Monthly Archives: June 2012

Which Opportunity?

God uses any time, place, person, or thing to show His truth. Any opportunity can be used by God to save someone. However you came to be saved, assuming you are, God used the things that led up to that as opportunities to show you the truth and do his will.

Be very careful, then, how you live —not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.” Ephesians 5:15-17

Opportunities can sometimes be missed, there may be many, or you may need to ask God to help you see the opportunities.

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Google’s Nexus Tablet, Media-Streamer, Glasses, and More

So it looks like the bulk of what we predicted to be released in the fall only weeks ago has been announced. A couple weeks ago, iOS 6 was announced and most features too, much of the final Windows 8 has been seen, Windows Phone 8 has been announced last week along with Microsoft’s tablet competition, Surface, and now Google is showing us their OS update and tablet to go with it.

Yesterday, Wednesday, Google surprised us with their all-new line of Nexus tablets, kicking it off with the Nexus 7 tablet, a release eerily similar to Microsoft’s Surface, and a device similar to the Kindle Fire. This device is running Android 4.1 “Jelly Bean”, and the update did turn out to be what looks like a tablet-focused update as expected, and we’re not sure what other devices will run it, phones or tablets. Another impressive announcement is the Nexus Q, a media-streaming device which will allow any device with Android and Google Play to access all music and send their music via the cloud. More than the new Nexus devices, Project “Glass” has been previewed. More yet, Google has shown us some new features to their mobile services which could be revolutionary.

The Nexus 7 tablet

An impressive (actually, astounding) device for a meager $199. Google seemed to get it right by announcing all of the specifications, the price, and the rough launch date of mid-July. Here’s everything you need to know and more:

  • Well-named for its 7″ screen
  • 1280 x 800 screen resolution
  • 8 GB or 16GB versions
  • significantly large 4325 mAh battery
  • WiFi-only
  • Bluetooth support
  • Android 4.1
  • Chrome browser for Android as default
  • Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor (CPU) clocked to 1.2 GHz
  • headphone jack and microUSB port
  • Front-facing camera 1.2 Megapixels
  • built-in GPS along with offline Google Maps
  • NFC support
  • Oh, and a 12-core Tegra 3 GPU

Beyond the above specs, the device is cutting back for price, lacking a rear camera and expandable storage. But that seems like a small loss. The Nexus 7 tablet is dressed to impress with a consumer-friendly simplicity and accessible price. The device is built for media-consumption, bringing Google Play at its best for books, movies, music, magazines, and all the apps and games of Android, unlike the Amazon Kindle Fire or Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet. The seemingly ridiculous GPU power should also give media consumption a headstart. The hardware superiority should bring this tablet an intense edge to other Android tablets, and brings a full-on Android experience, hopefully giving customers a true “tablet” experience.

The Nexus 7 Tablet is available for preorder already in the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK, if your heart is set.

The Nexus Q

Somewhat interesting, if not a confused effort. The bowling-ball-reminiscent sphere has a Tron-like colored light around the middle and an attractive design. The purpose of the device is to stream music from the cloud to devices and from devices to other devices via Google Play. The device accesses all information uploaded to Google Play libraries.

Google Glasses

Or more accurately, Project Glass, is a project which brings with it some extremely interesting ideas, but at the low, low price of $1500. Just kidding. Thankfully, this was only the price attendees of Google I/O were offered to buy the glasses for. No consumer price was mentioned, but the smart specs are set to ship early next year. Aside from live-streaming video via a Google+ hangout, the glasses didn’t seem to do much. As USA today, reported, Google, with Project Glass, “envisions a day that information is delivered so quickly, people feel as if they know the answers to things right away.” The idea of instantaneous information presentation in such a gloriously simple way is very enticing, but we’re all waiting to see what other features the devices will bring.

Source: AndroidCentral, USA Today

No Fear In Death

Heaven. Many may never see this holiest realm of God’s glory. But I’ll tell you something about this blog. Triple Vertex was founded partially to make sure you’re not one of those people. Death is the price everyone has to pay for sin ( John 3:16), because Eve and Adam ate the apple of the Tree of Life and sin was released into the world (see The Story of Sin).

