20 April 2011

Cyber Alert for Apple Products!

Take a look at this post on O'Reilly's Radar blog. It turns out that Apple's iPhone (with IOS 4.0) and iPad 3G keep an internal file that tracks everywhere you've been while the device is turned on. Call me old-fashioned, but that's a big privacy concern for me.

04 April 2011

Afghanistan you can thank me now

The Rev. Terry Jones of Dove World Outreach (officially cursed by the Blind Chihuahua as of this post) burned a copy of the Quran, and Muslims in Mazar-I-Sharif, Afghanistan, rioted and killed some United Nations workers. This may have something to do with Afghan tribal justice as observed in the more remote regions, which works like this. If someone perpetrates a crime against you, and you cannot catch the perpetrator to take vengeance on him, you are allowed to take vengeance on anyone from the perpetrator's tribe (which in this case means Christians). It's a lightweight system of justice, and provides incentive for each tribe to exercise discipline over its members. It falls afoul of justice systems elsewhere in the world, where it is required that no one other than the actual perpetrator pay for his misdeed, and where a third party - the State - exacts justice in criminal matters.

But as long as Afghans pursue an idea of justice that is dysfunctional and conflict-producing when applied to rest of the world, we might wonder if they have a sense of balance, of basic fairness.

If they become angry at Rev. Jones for dishonoring the Quran, will they celebrate a Christian who honors the Quran? Who has read three different translations of it, and who has downloaded three more to his iPad as part of the myQuran app? I am talking about me, of course. Will they celebrate my honoring Islam? Even though I feel called by God to worship him as a Christian, I nevertheless respect Islam, and will do whatever I can to help Muslims be Muslims. Will they celebrate that? Will they celebrate that I believe a modern person cannot claim to be well-read without having read the Quran?

So, you folks in Mazar-I-Sharif, how about a Thank Scooper Day?

I won't hold my breath waiting for it.

But I will mention that myQuran is free from the Apple AppStore and it seems excellent. You can even download audio of various reciters reading the Quran to you in the original Arabic. Actually the reading is very musical. Did you know the Quran can sing?