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EUCLID'S WALL
EUCLID'S WALL
Price: $7.50

44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Adventure Which Unfolds Between Continents, Rather Than Between Stars, October 23, 2012
This review is from: EUCLID'S WALL (Kindle Edition)
I'm a huge fan of Michael McCollum's always-terrific space operas. They rank among my most favorite Sci-Fi which I recommend routinely and without hesitation. They're so much fun that I've read most of them more than once, and if you haven't yet discovered his Gibraltar and Antares trilogies don't stop shopping after you have grabbed this latest work, Euclid's Wall!

In Euclid's Wall, Michael brings us down to Earth, or back to Earth, or stuck on Earth... after an innocent mistake made by a pair of PhD's in the near future (2087) pretty much ends the world as we know it. Whoops! Thus the sailing ship on the book's cover, one hundred years post-catastrophe, as humanity struggles to recreate and rebuild pieces of what has been lost. Lost was the technology required to fly, along with pretty much everything else we take for granted these days. The whole idea is really quite thought provoking and more than a little chilling.

Into this hauntingly plausible future, Michael introduces relatable and engaging characters, then weaves the sort of clever puzzle-plot I have always enjoyed about his novels. Though I finished the book several weeks ago, it has remained with me, a bit haunting, like a recent vivid dream.

If you have an imagination that's usually satisfied by phasors and photon torpedoes -- though you won't find those here -- I believe you'll enjoy this voyage on Michael's high seas every bit as much as I did. I rated this book five stars because I think it deserves every one of them. I'll bet you think so too!

/Steve Gibson - October 23rd, 2012.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 26, 2012 4:58 PM PDT


Trojan Horse: A Jeff Aiken Novel (Jeff Aiken Series)
Trojan Horse: A Jeff Aiken Novel (Jeff Aiken Series)
by Mark E. Russinovich
Edition: Paperback
47 used & new from $0.01

98 of 105 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Compelling Factual-Fiction Page-Turner Without a Single Flaw., September 18, 2012
Like so many of this terrific book's early reviewers, I have known Mark for many years. (Mark is a celebrity of significant note within the Computer industry.) But I only knew that Mark could write world-class code. I had no idea that he could also write world class novels. And being artful at one certainly doesn't suggest any strong talent for the other. So being very picky, I worried when Mark sent an early copy of his first novel, "Zero Day". I wanted to like it and worried that I might not. So I'll just say that I wasn't the least bit worried, I was delighted, when he sent an early copy of novel #2.

If you haven't yet read "Zero Day" you don't really need to, but I loved that Mark told this second story through the eyes of the two protagonists whom he introduced and developed throughout his first work of fiction. So by all means, click the purchase button above, but if you haven't already read "Zero Day", why not begin at the beginning?

Today, everyone understands that modern "connected" life requires some concern for online privacy and security. If you know very little about the details of how bad things happen to people online, you'll find Mark's stories compelling from that standpoint: They explain this clearly and intelligibly, wrapped around exciting narratives that bring those details to life. And if, on the other hand, you know your way around computer security, you'll find Mark's stories not only compelling but also technically perfect.

I am so glad that Mark decided to share his imagination and storytelling talent with the world. Once you have read Mark's novels I'll bet you find yourself recommending them to others as well. I certainly have.


No Title Available

114 of 120 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have a minute, I'll explain why THIS is the Lipoic Acid you want..., October 23, 2010
If you're into Lipoic Acid, this is the one you want. (And I sure think you're right to be into it!)

First: My "motivation" for taking the time to write this review -- to head-off the snarky folks who want to believe that people always have ulterior motives -- look me up on Google or Wikipedia or follow my review links and you'll find that I'm just a techie computer nerd with an interest in health, fitness and longevity who likes to get to the bottom of things. I'm writing this for one reason only: I have done the (extensive) research, and this is *the* BEST form of Lipoic Acid available. I want it to continue being available so that *I* can order and take it ... and so that you can too.

The key term is "BioEnhanced" (which is itself, of course, a nonsense marketing phrase) but the key is that it is the trademark of GeroNova Research of Carson City, Nevada. And THEY are a small group of scientists who are totally into lipoic acid and have figured out how to make the best stuff possible. GeroNova produces the raw material which Doctor's Best, of San Clemente, California, then encapsulates, packages, and retails it so that we can purchase it here.

