Something else I learned recently

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xmas_ornamentI was roaming around the Internet recently, looking for information on Christmas trees for a potential blog post, when I ran across something I was totally not expecting.

According to the Encyclopædia Britannica, “The use of evergreen trees, wreaths, and garlands to symbolize eternal life was a custom of the ancient Egyptians, Chinese, and Hebrews. Tree worship was common among the pagan Europeans and survived their conversion to Christianity in the Scandinavian customs of decorating the house and barn with evergreens at the New Year to scare away the devil and of setting up a tree for the birds during Christmastime.”

Alternatively, it is identified with the “tree of paradise” of medieval mystery plays that were given on 24 December, the commemoration and name day of Adam and Eve in various countries. In such plays, a tree decorated with apples (to represent the forbidden fruit) and wafers (to represent the Eucharist and redemption) was used as a setting for the play. Like the Christmas crib, the Paradise tree was later placed in homes. The apples were replaced by round objects such as shiny red balls.

I hadn’t heard of the wreaths and garlands histories before, but what really caught my eye was the hanging of apples on the branches of the Christmas tree.


Sweet, Sweet Seduction

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I’ve been seduced. I’m not quite sure who should get the credit, Steve or Ted, but I should probably “blame” it all on Ted. So much of what has gone on in the last 15 years of my life has been due to his influence.  When I first met him, he was a 20 year old computer whiz kid, and damned cute!  Since that first meeting, he’s tried to teach me computers, with various levels of success.  For years, he’s been trying to get me to switch to Apple, but I’d resisted his charms, and Steve’s as well.  Well, I finally was forced to give in.  Steve may have designed the hardware, but the credit has to go to Ted for making me actually bite the Apple.


iPhone Alarm Glitch

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iPhone owners who use the alarm clock feature got a rude New Year’s surprise from Apple.  Users who set a non-repeating alarm for January 1st or 2nd will be met with silence from their device.  A glitch causes the phones to fail to alarm at the set time.   Apple put out an announcement about the problem, but many users were unaware of the issue.  Apple advises users to set a recurring alarm to cover January 1st or 2nd, and that the phone will resume expected operation January 3rd.

Twitter lit up as users around the world experienced the failure, and took to the service to vent about not being alerted at expected times.

No word at the time of this writing on whether there are more glitches waiting in our iFuture.

Some words about the New Year’s surprise here.

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