Thursday, September 22, 2005

Pythagorean Theorem

Yesterday my 8th grade son brought home a paper from school that had squares and triangles that he was supposed to cut out and then arrange to prove the Pythagorean Theorem. Unfortuanetly, the example triangle that was used in this assignment made it difficult to tell the difference between the b2 square and the c2 square. So I decided to create a new version of the assignment using a 3,4,5 triangle

Download Improved Version Here

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

It Is Not Too Late To Start

If you have not started reading the Book of Mormon in response to President Hinckley's challenge it is not too late to start.

Kris said "I haven't started- Am I too far behind to get started?"

In response to that Ryan said "it might be helpful to have a chart for those who would like to start reading Sept. 1"

I previously created a chart that started August first and now to help anyone that has not started yet I have made a chart that starts September 1st.

If you start reading before the start of September you will be ahead of schedule.

If you have family or friends that have not started yet give them a copy of this chart and encourage them to get moving.

UPDATE: There was an error in my program that caused the book of Enos to be left off of the chart. This has been fixed. The link above will download the corrected chart.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Book of Mormon Challenge

President Hinckley has challenged us to read the Book of Mormon by the end of this year. I have created a chart to help you track your progress. The chart has a box for every chapter in the Book of Mormon. The height of each box is proportional to the length of the chapter. As you read each chapter color in the box. The dates next to the chapter boxes tell you where you need to be to finish by the end of the year.

Download Chart Here.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005


The MinuteManProject has focused a lot of attention on Immigration. Yesterday some co-workers asked my opinion on this topic.

I told them that I believe that all men are created equal and that no matter where they were born they should have the freedom to live whereever they want. As part of allowing open immigration we need to drastically reduce the government handouts that are available to immigrants. We should also reduce the handouts available to native citizens.

One of the things that led me to this belief was an article I read many years ago about a family trying to come to America from Cuba. With a little searching I found the article, Bringing the Border War Home. It was published in the October 1995 issue of Reason magazine. Whenever I read this story it brings tears to my eyes.

In the national din over immigration, Lizbet Martinez's story barely rates a whisper. She's just a little girl, born in Cuba in 1983. Her mother was a dentist, her father a truck driver, and Lizbet was their first child. Like all new parents, Danne and Jorge Martinez found that having a child changed their lives in ways they couldn't have imagined before she was born. Sleeping through the night was a thing of the past. And a simple trip to the market suddenly required so much planning and preparation that it seemed like a military operation.

Yet it was only when Lizbet was old enough to go to school that the most profound change of all became obvious. Like many, probably most Cubans, Lizbet's parents led double lives. At work, they dutifully chanted the praises of the Cuban Revolution and its all-powerful leader, Fidel Castro. But at home, behind closed doors, they cursed him for turning Cuba into an economic waste land and political dead end, a country without a future.

That was fine when it was just the two of them. But now Lizbet would be leaving the house each day to sit in class with a teacher who owed his job to his membership in Cuba's Communist Party. What happened if the little girl repeated something she had heard at home? How long would it be until her parents were fired, or their ration cards were confiscated, or their house was seized, or they were summoned to the Ministry of the Interior for questioning?

Read the full story.

Here is an article about where Lizbet Martinez is today.

The following is an excerpt from the Libertarian Party position on Immigration:

The Libertarian Party has long recognized the importance of allowing free and open immigration, understanding that this leads to a growing and more prosperous America. We condemn the xenophobic immigrant bashing that would build a wall around the United States. At the same time, we recognize that the right to enter the United States does not include the right to economic entitlements such as welfare. The freedom to immigrate is a freedom of opportunity, not a guarantee of a handout.

Monday, April 04, 2005


This quiz will help you determine which religion most closely matches your religious beliefs.
Even if YOU don't know what faith you are, Belief-O-Matic knows. Answer 20 questions about your concept of God, the afterlife, human nature, and more, and Belief-O-Matic will tell you what religion (if any) you practice...or ought to consider practicing.
I took the quiz and was pleased to find out that I don't need to change my religion.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Easter Talk

As I prepared my talk for Easter I tried to write it out word for word. When I did this I got a talk that sounded stuffy and boring. So I decided to just write an outline and the get up and talk. I was nervous about this but I have studied this subject extensively so I thought I could do it. Doing it this way also has the advantage that you are able to look up more as you are not tempted to just read the paper in front of you. Click on the Read More link to see the outline of my talk.
12 Oaks 1st Ward
March 27 2005

I. Introduction (Talk Slowly)
     A. Greatest event in History – When did it occur
     B. From Ensign
         Subject that I have been interested in for nearly 20 years
     C. Simplified to fit time
         Other possible interpretations
         Supporting evidence for the conclusions

