The Curious Connection Between Baseball and Technology

Jason Snell writing for Six Colors:

So I am a baseball fan, and my team is in the World Series. Last night’s game was in San Francisco, and I somehow won the lottery to buy tickets, and so my wife and I went to the game. We went early, had a beer at the 21st Amendment Brewery that’s next door to my old office and right down the street from the ballpark.

Sports were my first love, especially baseball. Baseball was the first sport I played as a child and the first sport I avidly followed. I am still a diehard Braves fan to this day and well, to put it lightly, I still love sports.

My love for technology came a bit later in life, but as I began following the tech industry I noticed something extremely interesting. Those in technology, especially in the Apple space, share my love for baseball.

It’s unexplainable, really. Baseball is a relatively archaic game. Granted, technology has changed the game in some ways, but baseball has stood the test of time.

Jason Snell’s recent article detailing his trip to the final 2014 World Series game in San Fransisco featuring the Royals and the Giants reminded me of the strange connection between baseball and technology.

Jason is known for his love for sci-fi, video games, television shows and other extremely geeky hobbies. So, what drives this crazy connection between baseball and technology?

Is it the draw of keeping your own book and observing all the little details that go into a baseball game? To be quite honest, I’m not sure.

Baseball has always been my favorite sport to consume in person. It’s a relaxed atmosphere, doesn’t require your full, undivided attention and features some great personalities and quirks that only come alive on the baseball diamond.

Whatever the connection, it’s there and it’s fitting that the MLB is the first major sports league in the U.S. to support Apple Pay and Passbook.

Either way, anytime two of my loves collide, it’s bliss.

Section O, Row 61 – Wright Thompson

When it’s all said and done, Wright Thompson may be the greatest sportswriter of my lifetime.

That’s just it though, Wright Thompson doesn’t write about sports. He just tells stories. Powerful stories.

Section O, Row 61 is a story that Wright recently wrote and narrated for ESPN’s College Gameday.

His words are powerful, but there’s something even more powerful about hearing his deep, scratchy voice read his own words.

College football Saturdays are how we talk to the dead in the south. It’s how we remember the past, escape the present and look forward to the future.

Wright makes me love writing. His work constantly reminds me why we need good writers. The stories are out there, they’re just waiting to be told.

iFixit’s Mac Mini Late 2014 Teardown

iFixit:

It’s been two years since the Mac Mini’s last appearance on iFixit’s teardown table, but a newly revised version joins Apple’s lineup this week. Is this truly a refreshed Mini, or merely a mini-refresh? Stay tuned to find out just what two years of innovation has to say for itself—it’s Mac Mini teardown time.

As always, iFixit has done a great job in their teardown documentation and outlines exactly what you need to pry into the latest Mac Mini.

I love my Mac Mini. It’s quiet, is extremely reliable and provides just what I have always wanted – a Mac desktop experience that allows me to use my own monitor.

My Late 2012 Mac Mini has been rock solid since the day I bought it. It performs nearly any task I throw at it reasonably well and even drives two monitors (including a 1440p Monoprice panel). But, many Mac aficionados have lost interest in Apple’s cheapest Mac offering.

Well, Apple finally released a revision to the Mac Mini line, updating nearly every aspect of the internals of the system but leaving the external components nearly unchanged – except for one aspect.

Apple axed one of the Mac Mini’s most marketable features, user replaceable RAM.

Although this isn’t a shocking move, it still marks the end of an era as we know it. Now nearly every Mac that Apple sells has non-user replaceable RAM. In fact, most of Apple’s notebooks and even the Mac Mini have the RAM soldered to the logic board.

The Mac Mini is still a great little computer for the price, but it’s sad to see upgradability once again be neglected by Apple.

SEC Sports Roundtable 142: Week 8 in the SEC

Shane, Britton and I recap another crazy week in SEC play. Mississippi State is still the number one team in the land and the states of Mississippi and Alabama own four of the top five spots in the Top 25. Georgia seems to be pulling away in the east and we look back on how our preseason predictions are holding up.

