The Truth About Toilet Swirl

The Simpsons was where I first learnt about the Coriolis Effect.

Here’s a woefully uploaded version from the Simpsons (classic as it is!):

Enter two great science channels on youtube Veritasium and Smarter Every Day. (I recommend subscribing to both of them with the proviso that I might not necessarily approve of every bit of content on those channels… not that there’s much to not approve of).

They’ve put together a wonderful ‘sync’ experiment video, made over the two hemispheres, on the Coriolis Effect. It’s both thoroughly educational AND fun to watch – if only science was this interesting in school.

Here’s a short video with a tip on how to sync play the videos:

Here are the videos (side by side). Enjoy!


Weekly Videos and Good Reads: 11th August, 2014AD

Weekly Videos (1024) Good Reads

Thanks to a relatively large workload recently and illness it’s been a while since I’ve posted one of these. So here’s a combined version to get your week going.

First up, some good reads:

If you’ve been hiding under a rock the past few days then you’ll have missed the announcement by Acts 29 that founder and former director Mark Driscoll has been stepped down from eldership of the Acts 29 Network. Mars Hill Church has also been removed from membership of Acts 29. My first reaction was sadness. I’ll openly admit that I’ve benefited from Driscoll’s ministry and some of the ministry of Mars Hill. In the past few years I haven’t kept up as much with his ministry but the past 12 months or so has seen a number of controversies that I have earnestly hoped Driscoll, his family, and his church and leadership have been prayerfully and humbly working through. So to hear the news that he has been stepped down from the church planting network he founded, is saddening. There’s been plenty of online commentary – and a few confessions/open letters. There are certainly some strong concerns to be addressed, and no doubt a fair bit of ‘he said/she said’. But of all the commentaries on this matter I’ve read the best has been Dave Harvey who has urged caution, balance and prayerfulness for those of us in the Peanut Gallery.


A few months back Tim Challies blogged his way through church history’s notorious false teachers, presenting one false teacher per heresy/false teaching. Here’s the list (in relatively historical order), and their associated false teaching:

    • Arius – denied the eternal nature of the Son
    • Pelagius – denied original sin, predestination, and the need for special grace to be saved
    • Muhammad – denied biblical teaching of Jesus and significantly misrepresented him in the Qur’an
    • Joseph Smith – Founder of the ‘Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’/Mormons, he added his own writings and authority to scripture and significantly changed biblical understandings of Jesus
    • Ellen G White – founder of the Seventh Day Adventists, her teachings on the proper day of worship, and her views on death, hell and eternal punishment differ significantly from the Bible
    • Charles Taze Russell – his work led to the formation of the Watch Tower Society and modern day Jehovah’s Witnesses. Among his false teaching includes the denial of the Trinity, the deity of Christ and the existence of the Holy Spirit, as well as denial of existence of hell.
    • Harry Emerson Fosdick – the father of modern liberal theology, Fosdick denied the authority of scripture, and challenged the necessity of long-held doctrines such as the virgin birth, the return of Jesus, and the wrath of God (and substitutionary atonement).
    • Norman Vincent Peale – popularized ‘positive thinking’, denied the existence of a personal God (reducing God to a ‘force’), the uniqueness of salvation through Jesus Christ, and essentially made Christianity self-centred rather than God-centred.
    • Marcus Borg – strongly influenced liberal and progressive Christians, he denied many historical doctrines including the virgin birth and resurrection
    • Pope Francis – a surprising, yet not, entry into the list, the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church is included because he heads the worlds largest denomination which opposes the biblical teaching of salvation by grace alone through faith along in Christ alone
    • Benny Hinn – while Hinn has many errant teachings (see link) he is most recognised as a faith healer who teaches that with enough faith to believe God can heal anyone
    • Brian McLaren – While some of his earlier works were welcomed by Christians his later works have essentially proven that he is theological liberal, much like Fosdick before him…
    • TD Jakes – as much as he has sought to deny any false teaching, Jakes continues his association and affirmation of Oneness Pentecostalism and the language of ‘manifestations’ used by Modalism – which is essentially a denial of the historical doctrine of the Trinity
    • Creflo Dollar – one of the foremost teachers of the prosperity gospel – that God’s will for his believers is to materially prosper them

Click through the links to read more of the history of each person, their false teaching, and what the bible actually teaches.