II. Week of the Resurrection
     A. Resurrection on Sunday
         All four of the Gospels agree that the empty tomb was discovered early 
            on a Sunday Morning. For example In Mark 16:2 we read “And very early 
            in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre 
            at the rising of the sun.”
     B. Crucifixion on Friday - Three days
         Count inclusively
         According to Jewish custom, any part of a day was reckoned as an entire day
         Saturday was the Sabbath
     C. John 19:14 - Crucifixion on Preparation of the Passover - 14th of Nisan
         Passover feast each year on the 15th of Nisan
         Nisan first month on the Judean Calendar
         Preparation of the Passover on the 14th of Nissan
         New day on the Judean Calendar begins at Sunset

III. Symbolism of Passover
     A. The Lord instituted the Passover celebration at the time of the exodus of
         the Israelites from Egypt, to commemorate their release from slavery 
            after the angel of death slew the firstborn of Egypt but “passed over” 
            the Israelite homes.
     B. Prophets taught that the Law of Moses was symbolic of things to come.
         Abinadi condemned the wicked priests of Noah with these words: 
            “Therefore, if ye teach the law of Moses, also teach that it is a shadow 
            of those things which are to come—Teach them that redemption cometh 
            through Christ the Lord”
     C. 10th choosing of the sacrificial lamb (Monday)
         Male without blemish and no broken bones
         Triumphal entry
     D. 14th Sacrifice of Passover lamb Between 3 and 5pm (Friday)
         Sacrifice of the Lamb of God
         Beginning with Gethsemane on the night before yet still Friday
         Crucifixion at about 3pm
     E. 15th Feast Celebration of Liberation (Saturday – we call Friday Night)
         Liberation preached to captives in spirit prison
     F. 16th Firstfruits of the harvest presented to the Lord (Sunday)

IV. Year of resurrection and date on our calendar (Check Time)
     A. High priest Caiaphas and the Roman procurator Pilate presided at Jesus'
         trials. This limits the year of the Crucifixion to the period of 
         their common jurisdiction, A.D. 26 to 36
     B. John begins Ministry in the 15th year of Tibereas Caesar.
     C. Calendars
          1. Many Calendars
          2. Ours is Synchronized with the seasons by adding leap days
          3. Judean Calendar – Lunar-Solar – synchronized with the months and 
              the seasons
               Each month begins when the thin crescent moon is first visible 
                  in the western sky after sunset.
          4. Leap Months
          5. Modern Hebrew calendar follows a fixed pattern
          6. Anciently it was observational
     D. Astronomy
         Isaac Newton first
         Refined with computers
         Between 26 AD and 36 AD only in 30AD and 33AD was the 14th of Nisan
            a Friday.
         Because John started his ministry in 29 or 30 AD and Christ ministry 
            was at least 3 years then 30 is excluded
     E. Crucifixion: Friday 1st of April 33 AD
     F. Resurrection: Sunday the 3rd of April 33 AD
     G. Lunar Eclipse
         On Friday Evening 1st of April 33 ad
         There is an un-canonized “Report of Pilate” that claims at 
            the Crucifixion “the moon appeared like blood.”

V. Date of birth + length of life = Date of Crucifixion
     A. D&C section 20 implies Organization of the church on 6th of April 1830
     B. Then on 6 April 1980, President Spencer W. Kimball stated that Jesus 
         was born on “this day 1,980 years ago.”
     C. Birth was on 6th of April 1 BC.
     D. Book of Mormon – Length of Life
         Sign of Birth on the First day of the First year
         Sign of Death on the Fourth day of the thirty-fourth year
         Thirty-three Nephite years plus three days
         Not the Judean calendar because it was not on the fourteenth
         365-day year of the Mesoamerican calendar
         33 * 356 +3 =12048

E. Exact match
            Counting 12,048 days from 6 April 1 B.C., brings one to 
              Friday, 14 Nisan, 1 April A.D. 33 the exact Crucifixion date 
              deduced from the Bible!

VI. Conclusion
     A. The carefully prescribed elements of the Passover ceremony precisely
          foreshadowed both the events of the Atonement and the time that they 
            would occur.
     B. Adding the length of Jesus' life calculated from the Book of Mormon, to 
         his birthdate as understood from the Doctrine and Covenants, results in
         a biblical death date, to the very day. This precise internal consistency
         between different books of scripture was noticed only recently

VII. Testimony
     A. Son of God
     B. Literally Resurrected – We will all be Resurrected
     C. The Savior Atonement for our sins
          I god suffered these things for all that they might not suffer if 
            they would repent
     D. We can repent and our sins will not be mentioned unto us at the day 
          of Judgment

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Simple Human Genome Analysis Program