(Note that most of the Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) on the market is made in China. Enough said.)

There are essentially four types of Lipoic Acid on the market today:

Regular ALA (racemic-ALA) - Molecules that are non-symmetrical can also be made in a mirror image of themselves. In the case of lipoic acid, the two mirror images are labeled R- and S-. Our bodies only synthesize and use the R- version, but when big vats of ALA are stirred up synthetically both the R- and S- versions are produced in about equal measure. The trouble with the S- version is that (1) our bodies don't use it at all, (2) it may actually compete with the good R- version for intestinal uptake thus reducing the amount of the good R- version we get and (3) we pay for its presence since a 600mg capsule of regular ALA will consist of only 300mg of useful R-ALA and another 300mg of useless S-ALA.

The second form is R-ALA - This is better, since being all 'R' it's 100% of the 'version' of ALA that our bodies can use. However tests have shown that while it is rapidly and mostly absorbed, serum levels of regular R-ALA do not reach the peaks that can be had with a "stabilized salt formulation" of LA (which is what the GeroNova scientists have created).

The third type of ALA is Timed/Sustained/Slow Release - Since ALA has a notoriously short "half life" in our blood -- on the older of 30 minutes as our kidneys remove it -- some non-scientific purveyors of competing ALA formulations are selling "slow release" versions under the, possibly well meaning, belief that maintaining a lower level for a longer time will be more beneficial. But this has never been proven to be true. And, in fact, it now appears that it might well be the "high and sharp pulse" of ALA in our blood serum that does whatever it is that ALA does that's good.

(Annoyingly, researchers are still unsure exactly how and why ALA does all of the various good things that it does. But it's looking less and less like this is due to the anti-oxidant effects of the molecule, which would tend to argue for a timed release to keep it around longer. It now appears that even having a once or twice daily large brief "pulse" of ALA acts to "wake up" our cells, resetting them to a mode more like that of their youth. And that appears to be a good thing.)

The final type of ALA is the "BioEnhanced" R-LA that's produced by GeroNova. They create a "stabilized" lipoic acid salt by binding the lipoic acid to a bit of sodium. (They also tried using magnesium but yields would have always been too low, and it turned out that resulting human intestinal bioavailability was far higher when using sodium.)

The GeroNova-based R-LA ends up yielding about %250 more R-lipoic acid into the bloodstream than standard racemic (mixed R-/S-) ALA. Given that half of the racemic (mixed) ALA is the wrong mirror image and useless, one 100mg capsule of THIS stuff is about equal in biological value to a single, MORE expensive 600mg capsule of regular (made in China?) alpha lipoic acid.

So, even though "milligram for milligram", this appears to be more expensive, based upon what actually gets into our bloodstream, this formulation is actually less expensive and MUCH more trustworthy. For this reason, THIS is my Lipoic Acid formulation of choice and I truly think that it should be yours too. :)

OH! And so long as it doesn't upset your stomach, try to take it on an empty stomach if possible -- two hours before or three hours after a meal. Studies show that only about half will be absorbed if it's competing with other food.

(If you found this review and these thoughts useful, would you click the "YES" button so that others will see this too? Thanks!)
Comment Comments (13) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 3, 2015 5:55 AM PST


No Title Available

25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have a minute, I'll explain why THIS is the Lipoic Acid you want..., October 23, 2010
If you're into Lipoic Acid, this is the one you want. (And I sure think you're right to be into it!)

First: My "motivation" for taking the time to write this review -- to head-off the snarky folks who want to believe that people always have ulterior motives -- look me up on Google or Wikipedia or follow my review links and you'll find that I'm just a techie computer nerd with an interest in health, fitness and longevity who likes to get to the bottom of things. I'm writing this for one reason only: I have done the (extensive) research, and this is *the* BEST form of Lipoic Acid available. I want it to continue being available so that *I* can order and take it ... and so that you can too.