Let’s stop forgiving those who don’t want forgiveness.

I’ve lost count of the number of times some tragedy has occurred – a mass shooting, a terrorist attack, a drunk driving death – and the victims or their relatives, usually Christians, start “forgiving” the offenders within hours or days of the crime.

I understand the motive, and also the desire to present an attractive witness about Christian forgiveness to the world. But it’s not a faithful witness to God. It does not reflect how God forgives, which is to be our pattern and model. Here’s why: God does not forgive those who do not want forgiveness.

There is much food for thought here by David Murray.


Finally for today, here’s a great article about the myths of divorce rates, including that of churchgoers. “Many of the most demoralizing beliefs about marriage, especially when it comes to discouraging statistics commonly passed around, are just not true, says social researcher and best-selling author Shaunti Feldhahn.


Now to some video action:

Youtube Doesn’t Know Your Password – A brief introduction to password hashing for the uninitiated — and why you should never trust a site that emails your password back to you!


You won’t believe what happens in this video!! A parody from Wong Fu on the increasing clickbaiting culture that’s going on…


What happens when 22 amateurs play against 11 professional footballers? It’s a bit late for the World Cup, but I actually enjoyed watching this (NOTE – turn on English captions)…


How to ruin a wedding with your camera. But seriously, don’t be like this guy.

Masterchef Australia, Season 6 Review



So it’s no secret that we love Masterchef in this household. And this season reaffirmed why.

It really doesn’t feel like it was only three months ago that I live blogged my way through the first episode of season six of Masterchef. That feels good – the last few seasons of Masterchef always felt like they were being dragged out, but this year was such a fun ride (even with the many familiar elements) that the time passed relatively quickly.

But then again, I could just be getting old with time feeling like it’s moving by quicker.

So here’s my basic review of the season. I hope Channel 10 sees this as I think some of the ‘Needs Work’ section really needs addressing:

The Great:

  • This season had the best contestants of any season so far.  When the advertisements had George Colambaris spouting his praises I was interested to see whether it was puffery or the real deal. The contestants exceeded expectations – seriously, their plating skills and food quality was just amazing. Oh for smell ‘o vision!Sure, there were not-so-great contestants. When Brendan Langfield served up medium-rare pork thinking it was perfect (what the?) for the first time he’s ever cooked pork, that was bad. But even then, in the ‘return’ episode where the eliminated contestants could cook off for a place back in the competition you could see that he had worked really hard on the outside. This was a special group.
  • The selection process for the top 24 was probably as good as it was going to get. I liked that there was warning to the contestants that if they weren’t up to scratch then you wouldn’t try to fill in the top 24 for the sake of it – which might have been a lesson learned from last year?
  • There seemed to be a much greater sense of a family feel within the group of contestants this year. I think this was partly aided by the nice addition of having the main group stay back at the Kitchen during the elimination to be able to say their goodbyes as a whole group. Previous years had a secret reveal to the remaining contestants back home, and a final toast to the eliminated – which always seemed hollow in their absence.
  • Marco and Heston weeks. Marco week, again, was good. He’s such a fatherly figure! When he took Byron aside at the end and gave him some final encouragement there was a real sense that the viewer was there with Marco encouraging Byron – fantastic stuff. This season also enjoyed the company of Heston Blumenthal for a whole week and that was worth it. And how can you not love that ultimate season winner Brent woke up to Heston at their house in a onesie.
  • Last season’s battle of the sexes was not replayed. Thankfully.
  • Cutting down the viewing from 6 nights a week to five nights made sense – combining the final elimination with a Masterclass was thoughtful planning.
  • Speaking of eliminations, it was nice to see that eliminations included more cooking and food knowledge. The disaster of the ‘voting’ system of season one has thankfully never been returned to. But with an extra round for the contestants to participate in this mean that one slip up didn’t mean all was lost. So the shock exit of Marion from season 2 hasn’t been repeated. When Sarah, a strong contender, went this year it was because the wheels were falling off her wagon and not because she made one small mistake to send her home.
  • This year lacked any spectacular travel locations. Steph and I were waiting for it to happen… but it never did. There’s something ok with that, because the show itself is so focused on the contestants that the viewer’s ability to be immersed into a location just couldn’t go deep enough. Location shooting works better for shows like Luke Nguyen in France or Vietnam – spending a whole series there, travelling, seeing some sights, allowing us to immerse ourselves into the culture and place of location. Last seasons’ regular travelling never achieved this immersion experience, and just seemed gratuitous and over the top.

