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Fred Cai (Kent, UK)

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Auraglow BC/B22 Remote Controlled Colour Changing Light Bulb
Auraglow BC/B22 Remote Controlled Colour Changing Light Bulb
Offered by Safield Dist. Ltd
Price: £29.99

14 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't want to be an outlier but this product is below my expectations, 23 Dec 2010
The main issue I have with this product is its low brightness. It's very dim and you would need about 4 of these to get a solid colour to fill your room. I would say only green, blue and white could even be called remotely acceptable. It certainly isn't a 40w equivalent, it's more like a 25W bulb when on white (which is when it is at its brightest). When you switch on any other normal incandescent (40w) or GU10 lights (50w), the light from this bulb is almost not visible and have no effect.

If you want a brighter bulb, go for a higher wattage or get a GU10 colour changing bulb, they "look" slightly brighter since their light is focused on a smaller point.


No Title Available

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but my unit was faulty, 23 Dec 2010
First, just to say that my unit was faulty - the problem was that there was always a green spot in the middle of the light regardless of the colour you set the bulb to (except red). But I can still comment on the quality of the light otherwise.

I am pleased overall with the light. However, the brightness was below average for me. I also bought the ES bayonet socket bulb from Auraglow, so I can say that when they say 40w equivalent, you need to take it with a pinch of salt. I would say it's more like 30w. It does depend on what colour you have the bulb set on. Red always "seems" darker while green always seem brighter (of course white light being the brightest). Even if you have it on white, I would say it's still equal to a 30w.

Apart from that, this is still a good bulb out of the range of GU10 bulbs. I am guessing that other GU10 LED colour changing bulbs are basically the same too. The remotes are all the same, the function are the same, I think the LED might be the same too. So the only thing different is the bulb's casing itself. Finally, just a bit of extra info - the metal part of the bulb does get warm despite the low power consumption, but only warm, not hot.


Kant: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)
Kant: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)
by Roger Scruton
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.39

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not an introduction, more a review of Kant's ideas, 9 Jun 2010
The reason why I am writing this review is because I felt the reviews I read here when deciding on whether to purchase this book does not correspond with my experience of reading the book.

The main problem I have is that it is NOT a good introduction. The other reviewers are obviously people who have some basic (and by no means insignificant) knowledge of Kant already. Either taking a university course on Philosophy, or an avid reader of philosophy for some time already. I only know Kant from the various talk about his theories in other philosophy texts. This book REVIEWS Kant's ideas but does not INTRODUCE them. This is the main reason for the 2 stars - it does not do what it sets out to do.

The author evidently understands Kant well - he understands a very wide range of what Kant says, from his philosophy on reason, ethics, aesthetics and politics, and links them nicely. He has covered the aspects of Kant in such a short space warrants praise. The author does comment in his preface that Kant and this book will take effort (this has being proved true), so people should not expect less. But as an introduction, I am not satisfied. I cannot recommend a better introduction as I am in the process of finding one myself.

People who do already know quite a bit about Kant will be able to put flesh on the framework they have already acquired. Otherwise, readers may find it too concise and lacks detail, argument are not easy to follow in many places. The part where I found I did learn something new and useful was of Kant's synthetic a priori theory and his antinomy theory, but the application to other things such as ethics and aesthetics were, to me, mostly obscure. Often, I do not know if what I read was correct and that's all Kant had to say, or whether I have missed something that would help me be enlightened. I usually suspect the latter.


No God But God: The Origins, Evolution and Future of Islam
No God But God: The Origins, Evolution and Future of Islam
by Reza Aslan
Edition: Paperback

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read and very open minded, 23 May 2010
Now, this is a topic where there seems much debate over which author is bias and which is not. The fact is all authors have a bias. But the key is still providing a good pro and con to the argument an let readers be aware of the other side and make up their own mind. Reza Aslan seems to be a good bridge between the two camps of what can be broadly said of the West and Muslims (In fact his Preface in this book seems to convey this message when he was on a train in Morocco and had to be an arbitrator for a Christian couple and a Muslim train conductor). The reason being he is an Iranian Muslim of American citizenship.

But this would purely be symbolical and does not mean all people of his disposition would be less biased. However, he does pull it off. In what is only 300 pages or so, he managed to squeeze in a lot of history and debates of Islam without falling victim to being too brief. Not only that, he manages to make this read like a novel which really crowns the achievement. Around half the book covers from birth of Muhammad to his death, the second half covers Islam thereafter.

There are literally tons of facts the average person would not know about Islam in this book. Extremely enlightening, a pleasure to read, very open minded. Whether you are looking for your first book on Islam or you are an avid reader on this topic, this is a must on your shelf - the ratings its got here (and on the US Amazon site) is not a skewed reflection whatsoever.


A Brief History of Philosophy: From Socrates to Derrida
A Brief History of Philosophy: From Socrates to Derrida
by Derek Johnston
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.09

2.0 out of 5 stars Too brief and ultimately not enough for a good grasp of the topics, 23 May 2010
I know the title says "Brief", but the author might have been too ambitious. The structure of the book is one that looks at a few of the paradigm-changing philosophers in the Western World. Each section covering the philosopher covers a lot - this is exactly what let it down. More depth and less scope would be much more suited. Instead, what you end up with is often a philosopher's thoughts on a subject or a particular idea given so little space that 4 to 5 lines cover one idea. This naturally means there is little or no room for illustration. The end result is that you might as well not have read anything; just a statement of the existence of the idea. The fact that I found the biography section on each philosopher the most interest says a lot.

