Category Archives: News Commentary

News Commentary—-

Wisdom as we know it

1 Corinthians 1:26-29

26 For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. 27 But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; 28 God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, 29 so that no human being might boast in the presence of God.

Over the last centuries, science–with its consistent standards of evidence and rules for testing ideas about how things we observe work–has produced great improvements in the human condition, as well as tremendous improvements in the means of producing death and destruction.  But something is wrong. It seems that the more we learn, the less we understand.

Once, the physical world could be explained by Newton’s physical laws. Now, we learn this only explains the tiny context of the world of our species’ experience, and time, space, and seemingly immutable realities are subject to the observer’s frame of reference.  At very tiny scales, the “reality” of a phenomenon can be changed by observing it.

Once, everything in the Universe was fixed in place, orbiting like clockwork about planets, stars, and galaxies.  Then, the Universe was seen to be constantly expanding, the galaxies flying away from an apparent point of unimaginable explosive force.  Now, they are seen to be accelerating away from each other, expanding faster by the moment.  The orbits of stars around the centers of galaxies, rather than politely following Newton’s laws of motion, are seen to orbit at similar velocities all to way out to the rim.  Observations indicate that what we have always assumed was the stuff that made up everything is only a small fraction of the matter and energy in the Universe.

Once, everything could be assumed to follow empirical and analytical laws of thermodynamics.  Now, we are faced with the indisputable existence of life, which so ravages the principles of entropy as to be thermodynamically preposterous.  Worse, we have ~6 billion “observers”—sentient being of unimaginable complexity—on one tiny rocky planet in the galactic outback.  There are theories that it would be less improbable for sentient beings (“Boltzmann brains”) to spontaneously wink into existence in deep space, look around, and wink out of existence in a tiny fraction of a second.

It even becomes necessary for those who uncritically devote themselves to scientific dogma (!) to worry about a Universe which is “apparently tailored” to produce and support life.  To have an existence which can still be explained by mere flickers of probability requires an infinite array of parallel universes, so that all possible outcomes are supported without resort to a Creator.  Now we don’t need “free will”, never really decide anything ourselves, but are simply permutations of an infinite decision tree–statistical puppets.

It’s almost as if Creation is making fun of us.  Far from leading us to “laws of everything”, this unquestioning, dogmatic devotion to our own logic and reason will only lure us farther from the Truth.  We should rely instead on God’s Wisdom, which will show us the way home.

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Walkthrough of Commemorative Air Force B29 “Fifi” in flight, Dallas, Texas

Rapture Night

More frustrations with local Bible studies. I seem to have showed up for Rapture night.
It is a terrible irony that in order to satisfy their demands for an absolute literal interpretation of Scripture—including a literal Israel at the time of Christ’s return (but see Romans 9: 6-8, for example) and a literal physical Temple (but see 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 for example) Dispensationalists must drape a whole new man-created, imaginary theology over God’s Word.
The arguments presented tonight for a Rapture separate from Christ’s return (the Second Coming) include:
  • The Rapture isn’t mentioned in the Old Testament (!).  The Hebrew Bible or Old Testament is an incandescent arrow (metaphorically, not literally), drawn across time—forward and back—to show us what to expect of the Messiah, and to let us recognize Jesus when He appears; but somehow the Law and the Prophets neglected to ever mention the whole Rapture thing?
  • There are no signs associated with the Rapture–it’s “imminent”.  God isn’t going to give His people any markers of progress toward this monumental event because there isn’t enough time? On the other hand, Jesus’ return is to be marked by numerous signs.
  • Jesus will meet with the Church “in secret”, presumably to remove us from Earth so that a literal Israel and a literal Temple can take their place without any messy symbolic interpretation.  But that isn’t what Jesus said:

 27 For just as the lightning comes from the east and flashes even to the west, so will the coming of the Son of Man be. Matthew 24:27

Again, if you reach a conclusion about God’s Word that contradicts most or all of what It says, your conclusion is wrong.  The dispensations and the Rapture aren’t in the Bible, because they don’t exist.

UK Tank Museum: Tiger I and Elefant

Lengthy video of the entire process of unloading the (non-running) Elefant from its trailer, with the only working example of the WWII Tiger 1 (no. 131, as seen in the movie “Fury”) nearby.  Interesting history lesson by the narrator is also provided.

Air-launched Minuteman?!

Another bizarre military project:

[from Ancient and Modern Warfare Facts]

“When the US Air Force made an ICBM go airborne.. (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile)

In the early 1970s, the USAF tested air-launching a Minuteman ICBM from a C-5A Galaxy transport aircraft.

On 24 October 1974, the Space and Missile Systems Organization successfully conducted a test where a C-5A Galaxy aircraft air-dropped the 86,000-pound missile from 20,000 feet over the Pacific Ocean.

The missile fell to 8,000 feet before its rocket engine fired. The 10-second engine burn carried the missile to 20,000 feet again before it dropped into the ocean.

The test proved the feasibility of launching an intercontinental ballistic missile from the air.

It was, however, never deployed operationally because of engineering and security difficulties.

It still looked cool though!

-Bryan”

CAF Demonstration of Corsair Wing Folding

Batman v Superman – Theme Song Battle

Abrams drifting turns

Beehive Instrumentation Project-8: Wired prototype instrumentation board

Assembled and tested a more permanent prototype with soldered wire interconnections on the 74HC4052 mux/demux.

Wired hive instrumentation

Two temperature & humidity sensors shown.  Tested it with the outdoor 120 VAC-to-12VCD power system. Will likely connect the third for reading conditions between the hive body and the insulated enclosure tomorrow.  The fourth sensor shed a through-hole connector while I was trying to desolder and remove the bulky header pins–will have to be replaced.

Also need to reprogram the operating software to use daily logs with the date in the file names to facilitate log management.

Hopefully I can get this in the box tomorrow morning before the outside temperatures drop back below freezing and/or it starts snowing.  The next version should log temperature and humidity outside, between box and enclosure, and under the inner cover or close to the cluster of bees.

The all-foam enclosure stayed put during high winds yesterday, although it was left at an angle. I have a better design in mind, based on this experience.

 

 

“Baahubali – The Beginning”