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Dave Barter
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How Google Works
How Google Works
Price: £12.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A handbook for innovation, 8 Jan. 2015
This review is from: How Google Works (Kindle Edition)
Having worked in two startups and two corporates I wished I'd been given this book as a teenager. The reasoning and logic for the way things are done in Google is clear and impossibly hard to fault. This book has snippets that are so obvious yet revelations at the same time. Take the simple statement about ex-employees becoming part of an alumni. Obvious but brilliant.

The advice on recruitment is outstanding, yet again so simple and obvious.

Many directors will read this and think "it could not possibly happen in our company". The good ones will lean back and think "I wonder why?" and then actively try and change things or at least challenge current practise.

Clearly this book has Google spin entwined within. But it is a great tome for challenging the HiPPOs ....


Probably Nothing: A diary of not-your-average nine months
Probably Nothing: A diary of not-your-average nine months
by Matilda Tristram
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £13.59

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Uncompromising yet hugely entertaining, 23 Aug. 2014
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Many people have written about their struggle with cancer but very few have managed to properly elucidate the landscape of emotion that surrounds them. Matilda's book manages to do this amazingly effectively both in the words and the drawings of the author. Not a single punch is pulled throughout the book as Matlida strafes the reader with her honest opinion and emotions. Sometimes I laughed along with her observations, other times I was pushed back into my seat as her perspective challenged my own preconceived view of the cancer sufferer. She not only paints a landscape of a time of life but also neatly snapshots the observations of an urban dweller. Never again will I pass a pi**ed tramp without imagining what he is thinking of me .. and whether he is right. This book was undoubtedly born from adversity but manages to celebrate the individual and their need for emotion. Matilda got off the cancer sufferer stereotype bus at the first stop and walked instead.


Postgis Cookbook
Postgis Cookbook
by Thomas J. Kraft
Edition: Paperback
Price: £30.06

4.0 out of 5 stars Full of great ideas., 13 May 2014
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This review is from: Postgis Cookbook (Paperback)
As an intermediate/expert Postgis user I found this guide full of interesting approaches to a number of problems I'd attempted to tackle myself. For example, extruding geometries into 3D and processing DEM rasters. The level of explanation is perfect for one who already knows their way around Postgis. The Cookbook is also comprehensive and covers almost all aspects of the Postgis capabilities. I would have liked a bit more breadth in the programming chapter which is mainly python based and could have done without the desktop clients/web chapters which don't really cover Postgis capabilities.

All in all a really useful resource for anyone wondering if "Postgis can do that?" the answer is almost always "yes"


Classic Darksite Diving: Cave Diving Sites of Britain and Europe
Classic Darksite Diving: Cave Diving Sites of Britain and Europe
by Martyn Farr
Edition: Paperback
Price: £27.50

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I can only dream, 13 May 2014
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Many years ago as a wet behind the ears (literally) caver I was in the South Wales Caving Club hut and a friend pointed at this bloke in a wetsuit. "That's Martyn Farr" he said. I'd never heard of him and all around me laughed at my ignorance. Since then I've made it my mission to fill that knowledge gap and was blown away by reading The Darkness Beckons. I've consumed just about every other piece of cave diving literature since including "Classic Darkside Caving". The book has proved inspirational and got me thinking beyond my current UK open water diving experience. It's well written, nicely illustrated and photographed but most importantly, frank. I have no illusions of diving straight into Wookey Hole, but am looking at some proper training and then maybe a few tentative trips into some of Devon's sea caves. Who knows what will happen next. But thanks Martyn for opening my eyes to what is out there.


Great Britain Mountain Biking: The Best Trail Riding in England, Scotland and Wales
Great Britain Mountain Biking: The Best Trail Riding in England, Scotland and Wales
by Tom Fenton
Edition: Paperback
Price: £19.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars That's the next year's cycling sorted then, 13 May 2014
Tom and Andy have produced a stunning guide to mountain biking in the UK with beautiful photography, excellent layout and clear/concise route directions. The use of OS mapping makes it simple to transcribe the routes and each location comes complete with a shed load of useful information for the biker intending to take on a ride.

BUT, the guide is much more than this. Tom and Andy's enthusiasm for the rides is there in spades. The photos make you want to get out there. The text is not the usual, dry "go left go right" you can hear the two guides egging you on to complete the loop. I was supposed to spend the next twelve months on my road bike, but it's gathering dust as I thumb through the guide and make plans.

Bin the trail centre rides. Get the maps out and let Tom and Andy show you where the good stuff is really to be found.


