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Le Feu Follet (Berkshire, UK)

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Zyxel NSA325v2 NAS Server 2-Slot SATA II 1x Ethernet USB 3.0
Zyxel NSA325v2 NAS Server 2-Slot SATA II 1x Ethernet USB 3.0
Price: 94.99

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fine for serving files, but not for Time Machine backups., 2 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have had one of these for just under two months. It is providing music files for a Squeezebox and video files for a Western Digital TV Live. It offers Time Machine functionality and I wanted to use that to back up my MacBook Pro. After posting problems on Apple forums I am now satisfied that the Time Machine functionality of the Zyxel should not be used. Firstly, it does not allow one to set a quota for Time Machine backups, so the backups would progressively use all the available storage. I have made Time Machine backups to the Zyxel but I have just discovered that the functionality to delete files in the backup does not work with the Zyxel. People more expert than me say that no third-party products conform to Apple's specification for network-attached Time Machine backup devices.


Britten Nocturne [DVD] [NTSC]
Britten Nocturne [DVD] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Tony Palmer
Price: 15.32

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very moving and polemical film, 11 Sep 2013
I saw Tony Palmer present this film at the Chichester Film Festival, and he talked about it for about twenty minutes. He started with a warning, saying that if the audience was expecting a feel-good biography of a great English composer, the composer of the The Young Person's Guide To The Orchestra, then this would not be the film they were expecting. He said that when he was asked recently by Peter Pears' niece (I think) whether he was thinking of making a film for Britten's upcoming centenary he answered no, because he had already made four films related to Britten. She replied that that was a shame because she thought that Palmer probably knew more about Britten than anyone else. He went away and looked at the material he had and suddenly he was dumbstruck: he hadn't seen what now seemed to him the most central aspect of Britten - his strong feeling of contempt for the folly of humanity, particularly for the folly of war. With this perception Palmer made this film. It is an impassioned anti-war polemic and possibly Palmer's most bold and moving film. He has been invited to the White House to show the film to the Obamas.


Stalingrad: The Battle that Shattered Hitler's Dream of World Domination
Stalingrad: The Battle that Shattered Hitler's Dream of World Domination
Price: 1.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should read this book, 7 Jun 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a very good book and as much of a page turner as many novels. There were times when I really did have great difficulty in putting it down. It is heartbreaking to read of the heedless and so rapid destruction of Stalingrad and the equally heedless infliction of suffering and death by each side on the other. The fact that it happened so recently and that the events that it describes moulded the world in which we live lends it great relevance to readers today.


WD TV Live Media Player
WD TV Live Media Player

31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Works well in some ways and struggles in others, 16 Aug 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have had one of these for about a month now, and I am quite pleased with it. There are some ways in which it struggles, however. I have some high-definition movie files, and these will not play over Wi-Fi without stopping and starting. This did not surprise me. I have connected a 2 TB external hard disk to the unit through the unit's USB2 port and now I can watch all my movies with no problem. The WD TV does struggle to manage the hard disk, however. Sometimes the WD TV gets into difficulties and reboots itself and then says the hard disk is not connected, even though the system has not been touched. I then disconnect both WD TV and the hard disk from the power and reconnect them, and when the system comes up again the WD TV can again see the hard disk. All this is a lot of irksome hassle. If I delete a film from the hard disk using the WD TV's functionality to do this, it takes about five minutes for the system to recover and to reread the hard drive, so there is no way that I would tackle deleting several films because it would simply take too long. I do feel that the USB2 interface is just too slow for this unit and it is a shame that a faster interface has not been provided, such as USB3, FireWire or thunderbolt, for example. The WD TV has never failed to read the diverse video files that I have, including .VOB folders and ISOs. I have a Flickr account and the WD TV has a Flickr app, but the app is not capable of logging into an account, so it is pretty useless. The WD TV is amazingly good at getting a film's ratio correct without any intervention from me. I am using it with a 42 inch Panasonic plasma TV.

Edit (12th May 2014): I have registered with Netflicks and I'm using the Netflicks app in the WD TV Live to watch Breaking Bad. Typically, when I want to watch something on Netflicks it takes about ten minutes before I'm settled and watching the item, and I feel as though I've been through an assault course to make it work. Initially it took three tries to get a BB episode to load. On the first two tries the WD TV Live rebooted itself. The next problem is that an episode starts without the sound. To cure this I walk across my sitting room and pull the power plug out of the WD TV Live and wait for it to restart. This has happened four times. The next problem is that an episode starts with a pink cast, or wash, across the image. This has happened twice. So yes, that's three types of problem encountered so far (in about a fortnight). Everything the WD TV does is so S-L-O-W. When I have to reboot it (often!), or when it reboots itself, I wait until its home screen appears on the TV, and then it says 'Connecting to the network'. Just that takes about 30 second. Then, at the top of the screen I see that it is re-cataloging the attached hard disk. I'm now amazed that the WD development guys judged that this device was fit to be released to go into production. If Apple's motto is "It just works", Western Digital's motto must be "It can be made to work." It just takes patience, patience, patience.... I'm now wondering what device to buy to watch Netflicks without hassle.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 22, 2014 12:47 PM BST