The key term is "BioEnhanced" (which is itself, of course, a nonsense marketing phrase) but the key is that it is the trademark of GeroNova Research of Carson City, Nevada. And THEY are a small group of scientists who are totally into lipoic acid and have figured out how to make the best stuff possible. GeroNova produces the raw material which Doctor's Best, of San Clemente, California, then encapsulates, packages, and retails it so that we can purchase it here.

(Note that most of the Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) on the market is made in China. Enough said.)

There are essentially four types of Lipoic Acid on the market today:

Regular ALA (racemic-ALA) - Molecules that are non-symmetrical can also be made in a mirror image of themselves. In the case of lipoic acid, the two mirror images are labeled R- and S-. Our bodies only synthesize and use the R- version, but when big vats of ALA are stirred up synthetically both the R- and S- versions are produced in about equal measure. The trouble with the S- version is that (1) our bodies don't use it at all, (2) it may actually compete with the good R- version for intestinal uptake thus reducing the amount of the good R- version we get and (3) we pay for its presence since a 600mg capsule of regular ALA will consist of only 300mg of useful R-ALA and another 300mg of useless S-ALA.

The second form is R-ALA - This is better, since being all 'R' it's 100% of the 'version' of ALA that our bodies can use. However tests have shown that while it is rapidly and mostly absorbed, serum levels of regular R-ALA do not reach the peaks that can be had with a "stabilized salt formulation" of LA (which is what the GeroNova scientists have created).

The third type of ALA is Timed/Sustained/Slow Release - Since ALA has a notoriously short "half life" in our blood -- on the older of 30 minutes as our kidneys remove it -- some non-scientific purveyors of competing ALA formulations are selling "slow release" versions under the, possibly well meaning, belief that maintaining a lower level for a longer time will be more beneficial. But this has never been proven to be true. And, in fact, it now appears that it might well be the "high and sharp pulse" of ALA in our blood serum that does whatever it is that ALA does that's good.

(Annoyingly, researchers are still unsure exactly how and why ALA does all of the various good things that it does. But it's looking less and less like this is due to the anti-oxidant effects of the molecule, which would tend to argue for a timed release to keep it around longer. It now appears that even having a once or twice daily large brief "pulse" of ALA acts to "wake up" our cells, resetting them to a mode more like that of their youth. And that appears to be a good thing.)

The final type of ALA is the "BioEnhanced" R-LA that's produced by GeroNova. They create a "stabilized" lipoic acid salt by binding the lipoic acid to a bit of sodium. (They also tried using magnesium but yields would have always been too low, and it turned out that resulting human intestinal bioavailability was far higher when using sodium.)

The GeroNova-based R-LA ends up yielding about %250 more R-lipoic acid into the bloodstream than standard racemic (mixed R-/S-) ALA. Given that half of the racemic (mixed) ALA is the wrong mirror image and useless, one 100mg capsule of THIS stuff is about equal in biological value to a single, MORE expensive 600mg capsule of regular (made in China?) alpha lipoic acid.

So, even though "milligram for milligram", this appears to be more expensive, based upon what actually gets into our bloodstream, this formulation is actually less expensive and MUCH more trustworthy. For this reason, THIS is my Lipoic Acid formulation of choice and I truly think that it should be yours too. :)

OH! And so long as it doesn't upset your stomach, try to take it on an empty stomach if possible -- two hours before or three hours after a meal. Studies show that only about half will be absorbed if it's competing with other food.

(If you found this review and these thoughts useful, would you click the "YES" button so that others will see this too? Thanks!)
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 9, 2012 10:36 AM PDT


No Title Available

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have a minute, I'll explain why THIS is the Lipoic Acid you want..., October 23, 2010
If you're into Lipoic Acid, this is the one you want. (And I sure think you're right to be into it!)

First: My "motivation" for taking the time to write this review -- to head-off the snarky folks who want to believe that people always have ulterior motives -- look me up on Google or Wikipedia or follow my review links and you'll find that I'm just a techie computer nerd with an interest in health, fitness and longevity who likes to get to the bottom of things. I'm writing this for one reason only: I have done the (extensive) research, and this is *the* BEST form of Lipoic Acid available. I want it to continue being available so that *I* can order and take it ... and so that you can too.

