Profile for Chris Of The OT > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Chris Of The OT
Top Reviewer Ranking: 19,458
Helpful Votes: 1111

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Chris Of The OT (South West of England)

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10
pixel
DUNLOP Unisex DEVON (GREEN) WELLY / Mens Womens Boots (9 UK) (Green)
DUNLOP Unisex DEVON (GREEN) WELLY / Mens Womens Boots (9 UK) (Green)
Offered by safety-site
Price: £12.30

1.0 out of 5 stars No good for walking - painfully uncomfortable and not durable enough, 23 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Wellies split in a couple of weeks. As others have said, where the boot bends, just behind the steel toecap, a split developed in both boots. I didn't notice initially because it's dark when I put them on so they must have started to split very quickly.

For walking long distances, they're so uncomfortable as to be painful at times. The sole is great as the metal plate really stops sharp, hard stones hurting the foot but the toecaps just plain hurt - blisters, etc. (Compared to normal lather saftey boots, which grip the foot much better because they're lace-ups, these are horrible to ware.) The size is enormous too - two chunky pairs of socks on my size 9's were not enough to fill them. They might work if you're in a trench digging all day but if you're a walker, they do not work at all. (I switched them for a pair of standard black Dunlops which are much, much better.)

If you're walker, get the ordinary Dunlops as these are uncomforable at best, sometimes just painful - and they split.


Tefal Sensorielle 18 cm Saucepan with Lid
Tefal Sensorielle 18 cm Saucepan with Lid
Offered by SelectiveGoods
Price: £16.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Handles rattle, but otherwise good quality, 30 Sept. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
We paid extra for the 18cm and the 20cm sizes hoping for better quality and a deeper pan (so you can get more in them). The none-stick surface looks tough and dishwasher use has not dulled it so far. However, the handles rattle already. I tightened the screw but it does not stay tight. Since the handles do not wobble too much, and the dog-tooth design fit means they'll never actually rotate, we'll keep them but for the money we hoped they would remain solid.


Wolf Garten GHS10 Washable Pruning Gloves - Large
Wolf Garten GHS10 Washable Pruning Gloves - Large
Price: £21.91

3.0 out of 5 stars Not very good for thorn protection, 30 Sept. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Very comfortable indeed for work gloves. However, the 'large' size is optomistic as I have average sized hands and the fit is snug - perfect for me but if I had large hands, they'd be very, very tight.

As for protection against thorns, they're not up to much. I got some horrible cheap gloves which protected my hands stunningly well from thorns. Once. From about he second time, the leather cracked and they quickly became useless. These gloves are much, much better quality but even small thorns can find a way through. I imagine they stop about 70% of potential penetration, the cheap ones must have got to 95% on first use. (Since the cheap ones are also enormous, piggy-backing them, cheap over the Wolf Gartens, protects very well but is nearly impossibly uncomfortable & clumsy.)

I expected better from these expensive gloves. I'll keep them as I hope they'll last a good long time but they're not really thirty-quid's worth (unless you do not have many brambles, etc. to deal with).


Duronic DM451X3 Solid Single LCD LED Desk Mount Arm Monitor Stand Bracket with Tilt and Swivel (Tilt -90°/+45°|Swivel 180°|Rotate 360°)
Duronic DM451X3 Solid Single LCD LED Desk Mount Arm Monitor Stand Bracket with Tilt and Swivel (Tilt -90°/+45°|Swivel 180°|Rotate 360°)
Offered by DURONIC
Price: £97.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Using a (comparitively) heavy 19" Bush TV as a monitor ..., 30 Sept. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Using a (comparitively) heavy 19" Bush TV as a monitor did not work well. As other reviewers note, the arm 'sags' to one side leaving a portrait orietated monitor at the 1 o'clock position. Also, it can sag forwards, as if nodding to you. It takes a lot of 'balancing' to get it right but if more than one person uses the monitor - unless they are both exactly the same height with exactly the same eye strength - this will be a real pain.

