Archive for October, 2009

Today, our President won the Nobel Peace Prize. Upon first hearing the news I thought “what for?” Many people were asking the same question. However, as the day went on the tone of the question changed. It has become partisan.

Supporters of Pres. Obama often argue that he won it for not being Pres. Bush and seriously putting forth a policy of diplomatic engagement with countries who are not our allies. His detractors argue that he has won it for making good speeches and/or being popular with “socialist” Europeans.

All of the vitriol aside, both may be correct. However, I think it is President Obama himself who called it correctly. It IS a call to action.

The United States is the only country on the planet with the ability to act unilaterally (militarily) anywhere on the globe. Our power projection capability is unmatched. There is little another nation or group of nations could do to stop us. If you are not the United States, how do you temper “the beast?”

You temper the beast through engagement. Giving President Obama the Nobel Peace Prize before he has “earned” it is a brilliant manuever. President Obama wants to earn it. I’m not saying he will place earning the prize above US national interests. But the desire to earn it may be enough to push him towards peace during a critical time when everyone around him will be clamoring for war or disengagement.

Specifically, in the not too distant future, bombing the uranium enrichment facility near Qum, Iran could be a decision he will have to make. Secondly, he may need to persuade Israel not to bomb the facility. The possibilities are endless.

My point here is that the prize adds another voice in his head to push for peace.

I think he will earn it. It will take time and it will be difficult but diplomacy always does.

One final point here. Regardless of whether you think he deserves it or not, he didn’t nominate himself for it, nor did he campaign for it. So let’s stop berating him for it. Instead, let us help him earn it through reasoned, unemotional, and non-partisan public discourse.


via tweetie

My Boys at the Park

Posted: 2009-10-05 in Uncategorized
Spent the morning at the park with my boys.  Great weather.  Doesn’t get any better than this!


File posted to Posterous via Dropbox Automator action.  The process was created by Victor Cajiao and George Starcher.  The link for the how-to is at


I wrote this up for a friend a few months ago.  Thought some people may find value in it.

I’ve used both InvisibleShield and BodyGuardz.  I can safely recommend both without any hesitations.  However, my highest recommendation goes to BodyGuardz for the following reasons:


1.  Price: BodyGuardz

    a.  BodyGuardz is $24.95 and includes two (2) shields.

    b.  InvisibleShield is $24.95 and includes one (1) shield.

    c.  Both offer FREE USPS shipping.

2.  Warranty: BodyGuardz

    a.  BodyGuardz offers a lifetime warranty and will replace your shield no questions asked.  Per their website, when you purchase a BG shield you also receive your first replacement (the second included shield).  You could also use the second shield to protect a second iPhone.  If you need to replace, you’d have to wait for the replacement to arrive.  Replacements cost $4.95 to cover shipping and handling.

    b.  InvisibleShield offers lifetime warranty if your shield becomes torn, scratch or damaged.  They charge shipping and handling for the replacement.  I was unable to find out how much without actually ordering so I’m assuming it is about the same as BodyGuardz.

3.  Ease of Installation:  InvisibleShield

    a.  Both shields install in basically the same manner.  Pull the shield from the backing, spray with included application spray (probably just water), place shield on device, use included squeegee to remove excess spray, let dry for 12-24 hours.

    b.  InvisibleShield is more forgiving during installation.  After spraying the film, the IS will glide a little allowing you to slide it into position.  Invisible also has a better squeegee.  It is rubber with rounded corners and small edges for detail work.

    c.  BodyGuardz are not as forgiving.  I used a couple of pieces of scotch tape to hold the film above the phone, eyeballed the position, then laid it down.  Works well.  BodyGuardz sheild is a rounded rectangle made out of credit card material.  It does the job but I like the IS squeegee better.