When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”” 1 Corinthians 15:54

We are the perishable and the mortal, and when we die (or Jesus returns) we will be imperishable and immortal. Jesus conquered death and took the blame for our sins. He took the weight off our shoulders, so that we could have eternal life in him (yes, John 3:16 again). He paid the price of death so that we didn’t have to.

Death is difficult, nonetheless. Jesus made it possible for us to be comforted in death, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t hard. When someone dies, it seems that’s something we have to overcome all over again. But for those who die with their faith in Christ, there is no place for fear. We are sinners, but by the blood of Christ, by his death and resurrection, we are sanctified in our acceptance of him.

Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with mennor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

We must sanctified in order to be worthy and holy enough for passage to heaven. That is why we all must be redeemed by Christ, accepting the sacrifice he made in his death, so that we’re sure about ours. It involves only two steps:

If you [1] declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and [2] believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9

This verse makes it plain and clear. Believe that Jesus Christ is our Lord, and that he was resurrected for us, and we can be sure of our passage upstairs. This is why there is no fear in death for us–but hope. Death isn’t a pleasant thing, but in our deaths as Christians, we will be more alive than before when we are with the Lord.

Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death — that is, the devil — and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.” Hebrews 2:14-15

Windows Phone 8 Announced

While Microsoft has already made a huge impact this week at the Windows 8 Surface tablet announcement, but hasn’t stopped yet. At Wednesday’s Windows Phone Summit, the all-new Windows NT core found in Windows Phone 8 is the same Windows RT core in Windows 8. Sadly, existing Windows Phone devices like the Nokia Lumia 900 or HTC Titan II won’t be upgradeable to the new OS because the kernel requires specific hardware as well as security functions. Microsoft also announced Windows Phone “7.8”, which will be on the current Windows CE kernel and be offered to existing devices. This means that those devices will get many features of the new operating system, as well as the homescreen redesign. So what does all this mean for consumers?

We’ve already seen the first supposed Windows Phone 8 phones, and from those and all we heard we can draw some conclusions. According to the Verge, these devices from HTC, even the lower-end, all have at least dual-core processors, as well as chips which support NFC and LTE. This means that Windows Phones can be expected to offer superior hardware even in what would be at cheaper entry-level. For more info, check out the Verge’s post.

Below is a comparison of the Start screens of two Nokia Lumia 900 phones, one running Windows Phone 7.5 and the other, right, running 7.8. The difference is significant, and customizability has been seriously revamped. 

Now for the full feature breakdown:

  • DirectX and Direct3D support, Havok Technology Suite (the engine which powers Halo, Assassin’s Creed, and Skyrim) as well as other gaming engines for a powerful gaming experience.
  • C++ native code support. This means developers can access the grassroots of the phone, utilizing all hardware. (This also puts developing potential on the level of other platforms.)
  • NFC support.
  • Multi-core processor support.
  • “Wallet” app offers integration of credit cards, gift cards, coupons, and PayPal, allowing in-app purchases and supporting NFC payments.
  • A variety of new theme colors along with the new Start screen. Live tiles can be made quarter tiles, regular tiles, or double tiles (there aren’t any in the picture).
  • HD Screens including 1280 x 720 (720p) and 1280 x 768 (720p and a higher pixel density) resolutions, as well as current 800 x 480.
  • Over-the-air updates eliminates reliance on a PC.
  • Integrate Skype and VoIP services, as well as developer access to this.
  • Camera API which allows the camera button to be linked to other apps.
  • Device encryption and secure boot.
  • Office 2013 apps.
  • App “sideloading” (meaning you can install apps not on the market).
  • Device “manageability compatibility” (we’re not sure what this means).
  • Removable microSD support and management.
  • Java in web browser is faster than the iOS 6 beta.

That’s what we know so far, so of course we’ll be waiting to see the final product which Microsoft delivers. There’s also rumor of Microsoft making their own device, like they’re making the Surface tablets, but we’re not sure this rumor holds water. All-in-all, I’m impressed with Windows Phone 8, but in order to make a market impact, a lot more people are going to have to be impressed first.

The following is an informative video, showing a brief history of Windows Phone, along with introducing the new Start screen.

