I Am Finley

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To the Left

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To the Left: You’ve been pushing to federalize public education for decades as most conservatives have been saying that public education should be run at the local level. You’ve been voting for more and more control to be had by the federal government over education. More and more power. And now you are scared shitless by the fact that that power is in the hands of someone who disagrees with you.

That is the very problem with government. If you give it power, it could be used against you. This is why our Founding Fathers sought to limit government. You let the government define what marriage is, eventually those in power will disagree with you. You let the government define what hate speech is, eventually those in power will declare your views hate speech. You let the government control what your kid learns and doesn’t learn in school, eventually those in power will teach your kid what you don’t want them to learn.

So now, you all will start moving your kids to private schools because the public schools will go this shit. At least you think they will. And you’ll find that private schools cost a lot of money. And that your tax money is now going to a school your kids don’t attend. And that is unfair.

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Ad Absurdum and Feminism

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I shared this on Facebook this morning without comment:

Sex Slave and Hypocrisy

An explanation with this is necessary. Many in the progressive movement ignore the atrocities of the Islamic world and call anyone that points them out a racist or Islamophobe. It is pure sensationalism to say that a president that has said crude things— and allegedly sexually assaulted women— is oppressing women. It is a lie to say that the Republicans that want to make abortion illegal are oppressing women. Neither of these things is oppression.

Those are the women this was targetted at. Sensationalizing progressive hypocrites.

Are there issues within feminism that are true, valuable, and should be fought for? Yes. Even from a Christian worldview. However, much of what was featured in the rallies over the weekend cannot be endorsed or supported from a Christian worldview.

The modern feminist movement is largely driven by abortion rights, homosexuality, and transgenderism. It is right, as a Christian, to have a problem with this.

But moreover, through satire and ad absurdum arguments, I think it can be addressed in a way to wake some hypocritical people up.

Sharing this without comment or context was likely a wrong choice.

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God Chose Trump

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Just like God chose Saul. Just like God chose Caesar. Just like God chose Nero, and Stalin, and even Hitler. Our God is sovereign. Even when we don’t understand His choices, He is sovereign. It’s one of the comforts that comes with Christian faith.

But remember one thing: God can choose to punish as justly as God can choose to bless. Trump could be either. He could be neither. But God is sovereign no matter what.

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How to Break Your Echo Chamber

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The Echo Chamber. Since November, much has been focused on it. How Facebook, through algorithms, enforces it. How our own confirmation bias encourages us to surround ourselves with things that we agree with. But how does one start to break out of their chamber?

A few years ago, I started to use my morning commute for podcasts. I went through quite a few before finding a couple that I regularly enjoy. While there are a few tech podcasts on my list, my daily morning commute is Albert Mohler’s The Briefing. The Briefing is a news and events podcast, covering things from a Christian worldview. The benefit, however, is that he doesn’t grab articles from Fox, or The Blaze, or even Breitbart. No, he regularly references New York Times, HuffPo, Washington Post, and more on the Left-leaning side. Hearing the way that liberals put things, their use of language, and their train of thought has become a part of my daily routine.

The other podcast that is a part of my weekly routine is Steven Crowder’s Louder with Crowder. While he is less respectful and more comedic, he too cites liberal news sources more often than conservative ones.

By taking 20 minutes a day, one can start breaking down the barrier. So if you are a conservative, I’d recommend both of these podcasts. If you are a liberal, I’d honestly recommend both of these podcasts as well. The reason is that Albert Mohler has a humble honest way of explaining things that I feel anyone can respect him and from him understand the way that conservatives look at things. And Steven Crowder is just hilarious and I think that can work across political boundaries.

Breaking the echo chamber in your life has to be intentional. Make a choice to understand people instead of stereotype them.

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Crap. I’m starting to like Trello.

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I went to Agile training last month at Asynchrony. Our department director wanted our team and a few others to go. I agree with almost everything about Agile. It’s easy to, at least for me.

Last week, as I prepped for our team’s next project, I decided that I want to push myself to do as much from my iPad Pro as possible. I have edited many sites from my iPad. But at work, I have been working on a C# website for the last few months. Despite trying, it was much easier to work in an IDE (Visual Studio for Mac Preview) on this site. But our next project is a complete redesign of a marketing site, setting it up on a LAMP box with a PHP-powered CMS.