That’s the great stuff. Now here’s some things I think need work:

  • The selection process of the top 24 was predictable. For evidence of this, see my live blog post on the opening episode. The editing of the show generally makes for non-exciting viewing – with predictable outcomes.
  • The clichés need to go. The puns are still there, but they didn’t seem as intrusive, or as overused as previous seasons. But the cliff hangers are utterly predictable and annoying – as soon as anything remotely dramatic happens I know we’re going to an ad break.The ‘real time’ commentary by the contestants can often be trite. There’s got to be better ways of doing that, or at least some coaching.And please sort out the after ad-break recaps. I’ve complained about this before. They are still unnecessarily long. What’s the point – do you honestly believe that people are tuning in late, or do you believe your audience is so forgetful they can’t remember what happened two and half minutes earlier? Neither is true.
  • But here are my two biggest bones to pick this season. Steph and I have a young family and I have a busy evening schedule during the week. So we regularly watch the show as recorded by our PVR. The first bone I have to pick is this: the start time of the show changed slightly night to night. I don’t seem to have this problem with other programs we record – but it seemed fairly regular that one night our recording would start half way through the intro song, and other nights we’d be catching the tailend of The Project. TV shows used to be clockwork when they started. I used to be able to set my watch to them. Now, more than ever, it’s totally unpredictable.But my biggest bone to pick is the overrun finale. It was advertised to finish at 9:30pm. I knew that the show would run a little over, so I overran the PVR setting by 15 minutes – yet STILL missed out on the winning announcement. I get why you overrun programs – it keeps people on your channel – but seriously, with so many people using PVRs to rewatch programs later, or skip advertisements quicker, it’s time to rethink this whole strategy. Don’t be jerks about this.


Some other random thoughts:

  • We haven’t seen a Kid’s Masterchef – that would be a nice return – and perhaps make it a little less daunting for the contestants.
  • Need a Jamie Oliver week!
  • Bring back the professionals. That was one hell of a series.


That’s it from me. What would you add? Put it in the comments below…



The Bible Project: THE BEST infographics

The Bible Project


I’m fairly certain that these guys are producing THE BEST, most creative, theologically informed infographic expositions of the ‘Big Idea‘ of the whole of scripture. These guys are really good.

And worth supporting financially.


Here’s their introduction as to what the Bible Project is all about:


That’s an ambitious project and I’d encourage all my Christian friends who understand biblical theology to support these guys.

Here’s their Genesis 1-11 video:


And their first ‘thematic’ video on Heaven and Earth:


Best of all, these videos are all free! There’s a few reasonable restrictions, so spread the word.



Food Myths…(unconfirmed, but I believe them)


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I do consider myself a bit of a foodie thanks in no small part to Jamie Oliver, Bill Granger, Masterchef and a whole host of other youtube food channels. My journey from being kicked out of the kitchen at youthgroup camp (because I wasn’t confidently handling a knife) to producing fairly quality home meals to satisfy has been quite fun. I’ve learned a few things along the way and even more so now thanks to the internets.

This post, however, is to explode some of the common food and cooking myths – some of which I still hear on Masterchef! Sheesh.

But I’m not going to type them all out, instead here are some links with the highlights included.

First up, Kenji Lopez-Alt has written a fantastic little post concerning steak cooking methods. It’s all done with science and is probably one of the most scientifically thorough links in this post.