There are also part of the book I didn't find too useful, namely the timeline of the philosophers which took much space. There is also the not-too-useful definitions boxes.

Ultimately, I felt I didn't get too much from this book. Much of what was said were statements not expanded on (or not expanded well).


The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
by Alice Schroeder
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Biography I Have Read, 8 May 2010
What is to be said about this book would already have been said by other reviewers, so I will just provide a succinct pros and cons.

Pros:

-Extremely easy to read, flows very well.
-Chapters on Buffett's childhood were surprisingly funny
-Gives a very complete picture of Buffett's life behind the scenes. From what I can see, it is extremely well researched.
-A good moral story with lessons on morality. Allows you to ask yourself: "What would Buffett do here?"

Cons:

-You may not finish if you aren't interested in Warren himself, whether you are interested in Business is largely irrelevant.

Finally, I would like to point out that if you are looking for a investment 101, this wouldn't be a buy. This is meant to be an accessible book. Remember this: Business without emotions, ethics and moral is a bad apple.


Existentialism: A Beginner's Guide (Beginner's Guides (Oneworld))
Existentialism: A Beginner's Guide (Beginner's Guides (Oneworld))
by Thomas E. Wartenberg
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An easy to read intro to the topic., 29 April 2010
This book certainly gave me a good understanding of the topic. It was shaky around chapter 2 when a lot of abstract and somewhat inevitable terminologies were discussed. I can't say I fully grasped all of them absolutely, but this is one of those books where you don't need to - the author does not rely heavily on terminology later on to convey or illustrate his points (bar the odd case or two).

I really gained a lot of different ways to look at life and Existentialism is one of the more applicable and relevant schools of philosophy for the masses. I think Warternberg deserves a big thumbs up for whetting my appetite to pursue some of the original texts by Existential philosophers, and I can do so with more confidence.

Finally, I would like to say that this would be a good intro for philosophy students if they are studying the subject.


Apple Keyboard (MB110B/B)
Apple Keyboard (MB110B/B)
Offered by Office Nerd
Price: £46.08

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like Typing on Air, 6 Nov 2009
In short, this is the best keyboard I have used. I am using it to type now and it is effortless. The two USB sockets are excellently placed and is extremely useful for me. It is only when I used my old keyboards - desktop keyboard and laptop keyboards - that I realised how stiff they were. This apple keyboard is like typing on air.

I cannot comment on the durability of it since I have only had it for a month (of constant use) but I can see why some people may see key falling off. I would rank this on the more delicate end of the keyboard I have used but this does not mean that you need to be extra gentle with it, a normal typer should not experience defects but teens on the other hand...

One more point, this keyboard is not ideal for gaming, it works fine but if you are into your games, I would perhaps go for another keyboard, especially if you are playing FPS or strategy games that need fast button pressing.


The Interesting Bits: The History You Might Have Missed
The Interesting Bits: The History You Might Have Missed
by Justin Pollard
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Treat this book like a fine wine or good chocolate, 6 Nov 2009
"The Interesting Bits..." provide short snippets of stories on parts of history when strange, weird, tragic and sometime hilarious things occurred. For readers that have little or no knowledge of the surrounding event, this is a book that should not be hurried. I will explain why.

I read the snippets contained in the first section or so in straight succession. But from then on, I started doing more research into the character(s) and setting of each story and suddenly the whole experience transformed into something much richer. You need not spend hours reading books on the related topic - a simple visit to Wikipedia is more than enough to really put things into context. You learn so much more this way and personally, through this process, my knowledge of many parts of history has been patched up and solidified.

Treat this book like a fine wine or good chocolate, not some low value fast food that you eat and dispose of. Behind every story is a whole chest of other equally fantastic and fascinating stories awaiting your discovery. This is each story an interesting one - the title did not lie.


Parallel Worlds: The Science of Alternative Universes and Our Future in the Cosmos
Parallel Worlds: The Science of Alternative Universes and Our Future in the Cosmos
by Michio Kaku
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.69

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fuel for your imagination, 6 Nov 2009
An excellent book on popular science. Kaku delves into a fascinating world of theoretical physics that leaves your imagination run wide! This is the world of the truly bizarre and wondrous. He provides such a good and solid introduction on the major aspects of the string theory and the almighty M-theory was well as the good 'ol general relativity without the use of any (much) mathematics. The aim here is to be as non-technical as possible, and in this he succeeds.

This is the rarest of talent, in order to condense the complex into its simplest and most accessible form. So much so that when I finished this book, I am able to form my own opinions on big questions such as the birth of our universe, the invisible world around me and many other things. You too should be well informed by the end to make your choice on which side to take.

I would recommend this to anyone who are interested in this topic. And why shouldn't you be? It is about our ultimate beginning and ultimate end.


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