There is a difference between making quick updates to a site and starting one from scratch. Quick updates typically only require Coda and Web Tools. But starting from scratch sometimes requires more tools. So I started looking at what I needed.

Image Tools is what I came up with. Two new tools coming soon to Web Tools. Easily open an image and use a ruler to measure and a loupe to grab colors.

My typical flow is to jot down a stream of consciousness in iA Writer. Lots of unfiltered thoughts. But this time, I downloaded Trello. I’ve never necessarily hated Trello, but I have a thing about todo list apps. I buy tons of them. Trello just didn’t fit my flow before. But this time it did. I created my Ready, Working On, and Done columns and started adding cards to my Ready column.

Saturday, as I finished my designs, I started working cards through my columns. And crap, I’m starting to like Trello.

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Dragons and Geese

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Watched “How To Train Your Dragon” with Lottie Saturday night. Sitting at church Sunday morning and she says, “Daddy Daddy, dragons!” while pointing out the window.

Okay, I think, what does she see? I walk over to see what she’s pointing at. Canadian Geese. She’s pointing at a gaggle of Canadian Geese outside.

“No, Sweetie, those are geese. They’re worse than dragons.”

“Baby dragons!” she exclaimed.

“Well, remember, even baby dragons can spit acid and fire.”

Dad’s job is to train her for battle. Even with dragons and geese.

Finley Home

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Resisting Impulse

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I just resisted posting something to Facebook. And then almost tweeted about resisting posting it to Facebook. It was after the third or fourth sentence, after the second rewrite, that I realized that it was better for my blog than Facebook.

Impulse drives us to post the moment something comes to our mind. Take the extra time to sit on something. The world doesn’t need your commentary immediately. Your snark and sarcasm can wait, even if you don’t catch the trending #hashtag. Be more thoughtful. Slow to speak, slow to anger.

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The Thing About Trucks

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While Brooks and others are arguing that iPad will eventually replace the Mac, Gruber is arguing there will always be a need for macOS—specifically a desktop operating system. Despite what my aforementioned dalliance with iPad might suggest, I’m firmly in Gruber’s camp.

Here’s the thought experiment, which I used to inform my opinion: If you could take only one device with you, which one would you take? Ben Brooks or Federico Viticci would almost certainly choose an iPad.

However, I’d take a Mac. Exactly the 11” MacBook Air, which I’m using to write this article.

Delusions of Grandeur

Which one would I take?

The other day, we were going to meet up with my extended family for dinner. My wife told me that I needed to bring my laptop, as my aunt wanted to talk about some logo design stuff. I was tired after a day of work and mindlessly grabbed my laptop. I regretted it as soon as we started to talk. Why? Because I couldn’t grab my Pencil and mindlessly sketch out some logos and notes.

Most of my design process is now done on my 12" iPad Pro. Between Adobe Draw, Graphic, and Bez I do a lot of design work on my iPad.

Christmas was on a Sunday. One Thursday, the 22nd, we drove up to Chicago to stay with my in-laws for the weekend. Going iPad-only, I did some doodling, some writing, and some reading. But I wanted to work on an iOS app side project.

Part of my developer life is web development. Something I have done for most of my life. I can do much of this from my iPad. But over the last five years, I’ve delved into iOS development. That “Brooks” that Rob Rhyne mentions above? He, Ben Brooks, linked my professional development app Web Tools right before the New Years, saying, “I wouldn’t be able to troubleshoot website errors without this.” But the sad thing is, I cannot do iOS development on an iPad. Xcode isn’t there yet. So I need my MacBook Air.

So which one would I take? Depends. I have set up a Digital Ocean server, installed Ghost, and built a theme all from my iPad. I have designed entire websites on it too. And designed logos, posters, flyers, and more. But if I need to work on an app, I gotta have my MacBook.

So, it’s like Ben Brooks has said, “I couldn’t use my Mac as my only machine in 2004, but in 2005 I could.” If it were about preference, I’d be on my iPad 100% of the time.