The key term is "BioEnhanced" (which is itself, of course, a nonsense marketing phrase) but the key is that it is the trademark of GeroNova Research of Carson City, Nevada. And THEY are a small group of scientists who are totally into lipoic acid and have figured out how to make the best stuff possible. GeroNova produces the raw material which Doctor's Best, of San Clemente, California, then encapsulates, packages, and retails it so that we can purchase it here.

(Note that most of the Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) on the market is made in China. Enough said.)

There are essentially four types of Lipoic Acid on the market today:

Regular ALA (racemic-ALA) - Molecules that are non-symmetrical can also be made in a mirror image of themselves. In the case of lipoic acid, the two mirror images are labeled R- and S-. Our bodies only synthesize and use the R- version, but when big vats of ALA are stirred up synthetically both the R- and S- versions are produced in about equal measure. The trouble with the S- version is that (1) our bodies don't use it at all, (2) it may actually compete with the good R- version for intestinal uptake thus reducing the amount of the good R- version we get and (3) we pay for its presence since a 600mg capsule of regular ALA will consist of only 300mg of useful R-ALA and another 300mg of useless S-ALA.

The second form is R-ALA - This is better, since being all 'R' it's 100% of the 'version' of ALA that our bodies can use. However tests have shown that while it is rapidly and mostly absorbed, serum levels of regular R-ALA do not reach the peaks that can be had with a "stabilized salt formulation" of LA (which is what the GeroNova scientists have created).

The third type of ALA is Timed/Sustained/Slow Release - Since ALA has a notoriously short "half life" in our blood -- on the older of 30 minutes as our kidneys remove it -- some non-scientific purveyors of competing ALA formulations are selling "slow release" versions under the, possibly well meaning, belief that maintaining a lower level for a longer time will be more beneficial. But this has never been proven to be true. And, in fact, it now appears that it might well be the "high and sharp pulse" of ALA in our blood serum that does whatever it is that ALA does that's good.

(Annoyingly, researchers are still unsure exactly how and why ALA does all of the various good things that it does. But it's looking less and less like this is due to the anti-oxidant effects of the molecule, which would tend to argue for a timed release to keep it around longer. It now appears that even having a once or twice daily large brief "pulse" of ALA acts to "wake up" our cells, resetting them to a mode more like that of their youth. And that appears to be a good thing.)

The final type of ALA is the "BioEnhanced" R-LA that's produced by GeroNova. They create a "stabilized" lipoic acid salt by binding the lipoic acid to a bit of sodium. (They also tried using magnesium but yields would have always been too low, and it turned out that resulting human intestinal bioavailability was far higher when using sodium.)

The GeroNova-based R-LA ends up yielding about %250 more R-lipoic acid into the bloodstream than standard racemic (mixed R-/S-) ALA. Given that half of the racemic (mixed) ALA is the wrong mirror image and useless, one 100mg capsule of THIS stuff is about equal in biological value to a single, MORE expensive 600mg capsule of regular (made in China?) alpha lipoic acid.

So, even though "milligram for milligram", this appears to be more expensive, based upon what actually gets into our bloodstream, this formulation is actually less expensive and MUCH more trustworthy. For this reason, THIS is my Lipoic Acid formulation of choice and I truly think that it should be yours too. :)

OH! And so long as it doesn't upset your stomach, try to take it on an empty stomach if possible -- two hours before or three hours after a meal. Studies show that only about half will be absorbed if it's competing with other food.

(If you found this review and these thoughts useful, would you click the "YES" button so that others will see this too? Thanks!)


Dr's Best Stabilized R-Lipoic Acid featuring BioEnhanced Na-RALA (100 mg), 60 vcaps (Multi-Pack)
Dr's Best Stabilized R-Lipoic Acid featuring BioEnhanced Na-RALA (100 mg), 60 vcaps (Multi-Pack)

30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have a minute, I'll explain why THIS is the Lipoic Acid you want..., October 23, 2010
If you're into Lipoic Acid, this is the one you want. (And I sure think you're right to be into it!)

