Over the past two weeks I have already been stretched a lot and have discovered that there is so much that I have yet to learn in tis field. Our worship pastor and instrumental music director have strongly recommended that in addition to my required classes for my major, I sit in on the instrumental technique classes so that I can learn as much as possible about how to play every instrument. I do not have to reach an advanced level in each of the instruments, but I do need to be able to play simple songs and sight read simple music. This will help me be:
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I was able to download pdfs of music and play some songs off of that. I found that the screen size made it difficult to read a full piano score, however it was possible to read chord charts. I was not able to test this feature, but a friend of mine wound up scanning his music for choir and reading off of that so that he did not have to worry about turning pages or finding the correct page/book. This was very effective for him and I hope to do the same next semester.
I also wanted to expand a bit on my experience with the Surface Pro as a musician. While I am not a composition major, I do have to compose for various school projects. As a test for the Surface, I downloaded a free trial of Finale, the primary music notation program we use on campus, and proceeded to engrave the first page of a Mozart sonata. I tried various methods of entry (touch, stylus, mouse, and USB piano keyboard) and determined that the best way to enter music into the Surface was via a USB piano keyboard and a mouse. Entry was rather slow without a number pad, and the size of a screen only makes it realistic to enter music for 1-3 instruments, but the software worked and proved that the surface can be used as an effective idea capture tool. (Note, I only used the free Finale Software and did not install the Garritan Sound Bank.) It would be interesting to see a Finale App for a tablet so that I could split my screen and have on half be a piano keyboard for entry and the other half be the Finale software.
The first song I wanted to share was actually the finale of the concert. It is an arrangement of "Take Me Out to the 'Bell' Game" in the style of a cheesy waltz, Pink Panther, and Magnificent 7. It was arranged by myself and a fellow student, Morgan Ruthard, as a final project for our Handbell Directing course. We really enjoyed adding a bit of drama to this song and I hope you enjoy it.
I finally decided to spend some of my own money to purchase a case for the Lenovo to see if that would help make the tablet more durable. I was primarily concerned with finding a case that was lightweight, but still protected the screen and weak back. I also was curious to see if any of the cases I found would help me get a better screen angle as I was not pleased with the angle the Thinkpad Bluetooth Keyboard provided.
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The Thinkpad Tablet 2:
The Thinkpad Tablet 2 is significantly lighter than the Microsoft Surface, and therefore even easier to take with you wherever you go. While I have a desktop at home for major projects that require multiple screens, the tablet is powerful enough to allow me to use it as my primary computer. Its small size has allowed me to use it in meetings without being a distraction and the ability to type or switch to drawing mode has let me take more effective notes in school. But more on that later.
Unlike the Surface, however, the Tablet 2 is rather weak and very fragile. The backing of the tablet is not very strong and I have already had to send two tablets back because of hardware issues that have developed behind the screen as I simply carried it around. I finally solved this problem, by purchasing a case for the tablet. The case only cost about $20, but the extra protection it afforded allowed me to be comfortable taking the tablet with me wherever I went or storing it in a backpack - very important for a college student.
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The Surface Pro:
The Surface Pro is the perfect size to fit in a backpack, purse, or just grab and go. It is somewhat heavy, but what the device loses in desired weight it makes up in power. Having both a tablet for drawing and media consumption, and a full laptop is fantastic. As a student, is helpful to be able to have my textbooks, computer, and notes on the tablet so that I have fewer things to carry/manage.
I appreciate the Surface's robust design. While it is heavy, the firm casing protects the screen and electronics enough that I don't have to buy an extra case to protect it - which saves weight and room in my backpack. I love the built-in stand which is a part of my casing, and the only change I would like to see in this is the ability to adjust the angle of the stand for various purposes.
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On the first night, I realized that I had completely underestimated the class. The professor, Sam Neylan, was not only going to teach us how to coordinate weddings and baby showers, but was also planning to teach us how to become more organized in our own lives, pay attention to detail, begin with the end in mind, become more professional in our writing and communication, be creative in everything we do, and coordinate events so that every moment is intentional.
