Showing posts from November, 2014

Book Review - How to Survive Middle School and Monster Bots

Author: Ron Bates Print Length: 220 pages Publisher: Zonderkidz (September 16, 2014)   “First, before I say anything else, I want to make one thing clear: some of my best friends are machines. Seriously. There’s the clock radio that wakes me up in the morning, the toaster that makes me breakfast, the electric toothbrush that scrubs my braces, the computer that does my homework, and the night light that’s there…” – Howard Boward   Introduction Howard Boward is a nerd and proud of it. This much is true despite the painful tribulations it brings from “…angry, oversized, wedgie-obsessed jerks” that makes up a good percentage of the students in his school. Howard also loves robots and spends endless hours tinkering with machine parts. His public robot demonstrations are not without hiccups (in the shape of destruction of family property), but Mum is always at hand to minimise the chaos engineered by these exhibitions as she happens to always know “... where the fire extinguishe

Book Review: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing)

Author: Marie Kondo Hardcover: 224 pages Publisher: Ten Speed Press (October 14, 2014) ……………………………………………………………………………………   “Storage … is the sacred act of choosing a home for my belongings.” – Marie Kondo   Introduction The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up is a weird book. It is weird because it is written by a peculiar author who is way different from the normal people you meet every day. If you are looking for information that examines how the minds of neat- freaks work, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up is the Holy Grail. The book reads like a manual. It is uncomplicated and straightforward in its counsel on how to declutter your life, embrace an organised and clean form of living. It has practical advice about designating spots for each of your items, the advantages of vertical storage, keeping stuff out of the bath and kitchen sink, etc.   The Marie “KonMari” Kondo Concept In case you are doubting how much organisation and tidying up means to the author

Eric Metaxas On The Reasons Behind Bonheoffer's Spiritual Stance Against The Nazis

Attribution: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-R0211-316 / CC-BY-SA 3.0 When Adolf Hitler came into power in Germany, a German theologian's (Dietrich Bonhoeffer) stance and beliefs put him right in the eye of the storm. Also, his refusal to bend to the machination of the Nazi system, and his encouragement of such mind-set, was a source of irritation to the new government. Eric Metaxas , author of Bonhoeffer Abridged: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy , documents Bonhoeffer's journey and complicated relationship with the German Church and Nazis, a journey made him turn his back on the majority of his contemporaries who were supporters of Adolf Hitler's way of government. Bonhoeffer's strong convictions also lead him to attempt an assassination  on Hitler in 1944, an attempt which led to his own death. In Bonhoeffer Abridged ,  Eric Metaxas  tries to peer through the curtain of history and brings us Bonhoeffer's beliefs on the relationship between the Church and the State,

Giving = Warm Feelings?

I once heard an economist say (on a Freakonomics podcast) that humans give mostly out of the warm feeling they get when they help people and not out of altruism. He concluded that if you are a fundraiser and in search of better fund takings, you will be smart to tap on this human quirk.   I got defensive when I first heard this. But what do I know? I mean a large amount of money given to the poor in the name of charity and other good deeds don’t even reach the people they are meant for.   An ex-colleague once donated bone marrow to an unknown patient…we heard of nothing else in the office for months but the magnitude of his love, goodness and compassion . (Photo by Glitterchirag )