Home School and Work Personal

rtmerrill.com

Welcome to the not-so-secret life of Robert.

Blackhawk Church

I spend a lot of time there, and not because I feel guilty about something.

I am a regular teacher in the Ambassadors Community Group adult class. I'm especially interested in teaching parts of the Bible that people would find hard to read and understand for themselves, so in recent years I've taught a lot from the Old Testament prophets, such as Amos and Jeremiah.

Most recently, I tried something different. In July 2006, I taught a series about epistemology, called Foundations of Faith. Although the Bible actually has a lot to say about epistemology (without ever using the term), I based the talks on Alvin Plantinga's book, Warranted Christian Belief, and you can read them here.

I'm a member of the Worship Arts Community. I'm a techie; I drive a computer but I get to hang out with lots of musicians. Since the congregation sings the words I project and not the words the team sings, I am not as low on the food chain as you might expect. It's the closest I've ever come to being a rock star. If you're in the Madison, WI area, a follower of Jesus Christ, know how to drive a computer, and are not easily distracted (you’ll see), come check us out.

I'm also a Stephen Minister. I cannot even begin to explain how cool that is.

Writing

This is a new thing, but one that I expect to become more and more a part of my life.

Everyone tells me that writing about technical topics is essential to my career, so I've started.. You can read about the metaphor of Software-As-Factory on my professional site, uFunctional LLC.

I've also written many short pieces over the years, often in response to questions people ask me. Many of them have no personal information, so I may as well add to Google's workload. My latest is about theologoumena. Yes, someone really asked.

Flight Simulator

As a kid, if it flew, I liked it. Birds, rockets, airplanes, whatever. I still enjoy birding (the cool, sophisticated name for birdwatching)—a passion I caught from and still share with my Mom.

It's a good thing that Microsoft Flight Simulator did not exist back then, or I might not have done so well in school. If you have even a trace of the flying bug in you, you have GOT to try this!

When I get the time, I'm going to put up some (hopefully) useful and entertaining resources and screen shots. Oh, wait—when I get the time, I'm FLYING!

Earning a living

After about 10 years at the University of Wisconsin and another 10 years at Berbee, I'm looking for a new ways that I Can Help You (and earn a living in the process).

Okinawan Taiko Drumming

And, finally, something completely different.

My domain is also the temporary home of the Okinawan Taiko Drummers of Wisconsin web site. My daughter is a member of this group at Madison West High School. They do martial-arts-style dance movements, bang on drums, and yell. What's not to like?