Monday, February 12, 2018

More Mayflower Ancestors?

A week or so ago I noted that Mayflower travelers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley are my 10th great grand parents. Here is my line:

John Howland (abt 1593-1673)
  Desire Howland (1623-1683)
    Shubael Gorham (1667-1696)
      George Gorham 1697-1772)
        Shubael Gorham (1727-1748)
          Mary Gorham (1748-1743)
            Jesse Hanford (1777-1868)
              Sally Maria Hanford (1807-1845)
                Amelia Mariah Fellows (1838-1890)
                  Albert Fellows Whipple (1856-1907)
                    Dewey Albert Whipple
                      Walter LeGrand Whipple
(Note: Above dates need to be verified)

Now I have reason to suspect that I might be a descendant of Peregrine White, the first baby born to Mayflower travellers (born aboard ship about 27-30 Nov 1620, as it was anchored in the harbor). His father was William White.

I have no concrete evidence yet, however ...

Saturday, January 27, 2018

My Mayflower Ancestors

Two evenings ago my wife and I attended an original play, That First Winter, written and performed by the Drama IV Class 2018 of Mountain View High School (Orem, Utah). My across-the-street neighbor—a senior and member of that class—helped write and performed in the play.

We arrived early, so I searched the Whipple Genweb (on my mobile phone) for some names mentioned on the program notes.

I immediately found John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley, my 10th-great grandparents. According to the program notes, John Howland, age 18 in that first winter (1621),

was hired as indentured servant for the Carvers [Governor John Carver and Katherine Carver]. They asked him to care for Elizabeth Tilley, whom they had taken in after all her relatives died. Mrs. Carver released him from his indenture after [Governor Carver] passed away. [John Howland] cared for [Katherine Carver] until she died a month after. The Carvers willed their land to [John Howland], and he and Elizabeth married a year later."

 (My sources indicate that the marriage was two years later, on August 4, 1623.) Elizabeth's parents, John Tilley and his wife, are my 11th-great parents. They both died in 1621. The Mayflower History website's passenger list gives John Tilley's wife's maiden name Joan Hurst. I need to correct her name at

The play was very moving. I felt the chemistry between 18-year-old John Howland and 15-year-old Elizabeth Tilley. Thanks to both of you for your sacrifices for your 10th great grandson! I love you!

Thanks also to John Tilley and his wife (my 11th-great grandparents) for giving the ultimate sacrifice on the Mayflower!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Goblin Valley

The two of us, October 20, 2017

Saturday, March 4, 2017

First Android Mobile App

Seven days ago my first Android app went live in the Play Store. It's been 6
years since my first app (of seven current apps) for the iPhone appeared in the iOS App Store.

I've been "playing" with Android for some four years, first with Eclipse, and finally (beginning about six months ago) with Android Studio. It must have been Android Studio that made the difference in finally releasing German PlateFinder for Android. (The localized version for the German Play Store is called Schildfinder.)

Thank you, Google (and IntelliJ), for providing Android Studio, a very workable development environment.

Now on to my next app. Hmmm ..., what will it be, I wonder?

Friday, September 2, 2016

William Shatner and Star Trek

William Shatner ("Captain Kirk") front and center
Got to see William Shatner at the Comic Con this week. He's every bit as nice in person as he was in Star Trek. (We also saw Mark Hamill (Star Wars' Luke Skywalker) at the Comic Con.)

Thursday, September 1, 2016

100 Korean Dramas, Start to Finish

Yesterday evening we finished watching “Lets Fight Ghost”—our 100th Korean Drama to watch in its entirety (generally 16 episodes or more).
Since watching our first episode of our first KDrama, “Secret Garden,” on March 15, 2013, we’ve avoided many KDramas that didn’t sound interesting. We’ve abandoned some 41 after just a few episodes. In general, however, these are so much better than American television (which we abandoned over 10 years ago).
We’ve finished a handful of Japanese dramas—two or three of them were exceptionally good. (We’ve also abandoned some.)
As for Chinese dramas? Well, we’ve yet to finish the first episode of any that we have tried. Hopefully we will (one day) find one that we actually like. (It would be so nice to be able to practice the Mandarin I’ve been learning on Pimsleur by watching Chinese dramas.)
That’s about it. Its time to watch episode 12 of “W” (which will likely be our 101st KDrama—and one of the best)!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Book on Beethoven's Organ Works Available Now

