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Profile for K. Briggs > Reviews


K. Briggs' Profile

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Reviews Written by
K. Briggs "yeshe-lhamo" RSS Feed (Charlottesville, VA United States)

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Canon PowerShot S100 12.1 MP Digital Camera with 5x Wide-Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Black) (OLD MODEL)
Canon PowerShot S100 12.1 MP Digital Camera with 5x Wide-Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Black) (OLD MODEL)
Price: $329.00
25 used & new from $190.00

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as Cannon S90, September 30, 2013
When I selected a digital camera, I wanted a sophisticated point and shoot with fast focus, good macro and some solid presets (like indoor light, action shot, etc). I went with the S90 and loved that model, sadly it was misplaced it at a party. Since the S90 model had by then gone off the market, I went with the S100.

I have not been satisfied with this the S100. In fact, it is probably the *least satisfying digital camera* I have owned (have had Kodak (great), Sony (solid), Nikon (slow), and Cannon S90 (great)).


1. Broke the first memory card I used in it (sidebar: I was taking a photo of this weird Star Trek dude in Maryland at the time. Maybe it was the sheer force of dorkiness that caused the memory card to expire).
2. Has GPS turned on by default - you have to opt out
3. Macro setting *never worked* despite a few hours of fiddling with every setting. It refused to focus.
4. Mode selection system is cumbersome. After I finally figured it out, it still took forever to configure scene mode and shot selection for each pic.
5. Battery is different size than S90!!! Yep, toss that extra $60 charger I bought for the S90.
6. Camera gave up the ghost with a "lens error"

Cannon has offered to repair this lackluster performer, or else charge me over $200 for its refurbished successor, the S110.

I will probably have it repaired, then sell it. And then, I am going to buy a used S90!!

Macromedia Dreamweaver MX 2004 with ASP, ColdFusion, and PHP: Training from the Source
Macromedia Dreamweaver MX 2004 with ASP, ColdFusion, and PHP: Training from the Source
by Jeffrey Bardzell
Edition: Paperback
34 used & new from $0.66

2 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mac Users - Read this, March 30, 2004
This review is directed to those who are newcomers to dynamic websites/and or mac users. Get Joe Kissel's book, 50 techniques for the Mac. It shows you how to turn on PHP. Skip the unix stuff written for the mac. Unless you already know unix, it is a huge project to do so.

Macromedia Flash MX 2004: Training from the Source
Macromedia Flash MX 2004: Training from the Source
by Jen DeHaan
Edition: Paperback
61 used & new from $0.01

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars My Flash Schtick, March 30, 2004
It is hard for me to criticize this book, because the example project is practical and interesting. The directions are pretty straightfoward, giving users a good command of working with 1. layers and 2. media assets like video clips and graphics.
However, this book is not the best for complete Flash beginners for several reasons. First, for complete beginners the Flash work environment is very complicated. My experience with Dreamweaver, Photoshop and HTML carried over only marginally to Flash. The book takes a very plodding approach to acquainting new users to how Flash "works." 120 pages into the book, I felt like I still had no clue WHY the directions were telling me to do certain things. For example, why do I have to put labels on the timeline? Why do I have to switch between different editing modes? etc.
The book is not very well edited, and the instructions themselves could be clearer. For example, the paraphrased step and the instructions that follow it often muddle the point of what you are doing.
For a better understanding of the "what's" and "why's" of Flash, I reccomend the Sam's Teach Yourself book on the subject. It is a better global view of the Flash authoring environment so that beginners can start projects with a better understanding of what you can accheive with Flash. Reviewers seem to enjoy it a lot. Following a better introduction to Flash, I will return to deHaan's book and will likely get more out of it.

Enhancing Creativity (Relaxing music plus subliminal affirmations)
Enhancing Creativity (Relaxing music plus subliminal affirmations)
Price: $12.99
25 used & new from $3.98

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very Pretty, Somewhat effective, April 25, 2003
This music is really beautiful and relaxing. Having said that, I would suggest that this not be your FIRST step into enhancing your creativity. Read a book such as Stephen Nachmanovitch's "Free Play" or Julia Cameron's "The Artist's Way" if you want to learn more about what it means to know yourself through art.
Those already following the path could take or leave this CD. The music is soothing and quite pretty. As for the messages, I believe that, for average people, subliminal suggestion is most effective under the following conditions:
1. Early Morning
2. After Meditation
3. While falling asleep.
4. When Listened to every day, preferable at the same time
5. When listened to in conjunction with conscious affirmation.
If followed in this way, it is likely that you will see some results. Whether these results are any better than conscious affirmation or simply intending creativity is hard to say. I leave it up to you.

