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May 2011

Leaving work Thursday night a co-worker mentioned that someone had said Saturday was the end of the world.  I responded with a smile and I said I was ready.  Friday morning comes around and I get a calendar reminder to do some reading.  I am not much for watching TV and the plans and tasks of running a business and other aspects of my life tend to leave me unaware of what is going on in the news – so I have to have calendar reminders to read the news.   I opened my Droid smart phone, updated the feeds on my RSS Reader and then started reviewing the headline summaries of the New York Times.  Sure enough there was a group of people in New York City proclaiming that Saturday, May 21, 2011 was the end of the world.  I clicked through to read more; curious to know where these people were coming from.  The article did not tell me much so I moved on to my BBC (British Broadcasting) News Feed wondering what the British were saying about this.  I found one article commenting on it.  I then pulled up Bing and the most popular search phrase for the day was “World Ending Tomorrow”.  I went to Google and typed e in the search field and the first auto complete phrase was “End of the World”. [SIDE NOTE: There is probably a great lesson in Public Relations in there somewhere – just think if our businesses could create so much buzz about them to get the attention of the world.] Anyway, a bit eager to find out how this group leader, Harold Camping, came up with this date I did some more searching.  I found a few sites that commented on the various calculations used.  It seemed like it was some calculation from the time of the flood in the days of Noah.  I remembered something that Jesus said to his disciples in the book of Matthew (Holy Bible), chapter 24, verse 36.  Jesus had made a comment that alluded to “the end”.  His disciples (in verse 4) eagerly said “Tell us, when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”  So Jesus, in His kind and patient way shared a few things.  And then in verse 36 said, “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”. According to the Holy Bible, it is clear that there will be an end, but it also seems clear that we cannot tell EXACTLY to the day when this will happen.  There are signs we can look for and, yes we are seeing some of those signs take place (major earthquakes, etc.), but it seems to me that trying to come up with an exact date is pointless.  I think the main issue, regardless of the date, is appropriately responding to God’s love He showed us in sending His Son Jesus into the world – being ready for “the end” at all times.   Part of Harold Camping’s message is true.  There is a saying, “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.” (i.e. if part of something we read or hear is not true it does not mean that there are not some worthy truths that we should consider).  The Holy Bible is clear that we all miss the mark when it comes to living our lives in ways perfectly before God and that as a result we stand condemned to judgment.  The Bible is also very clear that God loved us so much that He sent His Son into the world to make a way for our rescue (dying in our place).  Jesus lived perfectly before God.  He then received the judgment of death in our place (taking the punishment for us). So, what is an appropriate response to all of this?  I guess the first thing we have to decide is whether or not the Holy Bible is true.  If not, who cares, let’s live our lives however we want and deal with the natural cause and effect consequences (good and bad) that come from the choices we make.  If the Holy Bible is true then we can choose to respond to God’s kindness in humility.  We can acknowledge that we have blown it and do indeed need to be rescued “saved” from judgment.  We can put our hope and faith in Jesus and trust that He took the judgment for us.  We can ask Jesus to be the leader of our lives and follow Him.  The result is not only escape from judgment and eternal life but fullness of life now.  Another choice is to continue to live our lives on our own terms, rejecting God’s kind offer of rescue, joy and peace and, when His kind offer expires (when we die or the end comes), appropriately face His judgment. I made the decision to follow Jesus a number of years ago.  The joy and peace I now have is priceless.  The benefits of having Jesus walk with me and guide me through life are amazing.  Oh, and having no worries about of standing before God on the day of judgment is just icing on the cake. PS: In our software terms, the Bible is our owner’s manual, providing instruction for how our lives work.  It is God’s knowledge base that helps us know Him better.  We can search it daily to troubleshoot the problems we face and gain wise counsel with any changes we need to make.  So, what are you waiting for?  Submit a help desk request to God and be rescued today.

March 2011

I’ve often found it useful to utilize real-world experiences as inspiration for endeavors in design. The first question that comes to my mind is ‘what feeling do you want to impart on visitors?’ Do I want a conservative, blue and tan décor with a suit and tie mood? Do I want a sleek, minimalist décor with a creative, yet perhaps stuffy feel? How about a dark, almost foreboding décor with what could be considered an ‘edgy’ or ‘downtown’ sort of vibe? Then I think to myself, ‘What do we do,’ and ‘how do we WANT to be perceived?’ Yes, there are quite a number of conservative elements that mould the way Novo goes about business but we are most assuredly not ‘suit and tie’ people. We create applications intended to make business processes more efficient. That says to me ‘creative,’ but ‘stuffy?’ I don’t think so. We’ve illustrated that Novo is a seemingly contradictory balance of creativity when it comes to application design and conservative ethical and business practices. Looking at our present site, you could say that we’ve been doing the ‘tan and blue’ thing. It’s a handsome site that we’ve put a great deal of thought and effort into but it’s about time for that change we’ve been talking about. So what do you think about a site that is sleek and minimalist but warm and inviting at the same time? Inventive use of light, color and shading will lend depth and warmth. Well thought out navigational and content elements will lend an air that is both functional and creative. Attractive multimedia elements will be usefully employed rather than added as the afterthought.  It will be intuitive and interesting. What do you guys think? What do you like and what do you dislike about contemporary websites in terms of overall ‘mood’ and ‘vibe?’

March 2011

One of the issues near to our hearts here at Novo Solutions is the problem of modern day slavery.  As a thriving business in the western world it is hard to imagine that this goes on in the US and around the globe.  While this is a huge problem – we can all do something to make a difference. novoreach1Here is a list of resources and organizations if you would like to learn more about what you can do to help: CNN Freedom Project | International Justice Mission | Free the Slaves | Exodus Cry | The A21 Campaign | Project Rescue | Love 146 | We invite you to get involved in the fight.  Learn to recognize the signs of trafficking in your city.  And take a stand for freedom. Novo Reach An outreach of Novo Solutions, Inc.

May 2010

RichBy now you may be aware of the emerging problem of human slavery that is taking place today.  Some are calling it the human rights issue of the twenty first century.  And it is not only taking place in remote countries, it is rampant in the western as well as the eastern hemisphere....perhaps even in your own city (see CNN ‘Sex Trafficking: An American Problem Too' The numbers are staggering: National Geographic reports that there are over 27 million slaves in the world today, and according to UNICEF nearly 2 million children are exploited in the global sex trade.  Here in the U.S. the FBI estimates that there are well over 100,000 trafficked children and teens in the United States.  How can this abomination take place in such a civilized time as this? And while the human trafficking problem is mammoth, we can each do our part to help eradicate this tragedy.  Through monetary donations from company profits, the team at Novo Solutions is working together with agencies overseas that are helping children at risk so they are not vulnerable to such entrapment. Some problems in this world are unsolvable - but this one is solvable.  Will you consider looking into this horrible problem and lending your aid?  Here are just a few reputable agencies that are working worldwide to stop this problem:

Please join us in fighting this human tragedy.

April 2005

Novo Solutions Inc. announced the release of Knowledge Base 4.0, an enhanced version of their popular web-based, knowledge base software.