The Latest Issue of PyZine has an article about using python to analyze the Human Genome. As an example it provides a 14 line program that will count the number of TATA sequences in the Human Genome.
Genes are parts of the DNA that code for specific proteins, but there's no 'treasure map' or Rosetta stone that documents where the genes are in a complete DNA setup. (Moreover, Nature seems to have made it a point to preemptively strike down any formulated rule.) But there are some classic tell-tale signs and one of them is called a TATA box. A TATA box occurs upstream of where the actual transcription begins, but not at a specific upstream location. The occurrence of a TATA box is only indicative and not conclusive, as was mentioned earlier, and so it helps to look for them.
It also has an example of searching for protein sequences in a file of all known human proteins.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Car Accident

Today my daughter was involved in a car accident. She was turning left from a side street onto a major street. There was a car turning right from the major street onto the street that she was turning out of. As that car slowed down she thought that she could go. She did not realize that she did not have a good enough view of the second lane that she had to cross. As she crossed the second lane our Suburban was struck on the left rear by a '63 Ford Falcon. The Suburban was spun completely around and after spinning hit the Falcon on the drivers door. My daughter was scared but not hurt. The driver of the falcon had a bump on his head and a cut on his lip.

It is interesting to see how cars have changed over the years. The Falcon does not have anti-lock brakes, it does not have shoulder straps on the seat belts, it does not have airbags, and it does not have a padded steering wheel. It is also a much heavier car than a modern car of the same size. A driver in a lighter car with anti-lock brakes may have avoided the accident and if he didn't he at least would not have hit his head on the steering wheel.

There has been some talk in the news recently about raising the driving age to 18 because young drivers cause more accidents. My daughter is 18, however, she has only had her drivers license for about a month. I beleive that experience is much more important than age in the ability to drive safely. Also, a 16 year old is more likely to be supervised by their parents while they are gaining expereience. I do not think that the driving age should be raised to 18.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Talking In church on Easter

Today I was asked to talk in church on Easter Sunday. I am planning on talking about the date of the first Easter. The June 1985 Ensign has an article written by John Pratt that talks about this.
The morning of the Savior's resurrection could be considered the most important moment in earthly history. The announcement "He is risen" signaled that death had been conquered and the Atonement accomplished. Certainly it is an event worthy of the celebration and great rejoicing which we accord it each year at Easter. But when did this marvelous event happen? On what date did Jesus rise from the tomb?

I am a little concerned because of the complexity of this topic but I think that if I am carefull I will be able to cover it appropriately.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Learning to Sing

I have never been able to Sing. I have tried karaoke a number of times and it has always been hilarious. The last time I tried to sing karaoke a lady from church that gives voice lessons was there. She said that she could teach me to sing. I had my first voice lesson yesterday. My teacher says that I have potential and that if I work on it I will be able to sing in the ward choir by the end of the year. It seems far fetched but she says that she has taught people worse than me. We will see how it works out; or should I say hear.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Worlds Without Number

A few months ago we had a Family Home Evening lesson where we disscussed the following two scriptures. Moses 1:33 And worlds without number have I created; and I also created them for mine own purpose; and by the Son I created them, which is mine Only Begotten. Moses 1:37 And the Lord God spake unto Moses, saying: The heavens, they are many, and they cannot be numbered unto man; but they are numbered unto me, for they are mine. Most of this lesson was spent looking at the Sloan Digital Sky Survey / Sky Server.
This website presents data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, a project to make a map of a large part of the universe. We would like to show you the beauty of the universe, and share with you our excitement as we build the largest map in the history of the world.
One of the best parts of this site is a page where you can navigate around the image of sky the way you do with mapquest. As you zoom and pan around the map of the sky you will be overwhelmed with the number of stars and galaxies. You can click on an object and it will tell you if it is a star or a galaxy. Many of the objects that look like stars are actually galaxies. The website says that when the survey is done they will have mapped hundreds of millions of celestial objects. We finished our lesson by singing "If You Could Hie to Kolob" (Music and Lyrics)

Saturday, February 26, 2005


My name is Brad.

I am a husband and father. I have a wonderful wife and four wonderful children.

My wife has just recently graduated form college and is now a Registered Nurse. My oldest is the manager of a Cold Stone Creamery. My second child just started attending a local community college. My third child is in middle school and my youngest is in Kindergarten.

I grew up in a family where I was the oldest of 6 children.

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

I have been a software engineer for the last 20 years. I have experience with the following computer languages: Python, C, VB, Fortran, APL, SQL, dBase, Pascal, Jovial, and Various assembly languages.

I have a day job developing embedded software in C. In my spare time I like to write Python.

I am a Libertarian.

I am interested in Genetics, Biology, Mathematics, Physics, Astronomy, Chess, and Science Fiction.

I also like to play Racquet ball.