First: My "motivation" for taking the time to write this review -- to head-off the snarky folks who want to believe that people always have ulterior motives -- look me up on Google or Wikipedia or follow my review links and you'll find that I'm just a techie computer nerd with an interest in health, fitness and longevity who likes to get to the bottom of things. I'm writing this for one reason only: I have done the (extensive) research, and this is *the* BEST form of Lipoic Acid available. I want it to continue being available so that *I* can order and take it ... and so that you can too.

The key term is "BioEnhanced" (which is itself, of course, a nonsense marketing phrase) but the key is that it is the trademark of GeroNova Research of Carson City, Nevada. And THEY are a small group of scientists who are totally into lipoic acid and have figured out how to make the best stuff possible. GeroNova produces the raw material which Doctor's Best, of San Clemente, California, then encapsulates, packages, and retails it so that we can purchase it here.

(Note that most of the Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) on the market is made in China. Enough said.)

There are essentially four types of Lipoic Acid on the market today:

Regular ALA (racemic-ALA) - Molecules that are non-symmetrical can also be made in a mirror image of themselves. In the case of lipoic acid, the two mirror images are labeled R- and S-. Our bodies only synthesize and use the R- version, but when big vats of ALA are stirred up synthetically both the R- and S- versions are produced in about equal measure. The trouble with the S- version is that (1) our bodies don't use it at all, (2) it may actually compete with the good R- version for intestinal uptake thus reducing the amount of the good R- version we get and (3) we pay for its presence since a 600mg capsule of regular ALA will consist of only 300mg of useful R-ALA and another 300mg of useless S-ALA.

The second form is R-ALA - This is better, since being all 'R' it's 100% of the 'version' of ALA that our bodies can use. However tests have shown that while it is rapidly and mostly absorbed, serum levels of regular R-ALA do not reach the peaks that can be had with a "stabilized salt formulation" of LA (which is what the GeroNova scientists have created).

The third type of ALA is Timed/Sustained/Slow Release - Since ALA has a notoriously short "half life" in our blood -- on the older of 30 minutes as our kidneys remove it -- some non-scientific purveyors of competing ALA formulations are selling "slow release" versions under the, possibly well meaning, belief that maintaining a lower level for a longer time will be more beneficial. But this has never been proven to be true. And, in fact, it now appears that it might well be the "high and sharp pulse" of ALA in our blood serum that does whatever it is that ALA does that's good.

(Annoyingly, researchers are still unsure exactly how and why ALA does all of the various good things that it does. But it's looking less and less like this is due to the anti-oxidant effects of the molecule, which would tend to argue for a timed release to keep it around longer. It now appears that even having a once or twice daily large brief "pulse" of ALA acts to "wake up" our cells, resetting them to a mode more like that of their youth. And that appears to be a good thing.)

The final type of ALA is the "BioEnhanced" R-LA that's produced by GeroNova. They create a "stabilized" lipoic acid salt by binding the lipoic acid to a bit of sodium. (They also tried using magnesium but yields would have always been too low, and it turned out that resulting human intestinal bioavailability was far higher when using sodium.)

The GeroNova-based R-LA ends up yielding about %250 more R-lipoic acid into the bloodstream than standard racemic (mixed R-/S-) ALA. Given that half of the racemic (mixed) ALA is the wrong mirror image and useless, one 100mg capsule of THIS stuff is about equal in biological value to a single, MORE expensive 600mg capsule of regular (made in China?) alpha lipoic acid.

So, even though "milligram for milligram", this appears to be more expensive, based upon what actually gets into our bloodstream, this formulation is actually less expensive and MUCH more trustworthy. For this reason, THIS is my Lipoic Acid formulation of choice and I truly think that it should be yours too. :)

OH! And so long as it doesn't upset your stomach, try to take it on an empty stomach if possible -- two hours before or three hours after a meal. Studies show that only about half will be absorbed if it's competing with other food.

(If you found this review and these thoughts useful, would you click the "YES" button so that others will see this too? Thanks!)


iLuv Anti-Glare Protective Film for iPad
iLuv Anti-Glare Protective Film for iPad

181 of 182 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The One-Star Folks are not wrong, but it's the BEST RESULT, May 31, 2010
Everyone who hates this anti-glare film because it's IMPOSSIBLE to put on -- is right! It is really impossible to put on. (Despite that, I have it on BOTH of my iPads, and "iLuv it.")