I gave up on the 19" TV and swapped it for an old 17" Belinea monitor, which is a dreadful 4:3 ratio (so cannot read A4 documents full size when it's set vertically) but since it's lighter, the arm works nearly perfectly. (The screw on the clamp protrudes further than the swivel plate so will damage the under-side of desks, or whatever. This is caused when the washer bows when (over?) tightened.) I have no idea how they claim it would hold a 27" monitor - but others seem to have got it working okay.

So, having gone for the more expensive Duronic DM451X3 'solid' model, I am disapointed. But it is otherwise reasonable quality. I might be tempted with cheaper make next time...


Western Digital AV 3.5 inch 250GB 7200RPM Internal SATA Hard Drive
Western Digital AV 3.5 inch 250GB 7200RPM Internal SATA Hard Drive

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good little drive but not the warranty I'd expected, 18 July 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I wanted a very small capacity system HD for our server - by default (easiest!) WHS 2011 requires a minimum 160GB (though you can tweak it).

I also wanted a brand new drive with 3 or 5-year warranty as system drive failure is a real pain. Western Digital offer 3-year on their AV drives.

However, on receipt I noticed that the manufacture date for this drive is 28th Jan. 2009 - over 4½ years before purchase. It will not register on the WD site and shows as 'Out of Limited Warranty'. The anti-static bag is still sealed but I'm not confident it's a pukka WD-sealed bag - although the drive does look new.

I note the invoice says 'On products where no direct manufacturers service exists, Digital Components Ltd will offer 12 month Return To Base warranty...' I checked the DCLstore website (which is very good!) and it reiterates this guarantee.

I had thought I'd be getting a solid 3-year guarantee so was disappointed. I'll keep the drive as it's just what I need. A notation on the Amazon listing is required for full honesty, although it does not seem like any deception was intended here. Still, until then, two stars are deducted as the standard WD 3-year guarantee was not repudiated.


Ornami Glamour 9ct Yellow Gold Ladies' Plain Cross 46cm Curb
Ornami Glamour 9ct Yellow Gold Ladies' Plain Cross 46cm Curb

5.0 out of 5 stars Much nicer that the picture suggests, 8 Jun. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this for my wife's 50th birthday present. The chain is very light but not too flimsy to wear and the cross is small but still comparitively substantial. I bought this over the better selling (and cheaper) CX020 because the weight of this one is slightly higher: 2.7g, compared to 2.2g.

Unfortunately, my wife was worried about the cost so I had to send it back. Why still offer it 5 stars, you ask? First, because there was nothing wrong with the jewellery which offered slightly more gold than the alternative and second because Amazon's supplier, Yodel, handled the return quickly and without fuss. No grounds for complaint at all (£6 return carriage fee was quite reasonable).

A shame we couldn't keep it but it's still a nice enough cross & chain.


Colossians, Philemon: 44 (Word Biblical Commentary)
Colossians, Philemon: 44 (Word Biblical Commentary)
by Peter T. O'Brien
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £29.99

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent commentary with lots of NT Greek textual investigation, 27 Jan. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
`Word Bible Commentary: Colossians, Philemon' by Peter O'Brien is part of the hugely influential and impressive Word Bible Commentary (WBC) series. I got this because I've been studying a correspondence course recommending it, and because it was available cheaply second-hand!

Amazon's usually excellent `Look Inside!' feature here corresponds, at the time of writing, to the WBC on Corinthians, not Colossians/Philemon but I'll post a notification and I'm sure Amazon will sort it soon enough. In the meantime, the standard WBC format can at least be observed - including the massive `Abbreviations' section and even the more enormous `Introduction' which contains some very informative background information of the church at Colossae (and the surrounding area) and on the `Colossian Hersey'.

In the commentary proper, you are first offered an extensive `Bibliography' before the author's translation of each section. A short `Note' section usually follows offering brief translational explanations or reasons for complications and discrepancies, etc.

The `Form/Structure/Setting' section offers, perhaps, a slightly more formal theological exposition of the text where the `Comment' section offers a slightly more devotional style commentary - though there is such an overlap here it isn't necessarily helpful to differentiate so precisely. Each section ends with an `Explanation' where the whole is concluded.

I got O'Brien's WBC commentary because I could no longer avoid doing the NT Greek module for the course I'm studying. The WBC series focuses on often quite technical Greek (for the NT, Hebrew for the OT) interpretation but the commentary still offers great benefit to the non-Greek/Hebrew student as all the ancient language malarkey is explained plenty well enough.