The Fire from Within
The Fire from Within
by Carlos Castaneda
Edition: Paperback
Price: $10.81
104 used & new from $1.50

41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Halographic Universe, April 25, 2003
This review is from: The Fire from Within (Paperback)
This is my favorite Castanenda book, and I have read almost all of them. Please skip my following justification for these books if you are already a fan: Regardless of how one feels about the New Age movement, it is clear that, as Einstein observed, "Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods." Reading Castaneda gave me an appreciation for people who take seriously the complexities of the mind, the universe and their infinite dance. Castaneda, in this book, seems ready to acknowledge that the fact of other ways of perceiving the world seems to mean that there are rational and non-rational ways which intertwine with eachother.
Having said that, Castaneda lovers will enjoy the many characters, stories and esoteric teachings that really coalesce in this book unlike in any other. We finally understand who La Catalina really is; we go deeper into the teachings on the Eagle; we get to here more about the interplay between Don Juan and Don Genaro, and we see Carlos opening up a bit too. It was not until I read this book that I realized how hard it was for Carlos to lose his "self-importance," and what a difficult task this is. Enjoy.

The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression
The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression
by Andrew Solomon
Edition: Paperback
293 used & new from $0.01

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What does it mean to treat depression?, March 21, 2003
There is no getting around the fact that this is a deep, eloquent meditation on depression in our society. ... Solomon's major breakdown came after the death of his mother. His second came after a traumatic bodily injury. These circumstances, first of all, are somewhat beyond a person's control. Implying that taking "responsiblity" means not caring about a loved one's death seems to me rediculous. Furthermore, spending thousands of dollars on professional help seems like you are acknowledging a problem and you want to solve it.
Having said that, I agree that this book is not perfect. It subscribes to a kind of blind technological utopianism, and mythologizing. Solomon is the type who, for better or worse, views interfering with nature as something fundamental to human beings. As such, digging a hole in the ground and inserting mouse genes into strawberries are all part of human creativity and art. This strikes me as an extreme position, "man versus nature," but this issue requires another book to address it. Solomon takes this position throughout the book, and it is a bit annoying. ...
As a student of politics, Solomon's conservative and well-contextualized statistics on depression are staggering to me. In a way, he actually returns to the stoicism (which the reviewer chided him for lacking) by stressing how depression and mental suffering is the root of so many other diseases. For example, depression has doubled in America since WWII. It is becoming the disease of the 21st century. It is not depressing itself, and is surprisingly educating.
His attention to alternative treatments is a bit inconsistent. At time it reads like a news magazine trying to court pharmaceutical advertisers, with its claims that St. John's Wort is a "goopy" therapy to use. This seems odd considering that Solomon underwent treatments such as role playing, etc, which I think are fine but by his standard look silly. ... I think this book could have gone into more detail on prayer, Mindfulness meditation, yoga and so forth. This is also striking considering the fact that we got about 13 pages on electo-shock therapy, which very few people actually use. Solomon mentions faith, but that's about it.
In all, I really like this book. I think that Solomon really wants to find a cure for this disease. His great "psycho-social-biological" approach gives great evidence as to why depression requires a mix of social and chemical treatment. A wonderful book for our times.

Cindy Crawford - The Next Challenge Workout [VHS]
Cindy Crawford - The Next Challenge Workout [VHS]
39 used & new from $0.50

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Athletic moves, not jumpy fluff, January 12, 2003
Getting this video used for a buck was the best deal I have found all year. Cindy begins with a good warm up and stretch section. The aerobic series follows. I am not a fan of elaborate aerobics, so I was happy with the basics that are really worked: lunges, squats, kicks and jumps. Three ab segments are spread out across the workout: you will feel the burn. I think there is a total of about 160-200 reps. The stregnth training is very thorough: lots of chest excercises are something kind of different, rows and curls are plentiful. All of this takes place with beautiul backgrounds and ethereal music. Cindy is sweet and inspirational, but as another reviewer pointed out, not even supermodels have perfect bodies. Working out is fun!

