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Quintessence: Basic Readings from the Philosophy of W. V. Quine
Quintessence: Basic Readings from the Philosophy of W. V. Quine
by Willard Van Orman Quine
Edition: Paperback
Price: $25.66
49 used & new from $9.94

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All Killer, No Filler, January 25, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
W.V. Quine (2004). Quintessence, Harvard University Press (paperback)

I'm going to assume you already realize that Quine is one of the most important philosophers of all time and just tell you why you need this particular book.

Here are the contents. The title of each paper is followed by the title of the book from which it comes. (Note that most were originally published in various professional journals.) Those marked with a star are not available in book form.

I. Analyticity and Reductionism
1. Truth by Convention (Ways of Paradox)
2. Two Dogmas of Empiricism (From a Logical Point of View)
3. Two Dogmas in Retrospect (*)
4. Carnap and Logical Truth (Ways of Paradox)
II. Indeterminacy and Inscrutability
5. Speaking of Objects (*)
6. Reference (Pursuit of Truth)
7. Translation and Meaning (Word and Object)
8. Progress on Two Fronts (*)
III. Ontology
9. On What There Is (From a Logical Point of View)
10. The Scope and Language of Science (Ways of Paradox)
11. On Simple Theories of a Complex World (Ways of Paradox)
12. Ontic Decision (Word and Object)
13. Things and Their Place in Theories (Theories and Things)
14. On Carnap's Views on Ontology (Ways of Paradox)
IV. Epistemology and Philosophy of Mind
15. Epistemology Naturalized (Ontological Relativity)
16. Naturalism; or, Living within One's Means (*)
17. The Nature of Natural Knowledge (Mind and Language (multiauthor collection))
18. Five Milestones of Empiricism (Theories and Things)
19. On Mental Entities (Ways of Paradox)
20. Mind and Verbal Dispositions (Mind and Language (multiauthor collection))
V. Extensionalism
21. Confessions of a Confirmed Extensionalist (Future Pasts (multiauthor collection))
22. Quantifiers and Propositional Attitudes (Ways of Paradox)
23. Intensions Revisited (Theories and Things)
24. Reference and Modality (From a Logical Point of View)
25. Three Grades of Modal Involvement (Ways of Paradox)

Four papers are only available in professional journals. Three are only available in edited collections containing mostly work by other authors. And the rest are scattered across From a Logical Point of View, Word and Object, Ways of Paradox, Theories and Things, Ontological Relativity, and Pursuit of Truth. I have all of these last and more. And they're all great. But unless you know you're a big Quine fan the cream can be found in Quintessence.

The most telling thing to me are which papers are referenced by people who really know Quine. I recently read What is Analytic Philosophy? and I'm now reading Quine (Arguments of the Philosophers). The most heavily cited papers between both volumes are in Quintessence.

A caveat. There is really no shallow end to Quine, and if you dive into this unprepared you may drown. But, I came to Quine with little previous background through books like Word and Object and Ways of Paradox. It can be done. I don't know of a really good way to get started, so I'll have to assume that if you get this book you already have some background or are willing to put in the effort.

About Logic. A couple of reviewers have complained that this volume contains none of Quine's technical papers. Piffle. Most of Quine's philosophical work does not depend on appreciation of his technical work. I've read them both, and I'm telling you. And no author of a book on Quine nor editor of a collection of papers on Quine's philosophy has felt the need to inject tons of equations at any point. However, basic logic is sometimes used by Quine in his philosophical papers and you do need to know some basic quantification-theory/predicate-calculus/first-order-logic. I highly recommend Quine's own Methods of Logic or you might get by with his Elementary Logic: Revised Edition.

The book is subtitled Basic Readings From the PHILOSOPHY of W.V. Quine.

For those of you who can't let it go try Selected Logic Papers, Enlarged Edition. Just know that Quine took the annoying tack of saying "well, I already published that paper in (e.g.) From a Logical Point of View, so I won't include it Selected Logic Papers." So you need to buy From a Logical Point of View: Nine Logico-Philosophical Essays, Second Revised Edition and others even to get the essential stuff.


Motorola USB Wall Charger with Micro USB Data Cable - Bulk Packaging (Black)
Motorola USB Wall Charger with Micro USB Data Cable - Bulk Packaging (Black)
Price: $7.30
21 used & new from $4.88

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works great, July 7, 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This charger is a very simple device that works perfectly. I use it to charge my phone, MP3 player, and Kindle Fire using both the included mini USB cable and a micro USB cable I purchased separately.