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My first semester in college has been a dream-come-true! I am a double major in Worship Music Ministries and Liberal Arts and it has been amazing to be able to focus on areas that I really love. I have just finished taking twenty units which has been intense but incredibly worth it. This first semester I mostly took general education classes and a few of the basic classes required for my major and I thoroughly enjoyed it!
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"The urge to regulate is nothing new...but the extent of the regulatory state today is unprecedented in history. The problem in all of this is that regulation is like a hidden tax...when taxes go up it becomes more difficult for companies to succeed. Likewise when these hidden taxes - these regulatory costs - go up, it becomes harder and harder for entrepreneurs to thrive. What I would argue is that cottage industries are at the beginning of wealth creation."
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Our goal today is to entirely eradicate failure. We somehow have the idea that if our children fail, they will be bruised for life, unable to cope with the realities of society and unable to make a successful living. But is this really the right response? Is the key to success the eradication of failure?
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I recently applied for a $3,000 scholarship through WyzAnt, where I write an essay about who is my most important teacher and receive votes on my essay. I need to make it into the top 10 to be considered for the scholarship. Will you please help me earn this scholarship?
Just go to this site and vote for my essay entitled "Dr. Englin - Bringing the spark back into learning".
Thank you so much!
For a school assignment, I recently had the opportunity to read Lew Wallace's unabridged book Ben-Hur and I thought I would share a quick review of it. I had been well acquainted with the Charleston Heston movie of this classic story and had assumed that the book would be similar. I was surprised at how different the two really were.
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“How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! And to get understanding is to be chosen above silver.” (Proverbs 16:16) Wisdom is something that can be very hard to define because it encompasses a number of different qualities – each working together to strengthen the others. In today’s society, the word “wisdom” is often used interchangeably with the word “knowledge” – but this is a gross misuse of the word! Although knowledge is a small part of wisdom, wisdom is not the collection of facts and figures to be foolishly spouted off to anyone who will be made to listen. A wise person will share his knowledge at appropriate times so as not to humiliate or embarrass, and for the sole purpose of helping others – not to draw attention to himself. This knowledge is used to give him the ability to make good decisions or to be discerning. Francis Bacon said that “A prudent question is one-half of wisdom”. A wise person is always ready to learn from others no matter how young or old for he realizes that he does not always have the right answers.
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ATTENTION: Review contains a spoiler
It is easy to understand why Charles Dickens is listed among the great authors when one reads his classic A Tale of Two Cities. This exciting novel is the story of a family during the French Revolution and their struggles to survive. Dickens quickly captures and maintains the reader’s attention throughout the entire book, then masterfully shapes his emotions so that he experiences the same curiosity, nervousness, horror, and awe as the main characters.
Dickens begins his novel with a puzzling enigma to catch the reader’s attention. This opening statement has become one of the most famous lines in literature: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” How can it be the best of times and the worst of times? And what times? These questions puzzle the reader as he next reads about a man who was buried for almost eighteen years then “recalled to life”, about the curious actions of his caretakers, the Defarges, and about the love of a daughter who, having never met her father before, willingly takes him in and cares for him. In just a few short pages, the author has peaked the reader’s curiosity and is ready to help him experience the unrest of the age.
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As I have read and gone through a few technical tutorials, I realized that it is extremely difficult to present technical information in a way that keeps the reader's interest and attention while exciting him with new concepts or ideas. I have read books concerning three different programming languages (NXT-G, ROBOLAB, and LabVIEW,) and have found that, while the programming languages are different and unique from each other, the basic information and exercises are the same, causing the various tutorials to seem to blur together. this book did an outstanding job of keeping my interest while presenting the information in a new and creative way.
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While initially, one would expect the current recession to have an adverse effect on the average family, I have found that my family has grown more creative, closer in our relationships, and wiser in our decisions as a result.