I also bought the `NIGTC: The Epistles to the Colossians and to Philemon' by James D. G. Dunn - for the same reasons - though it was still much more expensive. In comparing the two I find two criticisms are easy to offer O'Brien's WBC volume:

First, my 1982 edition is not nearly so well presented as the NIGTC volume: specifically, the paper is cheaper (softer & yellower) which makes for less contrast with the text; and the printing itself is a much `thicker', bolder typeface, giving everything an almost smudged appearance. This may sound like nit-picking but I've never studied a foreign language seriously and the NT Greek characters are so alien to me that I need them to be as clear and consistent as possible. The WBC volume does not do so well here.

Second, the WBC series avoids using footnotes by incorporating the extra information within brackets which can often spread over many lines. I imagine this was done to try and aid continuity. However, the reverse results: it's often horribly difficult to find where the sentence continues when it's broken by brackets. I find it much more comfortable reading pages that have footnotes which I can easily ignore if I want to.

That said, I still recommend O'Brien's WBC volume (and the whole series) because they all deal with the Greek as gently as possible - to my layman's understanding. I am finding studying NT Greek horribly difficult, but I take encouragement from fellow reviewer Gontroppo who says that `a couple of years studying the language [the NT] is written in will be enlightening'. I hope so - but right now it's nearly killing me!

Maybe 3½ stars because of the presentation?


Microsoft Windows Home Server Unleashed
Microsoft Windows Home Server Unleashed
by Paul McFedries
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars WHS needs an instruction book and this is plenty good enough, 26 Jan. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Paul McFedries' `Microsoft Windows Home Server Unleashed' is the first SAMS user-guide type publication I've purchased. I've previously bought titles like 'Windows Vista Inside Out' from MS Press, or 'Using Microsoft Outlook 2003' from Que Publishing.

It comes as no surprise that this SAMS `Unleashed' offering is very much of the same ilk as the `Inside Out' & `Using...' titles, if not as `pretty' (nor quite as large) as my 'Inside Outs' - though still quite hefty & excellently laid out.

Amazon's hugely useful `Look Inside!' feature reveals how it is divided up; five large parts deal with everything from initial set-up to `Advanced Tools' & appendices.

I spent some considerable time trying to sort out which WHS book to get. I eventually decided to wait a few months because (at the time) none of the current publications covered Power Pack 2 or above: when I got this, it included Power Pact 3 updates, so I was chuffed with that. I began with 'WHS for Dummies', which was helpful with initial set-up but, as is usual for the Dummies series, while it was very easy to follow, it just didn't go anywhere near far enough.

I also considered titles like 'WHS User Guide' from Expert's Voice but despite some positive, if superficial, reviews, at just 334 pages, I plumped for this `Unleashed' 750+ page offering.

`WHS Unleashed' a very useful publication, very well laid-out, with McFedries' writing style managing to convey enthusiasm and authority without being tediously academic: he's informal and accessible but treats his readers like grown-ups (not experts).

I got WHS specifically for automated backups. It's a lot of cash to shell out for just that, with a (second-hand) PC and everything, but well worth it. WHS Unleashed will explain the whole process - even how that is achieved within the server OS - as well as describe some rather more technical `under the bonnet' aspects (Command Line and Power Tools, etc.). However, I've never needed any of them; I think the stability of WHS is secured by a relative lack of customisation.

Like every other technical computer help book I've purchased, when I do have a problem 'WHS Unleashed' doesn't seem to go quite far enough into explaining how I should solve it: For instance, connection to server failures. Only the MS internet user-groups helped in the end.

WHS Unleashed will also happily explain how WHS can do much more than just backups & command line jiggery-pokery though. However, other potentially useful stuff - like streaming video, etc. - is so pernickety it becomes pointlessly complicated. (Not necessarily WHS's fault, but when MS products like the Xbox 360 can't deal with `ordinary' Windows files, you know your on a hiding to nothing.)