Video: John Gruber – XOXO Festival 2014

John Gruber is one of my online heroes. For those that run in the “Apple space” online, he has been the voice of our community for years.

John recently spoke at the XOXO Conference in Portland, Oregon. XOXO is quickly becoming one of the premier conferences in the tech industry. The speaker lineup was simply amazing this year. John was joined by several other amazing men and women of the internet including Gina Trapani, Jonathan Mann, Hank Green and Paul Ford.

John gives an in-depth look back at the history of his site, Daring Fireball, and looks forward at the future of web publishing, Apple and many other fascinating topics.

If you would like to learn more about this year’s XOXO Festival and Conference, Shawn Blanc has a great photo essay on his newly revamped site, Tools and Toys.

SEC Sports Roundtable 139: Week 5 in the SEC

I joined a full panel this week to recap the Week 5 action in the SEC and look forward to what could be a historic Week 6. Nearly every team in the SEC West is ranked, no one wants to take control of the SEC East and Amari Cooper is quickly becoming a dark horse Heisman candidate – plus, Shane gets to celebrate a Kentucky victory.

Why?

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Why?

Why do you do what you do?

This is a question I believe we don’t ask ourselves enough.

Ultimately, as Christians, our faith provides an answer to this vague question.

God should be the center of our lives and no matter our calling, no matter our task. He should be the one that drives it all.

In essence, He is the answer to our “why?”.

Martin Luther King Jr. describes what I believe to be the best answer to “why?” in his sermon, “The Three Dimensions of a Complete Life”:

When I was in Montgomery, Alabama, I went to a shoe shop quite often, known as the Gordon Shoe Shop. And there was a fellow in there that used to shine my shoes, and it was just an experience to witness this fellow shining my shoes. He would get that rag, you know, and he could bring music out of it. And I said to myself, “This fellow has a Ph.D. in shoe shining.”

What I’m saying to you this morning, my friends, even if it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, go on out and sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures; sweep streets like Handel and Beethoven composed music; sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry; (Go ahead) sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will have to pause and say, “Here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well.”

If you can’t be a pine on the top of a hill
Be a scrub in the valley—but be
The best little scrub on the side of the hill,
Be a bush if you can’t be a tree.
If you can’t be a highway just be a trail
If you can’t be the sun be a star;
It isn’t by size that you win or fail—
Be the best of whatever you are.

The answer to “why?” is in who we serve.

Dr. King’s favorite shoe shiner woke up every morning and set out to be the best shoe shiner he could be.

No matter who you are, God has blessed you immensely.

Maybe it’s with a great talent, maybe it’s with a great personalty, maybe it’s with a great mind.

Why waste it today?

Wake up every morning and strive to be the best you can be.

Let all the host of heaven and earth pause and say, “Here lived a great doctor”, “Here lived a great mother.”, “Here lived a great father.”, “Here lived a great teacher.”, “Here lived a great student.”, “Here lived a great friend.”

Dr. King reminds us that no matter our calling, we are God’s children and that is “why?”.

Quote of the Week: Earl Nightingale

Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.

– Earl Nightingale

The best things in life are truly worth waiting for. This period of waiting can be extremely difficult, but the end reward is immensely greater. Don’t be afraid to wait.

Hands-on with OS X Yosemite: Mac interface rebuilt for Retina

Jason Snell writing for Macworld:

In the past year, though, it’s become clear that Apple no longer believes in that approach, if it ever truly did. iOS 7 took big, bold steps in one direction—and OS X Yosemite takes smaller steps in a different one. After spending several days running Yosemite (on a Retina MacBook Pro provided to me by Apple and pre-loaded with the first developer release), it’s clear that Apple has a very clear and distinct future in mind for the Mac—even though some of today’s Apple hardware might not be up to delivering it.

