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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

November
11
2011
9:09 am
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I first posted this back in 2008 and thought it deserved a re-post today.

A Lesson That Should Be Taught In All Schools

Back in September of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a social studies school teacher at Robinson High School in Little Rock, did something not to be forgotten.

On the first day of school, with the permission of the school superintendent, the principal and the building supervisor, she removed all of the desks out of her classroom. When the 1st period kids entered the room they discovered that there were no desks.

Looking around, confused, they asked, “Ms. Cothren , where’re our desks?

She replied, “You can’t have a desk until you tell me what you have done to earn the right to sit at a desk.

They thought, “Well, maybe it’s our grades.

No,” she said.

Maybe it’s our behavior.” She told them, “No, it’s not even your behavior.

And so, they came and went, the first period, second period, third period. Still no desks in the classroom.

By early afternoon television news crews had started gathering in Ms. Cothren’s classroom to report about this crazy teacher who had taken all the desks out of her room.

The final period of the day came and as the puzzled students found seats on the floor of the deskless classroom.
Martha Cothren said, “Throughout the day no one has been able to tell me just what he/she has done to earn the right to sit at the desks that are ordinarily found in this classroom. Now I am going to tell you.

At this point, Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom and opened it.

Twenty-seven (27) U.S. Veterans, all in uniforms, walked into that classroom, each one carrying a school desk.

The Vets began placing the school desks in rows, and then they would walk over and stand alongside the wall.  By the time the last soldier had set the final desk in place those kids started to understand, perhaps for the first time in their lives, just how the right to sit at those desks had been earned.

Martha said, “You didn’t earn the right to sit at these desks. These heroes did it for you. They placed the desks here for you. Now, it’s up to you to sit in them. It is your responsibility to learn, to be good students, to be good citizens. They paid the price so that you could have the freedom to get an education. Don’t ever forget it.

Follow-up  What Is A Veteran?

A ‘Veteran‘ — whether active duty, discharged, retired, or reserve — is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to “The United States of America,” for an amount of “up to, and including his life.”

That is honor, and there are way too many people in this country today who no longer understand that fact.

Now for the question you knew was coming:

What would YOU write a blank check for?

I’ve written about this before, and on this Veteran’s Day I again urge you to read about it and act.

Help a soldier.

Help him or her to call home while stationed overseas. 

You might not realize it, but despite Skype, VOIP, massive military funding, advances in telecommunication and ubiquitous cell phones, our servicemen and women still don’t have the ability or means to call home as much as they’d like.  It is for that reason that 590KLBJ radio runs Operation Call Home – donate a dollar, a few dollars, or the cost of a night out to directly purchase calling cards for our troops.

operation-call-home-2

operation-call-home

Thank you, Dad.  Thank you, granddaddy Rex.  Thank you to my uncles and extended family who served.  Thank you, Veterans.

November
11
2008
10:20 am
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Yo, whassup?

Veteran’s Day

Thank you.  Period.

Blackberry Storm

Last week, our local Verizon rep sponsored a Blackberry Storm preview party at Waterloo Icehouse (mmm, great triple-decker quesadillas!).  What more could I ask for?  Free drinks, free food, and a chance to get my hands on the latest gadget that just might be my next one.

First off, it’s similar to the iPhone – no hardware qwerty keyboard, fully touch sensitive screen, and it has a sensor in it that can tell when you flip it portrait or landscape.  Also, like the iPhone, you swipe your finger left, right, up or down to navigate.  

The big difference on the screen, however, is that the entire screen is like a mouse button.  You use your finger to select and navigate things, but you PRESS IN on the screen to click.  This is a HUGE improvement in my opinion.  My biggest problem with the iPhone is the lack of a qwerty keyboard that I can feel.  With the Storm, you actually are clicking the letters, icons, or buttons on the screen as the screen floats above some magic void.  

Typing on the Storm actually feels more like real typing.

The video display was incredible – I watched a trailers for Max Payne and Speed Racer and the colors, detail and brightness were very impressive.

The phone doesn’t have Wifi, but does have bluetooth – and out of the box, the phone can tether to your PC over USB or bluetooth without any proprietary hassle.  Verizon’s CDMA network seemed fast enough browsing around to sites, but I’m no expert on the differences between AT&T’s 3G, EDGE, CDMA or Old McDonald’s EIEIO.  I just thought it was decent.  I did hear him (the RIM guy, not Old McDonald) say it was a quad-band phone so it must work everywhere including Mars.

The speakers were loud, too!  When you hold the Storm portrait-style and cup your right hand on the side, the sound goes directly to your head and you don’t miss a thing.

Let’s see… what else.

It has GPS, 16GB ram out of the box, and it has a removable battery (take THAT, iPhone!) as well as a micro SD slot to add more space.   It has a 3 megapixel camera and takes good photos and video, although I didn’t test it myself.

Oh, and copy and paste works. 

heh heh, had to put that in there for you iPhone addicts.  On the Storm, you can select, copy, paste text from just about anywhere in any app.  Oh that reminds me too – another big difference between the iPhone and the Blackberry is that multiple apps run on the BB at the same time.  With iPhone, only one app can run at a time.

I will say however, that as cool as everything is, it doesn’t feel as cool as an iPhone.  If you’re looking for a neat do-it-all gadget for personal use, the iPhone is still probably for you.  But if you need enterprise features with an iPhone feel, the Storm is probably it.

Verizon supposedly has a “App Store” kind of like Apple’s where people can download more programs, but I haven’t seen it myself.  They (RIM/Blackberry) also made their Software Development Kit (SDK) open and released to all, so people can write their own apps.  The phone runs Blackberry OS 4.7, which is new and probably will only run on this series of phones.

Another big upgrade for former blackberry users is that the Storm and it’s 4.7 OS, you have HTML email.  You can read and send HTML email, and that’s a pretty big thing for die-hard BB users.

There were some other things here and there, but if I were to sum it all down – this is the iPhone for the corporate user.  One reason IT departments don’t like the iPhone is that it’s not controllable from a central point.  The Storm however, is first and foremost a Blackberry, and that means a BES server can completely control it.

Now I just need to come up with something really cool and addictive that I can put out on the Internet that makes people pay me money so I can afford it.  Got any ideas?

Ok, got any LEGAL ones?

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