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About Phidippus

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  • Occupation
    Numismatist/graphics geek
  • About my avatar
    It's a coin of Abgar VIII of Osrhoene with a tiara showing a Greek cross of pellets, dating to AD 177-192.
  • Favorite movies
    Seven Samurai, Pathfinder (Gaup), Gone with the Wind.
  • Favorite music
    Al Stewart, Simon and Garfunkel, Kingston Trio, several wierd Scandinavian groups. Beethoven. Bach, played well.
  • Favorite creative writing
    C. S. Lewis, Charles Williams, Eusebius, Juvenal, ancient and medieval historians in general.
  • Favorite visual art
    Durer, Holbein (drawings), Rembrandt.
  1. What - no takers here? Surely somebody must know something about the subject!! I suppose I'll have to take the plunge. I have little familiarity with childrens' books in general, as I have no children. In any case, if the child in question is reasonably bright, I would suggest a good general history - one in two volumes comes to mind, by Muchael Aukland Smith (From Christ to Constantine, Church under Siege), which you may be able to get used for little money, since they are out of print. They may be a bit technical, so you may want to be available for discussions. This may not be the gr
  2. It's the impression I get when someone hangs an isolated date, tacks an era designator on the end, and provides an in-your-face explanation (in parentheses) which breaks the flow of the text, then drops the dates entirely untill injecting a 2000 without CE (or AD) several pages later. To quote from page 1: The next date in the text is on page 7, and is nearly 3000 years later. The author isn't trying to use the conventions of his audience; the explanation indicates quite the contrary. He isn't simply trying to teach; this usually involves something which isn't quite so "in-your-face",
  3. It is difficult to be reasonable at 0230 - the perils of late-night home-office work - so I apologize in advance for anything unreasonable. Here goes: The last remark indicate that perhaps, on the contrary, the biases are sinking in - or that you have a case of "grad-student-itis". We aren't all uneducated end-times-obsessed hicks here; some of us have "been there, done that" in grad school ourselves. As far as world-view perils of using secularist tools goes, try a read of Os Guiness's Gravedigger File; he pts it a lot better than I do. Regarding commemoration, we all know that "happy
  4. Given that this CE stuff got its start in circles actively opposed to Christianity - especially among Holy Land archaeologists of the Bible-debunking variety, as well as among militantly secular Jews, two categories which sometimes overlap - and after all it rather specifically denies the validity of the event which the era was intended to commemorate, I am a bit surprised that so many of us here are content to be so marginalized. This sort of thing serves to set up an intellectual climate in which Christianity - and Judaism, for that matter - are assumed to be bogus from the start, and that
  5. Normally I don't care about football, but as I have relatives in Austin - my uncle is a retired math prof. there - I had the game on. The Longhorns won by a narrow margin, getting a TD at the very end. It was the way such a game should be; the desired result, but a good, dramatic game.
  6. Not to brag too much, but while I was studying in England I got a "reading copy" of Fellowship of the Ring, which happened to be a first printing (the one with the publication date on the recto of the title page, not just the printings list on the verso) for a fiver, which was worth about $5.50 at the time. Not too shabby, perhaps.
  7. I don't know about anyone else, but when a paper supposedly from a Christian perspective dates things in "BCE" rather than "BC", I tend to bail out immediately, as I did here. It's perhaps understandable if the author is Jewish, for example, but for a Christian to thereby suggest that the central event of human history - the Incarnation - really doesn't matter, hence that when our era is created around that event, we should just ignore it and give it some bogus name, is really lame.
  8. Art auctions and sales turn up in odd places. In my first undergraduate year the college had someone come in and sell prints in the student center, and I shelled out the (to me) vast sum of $25. for a print which happened to be old; in this case it was by someone named Jode, who worked in Antwerp up to the 1580s. It is a print illustrating the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican. It isn't the best example in the world, but it is a decent and old print. In a sale when I was at graduate school I paid arouind $10. for two (fake) Rembrandt landscapes; they are genuine Smiths of Chichester,
  9. While I obviously can't say anything about your collection without seeing the listing, I would remind you that eBay is a curious auction venue in that in many cases - and stereoviews are particularly notable for this, a I have learned the hard way - most of the price appears within the last minute. I have had to learn to snipe in self-defense, and I know that the price can easily quadrupe in the last five seconds. eBay is useful largely for seeing what is out there, but the prices are often meaningless until the auction ends. Common material, or specialized material without a specialized buy
  10. Stereocards are one of my bad habits, and have been so for many years. In theory they are stock photos for graphic design, but of course that's really an excuse. I bought rather a lot of them in the UK while I was over there in grad school, and they were still cheap. I even have a sat-print of a church in Paris by Fox Talbot himself; evidently he made a foray into the business in te 1850s for a brief time. Colour stereos are mainly of two types: first, colour screen prints the so-called "Lithoprints", and second, hand-painted views. We do occasionally find Autochromes, but all old (before
  11. Not quite the earliest full-colour photographic process, BTW. The earliest one which worked was the Ives "Kromoskop" (or similar name) process, from the 1890s, which used beamsplitters to expose three separate negatives of a scene through red, green and blue filters. The resulting sets of three were viewed in a similar arrangement and the result was a full-colour image. I am somewhat familiar with the process as I have two stereo-sets of this process, which I bought in a street market in Paris. I still haven't figured out a way to copy and blend the images successfully. All these three-col
  12. Civ is (was) fun, as long as you remember that Microprose games tend to improve AI at higher levels mainly through cheating (i. e., the AI players get more bang for the buck than you do). Ditto Master of Orion, 1 and 2; I have heard less than wonderful things about MoO 3. Warlords series, from the beginning; the original version, BTW, plays perfectly well on XP. Transport Tycoon Deluxe, when I don't feel like destroying anything. It's simple enough, but the new "open source" version is greatly improved over the original, and it, unlike the original, plays well in XP.
  13. Agreed. Then there's Sandbaggers, which is also on DVD, which ran to all of 20 episodes. It's a spy show in which the main character can be best described as the anti-James Bond.
  14. Perhaps you have corrupted driver files? You might want to try to uninstall/reinstall the scanner drivers; or, alternately, try running the scanner from within your photo processing program (e. g. in "Photoshop LE" use the File-Import-Twain 32 option). Scanners are dodgy beasts at best, but they can usually be partially tamed, although mine still on occasion refuses to work at all without rebooting the entire system.
  15. Oh, well, there's always next year. Tonight they played like they wanted to lose; their skill at leaving the bases loaded is always a source of amazement. Loaded, with nobody out, and not a single run scores, with Johnny D. striking out on ball 4, when he knew it was a ball, and the tying run was all set to stroll home ... they deserved to be swept after playing like that! As long as the "Empire" goes down to defeat ...
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