I've heard of studies that claim that television and video games “reduce” creativity and I believe that there may be some truth to that. Several years ago, in order to better manage what we consumed, my parents made the decision to get rid of our cable television. We still had videos to watch, but the television was on far less frequently than when we had cable. Suddenly, my sisters and I found ourselves with abundant time on our hands. We all read more and began to discover interests or talents that we otherwise might not have known we possessed. Although I did not enjoy the home economics course I took in high school, I realized that once I had the freedom to experiment, I loved cooking and baking. I also learned how to knit and have enjoyed making sweaters and scarves for family and friends. We encouraged friends to get rid of their cable subscription and they, too, have found themselves being more creative.
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Our family stopped watching the Disney Channel many years ago. Somewhere along the line the channel changed from fun and interesting family programming to several broadcasts each day of tween shows. I mean, really, how many times a day does "Hannah Montana" have to air?
We miss "Vault Disney" and the classic movies. You used to produce wonderful series like "Avonlea". Where is the creativity?
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Many of our schools are dangerous and inefficient. Often in the news there are reports about shootings and drug abuse in schools. Children as young as elementary school are familiar with several curse words and are hearing about subjects not appropriate for their age. Students are being taught that there is no God who created the universe, and that they are a result of random chance which diminishes the value of their life. It has become popular throughout our society to refer to education as boring or torturous, and students have little incentive to read or experiment outside of school. Students are graduating with few writing or math skills and without the knowledge of how to discover answers for themselves. Yet despite this grim situation, a movement has been growing to repel it. More and more parents have decided to pull their children out of public schools and to educate them at home. Critics of this movement claim that homeschooling children are ill equipped to handle situations in the “real world”, socially deprived, or that parents are unable to meet the special needs of a child – yet with homeschooling it is quite the opposite.
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A magi named Artaban leaves his home and sells everything he has to go look for the Messiah. All the other magi taunted him for his decision. A reluctant servant accompanied Artaban only for a reward of his (the servant's) freedom. Artaban brings three gifts for Jesus; a ruby, a sapphire, and a pearl. Along the way, he stops and helps needy people and gives the gifts away to provide for them. He got sidetracked, and for 33 years, Artaban lived with a colony of outcasts and lepers using his medical skills and farming abilities to help them. Artaban learned that Jesus was in Jerusalem and set out to meet him. Many troubles prevented him from seeing Jesus before the crucifixion. Before Artaban’s death, Jesus rewarded his faithful servant, Artaban, with his heart’s desire.
My dad gave my sisters and me a challenge of how many verses from the Bible we could find to support this movie. He said if we found enough verses, we could earn the new Nancy Drew computer game for the four of us to play together. My dad also said that if we write a blog post about it, we could earn another game. These are the verses and the reasons why that we found:
John 3:16- For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son that whosoever believeth on Him will never perish but have eternal life. –Answers why Jesus came.
Isaiah 9:6- For unto us a child is born. Unto us a Son is given and the government will be upon His shoulders and His name will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. –The prophecy that Jesus was Born.
Matthew 11:5- The Blind receive sight, the Lame walk, those who have leprosy are healed, the deaf her, the dead are raised and the good news is preached to the poor. –Blind man received his sight
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The men who signed the Declaration were not only risking their lives, but their families lives as well. They knew that if they signed it, and if they were caught, they could be tortured and hanged as conspirators against the king.
Today, We should be inspired by the men who took this great chance, for instance, John Hancock. While other men were making small signatures on the Declaration, Hancock signed his name large and right in the middle of the page. When asked why he took that action, Hancock said that he"wanted the King of England to be able to see his name without wearing spectacles (glasses)"
I hope this Fourth of July, you will stop and think about all the people throughout history, who gave their lives for America's freedom.
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For a vacation, I prefer a visit to the forest rather than a visit to the seashore. The variety in color, sounds, and sights in the mountains are much more appealing to me than the variety at the seashore.