In the end, if you get WHS (a hugely beneficial purchase, well worth the outlay), you'll have to get some sort of instruction book: the Dummies book is cheap and very easy to understand but I'd recommend this one any day. It's every bit as good as Que or MS offerings but, ultimately, much more useful than the Dummies title.


Bernie: The Fully Authorised Biography of Bernie Ecclestone
Bernie: The Fully Authorised Biography of Bernie Ecclestone
by Susan Watkins
Edition: Hardcover

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating: a very well written and presented title though the subject himself is surprisingly unpleasant, 26 Jan. 2011
`Bernie, The Biography of Bernie Ecclestone', is written by Susan Watkins who is married to Professor Sid Watkins (ex-F1 medical guru). This was the only Ecclestone biography that I could find and it's been on my Wish List for years, literally.

This title has had more than one rescinded publication date and it has also had more than one cover photo. The actual published cover photo is the `Smilie Bernie' version, which seems like the least appropriate but, I imagine, the one he insisted upon. (This, unpublished `Cold, Lonely, Windy Bernie' seems much more suitable.)

Watkins is an accomplished biographer and her writing style is informal, extremely well informed (as you'd expect), bright and intelligent. She does well in explaining the bizarrely complicated business interests of Ecclestone and succeeds in telling a deep, almost bewilderingly multi-facetted story while managing to maintaining a sense of journey: you do still want to find out `what happens next'.

The author's style is not without it's irritating girly quirks though: `[Bernie's] sense of fun is always... just below the surface, fluttering like a jar-full of butterflies'. Fortunately, these are very few and I only noticed two or three, appearing in the first half of the book. I also didn't like the whole attempt at making Ecclestone seem `cuddly': like many super-rich, super-successful people that I've read about, he seems perfectly happy to use people mercilessly and nothing, but nothing, is as important as making money. (Despite Watkins protestations that relationships are the most important thing to Ecclestone, wives, children, business colleagues and partners all fall by the wayside where his companies, and he energies to sustain them, never does - not under any circumstance whatsoever.)

One or two sections of the book made me so angry that I nearly stopped reading. The most offensive of these is Chapter 14 `Smoke Alarm', dealing with the previous tobacco sponsorship of Formula 1. We all remember Ecclestone's remarkable £1 million donation to the Labour Party (since returned) and the subsequent `permanent exemption' of Formula 1 from the tobacco advertising ban. Watkins describes the problem as all the (then Labour) government (and Tony Blair's) fault: the PM's advisers were in `a tizzy' and `disingenuous': `panic reigned in the Labour Party.' And, quoting Ecclestone, `It was third-rate behaviour by a bunch of clowns'. Ecclestone, on the other hand, was just `showing [his] approval for the [Labour] party's decision not to put up income taxes at the top rate'.

The bit that nearly stopped me reading was the re-iteration of `the lack of evidence proving tobacco sponsorship of Formula 1 caused people to start smoking', in spite of the fact that `[tobacco] companies would move their investment to circuits in Asia, the Pacific and South America... where... they wished to increase their sales.'

This, along with the cover photo changes noted above, illustrate the most unpalatable aspect of this book - and, indeed, why it has taken years to come to publication: Susan Watkins was apparently ready to publish by 2005 but her `contract with Bernie' prevented it. This tight, but, I imagine very necessary, contract has resulted in a portrait of Bernie Ecclestone as a surprisingly warm and fluffy person, but which also acknowledges that Ecclestone is hard as flint (particularly in business): this dichotomy simply does not sit well as you read.

In the end, Susan Watkins writes a very good biography. However, I ended up finding the book a bit of a slog at times. This was not due to any literary deficiencies but, bizarrely, because I found I disliked Mr Ecclestone so much. I've never had this before - and I've read stuff on some of histories' worst. I'm a keen fan of Formula 1 and I've enjoyed several books about it (including Prof. Sid's). `Mansell' is the best by a vast margin. Watkins' `Bernie' describes or alludes to most of Formula 1's behind the scenes shenanigans and so is a fascinating eye-opener in many respects - including the vastly complicated Silverstone scenarios. But Bernie Ecclestone is revealed as someone who would, and has, sacrificed anything and anyone for his businesses. For me, this truth darkened an interesting tale so much that, at times, it made it difficult to read. Still, a must have purchase for Formula 1 (and big business) fans.