The entire Summit presentation from Microsoft is available to be viewed, coming in at about 2 hours long. There’s got to be more we missed, so check it out.

Via: WPCentral  Source: Microsoft Channel 9The Verge

Microsoft’s New Surface Tablets

Today in Los Angeles, Microsoft revealed their all-new line of Windows 8 tablets. The new Windows 8 tablets come with extremely thin case/keyboard combinations, along with a slick stand. They look to be  more portable than laptops and more functional than any tablets we’ve seen yet. Running Windows 8 and with all the bright cases, the 10.9″ tablets look great. Microsoft if making its own hardware, and the news-world drama which ensued was reminiscent of an Apple announcement.

The style is more than eye-catching!

Two devices were announced: a Windows RT version and a Windows 8 Pro version. This means that the RT version is running on ARM, so will be lighter, thinner, and cheaper, while the Windows 8 Pro version is traditional x86 architecture. This also means that some capabilities are limited, such as all features of Microsoft Office “2013”. The Windows RT version will come in 32 GB and 64 GB versions, while the x86 version will be 64 GB and 128 GB. The breakdown of the differences is in the chart below.

Here’s a promotional video which is pretty sweet, but not terribly informative:

We haven’t heard anything on prices yet, but we’re told they will compete with today’s ARM tablets and Ultrabooks accordingly. My guess on pricing is that Microsoft will be extremely competitive, but I would still expect to pay at least $299 for the Windows RT version, and a couple hundred more for the 8 Pro, but we don’t know until Microsoft discloses it. Plus, we can look forward to other devices coming from third-party OEMs like Samsung. All this and more is set to come Q4 this year.

Source: Microsoft

Measuring the Universe

This is a short video with a lot of good information on measuring the universe coming from . It has long been claimed by creation and intelligent design scientists that the universe is expanding, or at least seems to be. This video shows exactly why this is the case, along with explaining the methods which are used to estimate distances of celestial objects, though potentially light-years away. As far as astronomy goes, this will catch you up to speed on how modern tactics allow astronomers to distance the universe.

Sources: The Verge, Kottke.org

Origin: Royal Museums Greenwich

Strength

Whether you’re the skin-and-bones gamer who spends his Saturdays captivated by the latest, or the person who spends their day at the gym, or maybe a strange mix of both, we all have at least a little strength. But all that doesn’t even compare to God’s unlimited strength. God also has unlimited love, and so he’ll use his strength to help us out. Plus, all he asks for is us giving him glory (see Glory to the Lord Most High) by accepting and living for him.

The Lord is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.” Exodus 15:2

The Lord is omnipotent (all powerful) and will protect us with his strength and love. The Lord gives us strength so that we can thrive in Him.

David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the Lord his God.”    1 Samuel 30:6

I want to keep Geeks on Faith posts like this simple, short, and made just to remind of you of the important things we all need to remember. I hope you walk away today trusting God to give you the strength to get through whatever you are going through. The Lord has more strength and love than there is in the entire world, and he is fully willing to help you with it.

Apple Changes Everything Again with iOS 6, OSX Mountain Lion, and Retina Macbook Pro

Apple really sounded off announcements today at the first day of their Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, and they certainly didn’t disappoint. We saw a variety of new products soon-to-come including a new iteration of their mobile OS and desktop OS. Though the new features and devices are impressive, we have to question whether the changes and improvements will be enough to keep Apple at the prominent position it’s in. Our prediction? Yes.

So far, Apple has announced the next version of their iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad OS, iOS 6, bringing with it a variety of new features. Also, The successor to OSX Lion is officially Mountain Lion, revealed to bring more apps, more Airplay, GameCenter, notifications, and more. There was also considerable excitement over the new expensive but premium MacBook Pro, boasting a Retina Display screen and a body thin as the Macbook Air. The iPad will also receive Siri to boot, and Siri will have a host of improvements.

Here’s the feature breakdown:

iOS 6 – New features are interesting but somewhat uninspired.

