My Kids

Soccer Class

I took this picture of Josiah triumphantly crossing the makeshift finish line with my phone. Catching an action shot was really a long shot due to the time from the shutter actuation to the actual image captured. It’s a first, and I liked the unexpected result.



First post. I like technology when it isn’t a pain. I have a laptop which is very powerful, and replaces my previous Desktop. Now I have a Phone which replaces my PDA, iPod, and Treo 700p. At last my pockets are closer to empty than they have been on quite a while. The only thing better was empty pockets. No car, insurance, or keys to carry. Freedom is traded for Responsibility, and Time is traded for priviledge.
My computer will replace my TV, and someday I hope my mobile connection will be fast enough to replace my ISP.
I am not so hopeful that my ideas will replace my work, and my projects will inspire my culture.
My God will replace the corruption of this world, and his holiness will erase my lacking. Understanding will replace confusion and growth will again replace entropy. I look forward to that day.


I Don’t Get it.

I don’t get why I am already getting these errors on my virtual machine.  I try and try again, restart, and the problem persists.  There does not seem to be an easy auto detector for the problem.  I will have to write down the names of the failed updates and research them by name and attempt to manually override whatever was planned.  

No really big deal though, it does work, and it’s not like I have to depend on Windows to work for me.  That’s why I have a mac now anyways.  I purchased XP so I can help others and browser test my web pages in a native setup, as most people in the world have to do things, with Internet Explorer, because they don’t know better, or have no choice.


Borrowed Time

It seems like all of my time is borrowed time. I have more ideas than time to implement them. I remember when I was a teenager and had more time than I knew what to do with, and there was nothing to do because I had no money, but all kinds of ideas about what to do with money I did not have. I imagine some day if and when I retire, I may have time and money to do things, yet have no strength to do them. Then I will give money to hard working teens and time to overscheduled parents (by watching their kids), and remind them that it is not wrong to ask for help. Perhaps I should lend my strength to someone who is retired. Perhaps I should give some money to a teen who needs some income as well. I need more sleep too.
Thanks to God for the perspective.


Here’s an idea for the future

Whenever there’s an advancement in technology that stays for the long haul, it is accompanied by a lot of people thinking, “Well that just made sense, I wonder what took so long for people to realize that.”
Some people in the technical field believe that a love of science is chosen in rejection to faith in God. That those who believe in Jesus Christ as the savior of their soul must chuck all logic out of the window when they claim a faith in God. There may be some who reject all of science fearing all of the complexities of asking questions and the humility that that entails.
I believe that God created the universe as described in the Holy Bible. I don’t know how a scientist might describe it if God allowed him/her to watch a time-lapsed version of it from an omnipotent point of view.
I also believe that no technology created by mankind rivals that designed by God. The best breakthroughs in technology come from a close study of the inherent designs found in nature/creation. God made mankind in His own image, and I believe that includes His nature to create, and to be pleased by His created things working as designed. I have a strong God-given desire to create things, but I don’t always have opportunities to excercise that. I tell friends and family about ideas I have regarding technology and inventions, as well as how certain products and even hardware are crafted/engineered. Not everyone is as excited by such discussion as I am.
Instead of just pointing out that this product or that software does exactly that thing I told my wife about a few years back, I decided to just blog it out, so that it at least gets published. Hey, maybe I can get some credit in the years to come. It sure beats clamming up and considering the cost of trying to sell ideas to businesses built on making money from a generation of people told that they all deserve an ‘A’ because they are special.
I was thinking about digital cameras. The sensor is built to mimic film both in form and function. The lenses we pay so much money for direct beautiful light through a nearly circular aperture to a square sensor. Cameras like my wife’s Canon 20D are helpful because they sense when the camera is sideways and rotate the RAW image in-camera. If the sensor was a hexagon shape, it would seem you could get a lot more efficient use from the real estate on a sensor. If the pixel arrangement were not in rows and columns of square or rectangular pixels, but more like that of a honeycomb, with interlocking hexagon shaped pixels, I imagine that would produce a much better resolution image in the long run. I also think of natural sensors like the eyes of a horsefly or other insects. Even the cells viewed at the microscopic level of the human eye, I am sure are not arranged as a square grid, it’s just not natural. I have a hunch that when High definition camcorders, screens, displays and
sensors are using screens with a hexagonal pixel arrangement, even if still square at the macro-level, will look back and think, “Oh, how horrible looking those square pixelated antiquated screens and images look from the past.”
That’s my idea. Let me know if someone else thought of it already and when I can get a honeycomb sensored Canon DSLR where portrait and landscape is a postprocessing afterthought as white balance currently is in shooting RAW.
I will let you (the reader) know when I get another idea worth writing about.
-Ezra J. Engle
Artist and otherwise creative guy

2.0 error ipod popup usb

weird ipod usb error message

I keep getting this popup when I plug in my ipod, and as far as I know, both of my USB ports are 2.0.  At first I thought that maybe one port was 2.0 and the other was 1.1, but I switched which port the ipod was plugged into, and the same error happened.  It still synchs just fine, maybe it’s a glitch.