Bernie: The Biography of Bernie Ecclestone
Bernie: The Biography of Bernie Ecclestone
by Susan Watkins
Edition: Hardcover

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating: a very well written and presented title though the subject himself seems surprisingly unpleasant (to me), 26 Jan. 2011
`Bernie, The Biography of Bernie Ecclestone', is written by Susan Watkins who is married to Professor Sid Watkins (ex-F1 medical guru). This was the only Ecclestone biography that I could find and it's been on my Wish List for years, literally.

This title has had more than one rescinded publication date and it has also had more than one cover photo. The present `Smilie Bernie' seems like the least appropriate but, I imagine, the one he insisted upon. (If the link still works, the previous `Cold, Lonely, Windy Bernie' seems much more suitable.)

Watkins is an accomplished biographer and her writing style is informal, extremely well informed (as you'd expect), bright and intelligent. She does well in explaining the bizarrely complicated business interests of Ecclestone and succeeds in telling a deep, almost bewilderingly multi-facetted story while managing to maintaining a sense of journey: you really do want to find out `what happens next'.

The author's style is not without it's irritating girly quirks though: `[Bernie's] sense of fun is always... just below the surface, fluttering like a jar-full of butterflies'. Fortunately, I only noticed two or three, appearing in the first half of the book. I also didn't like the whole attempt at making Ecclestone seem `cuddly': like many super-rich, super-successful people that I've read about, he seems perfectly happy to use people mercilessly and nothing, but nothing, is as important as making money. (Despite Watkins protestations that relationships are the most important thing to Ecclestone, wives, children, business colleagues and partners all fall by the wayside where his companies, and his energies to sustain them, never does - not under any circumstance whatsoever.)

One or two sections of the book made me so angry that I nearly stopped reading. The most offensive of these is Chapter 14 `Smoke Alarm', dealing with the previous tobacco sponsorship of Formula 1. We all remember Ecclestone's remarkable £1 million donation to the Labour Party (since returned) and the subsequent `permanent exemption' of Formula 1 from the tobacco advertising ban. Watkins describes the problem as all the (then Labour) government (and Tony Blair's) fault: the PM's advisers were in `a tizzy' and `disingenuous': `panic reigned in the Labour Party.' And, quoting Ecclestone, `It was third-rate behaviour by a bunch of clowns'. Ecclestone, on the other hand, was just `showing [his] approval for the [Labour] party's decision not to put up income taxes at the top rate'.

The bit that nearly stopped me reading was the re-iteration of `the lack of evidence proving tobacco sponsorship of Formula 1 caused people to start smoking', in spite of the fact that `[tobacco] companies would move their investment to circuits in Asia, the Pacific and South America... where... they wished to increase their sales.'

This, along with the cover photo changes noted above, illustrate the most unpalatable aspect of this book - and, indeed, why it has taken years to come to publication: Susan Watkins was apparently ready to publish by 2005 but her `contract with Bernie' prevented it. This tight, but, I imagine very necessary, contract has resulted in a portrait of Bernie Ecclestone as a surprisingly warm and fluffy person, but which also acknowledges that Ecclestone is hard as flint (particularly in business): this dichotomy simply does not sit well as you read.

In the end, Susan Watkins writes a very good biography. However, I ended up finding the book a bit of a slog at times. This was not due to any literary deficiencies but, bizarrely, because I found I disliked Mr Ecclestone so much. I've never had this before - and I've read stuff on some of history's worst. I'm a keen fan of Formula 1 and I've enjoyed several books about it (including Prof. Sid's). `Mansell' is the best by a vast margin, though Murray Walker's autobiography is very enjoyable too. Watkins' `Bernie' describes or alludes to most of Formula 1's behind the scenes shenanigans and so is a fascinating eye-opener in many respects - including the vastly complicated Silverstone scenarios. But Bernie Ecclestone is revealed as someone who would, and has, sacrificed anything and anyone for his businesses. For me, this truth darkened an interesting tale so much that, at times, it made it difficult to read. Still, a must have purchase for Formula 1 (and big business) fans.


Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10