Archive for Tech

Moving? Here’s a Tip

In the course of moving south recently Janie and I have researched numbers of ways of doing this.  The “givens” are…
1.    Nothing gets broken (duh – what’s the point if you have nice stuff that gets cracked up along the way regardless of savings?)

2.    Personal sanity.  Enough said.

We discovered two ways specific groups and ways to do this.  I don’t mind mentioning companies.  Hey, I’ve done the research.  I’m not going to hold onto this info.  My life goal is to help as many as possible to become successful in what they (you) are up to.

Discoveries about moving with as little pain and expense as possible…

A.    Load and unload your own traditional services.  If you are willing to do the packing of your boxes, the loading and unloading of all your stuff, there are lots of companies out there with this policy.  However, do your homework.  Look closely at references of past customers.  Among our pastoral talent team, with about a dozen families in this group alone, some have had very trying experiences.  One was a “Christian” group based in Tampa and proudly made it known they were long term attendees of a large fundamentalist church in town.  They outright lied to the family on the west coast who were using them.  The truck driver (a middle aged woman who had driven for over 30 hours to get there.

The best prices among these sorts of services – they are usually Ma and Pa Kettle companies you have never heard of.  (In the case of the fundamentalists, after calling them on their many promises they had utterly failed on, the “president” called our pastor an “A-Hole” then stated crying on the phone and eventually invited he and his family to come to church with them…  (This is almost as entertaining as the highlights DVD of Chris Farley on SNL.)

B.    Load and unload… but with a name brand.  Those who had the best experiences were in this category.  The company most used was Planes.  Not sure if they are a nation-wide company, but in each case they were timely, had a great attitude and all goods arrived without damage.

C.    Pods!

You’ve seen the commercials.  The mini-garage like “pod” is dropped off.  Fill it.  Approximately 5 to 10 days later your stuff shows up, depending on where in the U.S. you live.

The Pods approach is far less expensive than any of the above, IF, big IF, you have lots of friends to help you load.  In our case, we hired great laborers who weren’t one bit afraid of working.  We didn’t ask too many questions about their passports.  We paid them a fair wage.  They were happy as clams.  We loaded three large Pods in a matter of eight hours.  That’s what it took to load up our old large, 4,500 s.f. house.

By the way, the Pods people went way out of their way to accommodate us in many many ways that were very impressive.  We were blown away at their service orientation, including me calling the local delivery point near closing time to explain my wife was so stressed out she was crying because we needed one more Pod…  The driver said, “Ah shucks, we can’t have that now can we.  I’ll be right over with another one.  I’m off the clock but we aim to please.”  That is a company, like Apple, Tag Heuer, BMW, Chipotle… that realizes the obvious principle that most companies just don’t get – it’s not the itsy bitsy product in front of us we are selling – it’s raving customers for life we are interested in!

Those who think like this – they aren’t necessarily brilliant, they simply aren’t stupid like 99.99% of the manufacturers, poorly run companies, churches, etc. that abound in the U.S. and beyond.  It is a tremendous pleasure to do business with people who actually get it.  I will not only do business with them, I will become evangelistic about spreading the good news of their simple insight.

Wi-Fi TV just around the corner…

Unless you are really up on the latest developments in the tech world you have probably never heard of…but you soon will. Guaranteed. Picture TV meets the internet and you have Joost. The two Swedish guys who put together (if you aren’t using Skype’s services, you are missing out on amazing telephony software that is for the most part free – just need a headset – I use it most of the time instead of a phone and call around the world – mostly for free). There is a lot more that is about to emerge with the launch of Joost. Joost is in its beta stage now – if you can find a current user to invite you onto it, you can begin to watch TV from your laptop – cable quality TV – several hundred stations at this point. Think forward three to five years. The cable TV situation will likely be quite different than it exists now. There are lots of implications for those who are in the communication game versus the preaching game or who are stuck in a single dimension way of communication. One more thought on the coming of wifi TV that is around the corner. The Swedes who are launching Joost are promising that in less than a year there will be 5,000 channels online. That is an amazing fete to consider. That is a worldwide number. These guys have a great track record that indicates this number is real and the timeline they speak of will likely take place. With this coming into reality all that we think of as “Christian / Religious TV” today will be greatly changed in the next few years. Suddenly it will become affordable for those with a message but without a lot of funding to get into the TV game. Then the truth that has always been true about communication will become true – “it’s content that matters, not fluff.” This future is exciting. There are many not-yet believers who are truly interested in the Jesus story and who will likely check out the content present in what is to come – with less fluff, fewer neon colorer wigs, shorter eye lashes and no white cowboy boots.

Outstanding earphones…

Outstanding EarphonesYou can read my full article on the outstanding Er6i earphones here.

Tour the world in Hi-Def

Do you have either a blu-ray or HD-dvd player (we don’t but the PS3 and Xbox play these special DVDs, each respectively – the Xbox requires a less than $100 additional add on player to go with your Xbox 360 – both are great deals since normally the new players cost roughly the cost of the gaming system). If so, I highly recommend picking up the BBC series Planet Earth. One reviewer wrote, “The amazing shots and clarity of this series is the precise reason the HD system was invented.” I couldn’t agree more!

After searching a bit I found the least expensive version of this set sold on Amazon – $66 for the entire set comes out to about 12+ hours of around the world touring.