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Reviews Written by
Richard Allen (Wellington, Somerset)
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Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension
Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension
by Matt Parker
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.89

5.0 out of 5 stars Challenging But Also Fun, 22 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've always enjoyed Matt Parker on More or Less, so was intrigued by this book and keen to give it a go. I say "give it a go" as I'm certainly not gifted at maths and suspected this might be a little challenging and perhaps hard work. I did find it challenging, and requiring a degree of concentration, so is a book I'd dip into rather than read at long sittings. But it has certainly sparked my interest in maths and I can understand why those more gifted than me can find it such an consuming passion. I lent this book to a Maths teacher relative and he found it utterly fascinating, as did one of his older children. Definitely worth a go if you're tempted.


Dettol Anti Bacterial Surface Cleansing Family Pack (Pack of 216)
Dettol Anti Bacterial Surface Cleansing Family Pack (Pack of 216)
Price: £9.00

5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Product from a Trustworthy Brand, 17 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Obviously you can buy anti bacterial wipes a lot more cheaply than these. Most supermarkets now do their own-brand products. However, I think that if you're minded to buy a product of this type, you want one in which you can have complete confidence, and that is what the Dettol brand brings. I particularly like that fact that these are odour free as so many others smell of cheap air freshener. The packs are well designed and easy to reseal, ensuring the wipes stay moist. Each wipe is a good size, strong, and ideal for wiping down a surface such as a kitchen worktop, baby products or for cleaning toilet fittings.


Margin Call [DVD]
Margin Call [DVD]
Dvd ~ Kevin Spacey
Price: £3.90

5.0 out of 5 stars Greed is Good (For Some), 15 Oct 2014
This review is from: Margin Call [DVD] (DVD)
Any film that makes you despise the characters is represents even more than you thought possible is powerful stuff. Based on events similar to those that caused the collapse of Lehman Brothers, I appreciate there is a degree of dramatic license and characters and situations will be exaggerated. All the same, it does help you appreciate just how vile the people who work in this industry can be. With only a few exceptions, characters are shown to be completely amoral and consumed by greed. The acting and direction is exceptional throughout, particularly Jeremy Irons and Kevin Spacey. The scene in which Irons explains why the finance industry acts as it does and why their actions and behaviour will always be tolerated by society is particularly powerful. A strong and important film. What is sad is the certainty that what happened in 2008 will happen again...and again...and again.


The Love Punch [DVD]
The Love Punch [DVD]
Dvd ~ Emma Thompson
Price: £7.50

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Modern Day Screwball Comedy, 15 Oct 2014
This review is from: The Love Punch [DVD] (DVD)
With this cast I was expecting a more genial, whimsical film. Instead this is an attempt to create a more slapstick film, putting the characters into increasingly implausible situations to create laugh out loud moments. To their credit, they try their best, and I think I felt more uncomfortable then they looked with this material. The only character I found amusing was Timothy Small and his continual references to his past experiences of which his wife knew nothing. Other than that, I'm afraid I didn't find much to amuse me, but my partner laughed several times, so perhaps 3 stars is right as it just wasn't to my taste. It's well enough made, just don't expect anything remotely sophisticated.


SK hynix HFS256G32MNB-2202A 2.5 inch 256GB Solid State Drive
SK hynix HFS256G32MNB-2202A 2.5 inch 256GB Solid State Drive
Price: £78.56

5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 15 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have a two year old Dell desktop PC, with a decent spec, running Windows 7. Startup time is about four minutes, which is pretty frustrating. I've slimmed down the startup programs and optimised as much as I can, but it makes little difference. The next step would have been to rebuild the boot disk, but that is such a faff that I really didn't want to do it. Fortunately an SSD is the answer.

Firstly, it comes in a neat little box. The instructions are very minimal, but it's all pretty obvious to install the drive, and help can be found on the Internet. I had considered buying a mount to fit it into the second drive bay of my PC, but it sits in the empty slot pretty neatly, so I don't think I'll bother. After an hour spent installing Windows, the updates, my AV (AVAST is my preference) and a few bits and pieces, I initiate a restart and hold my breath; 15 seconds!!! It's even better than I'd hoped for. In use programs run much faster and as a little bonus, the PC is so much quieter without a disk rattling away next to me.

At 256gb, I shall use the SSD solely for the OS and programs. All my data files will reside on the HDD which is now visible as my F drive. I've looked at various articles on the life of an SSD, and opinion is pretty mixed. Some warn they will start to fail after six months, others say don't worry, they will last for years. So I've decided to be cautious, and leave all my data on the HDD and only use the SSD for items that are performance critical (i.e. executables and associated files) and can be easily restored. In that way I think I have the best of both worlds.