The color scheme of the forest is extremely varied: green trees burst into a brilliant gold, orange, or red in the autumn and scatter their leaves; the brown forest floor teems with insects and animals in a splattering of blues, grays, blacks, pinks, browns, reds, and many other colors; flowers poke their heads out to dazzle the world with their delicate colors and beauty; and berries pop out in delicious arrays of reds, greens, and blues. While the seashore has a beauty of its own, there is very little color variety to keep me interested. All is a blur of blue water, blue sky, white sands, white rocks, and white seagulls. Most of the different colors in the seashore comes from the shells which have strips of pale pink or pale blue, and from the dirty brownish-green seaweed that washes up on the shore, and perhaps an occasional starfish that is washed into tiny pools. There is an assortment of color, but not as striking as the collection of color found in the woods.
After working for two decades as a consultant in the areas of technology, information management, collaboration, and productivity, I realized that while these were all good things to do, the next opportunity was in the area of how we manage what we know and what we do with what we know. That realization led me to pursue the field of knowledge management and the management of intellectual capital. Unlike many people in the 1990's and early 2000's, I decided not to focus on the organizational level but rather to direct my attention to the individual or personal aspect of knowledge management. My work as an eProductivity specialist taught me that it's much easier to bring about a lasting impact working with individuals - from the bottom-up - than to try and create a system to be imposed on the organization top-down. Thus, my interest in knowledge management, and specifically my interest in what is frequently referred to as personal knowledge management, began.
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The BE WiSE science alliance is a group dedicated to engaging and teaching young women in science and technology and providing them with valuable experiences, background, and skills to pursue their goals.
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This was an exciting opportunity for me to encourage the incoming students by sharing my experiences in the Organizational Management program and to offer some secrets for success in getting through the program.
While the speech is directed to students, and adult learners in specific, the principles I share could be applied to anyone in any situation.
This week, business cohort had a reunion and my colleagues encouraged me to share the speech, so here it is. I hope you enjoy it.
2007 CPS Convocation Speech - 7 Tips for success
I want to publicly thank the Lord for this opportunity and I want to extend my thanks to the many people who have helped, encouraged and supported my efforts. My next action is a significant one, I will be working toward my Master of Information and Knowledge Management degree.
I could not have managed the demands of family, clients, business, and my education, without a great deal of determination, love and support from my wife and children, and my extended family, friends, classmates and clients. My suite of eProductivity tools, along with the Getting Things Done skill's that I've acquired while serving The David Allen Company, also came in handy for managing the multiple projects and actions I needed to complete along the way.
A brief narrative of my journey follows ...
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For my capstone project, I've decided to take my ICA eProductivity Template for Lotus Notes - a productivity tool that I wrote many years ago to help me personally implement the GTD methodology using Lotus Notes - and develop it into a commercial product. The ICA eProductivity template has been around for many years, and during that time it has undergone many changes based on feedback from my eProductivity clients who use it daily. Several of the staff at one of my eProductivity clients, The David Allen Company, have used this template as well and it's been fun to get feedback from a group of highly productive and organized people. Still, there's much that I want to do with it, including a new design for Notes 6.5x and 7.x and a general product release. I'm in the process of assembling the software development and management teams for this new adventure.
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These opening words, spoken by music director, D.J. Jackson, at the 2006 Baccalaureate Chapel, gave me pause to think about what I've accomplished and how thankful I am for the opportunities I have experienced.
The Baccalaureate Chapel was a powerful opportunity to assemble with the other graduates to give thanks and celebrate what God has allowed us to achieve. We sang traditional hymns, reflected on our achievements, heard some words of encouragement, and prayed for our future.
Dr. John MacArthur admonished the graduates:
You will be a product of your influences. Choose very well, those whom you allow to shape your life. "... everyone when he is fully trained, will be like his master." Luke 6:40He went on to discuss how we should carefully consider our goals, and how we approach life, allowing God to work through us.
As a computer geek, allow me to describe this in geek notation:
OUTPUT = INPUT * PROCESSING
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