networking into reality

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Test Video Twitter Player Card

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Latter-day revelation shows that John’s preaching and knowledge of the gospel were far more extensive than the King James Version of the Biblecredits him. The Joseph Smith Translation states that John “came into the world for a witness, … to bear record of the gospel through the Son, unto all.” (JST, John 1:7.) He taught personal righteousness, emphasizing repentance, confession, baptism, prayer, fasting, and receiving the Holy Ghost. He discussed brotherly kindness, generosity, honesty, moral virtue, and justice. John likewise spoke of the gathering of Israel, the conversion and adoption of the gentiles into Israel, the second coming of the Messiah, the resurrection of the dead, the keys of the kingdom, the fulness of time, and the Day of Judgment. (See JST, Luke 3:3–11.)

As John grew to maturity, the Holy Ghost prepared the young man’s mind for his ministry. John received the Holy Ghost while he was in his mother’s womb (see D&C 84:27; Luke 1:15), and no one can receive the Holy Ghost without receiving revelation (see Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith,p. 328). John was “baptized while yet in his childhood,” was set apart for his mission by an angel when he was only eight days old (see D&C 84:28), and later received the full keys of the Aaronic Priesthood, including the keys of the ministering of angels. (See D&C 13.) It follows that he would have received the visitation of angels during these preparatory years.

This was neither a simple task nor an honorary title. There was difficult and dangerous work to be done. The Book of Mormon indicates that priestcrafts and iniquities in Jerusalem at the time of the Savior made that generation the “more wicked part of the world.” (2 Ne. 10:3.) Into this maelstrom John—a mere mortal, yet armed with the Aaronic Priesthood, a divine commission, personal righteousness, the truth of God, and a huge amount of courage—launched his ministry. What he was called to do placed his very life in jeopardy.

John single-handedly challenged the network of apostasy that existed among the leaders of his people. His divine appointment was “to overthrow the kingdom of the Jews, and to make straight the way of the Lord before the face of his people, to prepare them for the coming of the Lord.” (D&C 84:28.)

The circumstances attending this time of exile and test must have been related by Jesus Himself, for of other human witnesses there were none. The recorded narratives deal principally with events marking the close of the forty-day period, but considered in their entirety they place beyond doubt the fact that the season was one of fasting and prayer. Christ's realization that He was the chosen and foreordained Messiah came to Him gradually. As shown by His words to His mother on the occasion of the memorable interview with the doctors in the temple courts, He knew, when but a Boy of twelve years, that in a particular and personal sense He was the Son of God; yet it is evident that a comprehension of the full purport of His earthly mission developed within Him only as He progressed step by step in wisdom. His acknowledgment by the Father, and the continued companionship of the Holy Ghost, opened His soul to the glorious fact of His divinity. He had much to think about, much that demanded prayer and the communion with God that prayer alone could insure. Throughout the period of retirement, he ate not, but chose to fast, that His mortal body might the more completely be subjected to His divine spirit.

The circumstances incident to the miraculous act are instructive to contemplate. The presence of Jesus at the marriage, and His contribution to the successful conduct of the feast, set the seal of His approval upon the matrimonial relationship and upon the propriety of social entertainment. He was neither a recluse nor an ascetic; He moved among men, eating and drinking, as a natural, normal Being.~138. 1 On the occasion of the feast He recognized and heeded the demands of the liberal hospitality of the times, and provided accordingly. He, who but a few days before had revolted at the tempter's suggestion that He provide bread for His impoverished body, now used His power to supply a luxury for others. One effect of the miracle was to confirm the trust of those whose belief in Him as the Messiah was yet young and untried. "His disciples believed on him"; surely they had believed in some measure before, otherwise they would not have followed Him; but their belief was now strengthened and made to approach, if indeed it did not attain, the condition of abiding faith in their Lord. The comparative privacy attending the manifestation is impressive; the moral and spiritual effect was for the few, the inauguration of the Lord's ministry was not to be marked by public display.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Friday, April 07, 2006


Just wanted to say thanks to Mike and the crew at TechDirt for the link.

Well lots of bad news the day before I launch. I have to move from Rosenberg to Houston at the end of May. This is going to make things difficult for my phone bank offering. We'll see what happens tomorrow.

I can always set up again in Houston once I get settled there.

Monday, April 03, 2006

I felt that this deserved its own post.

As I was walking between my home and the apartments, I was thinking about how I can grow my business without any VC/Angel funding. At the end of the day, VC is great, but I can't bank on it being there for me.

So I came up with this. My origional idea was built around the use of long range digital radios that would allow me to monetize the relationships between ex-patriots within it's reach. But that's a little more capital intensive that I can afford right now.

I was thinking about Fiesta and its competition with other grocers. At least in Rosenberg, it seems to lag a distant third. HEB is the dominant force for high end neighborhoods like Greatwood. A segment of my Hispanic market lives there. Mostly your successful contractors and builders.