  • New Maps app with “Flyover”, allowing users to see an aerial view with real images
  • GameCenter gets challenges
  • Deeper Facebook “integration” to accompany that of Twitter
  • “Do Not Disturb” disables ringer during specified hours
  • “Passbook” app unifies gift cards, coupons, tickets, and more

Mountain Lion –  Receives very iOS-like features.

  • All-new Safari with iCloud-syncing tabs to OSX and iOS devices
  • GameCenter support
  • iCloud with support for Documents
  • Voice-to-text
  • Notification Center
  • AirPlay (1080p streaming)

Siri – Can do stuff we thought she already could.

  • Launch apps
  • Give team, league, and player stats, scores, and standings
  • Give movie showtimes and read reviews along with actor information
  • Yelp business reviews
  • OpenTable reservations
  • “Eyes Free” feature coming with future car integration

It’s expected that we’ll see a couple other things at this year’s WWDC–and we should. We expect an Apple TV SDK as well as refreshes of the iMac and Mac Pro with Retina Displays. Despite the near overload of Apple’s announcements, we still have four days remaining of the WWDC conference. The question is: how much more can Apple change everything?

Sources: BGR, Apple.com

E3: The Games

E3, Electronic Entertainment Expo is a big get together for video games, technology, and related stuff.

This years E3 many new games and hardware were seen. Many were promising and original. Some of these were Halo 4, New Super Mario Bros 2, The Last of Us, Watch Dogs, Pikmin 3, and Assassins Creed III.

E3 always has tons to show but E3 2012 had lots of surprises.

E3: The Tech

Though the yearly E3 convention is intended for video games, often times companies stretch the definition a bit and unveil new software and technology enabling new ways to play. Microsoft and Nintendo took the stage in this regard, though we did see a few other pieces of technology rear their heads. In all honesty, the concept of Xbox Smartglass looked an awful lot like the new features of the Wii U, given the tablet-console communication will enrich the gaming experience. The Wii U’s tablet integration has been awaited for a while now, but this does raise questions. That said, Microsoft has been keeping us on our toes in awaiting the “Three Screens Vision”, connecting the console, tablet or phone, and PC. It’s also important to note that both have their advantages. Xbox Smartglass will be available for Windows 8 tablets, Windows Phone, Android, and iOS as far as we know. In the keynote,  Marc Whitten mentions the use of the app on Android, so we can assume iOS as well. The Xbox website’s Smartglass page says that there will be an Xbox Smartglass app for Windows and Windows Phone, and that the “Xbox SmartGlass technology is available on other major platforms in the My Xbox app”. There is already an Xbox Companion app for Windows Phone and a beta for Windows 8 (since Windows 8 is in beta–download the latest iteration, Release Preview here). We also assume that there will be something along those lines for Android and iOS, perhaps with some limited features, though we have no details as of yet. The real deal here is that Xbox Smartglass is connecting “the devices you already own” for an enhanced experience not just gaming, but viewing movies or videos, and for browsing the web. All these features are briefly described in Xbox video below.

As far as the Wii U goes, I’m convinced that Nintendo has this technology pretty much in the bag. The integration that they demoed does look more refined than that of Smartglass, and, as of late, superior. That said, Nintendo has the advantage working with only one “tablet”, if the so-called “gamepad” could be described as such. As far as we know, the gamepad will have some abilities we associate with a tablet, like video-chatting, but the apps and services which will be available are uncertain. We can’t hardly blame Nintendo for this though, because so far as we’ve “heard” the gamepad should be in the $100 price range, limiting the hardware. Then again, if Amazon can do it, why can’t Nintendo? It’s important to note that the gamepad isn’t a tablet. And unlike the devices meant for Smartglass, the gamepad is not really a device outside of gaming purposes. Outside of gaming, we know the gamepad may have features like the 3DS currently has. Both devices will feature integration with the new MiiVerse “social network”, for which smartphone apps will also be available. Nintendo seems to be really going out of their comfort zone in order to try and bring customers what they want most, so kudos to them there.

We’ll admit there was some other technology that was there, but we’ll save you the trouble of it because it wasn’t all that special. If you’re interested on the “virtual reality” Doom 3 goggle gizmo, we recommend the article at the Road to VR blog.

Sources: Xbox.com, KCCI.com,

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