The included cable is very thick and heavy. You'd have to work hard to damage it.

I've used this practically daily for a couple months and if I lost it I'd definitely buy the same unit.


Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner, Vegi Original, 5.5 Ounce (Pack of12)
Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner, Vegi Original, 5.5 Ounce (Pack of12)
Price: $21.48
2 used & new from $21.48

5.0 out of 5 stars Kid likes it., August 1, 2011
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Macaroni and cheese will probably never be a "health food", but it doesn't hurt to compromise and serve it up as a side or even as an entrée sometimes. But if you can make it a little more nutritionally balanced and still get the kids to eat it that would be good right?

That's where this product comes in. It is basically Kraft Macaroni and Cheese with "enriched cauliflower pasta product". So is it "more nutritious" than regular mac & cheese? And will the kids eat it?

Nutritionally I'll compare this product to Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Whole Grain original flavor.

WG VP
Total Fat 3.5g 3.5g
Cholesterol 15mg 10mg
Fiber 5g 3g
Protein 8g 10g
Vitamin A 15% 15%
Vitamin C 0% 15%
Calcium 15% 15%
Iron 10% 15%

As you can see, total fat is the same for the new product but cholesterol is 33% lower. Fiber is also lower, but that's no doubt due to the fact that I'm using Whole Grain as a baseline. VP isn't relatively low, WG is relatively high. We can also see that Vitamin C goes from 0 to 15%, and iron is increased by 50% relative to Whole Grain.

As for taste, reviewers agreed that it was "as good as" Whole Wheat. Importantly, my incredibly picky 8-year-old boy who loves mac & cheese said that he would eat it again, even after I told him what was in it.

In summary, the product offers some attractive nutritional benefits and my kids will eat it. That's a win-win and we'll be buying more.


Guide to Essential Math: A Review for Physics, Chemistry and Engineering Students (Complementary Science)
Guide to Essential Math: A Review for Physics, Chemistry and Engineering Students (Complementary Science)
by S. M. Blinder
Edition: Paperback
Price: $50.64
22 used & new from $10.21

4.0 out of 5 stars A Little Disappointing, July 19, 2011
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
From the back cover: "This book reminds students in junior, senior and graduate level courses in physics, chemistry and engineering of the math they may have forgotten (or learned imperfectly) which is needed to succeed in science courses."

So first off this book is a reminder (and reference) and exercises are not needed and not desired. They'd just make the book fat and unsuitable for carrying around all the time. So criticisms from reviewers on that account are misplaced.

I have to agree with other reviewers that the chapter on Matrix Algebra could me much clearer. I'm quite sure of this because I used it with other references precisely as a reminder/review of that subject. My other sources were Mathematics: From the Birth of Numbers, 3,000 Solved Problems in Linear Algebra, Schaum's Outline of PreCalculus, 2nd Ed. (Schaum's Outline Series), and Pocket Book of Integrals and Mathematical Formulas, 4th Edition. For what it's worth none of these books had a fully satisfactory reference section on matrices. How hard can it be?

Based on my serious use of the Matrix chapter and shallower review of other chapters I'm rating this at 4 stars. A book like this really needs to have you covered. It needs to have what you need when you need it. A book of this type that falls short in any major area like matrices can't be rated at 5. But, until I can find something better I can recommend this book. I'm sure I'll be using for other things.


Numbers: Book 1
Numbers: Book 1
by Rachel Ward
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $13.86
82 used & new from $0.01

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't get into it, September 23, 2010
This review is from: Numbers: Book 1 (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The story line of this book is very interesting. It's about a girl who sees the date on which someone will die whenever she looks at them. As a result, she isolates herself from people. Finally, she befriends a boy, but struggles because she knows he won't live much longer.

Despite the interesting plot, the book never really pulled me in. It moved very slowly and was a bit of a downer. The main character just spent a lot of time going on about how she wanted to hide from people - not terribly interesting.

Consequently, I stopped reading the book halfway through. I tried to get through it, but found I simply wasn't enjoying it, which is the whole point of reading. Perhaps the second half is more exciting, but in my opinion, it's not worth reading the first half to find out.


