Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Forty Days - Updated

Hi There!
About halfway through my forty day fast from online media! 18 days to go, which gets me right up to Dec. 17th (which is my last final exam for my first semester of college).

Reasons I started this fast and how it's going:
1. Bejewled - I don't miss online gaming at all. For the first couple of days, I'd automatically go for the "Bejeweled" button on Facebook, but I trained myself out of that quickly. I think I may have even deleted the application, as it no longer displays on my homepage and I clicked the remove X, but I'm not sure.

2. Netflix - don't miss it. I still watch movies with friends on the weekends, so it's not like I've gone high and dry from cinema, I just don't watch it by myself on the "Watch Instantly" anymore.

3. Hulu - It's been REALLY hard for me to go without Hulu because that means I don't get to watch 30 Rock.

That was what I was fasting from. However, I discovered PhD comics during my fast and read through an entire 10+ years worth of online comics. I feel like that was cheating. I didn't break the rules of my fast, because that was no games or TV via the internet, but I defeated the purpose of trying to get me to be on the internet less. However, I am benefiting from my withdrawal from movies and games and I have been staying on top of homework and studying much better than before the fast. It hasn't been a total loss.

And there are still 18 more days of fasting - just enough time for final exams to whirl past.

Friday, November 12, 2010

In my Lifetime...

Things that have been done/made in my lifetime that I use:
1. Google(1998)
2. Facebook (2004)
3. Skype (2003)
5. Youtube (2005)
6, Wikipedia (2001)
7. Blogger (1999)
8. Ipods (2001)
9. DVDs (1995)
10. Neopets (1999) / Webkinz (2005) if you do that

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Forty Days

Last fall, Nov. 13-15th, I was on a retreat about the Holy Spirit with NavYouth. (http://navyouth.org/)
While there, the speaker challenged us to follow Jesus example and fast from something for forty days, something that was distracting us from the Lord and hearing the voice of the Holy Spirit. I chose to fast from reading fiction, some of my friends said good-bye to Facebook.

I was listening to Adventures in Odyssey about a week ago (yes, I am in college and I listen to a program designed for eight-year-olds.) I've learned a lot from Adventures in Odyssey and they recently ran an episode on fasting.  (http://www.whitsend.org/vault/A000001185.cfm)

This episode reminded me about the retreat, and I decided to test myself again. However, my time-waster has changed from silly little novels to online games and online television. As of Sunday (11/7), I am trying to go forty days without Bejewled Blitz, Neopets, Hulu, or Netflix. I also decided not to check out any movies from the college library, which I have been doing the past few weeks.

Maybe there's something you should give up too? Or, if not, just keep my fast in mind!
I'll try to let you know how it's going every so often, in another attempt to force myself to blog more often!

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Greatest Magic

"The greatest magic is transmuting of passions." - fortune cookie
definition of "transmuting":
transmutation - an act that changes the form or character or substance of something
transmuter - One who, or that which, transmutes

Who are the people who transmuted passions to you?
Are the thoughts you have really something new?
Thinking about my teachers and tutors, my family.
Where my passions and skills were born.
Have you ever heard the phrase "It takes a village to raise a child"?
Think about the "village" that raised you.
Who gave you your first taste of magic?
What got you really excited about life?

I've always been passionate about knowledge. I've always loved the people who poured time into feeding that passion. 

(Sorry that this is so disjointed, it's basically just whatever my brain sent to my hands.)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


A lot of my friends do national novel writing month. Last year were were discussing the possibility of simply writing out numbers (eg: one, two, three, etc) as a NaNo project. I decided to figure out the logic to determine what number you'd have to type to in order to get fifty thousand words. The answer is not fifty thousand, because you have to account for the fact that "one hundred" is two words, even thought it is only one number. Here's the result of my figuring:

1-19 one word per number = 19
20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 are each 1 = 8
21-29 = 18, also 31-39, 41-49, 51-59, 61-69, 71-79, 81-89, 91-99, so 9*18 = 162
Total words for 1-100: 189
101-120 – 3 each, 60 words
121-129 – 4 each, 36 words, also 131-139, etc., 9*36, 324 words
130,140,150,160,170,180,190 – 3 each, 8*3 = 24 words
200 – one word
Total words for 100-200:409
every group of 100 is the same up to 1000, so 9*409 = 3681
TOTAL WORDS FOR numbers up to 1000: 3870
For 1000-2000: one thousand is two more words, 2000 plus the original 3870 is 5870
Repeat 9 times to get to ten thousand (first time prefix number is 2 words) -52,830
That's over the NaNo requirement of 50 thousand words.
To get exactly fifty thousand: not quite possible, but going up to 9748 will get you to 49999 words, so if you start with zero, 9748 gets you to 50, 000 words.

That's my NaNo algorithm for mathematically minded novelists. If you're interested in learning more about NaNo for normal people, the website is www.nanowrimo.org, and the challenge is a fifty thousand word novel in one month.