Get the two-pack version of this, and use the first one as a "learning film" and also as a good remover of whatever dust was on there despite all your best efforts. Then putting the second one on afterward is much better. Do I wish for a "clean room environment" as one of the 1-start reviewers quipped? Yes, absolutely! ... got one?

I have owned three iPads. The second one was a 3G that occasionally "hung", Apple replaced without complaint. So now I own two that I use constantly. But, much as I LOVE my iPads, I really can't STAND the ultra-gloss screen. Not only is it a mirror, but it's MADE to show fingerprints. The matt finish of the iLuv anti-glare screen really goes a LONG way toward hiding the annoying fingerprints. When people see my iPads they are so pleased by the anti-reflective surface. It's really SO much better. My point is, it is WORTH THE TRUE NIGHTMARE of getting one of these on right.

Also... I'm the sort of person who will (and I have) buy one of each brand just to find the best one. So this is why I've given this iLuv film a full Five-Star rating: I HAVE tried every other film I could find... and I really think the iLuv is the best, annoying though it certainly is. It's just not easy -- and it's never going to be -- to get a film THIS LARGE onto a screen the size of the iPad. It just isn't.

The main trouble is that, unlike laptops, where the LCD is recessed into a bevel, which can be used for alignment. The iPad's screen is raised up a bit out of the surrounding bezel. This really DOES make it tricky. But that isn't this film's fault, and it's not any better with any other films I have found.

The reason I came BACK to iLuv, is that the iLuv film comes sandwitched between two protective outer sheets. You pull the lower one off first, then apply the film, smoothing out the bubbles. (Note that the act of pulling the sheets apart is a BIG generator of static electricity which then immediately attracts every lose particle of dust within a ten meter range.) Laying the film down is so darned tricky, since it can't be repositioned (easily) once much of it is in contact with the screen. Then smooth-out the air pockets and smaller bubbles. Use a credit-card edge and be as rough as you need to be. Since the screen is STILL being protected by the unremoved top-sheet, you're not scratching the real film. Take your time with that since once it is bubble-free, it DOES stay bubble-free. The problem is that the film's edges, if the alignment is not true, will tend to float a bit above the glass in places around the edge. It's NOT going to be perfect -- which, yes, is annoying on such a lovely piece of equipment. But the anti-glare result is SO worth it!

Once you peel off the top protective sheet you wind up with a near-perfect look. I *really* wish that Apple would simply give us a matt-finish screen, but they appear determined not to.

The OTHER films I have tried didn't have the final CLARITY that the iLuv film has. For example, as you scrolled, and if you tracked the scrolling text with your eye, you could see quite distracting variations that other films were introducing -- their own "sparkliness" to the screen. There was an "interference pattern" with the screen's pixels and something about the films. The iLuv has none of that.

So... annoying? Yes! Worth getting right? Oh,, so much so! Best possible film for the iPad? I really do think so.

(Would you please consider giving this review a thumbs-up so that others will have the chance to see it too? Thanks!)
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 18, 2011 5:39 AM PDT


The Geek Atlas: 128 Places Where Science and Technology Come Alive
The Geek Atlas: 128 Places Where Science and Technology Come Alive
by John Graham-Cumming
Edition: Paperback
Price: $22.93
85 used & new from $0.01

135 of 136 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Written BY a Geek, but for Geeks and Non-Geeks Alike!, June 3, 2009
This terrific book first came to my attention when its author politely asked whether it would be okay for him to mention it in the technical newsgroup forums my company hosts. I had known of John through his many years as an occasional contributor in our forums, though I knew nothing of his being an author. Little did I know.

