The Independent Variable - Matt Haugland

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Today's Transcript

If any of you in the Norman area have a copy of today's Norman Transcript, please don't throw it away, at least not the front page.

Here's a link to the article.

And here's a link to the Oklahoma Daily article.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Inventors competition results

I am now back from Washington DC. The results are in!

click here (U.S. Patent & Trademark Office)
or here (Competition site)
or here (Popular Mechanics)
or here (WCAX)
or here (a blog)
or here (another blog)

I'll give more details later.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

The Competition

Now I know who the competition is. The finalists were announced publicly a few days ago.

[ list of finalists ]

From what I've read (I've looked up articles about most of these), they seem like amazing inventions (even though I don't quite understand what most of them do). It's a bit intimidating. I'm not expecting to win. I'm just thrilled to be on this list.

It's great to see how well the Bay Area is represented. Of the 7 graduate finalists, 4 are from (or went to school in) the Bay Area.

I'll be headed to DC on Tuesday and will hear the results on Thursday evening. I can't wait!! Even if I don't win, it'll be great to finally know for sure how I did. I've been waiting for so long. And I'm really looking forward to the trip itself. The only thing I'm not looking forward to is having to wear a suit.

[ more info about competition ]

Monday, October 09, 2006

Grandma's house

I'm back in San Jose again. It's the third time I've been here since June. After all these trips it's easy to forget that I still live in Oklahoma.

Yesterday was very exciting and interesting. I got to go inside my grandma's old house, where my dad grew up and where I lived (in the garage) when I was in 8th grade. What's so interesting about it is that my grandma hasn't lived there for several years. I was there to meet someone who happend to be in the family that bought the house when my grandma moved out. It was very weird and brought back a lot of memories. It mostly looked the same, but with a few obvious differences. And it seemed a bit smaller.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Hypo- & Hyper-bibleism

According to Christianity, there are two major types of revelation from God: General and Special. General revelation refers to what is revealed through creation/nature. Special revelation is what is revealed through more direct communication (i.e., God's words in the Bible).

Liberal Christians (in my opinion) generally don't take special revelation seriously enough. If they do, it's usually a loose and spiritualized interpretation of it. On the other hand, conservatives (in my opinion) focus too much on special revelation (i.e., the Bible).

I believe the Bible should generally be interpreted literally and within its context. And if it's true at all, it should be taken very seriously. But I also believe that general revelation can tell us just as much about God as the Bible (perhaps more?). It seems a little imbalanced that most churches focus so much on the Bible.

A lot of people (especially at my church) criticize "seeker-friendly" churches for being "watered-down" and not focusing enough on the Bible. But maybe these 'seeker' churches are on to something that my church lacks -- balance between general and special revelation. After all, truth not directly from the Bible is still truth, and all truth is from God.