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The Importance of Personal Websites

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Personal sites, our blogs, these were once our playgrounds. My own site was the first place I added rollover images, CSS for fonts, tried out a “table free” design. I wrote about the web, surrounded by my own experiments with the web. We all did, and it was only in reading those words from 1999 that I realised there was more to owning your own content than simply not publishing your words elsewhere.

Rachel Andrew

My first blog was called Cochon d’Vol, butchered French for the Flying Pig. It was on a blogging system I built in PHP called Blog Wizard. I put a lot of work into that blogging system. Even had a logo. Never intended to release it. But it was mine. And the site went through a redesign every few months. Because that’s what we did back then.

That was a lot of work. Sites like MySpace were much easier for publishing content. And MySpace, unlike its predecessors, allowed for custom CSS to be injected by users, making each MySpace profile an experience. Usually a gaudy experience with animated backgrounds and poorly chosen colors. And then came Facebook. More refined, less targetted at children. Just publishing.

We lost sight of the importance of our own domains. Photos went up to Instagram. Every thought that came to mind went up to Twitter. But our oasis, our experimental island, was lost. Over the last year or two many of my favorite writers in web development have returned to their blogs. I have done my best to do the same. The temptation of tweeting is hard. Look at President-Elect Trump. Finding a happy medium— a pattern of what goes to those centralized networks and what goes to my own site— takes time and intentionality.

But here I can play. A refresh of this site will be coming soon, something I started working towards right after New Years. After a tumultuous 2016, I finally updated Ghost to the latest and greatest version, gaining a lot of functionality that I hadn’t had before and started planning around an updated look. Let’s return to writing refined, thoughtful articles instead of spontaneous, haphazard thoughts. Let’s return to our playgrounds.

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Racially & Politically Charged Attack In Chicago Livestreamed on Facebook

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"Although they are adults, they're 18. Kids make stupid decisions -- I shouldn't call them kids; they're legally adults, but they're young adults, and they make stupid decisions," Duffin said.

CNN

What are these “stupid decisions” that Cmdr. Kevin Duffin is referring to? Kidnapping an 18-year-old man with special needs. Holding him for at least 24-48 hours. Physically assaulting him. Cutting his face and scalp. And streaming it live on Facebook.

The disturbing 30-minute video shows a man tied up and his mouth covered, cowering in the corner of a room. His attackers laugh and shout "f*ck Donald Trump" and "f*ck white people" as they kick and punch him.

The video shows someone cutting into his scalp with a knife, leaving a visibly bald patch.

Right, I didn’t mention that part about Donald Trump and white people. Specifically “fucking” them. The attackers were black and victim was white. Ordinarily, I would encourage that this doesn’t matter. See Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin, both cases where race didn’t matter. But here, we have a video where these assailants are shouting “fuck Donald Trump” and “fuck white people.”

So this is clearly a racially and politically motivated attack: a hate crime. And as the media has so loudly defended the victims of prior such hate crimes, we can expect them to very loudly defend the victim here, right?

"That certainly will be part of whether or not ... we seek a hate crime, to determine whether or not this is sincere or just stupid ranting and raving."

It's possible the racially charged statements were little more than people "ranting about something they think might make a headline," Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said.

He said he did not believe the attack was politically motivated.

It makes sense. Dylan Roof, a young and stupid-decision-making 21-year-old, most certainly thought that his racially charged murder of nine black churchgoers would “make a headline.”

That was hard to type.

These animalistic, inhuman attackers livestream themselves beating and cutting a man, screaming hate speech and not one report from the mainstream media is editorializing this. Not one. It’s barely front-page news. You could claim it was localized gang violence and not necessarily national news, but I would say that Trayvon Martin, a man that President Obama said could be his son, didn’t deserve national attention either. Or any number of the hate crimes committed by supposed Republican, Alt-Right wackos against Hillary Clinton supporters and minorities.

This case— involving two black men and two black women kidnapping, binding, and assaulting a white man— is the clearest cut hate crime since President-Elect Trump won in November. Video evidence and all. Yet the media has shown reservation unlike anything involving black victims.

This is, yet again, one of many reasons that Trump won.

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