McAfee Family Protection 2010 3-User
McAfee Family Protection 2010 3-User
Offered by lakeplacegames
Price: $32.99
4 used & new from $8.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not impressed, December 18, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I was very excited to see this product. I wanted something that provided me with more parental controls than were available through Windows (e.g., setting how long a child can be on the computer any given day). There are a couple of problems with this software. 1) It is not at all intuitive. I typically can figure out how to use a new software application fairly quickly, but that was not so with Family Protection. I looked online to get some guidance (there was no manual), and didn't find what I needed. 2) An online password (separate from the normal Windows password) is required for every account (whether Family Protection is turned on for that user or not). I don't think my 5 year old would be able to log into the computer with this requirement.

My suggestion would be to stick with what's available through Windows (or Mac) until something better comes along.


3M Permanent Adhesive Address Labels, 1 x 2.62 Inches, White, Laser, 750 per pack (3100-A)
3M Permanent Adhesive Address Labels, 1 x 2.62 Inches, White, Laser, 750 per pack (3100-A)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Work well, December 8, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
According to 3M, these labels are made to work on both laser and inkjet printers. I used the labels on an inkjet and printed images and text in color. The labels worked well. I was able to use an Avery template (you can also download a template from 3M), and it worked perfectly. My only (very minor) complaint is that the images could have been just a little darker. The images and colors didn't run, but looked a little dull.


3M Permanent Adhesive Shipping Labels, 2 Inches x 4 Inches, White, Laser, 250 per Pack (3100-S)
3M Permanent Adhesive Shipping Labels, 2 Inches x 4 Inches, White, Laser, 250 per Pack (3100-S)

4.0 out of 5 stars Work well, December 8, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
According to 3M, these labels are made to work on both laser and inkjet printers. I used the labels on an inkjet and printed images and text in color. The labels worked well. I was able to use an Avery template (you can also download a template from 3M), and it worked perfectly. My only (very minor) complaint is that the images could have been just a little darker. The images and colors didn't run, but looked a little dull.


TCP/IP Sockets in C#: Practical Guide for Programmers (The Practical Guides)
TCP/IP Sockets in C#: Practical Guide for Programmers (The Practical Guides)
by Kenneth L. Calvert
Edition: Paperback
Price: $28.16
71 used & new from $1.17

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Short and Practical, October 14, 2009
I have modest experience with sockets programming. Generally I've been able to take advantage of frameworks provided for me. However, I've recently been called upon to do performance comparisons between .NET Remoting, Windows Communication Foundation (wCF), and raw .NET sockets.

With this book I was able to get up and running very quickly. I had a real-world problem and I was able to solve it easily with this book. That single solution makes it worth the price when one hour of time can [...].

For a book such as this that is the highest praise I can give.

In a larger sense, I think the brevity of this book makes it terrific place to start.


Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do?
Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do?
by Michael J. Sandel
Edition: Audio CD
Price: $20.59
35 used & new from $16.60

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Introductory Course on Audio, October 7, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
What is just? What is fair? Sandel's Justice, based on his wildly popular course at Harvard, explains several historically important ways of answering these questions.

Utilitarianism, most associated with Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, is the doctrine that we should strive to ensure the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Whatever maximizes utility is just.

Rawlsianism, developed in John Rawls' Theory of Justice, appeals to a social contract to define fair and just behavior. This contract can be defined by imagining that one is placed behind a "veil of ignorance" hiding such biasing factors as one's social status, wealth, sex, and so forth. Thus benighted, how would one wish to be treated? Rawls' theory based on such thought experiments is the most influential of the 20th century.

Sandel himself subscribes to a form of communitarianism. Rawls is sometimes described as a communitarian, but those of Sandel's stripe reject Rawls' notion that it is possible even to imagine being behind the "veil of ignorance". We can't make moral judgments divorced from our cultural framework, nor should we. Both Rawls and the Utilitarians can also be criticized for failing to recognize individual rights.

Aristotle's belief that goods (i.e., any good thing) should be distributed proportionately according to merit and Kant's notion of categorical imperatives are also covered.

Throughout, numerous thought-provoking ethical questions are used to illustrate, contrast, and criticize these theories. Hypotheticals are designed to test one's judgment free from peripheral factors. Real-world issues are also explored including abortion, affirmative action, and redistribution of wealth. This renders potentially dry theory into the basis for stimulating contemplation.

Sandel's Justice is intended to be an introductory college course, not a statement of the author's own point of view, and this is carried off just well enough. I could not escape the notion that there was a decided tilt toward the author's position, but I found that this did not render the work unenjoyable or useless.
Sandel himself is the reader. While he is clear some might find that he reads rather slowly.

Overall I recommend this to anyone who wants an on-the-go introduction to the philosophy of justice.


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