Random Thoughts

I got a new to me/ used Palm Treo 700p to replace my 650. It’s quite an upgrade. The software to synchronize with my computer is not ready to use/ still in development- so I am synchronizing with Palm Desktop Software on my small Windows XP partition for now. I like the idea of having everything synchronize perfectly across my web, computer and mobile devices, but it seems once you have 3 things involved, things get messed up soon enough. I wish I understood the Palm OS better, so I could figure out which file to delete to stop this alert that happens every 5 minutes telling me that “The Default Scheduled Get failed” whether or not I have my email set to auto synch or not. One solution to ridding myself of the problems associated with synching is to have 1 device that was my computer and fit within my pocket, and did not require plugging into a main computer to get software onto it or updates on it. Every device out there that is portable and “smart” needs to be intermittently
connected to a base computer to stay up-to-date. I like my laptop and have grown to depend on a pretty high performance computer, but for all of the regular pc users out there, who could care less whether or not they could have a great Desktop Experience, they just want to browse the whole internet, and view all standard attachments, and have a full featured email and calendar client with the ability to reliably make and receive phone calls. I think the computer experience for this sort of consumer should be within a phone and may dock at home to have the same interface on a larger screen display- for viewing movies, if desired, but would not require that. I think it can happen within 3-4 years. It would require cheaper and prevalent open access to high-speed wireless data, consumer demand, and impressive advances in battery technology. I want to have a single data bill and no itemized phone call charges with long distance & peak minutes discrepancies, just unlimited data sold a
t different speed rates. Everything today seems so redundant. Redundancy is good for police, safety personnel and Some proffesional types, but not for me. If I can’t rely on one service, then it’s not worth having around and paying for. Oh, my lunch is over.


Back to My Mac is inspiring.

I tried this program that works with Apple’s new OS called Leopard and their subscription service called .Mac the other day, and wow, I am impressed. I used to use a free program called Chicken of the VNC and also tried a shareware program called SpyMe with HamachiX, and they worked, after some fiddling, but Back to my Mac is amazing, and I think I an guess where Apple is going.
Back to my Mac let’s me click an icon in my computer that represents another computer I have and select share screen button which instantly opens up a window with an excellent scaled version of the screen of the computer, giving me remote access to it as though I were using it directly. Because it’s built into the new OS, I don’t have to download 3rd party software and worry about upgrades and compatibility so much. The thing that struck me was when I clicked the green resizebutton in the window, it resized it to a 2″ square, and I could still use the mouse at that tiny illegible size to drag items around on the desktop and click icons on the dock. This resizing used to be a pain with other programs I used previously and even using the mouse and clicking things was irritating due to the lag time between the click and seeing what happened when the sreen refreshes like a slow strobe effect. Apple must have put some time into making this all very flexible.
I think that there’s gotta be a back to my mac icon coming to the iPhone by January to show off that you can now control your desktop at home with your iphone from anywhere in the connected world. After seeing that it’s possible to control the desktop in such a tiny window, I know it can be done, with a little magnifier and some panning and zooming capabilities. They just need to make sure the .Mac service as easy and reliable as the desktop experience I have had. This would make it useful for everyone while waiting for native 3rd party application approval by Apple for the iPhone.
I tested the usability of the Back to my Mac by controlling my Macbook Pro’s screen from my old ibook g4, and accessing the Windows version of Palm Desktop on my bootcamp partition through VMWare Fusion’s window That’s a lot of hoops to jump through and control in a way that felt close enough to real time and native that I was sold on the possibilities of doing that through a future iPhone. I am waiting for the iPhone to open up a little to do all the stuff my Palm Treo 650 currenty does natively, except for the automatic soft resetting feature, of course.


Waiting for Leopard

I was planning to purchase a new laptop since Spring this year, but wated to buy it after the new operating system from Apple was launched. Since it has been delayed, I have been following all Apple Hot News, Mac Break Weekly, The Mac Round Table, Mac Attack, This Week in Technology, Engadget, NPR Technology, and recently Google Technology News.
I assume that no matter when I purchase a new laptop, I will be disappointed if I hear a new announcement shortly after with a significant upgrade that makes my system seem relatively useless. I must have quite a bit of restraint up to now, however, since my current laptop is a 12″ ibook G4 Power PC with 1.07 GHz I have had for 3 years or so. I did upgrade the hard drive from 30GB to 160GB so I could install Final Cut Studio (which required 40GB at the time all by itself) and the memory from 256MB to 768 MB of RAM. I just wanted to have all of my software on one machine, slow and limited as it was (it took 3.5 days to render a 12 minute HD video slideshow in Compressor, but it did it!).
Since I am using professional applications, it made sense to plan to get the “pro” series of macbook. I was thinking of holding out for a 12″ macbook pro, without a DVD drive and a secondary 32 GB Flash Drive which would supplement RAM and speed up the system startup process. I may even hope for some pressure sensitive touchscreen features if they got Wacom Technology on board in their development process, but that may be asking for too much for less than a year from now.
I am writing all of this down perhaps for bragging rights if that’s exactly what Apple does, and perhaps to get it out of my mind, so I don’t feel compeled to talk to non-Apple fans about what they care nothing about.
Then I will wait for the first CDMA iphone to be announced in the spring/summer of 2008 with 3rd party applications opened up so I can turn off the phone and use a future Bible application offline, without worrying about text/email distraction.
Thanks, I feel better now.



There is no competitor greater than one who can’t be discouraged, won’t budge from his path and never stops. Such a competitor should not be fought with, rather joined. With an ally like that, there is no other competion.
Time is such a competitor. I have fought with time for too long, and now need to learn better how to ally myself with him.
God is not beat by time, so He’s even better, and gives me a purpose for trying as well. Then I am working for a goal and for the benefit of others. Only God can help me prioritize time and encourage me to keep moving in positive direction.
I fail when I ignore time and when I ignore God. I need to be more generous with both, not hoarding my attention away from the boundaries given by both.
That reminds me, my break is over. Back to work.