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S. H. O. Moss "vajrapriya" (Cambridge, UK)
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T-Force
T-Force
Price: 5.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating material, needs editing, 9 May 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: T-Force (Kindle Edition)
The author has certainly done exhaustive research into a fantastically interesting topic, about which I was wholly ignorant. He deserved a lot of credit for that. He bemoans the loss of the archive material (130 tonnes of papers, almost all of which were destroyed), and clearly wants to preserve in maximum detail all the information that he has turned up.

This makes the book a bit of a compromise: is it a popular history book, or a piece of scholarly research? It veers more towards the latter, so readers need to be prepared for that. I skimmed over large tracts of the material, especially the minute detail of the frequent reconfigurations of the task force, and its command chain. I can't see that appealing to many "lay" readers. If it were edited for a more popular audience, I think it could easily halve its length.

Less understandably, it is in need of a good editor simply to remove the frequent repetition of material. Sometimes the same passage will be repeated more than twice, and generally the same details will crop up over and again. So again, you need to be prepared to skim.

It's a shame, because the story is fascinating, and it's still definitely worth reading, but it could be so much more readable. What could have been a gripping book at half its length ended up as a bit of a trudge. Like other reviewers, I would be more interested in more technical detail, but then that might put off others.

I give it 4 stars because of the intrinsic value of the material and the service done by the author to history.


Dhammapada and Sutta Nipata
Dhammapada and Sutta Nipata
Price: 1.31

1.0 out of 5 stars Kindle version not fit for purpose, 19 Dec 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Don't bother downloading this: it's been mangled in the conversion process. There's no contents, so you can't jump to a specific part, but pages & pages of mangled notes at the start. Can't comment on the paper version as I haven't tried to read it.


HAMA UK LTD 149813 Digital Weekly Timer HBT100
HAMA UK LTD 149813 Digital Weekly Timer HBT100

4.0 out of 5 stars Good device: unusual over-ride button, 20 Dec 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this device because it's the only one on the market that I could find that has a button to advance the programme: ie like a standard central heating timer, if the heating's off you press the button to turn it on, and vice versa. At the next programme point, the programme reverts to normal. Other plug in programmers seem to necessitate manually cancelling the override, which so often doesn't happen.

Another couple of points: as you can see, the plug goes in the top, which means it obscures somewhat the buttons and the on/off light.

It runs off batteries: the batteries are not just a backup for when it's unplugged. That's handy if you unplug it frequently and don't have to worry about it losing its programme. But I've no idea how long the batteries will last.

It's simple to programme, and feels well made.


Adobe Premiere Elements 7 (PC)
Adobe Premiere Elements 7 (PC)
Offered by Karen Steward Merchandise
Price: 24.99

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very unstable, don't rely on autosave, 21 Jan 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This crashes every hour or so, and don't rely on autosaves (sometimes they don't). You need to manually save it every 5 mins or so. Don't do anything else while using the program, or walk away to make a cup of tea. I've got a reasonably powerful PC (2GHz Centrino duo core, 2GB Ram running Vista) and aren't even editing HD video.

I chose it after trying it against Sony Vegas Platinum. I'd loved to have gone for Vegas but it wouldn't do one necessary feature (cutting long files into subclips - weird). If you don't need that, I'd recommend Vegas - lovely to use and much more stable.

Premiere is very resource-hungry, and runs much more jumpily than Vegas or MovieMaker. It also drops frames on DV capture where the other 2 were fine (so I use MovieMaker for DV capture).

But, having said all that, it does do the job in its own quirky way, and has quite a lot of powerful features, but they're nowhere near as intuitive as Vegas.

The help is woeful - it justs points you to the online help front page, so it's not context sensitive. The manual is pretty basic. Once again, Vegas scores very highly here.

PS I'm editing my review after a few weeks of using Premiere. It turned out to be unusable when it started crashing when I did a manual save. After losing the same piece of work 3 times, I ditched all the work I've done on this project and bought Vegas Platinum, which I'm very happy with. I'd downgrade my rating for Premiere to 1 star if I could edit it.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 28, 2009 12:54 PM BST


APCOM DIGISCRIBBLE MOBILE DIGITAL PEN
APCOM DIGISCRIBBLE MOBILE DIGITAL PEN

32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Works better than I expected, 19 Jan 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Very clever bit of kit for the price. I wanted it to take notes away from home, and convert to PC files so I don't have so many paper files. Owned it one week now, so first impressions:

PROS:

- the resolution of the digitised writing is very good. Not jagged or pixellated, looks like my writing.

- the handwriting recognition software is pretty good, even with my pretty awful handwriting. A little bit of effort to write evenly & tidily pays off. It's fine with joined up handwriting, and sometimes does an amazing job at recognising scribbles that I can hardly read!

- The pen is pretty comfortable to use.

- Basically does what it says.

CONS:

- The battery in the receiving unit (the lozenge shaped clip) is built-in and rechargeable via the USB connection. I don't know how long it will last yet, but it does mean I can't pack a spare battery if I'm away from the PC for a while. I tried it with my USB mains plugin power supply but it didn't work. It also means the lifetime of the whole device is limited by the lifetime of the battery. I'd prefer a normal rechargeable AAA or suchlike.

- The software integration is a bit clunky. First you import into the proprietry software ("Scribble"), and then if you want to convert to text, export into the supplied OCR ("MyScript Notes"), and if you want it in RTF or TXT format, export again from that.

- MyScript Notes is pretty good at OCR as I said, but it does rely on dictionaries for the recognition. So if your word isn't in the dictionary, even if it is written neatly, it could come out as the usual spellchecker garble. You can train it, though, both with words you use, and autoreplacements if you want to use your own abbreviations.

- The clip that goes on your notepad feels a bit flimsy, and can only clip over a few pages at a time. You obviously need to move it each time you turn over the page. You need to press the button on it for a few seconds to tell it you've done so.

I've not used it as a mouse, or within Vista directly, nor discovered the battery life of the pen batteries (2x hearing aid type) or the clip battery (rechargeable).

The registration key for MyScript Notes is discretely written on the very throwawayable CD sleeve.


A Guide to the Buddhist Path
A Guide to the Buddhist Path
by Sangharakshita
Edition: Paperback

17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, readable and clear overview, 9 Jun 2005
This was one of my first books on Buddhism, and it's still a favourite source for ideas and inspiration.
It's divided into two main sections:
1. The three Jewels of Buddhism: the Buddha, the Dharma (his teaching) and the Sangha (community of Buddhists)
2. The threefold path of practice: ethics, meditation and wisdom.
This structure is pretty all-encompassing, and lets you navigate within it very easily.
Each chapter is very short (usually 2 or 3 pages), and can be dipped into without reading the whole book from page one. The text is actually edited down from Sangharakshita's lectures, and it manages to keep the approachability of the verbal format, whilst distilling out his most important ideas in a bite-sized format.
I heartily recommend this book, especially for newcomers or people who want to put their Buddhist readings within some overall framework. Sangharakshita is especially good at presenting Buddhism in a contemporary idiom without losing any of the rootedness in tradition.


Change Your Mind: Practical Guide to Buddhist Meditation
Change Your Mind: Practical Guide to Buddhist Meditation
by Paramananda
Edition: Paperback

72 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on meditation I have found, 7 July 2000
Paramananda's book is so special because it is suitable for complete beginners to meditation, but it remains an inspiration to me after 8 years of meditating. He manages to blend simple description of technique (which is soon remembered) with subtle pointers and indications which are so easily forgotten as one ploughs on with a meditation practice. I know many people who have read this book, and don't know of a single one who has been disappointed.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 17, 2008 2:46 PM GMT


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