Now I have a copy, and I love it. When I take it with me to coffee, other regulars who have seen it before, grab it if I'm reading something else. We all love it because it is SO accessible (and these are people who are not nearly as geeky as me). Opening the book to literally any page pulls you in immediately. Even if you're not a traveller (I'm definitely not) the book is a compendium of bite-size world-wide technical history of innovation and invention -- in gratifying detail. No single topic is more than four pages long, so you can read many before your coffee gets cold. And you may be ordering a second cup, because this book is difficult to put down. You can read by region, or scan the table of contents for anything that looks interesting; The Escher Museum in the Netherlands, the Experimental Breeder Reactor #1 in Idaho, the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico, the Mendel Museum of Genetics in the Czech Republic, and 124 other notable places and times where something geeky and technologically important happened. I used to wonder how and where the speed of light was first measured. Now I know.

John has filled the pages not only with a discussion of interesting brief historical notes, but also with his own diagrams and explanations of every principle and discovery. He has a direct, straightforward, and clear writing style. And best of all for geeky readers like myself, he clearly knows what he's talking about. Unlike some authors who are disconcerting because you sense that they're not sure of their facts, you won't find any of that here. The technical content is precise and will satisfy the geekiest among us.

This book would be a bargain at twice Amazon's price of only $20. So think about getting two. Even if you are not a geek, you'll love this -- really. And I'll bet you know a geek who would value this just as much!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 5, 2009 10:57 PM PDT


Everwood: Season 2
Everwood: Season 2
DVD ~ Treat Williams
Offered by Mediaflix
Price: $15.01
34 used & new from $9.73

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delayed because of the music rights..., March 7, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Everwood: Season 2 (DVD)
When I received the notification from Amazon this morning, I was beyond ecstatic, and I immediately ordered sets for myself and my family. Like some others posting here, several years ago I purchased a really crappy full set of seasons -- which, to my profound disappointment turned out to be bootleg and of low production quality (pieces missing, commercials not removed, etc.) So to finally be able to get the REAL Season 2 is wonderful. We can just hope that seasons 3 and 4, which were every bit as wonderful as the first two, will follow eventually.

For those who are wondering what the problem is with putting Everwood on DVD (when so many much less wonderful shows are clogging the shelves) ... the trouble is with the rights to the music used throughout the series.

Rather than using generic studio background musicians, the show's producers chose to use contemporary top-rated artists and their significant hit compositions and performances. The result was worth it for the series -- the soundtrack was fantastic and helped make the show what it was -- but it created a HUGE problem for taking those shows to DVD due to the cost of paying royalties to the artists. I don't know how this problem was solved, but it's likely that the producers are hoping the demand for the DVDs will be worth the trouble they must have gone through to make it happen. (The first season didn't sell overwhelmingly.)

(If this note/review was useful to you, would you click the button to say so, so that it can float near the top and others might see it too? Thanks very much!)

And let's cross our fingers for seasons 3 and 4!!! :)


Kindle: Amazon's Original Wireless Reading Device (1st generation)
Kindle: Amazon's Original Wireless Reading Device (1st generation)
18 used & new from $35.00

47,527 of 48,361 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why and how the Kindle changes everything, November 25, 2007
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This is less a "pros and cons" review than a hopefully useful commentary about the Kindle compared with other eReaders and what it means for the eBook industry. (I believe that everything has changed with the Kindle's creation.)

For many years I have been an avid reader of eBooks using almost every eReading device on the market. So as an early-adopter of techie gadgets I had been anxiously awaiting Amazon's Kindle since its first rumors. So I immediately purchased it both out of curiosity and hoping for a better "next generation" eBook solution. In case you're wondering whether I'm "that" Steve Gibson, I probably am -- I'm the guy who gets Google's first three or four links when Googling my name.

I was driven to write this review because it is somewhat distressing and, it seems to me, a bit unfair for the Kindle's average review rating to be dragged so far down by Kindle NON-OWNERS who, judging from their comments, seem to be quite annoyed by all of the positive comments about a device that's expensive, monochrome, not a general purpose media player, unable to leap tall buildings, or in some way less than they were expecting, wanting, or hoping. In contrast to non-owners, the people who actually HAVE Kindle's appear to universally love it, though with very valid caveats. I think of this as "The TiVo Effect" since, for the right sort of user, the Kindle will be life-changing ... but it certainly won't be that for everyone. Although it took me a few days to get completely comfortable with it, I am now hooked.

