hood (a second time) last night. A great quote appeared - "If you have to ask, then it is not a gift. I thought that was great line and applies in a number of situations. Coincidentally, I just read a passage in a book "Heaven" referencing jokes and comedian Sarah Silverman's line "If you have to explain it, Steve, it's not funny".

And then I used the same line talking to Susan (after a blow up situation with Jenna) - "If you have to ask for the apology, it's not an apology".

It's an important lesson in letting go of what what you want, your intentions, or your explanation. Keep it simple and accept the result.

If you have to blog about it then ............

Friday, June 11, 2010

Tear it apart

I learned from my Dad that after you have tried everything to fix the ____________ (you enter whatever you want - mower, TV, Stereo, Computer etc.), then just "tear it apart" to see how it works. It could be a guy thing or even an engineer thing. Wondering what is inside the black box. I think this is why my Dad's workshop has every spare part known to mankind.

So in that tradition, I have the Sony TC-200 1960 reel to reel tape recorder partially opened up. First to lubricate and who knows what next. After hours of review of tapes the rewind function no longer works and the 3 3/4 speed was slowing down - I guess after 50 years the player is tired.

There may still be enough life in the player to transfer the 1966 Xmas table discussion of the family to digital format. If not, a simple package to will do the trick for $20.

So the Sony T-200 will avoid a complete lobotomy.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Nostalgia Mecca

The internet has provided us nostalgia mecca - everything you need to document the vague memory of the past. I have been spending days listening to reel to reel tapes that I recorded back in 1968. Whether it is a song or an album, a quick search finds the album cover and listings of songs.

One of the reels I taped was Friday May 31, 1968 the WFIL 560 (Philly) Dr. Don Rose (the DJ) radio broadcast from 9:37am to 10:49am. What an interesting snapshot in time - with commercials for Dodge, Schick, Coppertone, local retailers, Canada Dry Sport, Pepsi, and Woolworth. Also the local news with NJ Bell Strike, the 19th Heart Transplant, Kennedy/McCarthy debate, Vietnam peace talks, etc.

Finding these undocumented jewels was an interesting journey as I reviewed the 20 reels that I confiscated from my parents. Now fully documented, I can decide to transfer the media. For the albums and songs it is a waste of time because the internet contains it all - with narrative and blogging opines.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


I'm fascinated with the power of networks. Visually they are complex and almost overwhelming. They are really just about relationships - how point A is related to point B .... and so on. I remember Don Siekmann (Managing Tax Partner Arthur Andersen Cincinnati) saying "Your network is your most important asset".

I used that line in most of my annual reviews of staff at Accenture. I would pull out my palm pilot and go to the statistics page saying to my staff - how many people are in your palm pilot? Or pull out your Rolodex file c(you technology dinosaurs) and count the number of business cards.

There are people who I call "Network magnets". Those are the people who have network diagrams (professional networks, social networks, spiritual networks, family networks etc.) that would make your head spin. When you need to "network" they are great "go to" people.

The challenge is how to maintain a network, once created. Should you be deliberate - or random? I don't lose much sleep over this issue. I let the network take care of itself.

Monday, June 7, 2010


I have always enjoyed the game of Monopoly (after all this was listed in a blog as story #9). We played it in college and I made some guys pretty mad on some of my negotiation tactics. Winning the game is about total dominance and control - HENCE Monopoly. You get all the money, all the property - you own the board. And the game ends.

"Let's play again" says the Monopolist. But there is no one left - the board is empty. There is no more property to be acquired, no more money to be made, no more tokens to pass Go and collect salary. The only alternative is to start over or as John Ortberg says "It all goes back in the box".

Today the Monopoly board returns to the RED212 third annual BillandWarrenDay. I have had the privilege of seeing the Monopoly board (signed by Warren Buffet) in my office for the year. I figure - why monopolize the framed board.

Let it play again --- This time for more money :)


Friday, June 4, 2010

What People Think

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Recordings and Playback

Movies, pictures, audio recordings capturing a moment in time - a documentation of history. I just listened to a 30 minute recording of a Christmas reunion of the Wells and Wisners in 1966. Taped on a reel to reel Sony Tapecorder TC-200. It was fun to hear everyone's voices.

The changing technology can quickly obsolete the recordings. How many reels, 5 1/4 floppys, cassette tapes etc. are collecting dust with no hope of review or playback. The Egyptians recorded on rock - not a bad strategy for preservation and playback.

Egyptians - the earliest bloggers.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Stop Arguing

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Visual Examples

Just as you watch people - they are watching you. Kids learn by watching you - so it is the visual example that reflects the values they will see in you. In business terms it is "Walk the talk".

I started the daily devotional book - "Daily with King" by W. Glyn Evans. He says - "What we are lives in perpetual memory; what we say withers away like the chaff".

Hypocrisy and stories of Hypocrisy are abundant in the New Testament. It is, of sorts, a lie - living the lie. When we discover hypocrisy it shatters our sense of consistency and in some cases trust.

I love the Andrew Carnegie quote: "As I get older, I pay less attention to what men SAY, I just watch what they DO."