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The Happy Space Invader

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Esbjorn Svensson Trio: E.S.T. Songbook
Esbjorn Svensson Trio: E.S.T. Songbook
by Esbjorn Svensson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £16.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Not for beginners, 23 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It's rarely a note for note transcription of what is played on the album, but this is normal for Jazz. However, I think this means the book would not really help beginners. If you're a seasoned Jazz pianist, and used to the format Jazz standards are delivered, then you will love it.


Mpow® 6.6Amps 33W Dual USB Port Car Charger for Apple and Android Devices, iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 5 5S 5c 4 4S; Samsung Galaxy S4 S3, Galaxy Note 3 2; iPad Air 5 4 mini; iPod; Nexus 4; LG G2; Motorola and HTC One and More
Mpow® 6.6Amps 33W Dual USB Port Car Charger for Apple and Android Devices, iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 5 5S 5c 4 4S; Samsung Galaxy S4 S3, Galaxy Note 3 2; iPad Air 5 4 mini; iPod; Nexus 4; LG G2; Motorola and HTC One and More

4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent compact solution for charging several devices in the car., 23 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Blue LED is annoying when driving at night though. Why does it have to be so bright?


Rodrigo Y Gabriela (Tab) Gtr
Rodrigo Y Gabriela (Tab) Gtr
by Various
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.86

4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and nearly perfect transcription., 23 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The score is spot on, but the tablature for Rodrigo's part is quite wrong in a few places (or at least not how he plays the pieces live). Gabriela's parts are transcribed as well as is practical for her flamenco-isn style, but to be honest, you're better off scouring YouTube for video tutorials (including some given by Gabriela herself) if you're new to that way of playing.

Additionally, all of this is fairly advanced - not for beginners!


Digital Additions® UK Mains Power Adapter Charger for Sony Playstation PSP Vita PS Vita
Digital Additions® UK Mains Power Adapter Charger for Sony Playstation PSP Vita PS Vita
Offered by Digital Additions Ltd
Price: £8.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Good points - small and compact, 23 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Good points - small and compact, so great for travelling.

Bad points - an incredibly (and unnecessarily) bright green LED light... so not great for use for bedside charging! Solution - back electrical tape, optionally with a tiny pin prick in, so you can see the LED is on without it lighting up the entire room.


Twelve South HiRise Charging Stand for Apple Watch - Black
Twelve South HiRise Charging Stand for Apple Watch - Black
Price: £35.65

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars it's easy to put the charging head back into place if ..., 23 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Also, rather fiddly to put together - not only is there a tiny and very shallow screw, but it requires an allen key. The allen key supplied is L-shaped, and the screw is right next to the tall edge, so you can't continually turn the allen key - you have to turn a bit, remove and turn again... and because the screw is so shallow, it inevitably doesn't bite, and comes out each time. Grrr! If you have a screwdriver with a hex-shaped end, then you'll find it massively easier. Why isn't a straight allen key included?

My only other complaint is that nothing really holds the charge head in place, so it can dislodge to the extent that it no longer makes contact with the back of your Apple Watch, and doesn't charge. Make sure you hear the Watch chime to indicate a charging connection, every time you put your Watch on the stand. To be fair, it's easy to put the charging head back into place if you notice it's moved. It would have been relatively easy to line the inside of the hole with some rubberised material to avoid the charge head slipping out.

However, once you do get this thing together, and take into account the second point, it looks great, and does the job perfectly. Still, two stars off for annoyances that could have been avoided.

NOTE: When Apple Watch OS v2 is released this Autumn, you will be able to place your Watch on it's side in a new "nightstand mode". This lets the display stay on while it's charging, so long as the watch face is on its side. If you think you may take advantage of that feature, then avoid this product, as it can only hold the watch vertically, which means the "nightstand mode" will not activate.


TP-LINK TL-PA8010PKIT AV1200 Gigabit Passthrough Powerline Adapter Starter Kit (1200 Mbps, Multiple HD Streams and No Configuration Required) - 2 Units Pack
TP-LINK TL-PA8010PKIT AV1200 Gigabit Passthrough Powerline Adapter Starter Kit (1200 Mbps, Multiple HD Streams and No Configuration Required) - 2 Units Pack
Price: £74.98

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Unreliable devices, Windows-only management utility, can be insecure., 30 Jun. 2015
I've tried 4 generations of TP-Link Powerline adaptors now, and none of them have performed adequately. The biggest problem is that the devices themselves are often very unpredictable - in the management utility.

While trying to secure them, one reported that the password was wrong, even though I copied it from the label on the device. So I plugged the computer directly into that device and found the same password reported... but now another device on the network reports the password (which was previously accepted) is wrong!

Several resets of all devices later and one device now consistently reports the wrong model number, and will not join the network. Is it broken? Who can tell... as there's no physical way to reset this device; you can only restore it to factory settings from the Windows-only management utility (which I have to run via Parallels desktop).

Some things to bear in mind before using this product:

The quoted speed is only a theoretical maximum across the chipset. There are many things in a home network that can (and will) attenuate the signal, such as consumer units and junction boxes. I live in a modern house that has recently been rewired. I get around 200Mbps between rooms on the same floor, but only 60Mbps

The quoted speeds are in bits, not bytes (which is what the file sizes on your operating system are displayed in). Whatever speed you're getting, divide that by 8 to see how much file data you can transfer per second.