Quick Highlights:

  • steak does not need to ‘come up to room temperature’ before cooking – it makes little to no difference
  • searing meat does not lock in juices
  • ‘flipping steaks only once’ is not a hard and fast rule
  • using a fork to clip your steaks or cutting it open to test its ‘done-ness’ does not make the steak lose all its juices

Kenji’s article on boiling eggs also reveals I’ve been doing it all wrong…


Second, this article from Cracked (yes, I know, the most academically rigorous site online :P – but it does have plenty of links) has a line up of 9 cooking myths.

Quick Highlights:

  • Lobsters don’t scream when boiled – it’s steam building up in their shell which requires an exit of some sort. Sort of like a kettle.
  • Alcohol does not evaporate when cooked – in fact, up to 85% of the alcohol can remain.
  • Using a microwave does not destroy food nutrients – in fact it’s the best way to retain nutrients!
  • Here’s a controversial one – Pork does not need to be well-done. I’ve read this a few times online and all with the same reasons. I’ve actually been served Pork medium and it was the best pork experience I’ve ever had!
  • Putting oil in the pot of boiling pasta does not prevent them from sticking. What prevents them from sticking is continuous motion to separate the strands/parts in the initial minutes, then a stir every so often.
  • All Salts are not created equal

So what other cooking and food myths have you head of? Put them in the comments below…




Weekly Videos: 14th April, 2014AD

Weekly Videos (1024)



Hey, did you know that the life of Jesus was stolen from the Egyptian God Horus? Oh, you know stuff about Horus? Well, I mean it was stolen from Mithras. Oh, you know stuff about Mithras too? Well, whatever pagan god you’ve never heard of is the one that the life of Jesus is stolen from.


At the ‘Final Four’ basketball finals this father and son team danced away to Pharrell’s ‘Happy’. It got the crowd pretty excited as well – I lost it laughing around 0:55…


When your dad is a computer animator for Dreamworks you’re going to have some special home movies…


There are as many different English accents as there are regions in England it seems. Here’s a few of them from dialect coach Andrew Jack


And to finish off, a couple of musical videos.

First – this Star Wars theme rendition on a massive pipe organ is simply stunning.


Finally, this is my absolute favourite rendition of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ – and, of course, by Tommy Emmanuel


Got any videos worth sharing? Put a link in the comments below…

Weekly Videos: 7th April, 2014AD

Weekly Videos (1024)



Jim Cummings, the voice of Winnie the Pooh, was asked at ConnetiCon 2013 to read a movie transcript as Winnie the Pooh. He was given Star Wars and his character was Darth Vader. You’ll smile when Vader says, ‘Oh bother…’


“Kenny, a ninety-one-year-old Wyoming native, is widely credited as the inventor of the jump shot. After being told by his brother that he was too short to play basketball, five-foot-seven Kenny thought to jump up with the ball in order to score despite his height. His innovative tactic led him to a pro career in the NBA, where he found fame and success. But along the way, Kenny learned there are more important things in life than sports. Over the near-century of his life, Kenny found one thing stood the test of time: God. Hear his story here.”


Ever wondered what it would be like to have Morgan Freeman as your GPS voice? It would be incredible. And annoying at times.


There’s plenty of good science youtubers out there, and one of my favourites is Minute Physics – because I’m a fan of short, clear presentations about difficult subjects to comprehend. If only high school was this clear. So if you’re ever wondered what the differences are between light bulbs – say while at the shops needing to buy a new one – here’s a short, clear and helpful presentation.

Weekly Videos: 31st March, 2013AD

Weekly Videos (1024)



Starting today is a new, and hopefully weekly, segment on this blog – Weekly Videos: Inspiring, Encouraging, Humorous, and above all never dull, boring or a waste of time.

Kicking things off is this duet from master guitarist Don Ross and Calum Graham playing a piece written by Graham. The melody and tones are exquisite. More like this on their duet album 12:34.


More music – this time a Doo-Wop Sextet Duet between Billy Joel and Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon.