Silicone Bike Bicycle Rear Wheel LED Flash Light Red By Buyincoins
Silicone Bike Bicycle Rear Wheel LED Flash Light Red By Buyincoins
Offered by MrStar
Price: £0.93

1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible, 1 Dec. 2013
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Arrived broken, the battery contacts had become removed from the main circuit board. This is due to the fact that they are held on with a small blob of solder. I suspect the same would happen over time on the bike with a few solid vibrations. As the old adage say "you get what you pay for". Avoid


Beyond Birkie Fever
Beyond Birkie Fever
Price: £2.98

5.0 out of 5 stars My first foray into skiing literature, 9 Nov. 2013
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I came in contact with Walter through a discussion concerning cycling and found out that he had written a book himself. Out of curiosity I purchased a copy even though I am not a cross country skier but was interested to read into the scene. Walt's book was immediately engaging as he covers the background to the "Birkie" and then takes us into his own personal journey through the race. The book is well written, witty and interesting. I know that as I finished it within a week, drawn back into the text each evening by the easy going style. At the end of the book Walter urges the reader to come and try the Birkie for themselves, he returns to the book's title "Birkie Fever" and lays out his call to action with:-

"I think of the fun involved, the festivities, the traveling
and the joy that exists in no other place than at the finish
line of that magical event as thousands of people come
together and celebrate the fact that they've all done
something silly and magnificent and wonderful."

As a cyclist I wholly identify with these words. I'm not sure that Walt has converted me to a love of cross country skiing, equally I've not added the Birkie to my own personal bucket list....yet. But I have finished the book with a real understanding and empathy with those that return to the event year after year. Walter's own obsession comes through in spades. This is a self published offering and as such contains the odd grammatical and literal flaw. But I ceased to care about those as I remained entrapped in Walter's own excitement around the event. Therefore he gets a good solid five stars for an excellent text that will no doubt inspire many to join the legions of those already infected with the Birkie fever. Maybe, just maybe I'll join them as well one year


The Race Against Time
The Race Against Time
Price: £4.68

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A breath of fresh air into pro-cycling biography, 15 Jun. 2013
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It's been a while since I've been properly engaged into any book concerning pro-cyclists. Recent literature has been littered with drug abuse "cash in" stories or utterly tedious autobiographies, playing to a marketable achievement.

Then along comes "The Race Against Time".

Like both Obree and Boardman, I was nervous on the start line as I browsed to page one. These are two iconic cyclists with huge characters to match, offering real potential for an author to play to the reader's inherent perception as to what they are about to consume. The nerves had gone after the first chapter. Edward has clearly taken pains to offer narrative rather than judgement, his book paints the picture with just the right amount of analysis which left me nodding at the end of each chapter. I already knew the individual stories of Obree and Boardman but had never understood how intertwined they were and the potential affect that each had upon the other. Edward clearly lays this out as the narrative flicks between the two making comparison where required. I may be wrong but I detected a clear affection for both Obree and Boardman within his words. For once I appeared to be reading a book that the writer wanted to write, rather than one that his publisher thought could sell.

The writing style is excellent and accessible, the two stories are compelling and well told without the need for hyperbole. I'd urge anyone with the slightest interest in cycling to purchase this book.


Hellingen: A Road Cyclist's Guide to Belgium's Greatest Cycling Climbs
Hellingen: A Road Cyclist's Guide to Belgium's Greatest Cycling Climbs
by Simon Warren
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will lead me badly astray, 15 May 2013
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I had no aspiration to ride in Belgium at all until this little number popped up in my Amazon recommendations. Having bought both of Simon Warren's previous books..how could I resist? But yet again he has created the perfect pocket guide to the gravitational ticklist any cyclist venturing towards Belgium should have. In fact I found this the most readable of his three guides with a decent amount of history thrown in with the climb detail. Simon needs a massive round of applause for taking on this project and us cyclists need to make it all worthwhile by ticking them all off and then waiting with bated breath for his next list (whilst begging for photos of cyclists on the climbs).
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 16, 2013 8:06 AM BST


Man Walks Into A Pub: A Sociable History of Beer (Fully Updated Second Edition)
Man Walks Into A Pub: A Sociable History of Beer (Fully Updated Second Edition)
by Pete Brown
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Engaging, well written and entertaining, 17 Jan. 2013
I was given this book as a Christmas present and dived into it in January, typically my month of abstinence. This was a mistake as the author wrote affectionately and passionately concerning beer. I have yet to find a history book that has acted as a proper page turner..until this book landed in my stocking. Every chapter held my interest and the book had just the right amount of flicking around the place to stall any potential for monotony. Pete Brown's writing is accessible and to the point. I enjoyed the humour and passion within the text and even let him get away with his own personal views that occasionally intrude upon the narrative.

In summary, I left this book with an urge to get down my local and support it. It has refuelled my passion for beer in a good way. Well done to Pete for writing such an interesting and informative book, but next time bring the footnotes into the main text!


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