Jason’s hands-on experiences with Apple’s latest version of OS X, Yosemite, confirm what many have believed is the next frontier for Apple in desktop computing.

It’s safe to say that the transition to Retina on the desktop has been much slower than many have expected, but it is increasingly apparent that Retina will soon make an appearance in the MacBook Air line and possibly in Apple’s main consumer-desktop line, the iMac.

I think Yosemite brings a much needed design tweak that brings OS X up to speed with the “flat” design of iOS.

Book Review: Boy Meets Girl: Say Hello to Courtship by Joshua Harris

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“Courtship is a time to see the good, the bad, and the ugly in the one we love. Then our emotions and decisions about the relationship can be based on fact.” – Joshua Harris, Boy Meets Girl: Say Hello to Courtship

I first heard about Joshua Harris’ book Boy Meets Girl: Say Hello to Courtship in a video produced by YouTuber Dani Austin. Dani mentioned that she was reading a new book that suggests the somewhat-lost art of courtship as a viable alternative to traditional dating. I was instantly intrigued.

Growing up in a Christian home and aligning my own values with Christ’s teachings in the Bible, I have always viewed dating as a broken system.

Although dating is an obvious step towards marriage, teens and adults alike treat dating as a time to enjoy the company of an individual while escaping the total commitment of an engagement or marital relationship.

Only minutes after finishing Dani’s video I launched the Amazon Kindle app on my iPad and began searching for Harris’ book.

Although it took me a month or two to get around to reading it, that was time I shouldn’t have wasted.

Only days away from my twentieth birthday, it seems as if my time as a “young adult” or teenager is fleeting. It’s time to step in the real world and begin to prepare myself for the plans God has in store for me. Through the teachings in his book, Joshua Harris opened some amazing and thought-provoking doors in my life.

Harris presents his thesis of courtship as an alternative to what we know as dating extremely early in the book. Seemingly from the first page I was hooked into this idea that seemed almost taboo compared to our culture today.

Harris does an excellent job balancing Biblical teaching with real life examples to create an easy-to-follow, engaging storyline that even weaves the relationship between him and his wife.

In fact, some of the stories are so engaging that I felt I was reading a romance novel instead of an informational book about courtship at times.

Harris’ extensive knowledge of the topic and personal experiences with the art of courtship shine through on every page. And although this is could be viewed as a “courtship for dummies” guidebook, his writing style allows the reader to escape into an engaging introspective journey.

Although this book is probably best-suited for those who are entering or are currently seeking a marital relationship, I truly believe anyone could pick up this book and learn a thing or two on building Godly relationships.

Harris provides some amazing advice on a wide-array of topics including the best physical practices for a couple in a courting relationship to one of my favorite chapters entitled “If Boys Would Be Men, Would Girls Be Ladies? How to Embrace Your God-Given Role As a Man or Woman.”

Final Verdict: 4.8 ♥s out of 5

Please don’t ask how I come up with these ratings, because I honestly can’t tell you. I just assign a number value based on my enjoyment and recommendation value of the book.

It was extremely hard to not give this book a perfect score.

I came into it expecting to learn a lot, but nearly be put to sleep with extensive references to scriptures and “the do’s and don’t’s of courtship.

Although these were present in the book (and are extremely important), they were presented in an easy to digest form and I applaud Joshua Harris for that.

It is obvious that this book wasn’t written for theological professors and instead for anyone who is willing to pursue God’s will in their relationship.

One of my favorite parts of the book is a bonus inclusion at the very end. Harris maps out eight great ideas for courtship dates. I will have to admit, they are extremely creative and sound like a blast!

I would be lying if I said I’m not eager to try a few of them out!

Joshua Harris is a pastor at Covenant Life Church in Gaithersburg, Maryland. He has written several books on relationships including the popular personal account I Kissed Dating Goodbye and his latest book, Humble Orthodoxy: Holding the Truth High Without Putting People Down.