I just noticed that my latest book—Beethoven’s Organ Works: A Study—is now available for purchase at and at
I prepared the book during the two weeks before and after Christmas this past December, based on a Beethoven’s Organ Works web site I had created earlier in 2015.
In the process of preparing the book for publication, I corrected numerous errors.
If you’re a Beethoven fan or an organ fan, I invite you to read Beethoven’s Organ Works: A Study.
Feel free to send feedback!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Three Years of Korean Dramas

I watched my first episode of my first Korean Drama–“Secret Garden”–exactly three years ago, on the Ides of March 2013. I’ve now watched 87 complete KDramas … and abandoned 35, totaling 122 KDramas. Additionally I’ve completed two Japanese Dramas (and abandoned 1, if I remember correctly.
I have no plans to quit in the foreseeable future.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Korean Drama Update

Next month marks 2 1/2 years since I watched the first episode of a Korean Drama with my wife. Amazingly, we still like (some of) them. You can see our favorites near the top of my Korean Drama page.

When we started, we watched every episode of each KDrama we started. During the past year we've watched only a few episodes of an increasing number of dramas. (For a list of those series, scroll to the bottom of the KDrama page mentioned above.) Is it because we're raising our personal standards? ... or is it because the KDramas aren't as good as they used to be? ... Maybe a little of both. (Who knows?)

A few times we've "marathoned" a series or two. For a few weeks in the recent past we couldn't find any KDramas that kept our interest for more than a handful of episodes. Then (again, more recently) we've seen a small handful that were exceptionally good.

We watch most KDramas on our iPad's DramaFever app. We connect the iPad to our Apple TV using AirPlay. The Apple TV connects to a projector mounted on the ceiling, which projects the video onto the wall. Audio goes from the Apple TV to an amplifier, then to large speakers "inherited" from my oldest son when he left for the army.

I think we've been to a movie theater (maybe) once during the past 2 1/2 years ... and we didn't really like the movie we saw. (In fact, I don't recall what that movie would have been ...)

We don't watch network television at all (and haven't watched cable TV in some 23 years)--it just isn't interesting.

A few KDramas aren't available on DramaFever. We watch those on Viki. Soompi TV was a favorite source of KDramas for a short time, but we unsubscribed from their service a few months ago (after realizing that we hadn't used it "for months"). Last week I read that Viki had purchased Soompi.

Recent news of military troubles between North and South Korea is troubling. I hope they are able to work out their differences!

That's about it. Back to bed.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Why Comcast/Xfinity Is America's Most Hated Company

Yesterday my Comcast bill arrived in the mail. The monthly charge jumped from $65.82 to $85.55--a whopping $20. It was itemized as follows:

  • XFINITY Bumdled Services: $68.69
  • Additional XFINITY Internet Services: $12.00
  • Other Charges & Credits: $0.82
  • Taxes, Surcharges & Fees: $4.04
I guess I'll visit the nearby store today.

The TV box that they gave me several years ago when I signed up for Internet only has sat on the water softener in the laundry room, unplugged, since the day it came. (I wouldn't let the Comcast man connect it to my cable system.) They made me take that box in order to get Internet for $45.00.

Over time, the cost crept up to about $62.00. Then an unexpected $85.00. That was about a year ago.

I visited the Comcast office, and the employee arbitrarily decreased my monthly charges to $55.00.

It has periodically crept up to last month's $65.82. Then yesterday it jumped to $85.55.

This morning I carried up the TV box from the laundry room. I'll deliver it to the Comcast office today.

I wonder if they will decrease my monthly fee ... or if I will just quit Comcast again ...

We'll see.