‘The Expert’. This is probably why Marketing Departments and Engineers don’t get along…


From Bump to Buzz. This is a very, very sweet video/montage from independent artist Tom Fletcher. “We took photos every day through the 9 months of our pregnancy, this is the result (plus a little song I wrote called “Something New”).”


I’ve been a fan of Jane Lui for a little while now. I’m especially a big fan of her mashups – though she hasn’t done one for a while now. Here’s my favourite – two Madonna songs ‘Crazy for you’ and ‘Rain’ mashup.


Finally for this week, Snickers Australia took a rather despised and well known occurrence – on site builders harassing women as they walk past – and turned it on its head.


Do you have any videos worth watching/posting? Let me know in the comments below.

Good Reads: 27th Feb, 2014AD

Good Reads

More good reads this week. I’ve been blogging bits and pieces but nothing in final form as yet. In the meantime here are some things that caught my eye during this past week:

The Strange Yet Familiar Tale of Brian, Rob, and Don – Three names which were famous during the early days of the emerging church movement. The emerging church movement was a bit of an experiment in which Gen-X leaders in particular started rethinking traditional forms and methods of church. The voices were intriguing to listen to, but that was over ten years ago. Since then the movement has essentially finished and where the leaders ended up was fairly predictable about halfway into its development. The likes of Brian McLaren, Rob Bell and Donald Miller ended up on the path of theological liberalism, whereas someone like Mark Driscoll ended up in the ballpark of theologically reformed. This article from Christianity Today highlights some of what went wrong with McLaren, Bell and Miller. Insightful.


Visual Unit – Some very helpful stuff on the bible contained within. And it’s all free for use in churches! “This site is a collection of biblical diagrams, illustrations and infographics that I’ve put together over the last few years in various ministries.


Young, Restless, No Longer Reformed: A Review – Kevin DeYoung gives a very balanced review of a new book from someone who went from the reformed theological tradition towards Arminianism generally.

“Although I disagree with Fischer on a lot of things, I agree with his insistence that what we make of Reformed theology is tremendously important. I love this line at the end of the book: “I wish there were middle ground, but… where would it be?” (108). Amen. It’s not possible to be a Calviminian. If you care about theology and care about consistency—like Fischer does—you’ll see how different understandings of God’s sovereignty set you on markedly different intellectual, devotional, and practical trajectories.”


What Does It Really Mean To Cause Someone To Stumble? – Stephen Altrogge does a helpful job in explaining this saying from the New Testament. “When our “rights” lead others to act against their consciences we have become stumbling blocks.” There is a flipside to this, though, and I’m hoping to blog on that in the future as well.


A Dangerous Assumption About God’s Will – Here’s an interesting little post from Kevin Thompson:

“…making good choices does not guarantee an outcome we will love. Praying, listening to wise counsel, reading the Bible, and doing everything in our power to make a wise choice does not mean a new job will be easy, that a marriage will be perfect, or that doing what the Bible says will lead to a reconciled friendship or popularity.”


The False Teachers: Arius and Pelagius – It might surprise you to know that pretty much every book in the New Testament (with the only exception of Romans that I can think of Romans included!) contains some explicit or implicit warning against false teachers/teaching. Tim Challies has started a new series of posts titled ‘The False Teachers’. He aims to go through church history and look at some of the biggest false teachers, who they were and what they taught which was so thoroughly wrong. The first two in the series helps explain the existence of Jehovah’s Witnesses and the prevalent view even among Christians that humans are either generally morally good or neutral. This is a series worth keeping your eyes on.


How To Handle Image Theft – With the exponential increase in cameras (DSLRs, compacts and phones) there is going to be an increase in image theft. Here’s a neat little article on how to deal with it, especially if you draw an income from photography. It’s also just plain not nice when someone uses an image you’ve created without permission and that you haven’t provided for free use.


Blue Cheese Dipping Sauce – Fellow QTCer, budding theologian, blogger, and aspiring masterchef Josh Tan has a rather delicious looking blue cheese sauce recipe. I have to admit I’m not a fan of blue cheese, but this sounds really good!