Absalom, Absalom! The Corrected Text
Absalom, Absalom! The Corrected Text
by William Faulkner
Edition: Paperback
Price: $11.45
279 used & new from $0.01

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars American? Literature?, December 16, 2002
The number of lists of "classic" literature on Amazon is rather silly. It is pretty clear to must people with a High School education that Steinbeck and Hemingway are pretty standard. Absalom, Absalom is not standard. That is because it is a searing, shocking and truly unsurpassed work of art.
At the heart of this novel is a struggle for identity. How do we understand our history. In these days of "evil-doers" and the axis of "evil", we are often deluged with a biased media's quest to simplify historical conflicts of identity. Likewise, Quentin Compson is intrigued and repulsed by the history of the South. Is the South "America"? Are the slaves actually free in their own minds?
Faulkner is also amazing in his grasp of the philosophical underpinnings of gender issues. Judith, Sutpen's daugther is a new Antigone who must bury one of her two brothers when they feud. Faulkner's Southern agrarian lifestyle, and gentle humility in the face of nature(and correspondingly, our natures) is somewhat lacking in the flippant Beat generation through the electronic generation. If Faulkner were alive today, we would be reading deconstructions of internet porn and corporate Caesars, not silly vain and impotent gestures such as "Sex in the City." Morality is not dead.

Healing with Form, Energy, and Light: The Five Elements in Tibetan Shamanism, Tantra, and Dzogchen
Healing with Form, Energy, and Light: The Five Elements in Tibetan Shamanism, Tantra, and Dzogchen
by Tenzin Wangyal
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.00
96 used & new from $3.11

156 of 167 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book from a Wonderful Teacher, June 17, 2002
Before I begin, I must admit limited objectivity in reviewing Bon Lama Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche's latest book "Healing with Form, Energy and Light" (Snow Lion). Because Lama Tenzin has been my gracious teacher for more than two years now, it is tempting to dispense with a certain critical distance. Much of the material in the text is taken from Rinpoche's teachings and small-scale textual resources. Yet as I paged through my new copy, it was like I was experiencing this transcendent wisdom for the first time. Thus, I am happy to announce that this work, his third major effort, is geared toward practitioners on all levels of practice, and from diverse spiritual backgrounds.
In the book's introduction, Tenzin Rinpoche gives a brief but helpful outline of the Bon tradition, an early Tibetan religion that has gradually incorporated, and also influenced, Buddhist practice. Among other interesting observations, Rinpoche explains that his tradition "suffered the fate of many indigenous religions, a fate similar to that of the religions of Europe and the Americans when Christianity was introduced." While such claims are not the central focus of this book, they definitely enrich it.
This book is a heartfelt, meaningful and well-written offering of sorts to whatever powers guide the exchange between East and West. Rinpoche, who founded the Ligmincha Institute in 1992, explains "as I spent more time in the West I began to see that there was a need to teach about the teaching, to explain how to develop experience and how to apply the teaching and practices to situations in everyday life." Rinpoche's humble yet beautiful book thus succeeds with practical hints that are a joy to read.
This book is about the healing traditions in Bon Buddhist shamanism, tantra and dzogchen ("the great perfection"). Western-style psychology is one of Rinpoche's interests, and he has participated in annual panels on East-West psychology. Thus, he discusses Tibetan traditions in light of certain western psychological theory. Plus, if you read this book you will gain insight into "Tibetan yoga": the tsa lung movements that open up the energy so that the breath flows freely in the body. The book's discussion of psychology alone is worth taking the time to read.
The sky blue volume focuses clearly and insightfully on the elements, and how elemental qualities manifest themselves in our lives. Through an increased awareness of the flow of these qualities, we can see a way to increased balance and peace.

Blood Type B Food, Beverage and Supplemental Lists
Blood Type B Food, Beverage and Supplemental Lists
by Peter J. D'Adamo
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: $6.29
126 used & new from $0.01

27 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A welcome complement to D'Adamo's innovative book, March 28, 2002
At first, I was a big skeptic of the whole "blood type diet". However, Dr. D'adamo's research on food allergies is quite persuasive. His recommendations are simple: be aware of food sensitivities. He's not like Atkins or the Duchess of York, trying to find a quick fix. He simply explains that insulin/blood sugar imbalances, which affect many people and lead to sugar cravings, are helped through including more or less of certain foods that interact with the antigens on one's blood cells. Peter D'Adamo, a naturopath, peppers his book with anthropological insights that are also interesting. His theories seems a bit contradictory in places: for example, he does not reconcile the fact that many Asians are Type B with the fact that Type B "benefits the most from milk products". In fact, his overly-enthusiastic endorsement of milk products, in the case of type B, seems a bit skewed to me, especially given some of the research on how milk can cheese can cause a lot of inflammation. The section on herbs/supplements for the blood types has really changed the way I use herbs, for the better. At only [money], this book a a great deal. Give blood (they tell you your blood type) and then grab one of these little books.
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