A Bodey in Motion

Building momentum, one step at a time

Quick Hits of the Week

  • So, here’s an interesting development. Due to changes in banking regulations, a lot of the once “free” services offered by your local bank’s checking account are now incurring monthly fees. Consumers are seeking safer and cheaper options, and retailers are more than willing to step up. Walmart is now offering a prepaid American Express card that works a lot like a credit or debit card. They’re accepted the same as a regular AmEx card,  can be used to withdraw cash from a network of ATMs or to “get roadside assistance, bank from their smartphones and, eventually, write checks out of an account linked to the card.” This has the banks worried, and rightfully so. The market might still bring some truth to the lie of being ‘too big to fail.’
  • A while back, Michael Hyatt, former CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing, and NYT best-selling author, released his new book Platform. I’ve thought about picking it up, but I was a bit intimidated by it. I can’t be Hyatt, and I doubt my road to success will look anything like his. In fact, the road to success gets lost in the brambles more often than not. Over at Hyatt’s blog, Lucille Zimmerman has a guest post talking about just these problems, and she offers six ways to stay focused when things get overwhelming. Numbers two and four nailed me. How about you?
  • On tattoos: It doesn’t matter what your profession is, or what piece of skin needs a little art on it, it seems like everyone is getting a little (or a lot of) ink these days. Personally, I’m not interested, and my wife doesn’t want me to be interested (10 Marital Harmony Points earned). If I were, though, I would have to get something practical, and my first instinct would be one like this. However, given how often I find myself lost during sports conversations, maybe a tattoo of this would be more helpful.
  • I’m getting a little tired of all the discussion of genetically modified food going around in hushed and sinister tones, like the world’s agricultural industry is out to poison all of it’s customers. I’m not saying there aren’t problems, but the benefits of GM crops are being way under-reported.  Remember, when it comes to the news, fear sells more ad space. We live in a better world than we’ve been led to believe.

Is there something valuable or important or cool or funny or weird or awesome out there I missed this week? I can’t hit it all, but you should let me know about it by dropping me a line or sharing it in the comments below! I’d appreciate the heads up.

October 11, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits of the Week

Quick Hits of the Week

  • Being a politically active Christian can equal an open door to some of the worst kinds of sin. Not worst because they’re extra grotesque or heinous, but because they’re the ones that are pernicious and go unchallenged. “Not only are believers excused for their political indiscretions, but they are often applauded for committing them.” It’s time for us to stop living the lie that every Christian follows one political party. We each have been formed differently and are moved by different kinds of pain and injustice. We should each follow those ways that God has called us, while finding common ground with each other in the church.
  • Bicycles became popular after the automobile did. That seems backwards (as simple, man powered locomotion should have preceded the complex combustion engine) until you realize that for bicycles to be popular they need smooth roads and inflated rubber tires, both of which were brought on by the advent of the automotive age. The lesson is that inventions and innovation become accepted and popular spontaneously, when the world is ready for them. We shouldn’t look for inventions before their time. What does that say about new energy technologies?

Is there something valuable or important or cool or funny or weird or awesome out there I missed this week? I can’t hit it all, but you should let me know about it by dropping me a line or sharing it in the comments below! I’d appreciate the heads up.

September 20, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits of the Week

Quick Hits of the Week

  • I am not a coffee drinker. I love the smell of it, but you can’t add enough sugar and syrups to it to make me enjoy drinking the stuff. I married a coffee drinker, though, so that works out alright. It also makes me keenly aware what a few trips to Starbucks a month can total up to every year. If coffee is a staple in your house, like it is in mine, you might want to consider taking a few steps to save money on your daily fix.  Good luck with number five, though.
  • The world is going to end. No, really. At some point, this little ball of dust careening through the universe is going to be no more. Despite that, though, I can’t find a good reason to go about in a panic. Why are we always so eager to believe that the world is always on the brink of catastrophe? We’ve become Apocaholics. We’re addicted to the fear of a coming global apocalypse. We need to be more hopeful. Matt Ridley’s recent article about apocalypses warned but never realized is an excellent reality check.
  • I love it when my work is in front of me. All of the details have been worked out, and I can finally start producing a solution. That’s when the fun begins. The problem is, the “fun” part is only a small percentage of the total time I spend doing any task. Seth Godin points out that we need to be finding ways to improve our performance on the “boring” stuff, because it occupies up a bulk of our time.

Is there something valuable or important or cool or funny or weird or awesome out there I missed this week? I can’t hit it all, but you should let me know about it by dropping me a line or sharing it in the comments below! I’d appreciate the heads up.

August 23, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits of the Week

Quick Hits of the Week

  • I’ve been reading and learning a bit about the concept of gamification, and I’m fascinated. The basic idea is to take the techniques and mechanics developed for games, and apply them to more mundane tasks and events to increase interest and engagement. The good people who do the web show Extra Credits have addressed the topic a couple of times, and I almost demand you to take the twenty or so minutes out of your busy day to learn more about the topic. Why? It works. For example, check out this article by Matt Ridley about how researchers are using computer gamers to redesign enzymes in a way that are up to 18 times more efficient than what an organic chemist could come up with. A remarkable feat that happened because of a game that anyone can download and play. Gamification will be huge in the coming decade.
  • So, there’s some concern over the recent National Defense Authorization Act for 2012, which included a controversial provision regarding potential indefinite detainment of US citizens. Some are shocked that such a bill would be passed. I’m not. Look at the numbers in regard to Guantanamo and it paints a pretty clear picture how our government feels about the idea of indefinite detainment. “Oh,” I hear you gasp, “but that’s different. Those aren’t US citizens. They’re terrorists.” Maybe some of them are, but they’re also people who have been “created equal” and “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights” including that no person shall “be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” By quietly allowing this exception to continue, Americans have swung the door wide for possible abuse.
  • I know he wrote and directed the movie, so he gets to claim authority, but George Lucas is completely full of crap. I don’t get why he thinks he needs to clear this up. If someone is pointing a gun at me, and I have the opportunity to shoot them first, it doesn’t make me a cold blooded killer. It makes me a scoundrel, and not dead, which is a good thing. Seriously, George, shut up.
  • Finally, I’m all for getting a good bargain, but I guess what constitutes good differs depending on which part of the world you live in. Take Japan, for instance. I mean, 20% off is alright, but it would have to be 50% or more before I’d say it was that good of a sale.

February 16, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits of the Week