Wind in the Wires
Wind in the Wires
by Duncan Grinnell-Milne
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.40

4.0 out of 5 stars An Enlightening Insight, 13 Oct 2014
This review is from: Wind in the Wires (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
For anyone seeking an insight into the mindset of those who flew in the First World War, this book certainly evokes the sense of danger and adventure that we associate with those young men. Equally the writing is of a style that emphasises the excitement and derring-do and dwells little on what we now consider the appalling carnage and loss associated with the war. It is not a difficult read, and it gave me an insight into a world that we can barely imagine today. The bravery of these men and their willingness to risk all is conveyed almost as a boys-own-story, and I found myself occasionally having to reflect that all this happened to real people. A rewarding read.


Philips LED GU10 4 W Spotlight Warm White Light Bulb (35 W Equivalent, Dimmable, 15,000 Hours)
Philips LED GU10 4 W Spotlight Warm White Light Bulb (35 W Equivalent, Dimmable, 15,000 Hours)
Price: £11.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Ideal Low Energy Bulb, 13 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've always felt that those of use with dimmable lighting systems have been disadvantaged by the rush to low energy bulbs. A standard CFL bulb is non-dmmable, and when I last investigated, the variants that do dim had very mixed reviews. Thankfully this issue has been addressed with the latest LED bulbs, and whilst there's still quite a price difference between LED and CFL, hopefully that will narrow with time.

These bulbs are a perfect replacement for a halogen GU10. They are pretty much the same size (perhaps very marginally deeper) and are every bit as bright and luminescent. There are no startup delays, and the light is constant with no flicker. Hopefully the price will drop as the volumes and demand increase and the return on the running costs will make a strong case for replacing existing bulbs.


Philips GC8651/10 PerfectCare Aqua Pressurised Steam Generator, 2.5 Litre, 2400 Watt, 6.2 Bar
Philips GC8651/10 PerfectCare Aqua Pressurised Steam Generator, 2.5 Litre, 2400 Watt, 6.2 Bar
Offered by WebBasket
Price: £249.99

5.0 out of 5 stars As Good As It Gets, 12 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I'm one of those unusual people that enjoys ironing. I find it relaxing and there's a sense of achievement to be had in turning a pile of crumpled clothes into a neat stack of pressed items. I've tried various irons and was already a convert to steam generators, but this is the best yet. It scores over previous generators in the size of the tank and the quiteness in operation. With only a single heat setting, there's no checking the clothes or doing items in descending orer of heat setting. You just get on with it, from cotton shirts to silk blouses, it's all the same. The iron itself is light and glides easilyand does a fantastic job.

The only shortcoming to steam generators is that you ideally need a special ironing board to hold the base unit, but you can work your way around that. Whether or not you like ironing, and I appreciate that for most it's a chore, a steam generator iron is so much better than a conventional iron, and this particular one is the best I've ever used.


Philips B22 6 Watt LED 40W WW 230V A60 FR ND/4, Warm White
Philips B22 6 Watt LED 40W WW 230V A60 FR ND/4, Warm White
Price: £5.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Superior Light Bulb, 10 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've always had mixed feelings about CFL bulbs. Yes, they're cheaper to run and more energy efficient than the traditional incandescent bulb, but they take time to reach full brightness and the luminesence is not as good. Over time I think we've become used to them as the older type are almost impossible to obtain, but I think they are a poor compromise. However, I'm now convinced that LED is the future. Firstly, there are no startup issues. The minute you switch it on, it is at full brightness. And the light is definitely clearer and less muted. For me, this bulb is cetainly brighter at 40W than the CFL 60W equivelant. The acid test will be how long it lasts, but I'm content I've seen the future and it's certainly brighter.


Ultrasport Micro Fleece Headband Earmuffs with Hook-and-Loop Fastener
Ultrasport Micro Fleece Headband Earmuffs with Hook-and-Loop Fastener
Price: £15.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's a strip of fleece..., 29 Sep 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
...,slightly strechy, with velcro at the ends. And that's about it. No packaging other than a plastic bag. Nothing much in the way of branding other than the subdued logo on the front. Five stars for functionality and form, but £16 is an awful lot for what you get here. I can understand people will pay a premium price for a brand name or designer goods, but this product has nothing to mark it out as justifying such a price. If I didn't know better, I'd have said it would cost about £6, so am not sure how the retailer can justify the margin they are trying to make on this product.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 30, 2014 12:14 PM BST


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