Jack L. Wolfgang II
Wolfgang Coat of Arms

The Intersection of
Life, Faith, Technology, & Science

The Personal Blog of Jack L. Wolfgang II

Note: Comments are currently disabled for this blog as it is in the process of being moved. Please bear with me as the moving process progresses. The new link for the blog will be posted when it is ready. However, guessing the new link shouldn't be too hard (neither is cheating with Google).

When Newspapers Die

The second major newspaper in the last month will cease publication tomorrow. This isn't the Wakulla News or the Cairo Messenger shutting down, these are heavyweights of the industry: first, the Rocky Mountain News, of Denver, Colorado, and now, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Both of these newspapers began publication well before I was born, my father was born, and even my grandfather was born. The Rocky Mountain News began publication as the split between the North and the South was growing in 1859, and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer began during the Civil War in 1863.

The Post-Intelligencer will continue as an online news source, but the Rocky, as folks in Denver apparently called it, is dead. What does this mean? Is the feel of newsprint in hand fading quickly into some sort of Orwellian future? Have we sacrificed our ability to take in large amounts of information for a sound bite?

While I don't currently take the newspaper, I have fond memories of when it was in the house. I have had letters to the editor published in the St. Petersburg Times and the USF Oracle. The Traffic Doctor (aka Ron Hartung, who accepted a retirement buyout from the Tallahassee Democrat as a cost-saving measure) has printed my questions and even re-worked a thing about being careful in the fog that I submitted. Somewhere in my abode, there are paper copies of most of these, and even though the newsprint has yellowed and aged, there's pride that something I wrote was good enough to appear in print read by many.

Part of the reason I don't take the newspaper is there seems to be more than enough paper in my residence, most of which I seem to be reluctant to send to the blue can. Another part is the convenience of reading it online. Perhaps it is time for me to call up the Democrat or the St. Petersburg Times (which is one of the best newspapers in Florida) and subscribe. While I am all about using new technologies, a part of me yearns to be able to pick up a newspaper now and again.

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Mike Waers

Mike Waers is blogging. That is all.


Walk for Life

Every day in a country that was founded on the ideal that "all men are created equal" and that they are given certain rights: "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness"1, Americans are murdered. These Americans don't have the ability to run or to fight back because they have not yet been born. Seven men decided that a woman's "right to privacy"2 overrode the child's right to not "be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law"3.

Since the judiciary of this country has failed these children, crisis pregnancy centers exist to help women who find themselves pregnant to help them to chose to protect the innocent life growing in their wombs. In Tallahassee, A Women's Pregnancy Center is such a center, and it is conveniently located near the campus of FSU and FAMU, where much peer pressure exists for men and women to engage in sex outside of marriage.

On Saturday, March 7, 2009, my wife and I will be participating in "Walk for Life", which supports A Women's Pregnancy Center. We want this resource to continue to exist in the Tallahassee community, and we want them to be able to continue to counsel women to choose life.

If you wish to partner with us, please contact me.

  1. Declaration of Independence (National Archives, http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/declaration_transcript.html)
  2. Roe v. Wade (Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roe_v._Wade)
  3. Bill of Rights: Amendment V (National Archives, http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights_transcript.html#5)

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Rules for E-Mail

Marketing expert Seth Godin wrote a check list to go through before sending an e-mail . My favorites:

27. Am I forwarding something about religion (mine or someone else’s)? (If so, delete).

How true it is. I get forwards that people send because they think I will be interested because it is Christian. However, often, I have already seen them or something similar. Besides, is forwarding an e-mail really a good way to “make disciples of all the nations1 or to beg others “on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.1? Wouldn’t it be better to take time to write the person a personal message and carry on an electronic conversation with them?

28. Am I forwarding something about a virus or worldwide charity effort or other potential hoax? (If so, visit snopes and check to see if it’s ‘actually true).

Again, I may have already seen it. Also, it might not be true, and therefore, is a waste of my time. Besides, shouldn‘t a place of such unlimited educational potential be used for it? Not to mention, slactivism accomplishes nothing (that sounds like “faith without works3).

36. If I had to pay 42 cents to send this email, would I?


  1. Matthew 28:19 (NASB)
  2. II Corinthians 5:20 (NASB)
  3. James 2:26 (NASB)
  4. I guess I am in a footnoting mood tonight.

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Prince Caspian

Kathy, a friend of mine, posted to her Facebook page that she was waiting to see the second Chronicles of Narnia movie (which AMC Theatres called Narnia 2 on my ticket): Prince Capsian , which was released 2 days after my birthday. My wife and I were among the first in the United States to see the film, opting to see the showing at 1 minute after midnight (Tallahassee is on Eastern Time) showing on Friday morning. Kathy saw the film nearly 20 hours after we did, and asked me what I thought.

What I thought is a bit bigger than a Facebook message and useful to those of you waiting to see the film. Therefore, here are my thoughts on the second Narnia movie:

I thought The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe was a much better movie than Caspian. With Caspian, they strayed too far from the book and there was the other thing that the San Francisco Chronicle ’s Mick LaSalle captured more elegantly than I could hope to:

Alas, Lewis without Christianity just isn’t Lewis.

The faith was evident in The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe . It disappeared in Caspian the movie. I fear that Disney & Walden have a Star Trek -type curse going on where every other movie will be bad. Or perhaps it was that The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe was such a wonderful production.

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Small Problem with Feeds

I redirected the feeds that FeedBurner uses to produce feeds this afternoon. This may have caused duplication of some posts (it may also be due to the feed reader I use). Please accept my apologies if this affected you.


New Google Maps API

Google Maps has given us another way to include a map into our sites without either the JavaScript API or the iframe tag (which some people eschew due to the idea that it can be used to effect a cross-site scripting attack or to use a strict or transitional document type for HTML 4.01 or XHTML 1.0).

The new way to add a Google Map to your site uses the very standard and very accepted image tag. Google has provided nice, full documentation for the new method.

A Google Maps API key is still needed, but this gives web developers one more tool in their arsenal to display geographic information without JavaScript (which is turned off in some browsers to prevent hacking, attacks, and unwanted advertisements) or the iframe tag. By doing so, we can share geographic information in a visual way with more people than we could before.

This post has been cross-posted to the new site which is coming soon.

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Impending Move-Comments Discouraged

The template for this blog has been modified (actually, it was done about a dozen days ago). Comments are now discouraged on this blog because it is going to move! I have already exported the posts, and this blog will be launching very soon in its new home. In the interim, I may cross-post here and there until there is ready.


Real Programmers & Their Tools

I was in a IRC channel dedicated to Church IT this evening, and I commented on how much I am liking Notepad++.

Mark Burleson responded to me with a link to this comic strip, which made me laugh.


Why Web Standards & Accessibility?

Jeffrey Zeldman, founder of Happy Cog Studios and author of Designing With Web Standards, posted the story of how he and a stranger had to help a woman in the middle of a busy New York City (Zeldman lives in NYC) street.

Read the story, then read it again, but instead of a medical facility, make it your church.

Think about your church, what obstacles are in the way: both in the building and on your web site.

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