Braun UK Signal Radio Controlled Alarm Clock, Black
Braun UK Signal Radio Controlled Alarm Clock, Black
Price: 26.92

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Puzzled, 3 April 2012
I bought one of these Braun radio controlled alarm clocks from John Lewis but it didn't work so I got a replacement, and the second one was exactly the same so I got a refund. I have a Casio Wave Ceptor radio controlled watch, which works fine, so I was keen to have an alarm clock that's always right, especially on the morning after the hour changes. To set the Braun up one installs the battery and the display immediately advances to the next 4-hour increment, either 4 o'clock, 8 o'clock or midday. This worked, so at least I knew the suppled battery was OK. The instructions say that then the clock will receive a signal and, depending on the signal strength, it will go to the correct time within ten minutes if the signal is strong enough, or take longer otherwise. The Wave Ceptor instructions suggest one leaves the watch on the window ledge overnight because the signal should be stronger near a window, and synchronisation signals are transmitted during the night. My experience is that the watch just works wherever I leave it. It has a signal strength indicator that shows my signal to be at the strngest level. I left the first Braun I had at various positions in my house, including on a window ledge overnight, but the hands never budged. Ditto the second one. So I'm just puzzled. Looking at Wikipedia I see that the UK synchronisation transmission is transmitted from Anthorn in Cumbria and should have a range of 1500km. I live in Reading, which is about 500km from Anthorn, and I left the clocks on a north-facing upstairs window ledge. The Casio manual mentions the Anthorn transmitter and another in Germany, saying that outside the range of these transmitters the watch is not radio controlled. The Braun instructions don't go into this level of detail. I'm just puzzled.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 28, 2013 2:09 PM GMT


Kensington Car Charger Ipod and Iphone
Kensington Car Charger Ipod and Iphone
Offered by total digital stores
Price: 3.95

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This works but it's not powerful enough, 17 Sep 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I previously bought cheap Cigar lighter > USB adaptors from Ebay and my iPhone 3GS didn't work with them, with the phone generating an error message. I should note here also that these cheap adaptors don't charge my Tomtom fast enough to keep it working either, although they charge it slowly when it's switched off.

This Kensington does charge my iPhone and there is no error message. So far so good. But it does charge it quite slowly, however. When I use Navigon on my iPhone, with the phone connected to the Kensington the charge level of the phone slowly decreases. On a recent four-hour journey using Navigon on my phone with the phone display on (Navigon still works with the display off), and keeping the phone connected to the Kensington, the charge level of the phone fell from about 76% to 24%.

So there it is. I'm still looking for a car charger with whoomf. Although a car battery contains enough energy to vapourise an iPhone I'm still looking for a way to charge my phone in the car without problems.


Bird On A Wire (Live In Europe 1972) [DVD] [2010]
Bird On A Wire (Live In Europe 1972) [DVD] [2010]
Dvd ~ Leonard Cohen

34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A deeply revelatory and moving DVD, 14 Sep 2010
I saw Tony Palmer present this film recently, and he talked about it for about an hour. The film was made in the early '70s and, as Cohen wasn't happy with it, Palmer passed it to Cohen to re-edit. The re-edited version was shown a couple of times but was deemed to be pretty much a mess. The film was then lost. Recently, the audio tapes were found, together with editing fragments of film. The film here is a reconstitution by Tony Palmer of the original film, using the fragments. I don't know how close it is to the original edit, as Palmer was working from memory after a thirty-year gap. It was intended by Palmer to be a film about Leonard Cohen; not just a record of a tour. Palmer had complete access to Cohen for the duration of the tour and it is a very interesting and moving record of a significant artist in his prime. The price of the DVD is amply justified by the Jerusalem concert sequence alone, which is amazing and very moving, and it left me emotionally drained. It can be argued that some of Cohen's performances on this DVD are superior to the versions on the records that made his name, and I know there is industry interest in obtaining the rights to the tapes to release a CD.

I agree with the previous reviewer that there is a sequence of footage from the Vietnam war that is gruesome, but it is not inappropriate because it occurs just after Cohen speaks about the political meaning in his work, and this was in the early '70s in the aftermath of the Vietnam war when political currents were running fast and powerfully.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 6, 2011 11:06 AM GMT


Barack Obama: Dreams from My Father (A Story of Race and Inheritance)
Barack Obama: Dreams from My Father (A Story of Race and Inheritance)
by Barack Obama
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Now is the time to read this book, 25 Mar 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is the most moving book I have read in quite a while. It is easy to pick up, interesting and beautifully written. It overwhelms me to think that the person who wrote it is president of the United States, and it fills me with some optimism because it is impossible to believe that the person who wrote it will be blind to the 'real world' problems that engage most people, in the way so many politicials who are drawn from elites seem to be. When you've read this book you feel that Obama is a man who understands, and his heart is in the right place.

Obama has a way of relating events in his past in a simple, uneffected language in a way that can be very moving, without giving any sense of striving for effect.

I don't hesitate to press this book onto friends, and I have had no complaints so far. Clearly, if one is ever going to read this book, now is the time.


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