Wal-mart holds sway over the middle class. They also cater to a lot of Mexicans. They have a few products that are geared to their niche. Between providing cheap staples and some simple Mexican products they take a lot of potential business away from Fiesta.

So Fiesta does business with the poorest customers in this niche. They carry a lot of Mexico specific products and provide similar services. And yet Walmart and sometimes HEB eat their market share. There's also a Kroger in the area that squeezes the market for them.

Back to Fiesta. They are heavy into remittance to Mexico. They also provide bill pay and low cost utilities. So they are definitily focused on serving the same niche I am.

I could install a simple WiFi network in there store here in Rosenberg. Let customers make calls while their shopping, but restrict the geography. I watch a lot of people make calls to Mexico from pay phones in apartment complexes. Why can't Fiesta capture these people? With my WiFi network and Skype I can bring more customers to Fiesta. I'd be a layer in their relationship with their customers.

But what about the customers they already have. I bet it would help increase sales per customer. I'd say it's nearly a fact that the longer you stay in a grocery the more you buy. Say you go in for nothing but milk. They put it in the back hoping you'll see something else to buy on the way to the milk. And if you walk around looking after you picked up the milk, you'll probably find something else to buy.

The way I see it is that providing this Skype service in Fiesta would increase the average time that their customers new and old spend in their store.

I think I can increase Fiesta's metrics like sales per customer, revenue per sq. ft as well as total customers. I think I can help Fiesta win back market share in Rosenberg. This idea would also work for any other business in the Mexico niche here in Rosenberg so I should be able to find customers for this idea.

The only kind of company I can see it not working is restraunts. Keeping the same customers in the seats for 2 hours wouldn't be benificial for them.

Sweat Equity

Well it's started. The die is cast. Time to watch the ripples.

I spent the most of the day out in my market putting up and passing out flyers for my April 8th commercial start. I was much more nervous that I thought I would be. I've been a soldier, a missionary and numerous kinds of employee. I thought I'd been through just about every social situation possible. I found out how wrong I was. That's what made me nervous.

I think it came from the fact that I'm representing no one but myself. In every other scenario I at least had the reputation, good or bad, of whatever I was representing to work with. Now I'm just a nameless guy talking to people about how they call Mexico.

I actually turned off my network last night and left it off this morning so that I wouldn't have any distractions in getting out the door. It helped a lot. I can spend hours following the ebb and flow of business across the blogosphere.

I was actually scared the first few times I put up my flyers. This led to me thinking a lot about the mechanics of what I was doing. It's been a really long time since I put a great deal of thought into how to fold paper and cut tape.

Thankfully I've learned to face my fear. It actually becomes a source of motivation for me. I can't say I like it, but when I feel it, I can definitly get going, set it off, blow up, etc.

It took me about 20 flyers to calm down enough to enjoy what I was doing. Actually, putting sweat equity into my business. I'd gotten tired of talking about all the testing and re-testing I was doing. Back to the flyers. I was excited all the way through the first apartment complex.

At the end of the first complex, there's a little run down strip that is a great Mexican niche. A taqueria, a Mexican video store and some kind of remittance business geared toward Mexico. There are a lot of Spanish publications set out for free in front of these businesses. I decided to take advantage of this free advertising and put a flyer inside the ones marked "Gratis". I figure whoever opens it is looking for a lot of value so I hope they'll consider my products.

I finished the other 2 complexs I had targeted. During this time I realized that I definitly need to study some Marketing Best Practices. I also need to develop my own marketing strategies to deal with my current trickle of personal capital.

Finished distributing my flyers, I dropped by my brother's house. We talked about what I was doing. His wife is a 2nd generation Mexican. Her extended family is huge and has strong connections to Mexico. She listened and then told me that people in her family would be interested in my products since they call Mexico all the time.

This made me really nervous. With strangers for customers, I can prepare for our encouters. Our relationship is in the context of B2C. With extended relatives, I wonder what contexts will come about. If they become my customers, what will they expect? I've since moved from nervousness to curiousity about this subject.

Which makes me wonder if I can use it as marketing and/or growth opportunity. Can I do a great job servicing my extended family and grow from there? We'll see.

So today has been really exciting.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Well I've got it all set up. I'm going for the first $500. I've bought 50ft of Cat-5e cable and run it from my router out the front door where I'll have a table set up. I'll be offering my free and subscription phone services there. I'll be placing flyers at Victoria Gardens, Mustang Crossing and Lamar park - all densly populated by Hispanics - starting the first week of April.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Just thought I'd give an update on what's been going on. I've been talking with 2 venture firms. One here in Houston and one in England. It's felt like an endless english class with all the writing I've been doing.

On my own front, I'm saving up $500 to launch my first product here in Rosenberg. I'll pretty much just break even on it, but it will demonstrate that there's a market and give me some cash flow.