These devices can only be managed via a Windows-only utility. If you don't run Windows, then there is no easy way to factory reset these devices in the event that you run into problems. You can run it via Windows Parallels or VMWare, so long as your virtual network device is bridged from your physical ethernet device. Of course, this means buying a copy of Windows, just to run this one application :-(

Finally, and most importantly: unless you live in an extremely remote area, with no other houses nearby, it is essential to secure these devices! I set my 4 devices up in their default mode, and before I'd had a chance to secure them, my network scanner reported a neighbour's computer accidentally acquiring an IP address on my network! Use these devices unsecured at your peril.
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 26, 2015 3:27 PM BST


Nanoblock Drum Set
Nanoblock Drum Set
Price: £4.81

4.0 out of 5 stars I consider this a nice display item though, 9 Jun. 2015
This review is from: Nanoblock Drum Set (Toy)
These Nanoblock kits are lovely to look at, but be warned: the resulting model is extremely fragile compared to Lego models. The blocks do not lock together as snugly, and the designs do not help either (frequently missed opportunities for overlapping bricks, many brick precariously connected).

If you're "fat of finger", you will find tweezers indispensable, particularly for pushing some of the pieces into place.

I consider this a nice display item though, and good fun to build if you have the patience (and the eyesight).


Tru Virtu Cash & Cards Aluminium Wallet - Black Magic
Tru Virtu Cash & Cards Aluminium Wallet - Black Magic
Offered by Europens
Price: £28.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Catches broke; doesn't hold £sterling notes, 12 April 2015
Pros:
It looks nice from the outside.
It is apparently RFID proof (so your contactless cards can't be scanned)

Cons:
Doesn't hold UK notes without folding them many times (it will only hold 2 x £20).
Coin section is too narrow for £1 coins, so they get stuck
Card holder requires you tip all the cards out to access any single card
Cheap plastic catches are prone to breaking, making the wallet completely insecure
Very thick, and creates a pronounced bulge in any clothing (they should have made it larger, but flatter!)


Tile for iOS and Android - Bluetooth Tracker For Finding Anything and Everything [Unit Only, No Packaging]
Tile for iOS and Android - Bluetooth Tracker For Finding Anything and Everything [Unit Only, No Packaging]

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Depends entirely on becoming unrealistically popular. Never going to happen., 24 Mar. 2015
"While Tile does NOT have GPS real-time location information, the app does automatically record the last place your phone saw your Tile. Because if you have to retrace your steps, it's good to know where to start looking."

True story: when I first got this, I temporarily lost my house keys that had a tile attached. I used the app that helpfully gave the address as "1 Canada Square" ... which is a 50 storey building. Fortunately, I work in that building and was therefore able to isolate the location down to the 2 floors I work on, but tracking it down was a nightmare, as I was worried about what a colleague might do to the keys to stop the annoying tune from playing!

Anyway, read the other 2 star reviews here, because they corroborate some of the flaws I'm going to point out here:

1. The feeble noise this thing emits is easily muffled once it's inside a handbag, rucksack, some coat pockets and... between two cushions of your sofa.

2. It's too thick to stick to small devices like a remote control without compromising the comfort of holding that device.

3. The crowd-sourced location is unlikely to take off outside the USA for several reasons:

i) The company that makes Tile does not ship outside the USA.
ii) The tags are $20 each, and the battery only lasts a year, so you have to keep buying new ones (no indication as to when the battery will die though)
iii) There are other far cheaper Bluetooth tags that most people will opt for, as they better perform the simple task of tracking something down in your own house.
iv) even if Tile managed to file an injunction preventing anyone else from selling anything at all similar... or licensed their technology so that more vendors' Bluetooth tags would work with their smartphone apps... the Maths still doesn't work out... even in densely populated areas. Bluetooth connections from mobile phones are notoriously patchy, and you could in fact walk straight past someone else's Tiles and it might fail to register, and in fact....
v) I tried this with a college at work who bought his tags from the Kickstarter at the same I did. We set our tags into "lost mode" and then saw if the app picked up each other's tags. My app picked his tag up only when I got within 2 feet of it (it was in his locker) and his did not pick up my tag until I held it against his phone and waited 5 minutes.

So, like so many Kickstarters: great idea... utterly flawed implementation.


Anker® [3-Pack] Matte High Response Screen Protector for iPhone 6 (4.7 inch), Anti-Glare & Anti-Fingerprint [Lifetime Warranty]
Anker® [3-Pack] Matte High Response Screen Protector for iPhone 6 (4.7 inch), Anti-Glare & Anti-Fingerprint [Lifetime Warranty]
Offered by AnkerDirect

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great quality matte screen, and the installation aids have been upgraded!, 5 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
First thing to note - the iPhone 6's glass top curves over all four edges to meet the aluminium back. This design means that it's impossible for a tough plastic adhesive screen protector to cover the entire glass. All that's possible is for the screen protector to stick to the flat area. I see here several complaints about this - I really don't see what Anker could have done differently. Additionally, if you're going to the trouble of protecting the screen, you should certainly be protecting the back of the iPhone 6, which is far more vulnerable to scratches than the ion-strengthened glass on the front. Most of the back protectors wrap round pretty much to where the Anker protector ends. Problem solved.

With that out of the way, this is Anker's finest product. The screen is of the usual outstanding quality I have come to expect from Anker - I got the matte option, and there is as little visible graininess to the screen image as is possible, given that a matte protector does have to refract some light!

But what really makes this one stand out is the tools provided to assist installation - they have all been upgraded.

The "bubble scraper" is no longer made of credit card plastic (which could sometimes damage the protector screen under pressure). Now it's made of a kind of polystyrene (I'm guessing); it's very strong, but soft on the outside and far less likely to scratch.

The cloth provided is of far superior quality to previous kits I've bought from them; one side is suede-like and gives much more friction, allowing easy removal of greasy fingerprints and dust.

Two stickers are now provided - one for removing dust specks, and a slightly stronger one for assisting in removing the screen if it needs repositioning - a nice touch and I ended up using it.

Here's hoping Anker now provide these upgraded installation aids in their other screen protector products, such as the iPad Mini protector (they currently don't).


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