The Bible in a Digital World

We had been having problems with the quality and quantity of our Internet bandwidth for some time. With my wife and I both IT professionals for a living and the kids of the house being technology junkies, a matter for discussion another day, we finally gave up on our provider and switched. Other than the expensive monthly bill and the lousy Internet, our other services were okay. But to save money we signed up for a bundle of everything. That in itself was an adventure as the new company wasn’t known for great customer service just service and while I placed the order online, then tried to confirm over the phone, I finally had to pay a visit to an office to see if they wanted my money. In this day it seems good customer service is optional. So we awaited the day the company would come out to install our new services and I had told work I would be working remotely if possible, thinking the old services would be available even in their sad state until the “switch” was switched. Instead it seems they turned off our services somewhere in the wee hours of morning and so when I woke up at 5am to start working on personal and business things, I was without Internet. I decided to go ahead and eat breakfast. As I asked for blessing before eating my breakfast, I asked God to forgive us for getting wrapped up in first world problems when we have food, water, shelter, and most importantly, Him, in our lives and those are the essentials. I then sat down and I was going to read my Bible reading on my phone but inside our house, the 4G doesn’t work and 3G is so so. So I was unable to pull up my favorite Bible app as it was insisting it must talk to the Internet even though I have several Bible translations downloaded to it. My tablet devices do not have 4G options and require good old fashioned wireless Internet so they would be of no use. So I decided, no worries, I will hunt around and find the good old fashioned analog versions of the Bible. I was saddened it took me so long to find a copy of the Bible in paper form in my house. But I did finally find a pocket version of the King James Bible and then finally my old trusty NIV Study Bible which I used to carry before I went digital.

bible.com-logo

Now my next challenge is remembering what today’s readings are as I have been using a reading plan on my tablets and phone, going back and forth as technology allowed. And that is the crux of the issue here. It doesn’t matter where I am in the Word as long as I am in the Word and if I pray for guidance, God will put me on the pages he wants me to be on. God put me in Psalms.

Windows XP, I knew you when

Windows XP LogoAugust 21, 2001, Windows XP was released onto the world. So break out the calculator and as I am writing this, Windows XP is essentially a 13 year old Operating System.

Think about it. The year Windows XP came out, the Original iPod was released. Wikipedia started that year. There have been Six Olympics (counting Summer and Winter) since XP was released.

According to this site (http://www.fairmontflyer.com/news/2009/11/25/major-events-in-the-past-decade/) MySpace began in 2003, Facebook in 2004, YouTube in 2005, Twitter in 2006, and the iPhone wasn’t released until 2007. That is a lot of stuff that has happened since Windows XP came out.

Windows 7 was really released October 22, 2009. This makes Windows 7 basically a 5 year old Operating System aka OS.

So if your computer is running Windows XP, is it any wonder why Microsoft would want it to die?

There have been huge strides in Computer hardware as well since XP first arrived on the scene. For example, video cards that have 128 times the amount of memory Windows XP Home Edition said it needed as a minimum.

The minimum hardware requirements for Windows XP Home Edition are (Source Microsoft):

  • Pentium 233-megahertz (MHz) processor or faster (300 MHz is recommended)
  • At least 64 megabytes (MB) of RAM (128 MB is recommended)
  • At least 1.5 gigabytes (GB) of available space on the hard disk
  • CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive
  • Keyboard and a Microsoft Mouse or some other compatible pointing device
  • Video adapter and monitor with Super VGA (800 x 600)or higher resolution
  • Sound card
  • Speakers or headphones

All of this to say, XP is the car that is left on the side of the road and no one will call to donate the scrap metal from it.

To add insult to injury, you can’t necessarily run Windows 7 on your older XP machine. The minimum specks want 1 Gig of RAM and 16 Gigs of hard disk space. (Source Microsoft)

So what are you to do with your old Windows XP box? You can attempt to protect it. This would require keeping an up to date Antivirus program. You would need to add some type of third party firewall program to prevent things from access it from the Internet. You would need to run the latest possible web browsers. And those browsers would need any help they could get to be protected. But in the end, you can’t really protect Windows XP. Or really any OS for that matter. But that doesn’t mean stop trying.

There are other alternatives, but they require you to take a leap of faith.

WARNING!

For these two options, you need someone who knows how to back up your stuff, if this is you, great, if not, ask your favorite IT friend. As these two solutions I propose will wipe out your hard drive. All of your pictures, songs, videos, bookmarks, everything will be wiped out when you try one of these solutions I suggest. 

 

You could run Chrome OS on your computer and start living in the cloud. With Chrome OS, the OS is the browser. If it can be done in a web browser, it can probably be done with Chrome OS (unless the web site is strangely hard coded to an older version of Internet Explorer or Java). If the sites are modern browser compliant, they will work with Chrome OS. The OS is “sandboxed”, which means it is supposed to be locked down from anything attacking it. Reboot the box and it is just like it was before. You are running your browser in a protected mode. This option means no more Windows programs such as Word or Excel or iTunes or Internet Explorer, but you can use Google Docs with Google Drive and save all of your digital possessions in the cloud. Can’t sync your iPod or iPhone, but you can do all of that over the air now a days. Visit http://www.chromium.org/chromium-os for details.

Another alternative is to run Linux. Linux is a beautiful operating system that has been around for a long time but whose community has kept it up to date and fun into the future. With Linux, you eliminate a lot of the worries you have with any Windows operating system. As most viruses target Windows machines, but running a different OS such as Linux, you are knocking out most of the threats you would have to worry about with Windows. Ubuntu is probably the most user friendly version of Linux. Read this great article about Ubuntu Then if you are convinced, go here and download the latest version, http://www.ubuntu.com/. Again, this wipes your hard drive, though there is a way to install it without wiping so you can get your feet wet and see if you like it.

Good luck out there. Running Windows XP after April 8th is like not planning for the Zombie Apocalypse.