4.  Template Cut Quality:  BodyGuardz

    a.  BodyGuardz come perfectly precut and ready for installation.  No perforations and the lines are perfect.

    b.  InvisibleShield does not fully cut out the camera, speaker, nor volume ports.  Prior to installing I used a toothpick to pin down the cut outs and pull them out of the template.  During this process there is a risk of stretching the film and the edges are not perfect.

5.  Durability:  Draw

    a.  Both of the shields do exactly what they claim they do: protect your device from scratches.  Even under extreme circumstances (nails, sandpaper, carkeys) both will keep your device looking flawless.  Based on how well you install the shields will determine how much lint will get underneath.  I’ve installed several of these and I always seem to get a corner or two that raises up slightly and collects lint.  Not a major deal but know it could be an issue.

6.  Feel:  Draw

    a.  InvisibleShield can be described as “tacky” or “slightly rubbery” or “grippy.”  Grip is definitely improved with InvisibleShield.

    b.  BodyGuardz feels as if nothing is on your phone.  It does not improve grip or mitigate against dropping your device.

    c.  Because neither degrade touch performance and this is such a personal preference, I’m calling this a draw.  However, for my gear that I take with me to Iraq, I use the InvisibleShield because of the grippiness.  My civilian gear gets BodyGuardz.

7.  Discounts:  BodyGuardz

    a.  BodyGuardz wins this one, hands down.  After purchasing ANY product from you are registered in their Advantage program which awards you with a 20% discount on ALL future purchases.  I purchased my iPhone cover, then came back to buy the cover for the MacBook Pro at 20% off.  BodyGuardz also has a lot of sales.  You usually get 20% off of the sale price.

    b.  InvisibleShield will give you a 20% discount for buying multiple items in the SAME purchase.  No return customer discounts.

8.  Additional Notes

    a.  The MacBook Pro only comes with ONE (1) shield.  Recommend you do an iPhone install before attempting the MacBook Pro.  In some ways it is easier (bigger area, less extreme corners) and in other ways it is more difficult (more surface area, more ports to worry about lining up.  I have found that the MacBook covers are a “love’em or hate’em” product.  I love mine.  Others equate it to grandma’s couch with the plastic covering.  WHEN (not if) I sell my MacBook Pro, it will be in flawless condition because of the $40 cover I put on it.

    b.  Tools to have on hand when installing:  VERY CLEAN, DUST-FREE AREA (Critical), a microfiber cloth, wife’s hair dryer, scotch tape, saran wrap, toothpick, small tweezers.

        1)  Microfiber cloth: clean your device and help soak up excess application spray
        2)  Wife’s Hair Dryer:  used to dry your corners and help them set.
        3)  Scotch tape:  used to lift your shield into place
        4)  saran wrap:  THIS IS THE SECRET to getting the corners to lay down.  After your shield is starting to set, tightly wrap it in saran wrap to hold everything down in its place.  Use scotch tape to secure.  Let it sit wrapped in Saran Wrap (and turned off) over night.
        5)  Toothpick and small tweezers are nice to have in case lint or hair gets on your shield.  You might be able to pick it off.

    c.  Installing:  Patience, patience, patience.

        1)  You may want to do this when you are alone.  This is slow, detail work.  You don’t want anybody asking you questions or needing attention while you are doing this.
        2)  Clean your device!  It should pass a white-glove test.  If it is not clean, you will be sealing in the dirt with your new shield and it won’t look right.
        3)  Clean your work area!  Once you get your device clean, you don’t want your work area to get it dirty again.  The wet shields attract dust and lint so get rid of it.
        4)  Turn your device off during application and curing.
        5)  Don’t be afraid to lift and start over.  Just apply more spray if it is not right.  Once you get the shield positioned right, lift half off, spray and squeegee it down onto the device; repeat with the other half.  This will minimize bubbles.
        6)  It can take a few days for the shield to fully dry and become crystal clear.  Don’t expect it to be perfect in a few hours; its more like a few days.  With the MBP, it was more like a week and a half.