So, for what it's worth, if this posting is discovered by any truly interested pre-purchasers, I hope that the following commentary might place the Kindle in "perspective" and be of some value to you. (And if it is, I hope you'll click the button at the bottom to indicate that, so that this review might be found by more potential buyers ... Thank you!)

I have read many novel-length books on my various Palm's, I owned the original Rocket eBook, and I own both generations of Sony's eInk readers, the PRS-500 and PRS-505. So my clear bias is of someone who enjoys technology for its own sake and who loves the idea of reading books on a "device."

Amazon's first-generation Kindle arguably has a few warts (see below). So depending upon your needs, budget, willingness to purchase a "first-generation" gizmo that you might regret purchasing and want to replace a year from now, and so forth, you might well decide to wait for the next generation Kindle that will doubtless be even better. But whether you choose to jump aboard now or later, Amazon's entry into the eBook market is a BIG deal -- it forever changes the game. I think there is no doubt that for the first time ever, a substantial number of people who were never captivated by ANY previous eBook system will find themselves reading and enjoying textual content on Kindle's eInk screen.

The weird initial love/hate reaction to the Kindle is being compared with Apple's iPod, which was also initially met with striking polarization. We all know how that turned out. :) Although the iPod was far from being the first portable MP3 player, and critics called it a copycat, it was the first portable music player to go mainstream, and it changed the world. I believe that, similarly, the large and tightly interacting collection of Kindle features, that go far beyond those of any other previous eBook attempt, will cause the Kindle to be the first eBook to succeed. By connecting their massive book library, as well as newspapers, magazines, blogs and the Web -- wirelessly -- to a long-battery-life chunk of consumer plastic, Amazon has kicked eBooks into the mainstream.

Is the Kindle perfect? Not yet. Is it expensive? Yep. Does it feel like a first-generation product? Absolutely. Will I purchase the next Kindle too? Please let me be first in line!

Investing in Kindle's future...

From a DRM (digital rights management, aka eBook copy-protection) perspective, my eBook content ownership is already spread around all over the place; from Mobipocket, to Palm eReader, to Sony Connect, and now to Amazon Kindle. Sure, that annoys me a bit, but it's the price one pays for being an early adopter of technology that isn't yet ready for prime time ... as, until now, no eBook system has been. Sony's efforts came the closest, but that all ended for Sony (and everyone else) with the introduction of the Kindle. Existing owners of other eBook formats will certainly continue purchasing content for their devices, but who in the U.S. would purchase a new $300 Sony eReader when for an additional $100 they could have the Kindle ... which is so much more than any of the other "disconnected" read-only devices?

In other words, given that Amazon is Amazon, and the fact that they already, right out of the gate, offer so much more than any other previous solution, I feel comfortable now building up my eBook content ownership with Amazon. Sure, I've been wrong before, but this is where I'm placing my bet. I won't be purchasing any more content for Palm's eReader or Sony's. And I like the fact that the content I am purchasing now for this first-generation Kindle will certainly always be readable on whatever future generation devices Amazon's efforts will evolve into.

Look Ma, no wires!

The huge deal with TiVo was time-shifting and commercial skipping. The huge deal with the Kindle is its wireless connectivity. Being a "traditional" eBook user -- i.e. download into PC and "dock" the eReader to upload -- I didn't 'get' that at first. Now I'm as hooked by that on the Kindle as I am by my Tivo's ability to whiz through endless commercials. The Kindle brings the same sort of freedom and power to textual content that the cell phone brought to voice communications.

Sure, I'll purchase eBooks for the Kindle. But I have subscribed to a newspaper and two magazines ... and it is truly a paradigm shift to have their content "just be there" in the morning all by itself. And the periodical content is clean, blessedly free of ads, unnecessary pictures and distractions.

An ugly duckling in need of forgiveness?

Like many people who worship the infinitely-understated elegance of Apple's iPhone (and many other Apple creations), the Kindle's appearance put me off at first. I was as vocally critical of the darned thing as any of those "one star" reviewers. When the first early photos of it leaked a few months before its release, I thought "No way, what a joke! That must be an early balsa-wood mock-up." Now that weird angular wedggie is sitting here next to me as I type this. And I have forgiven it because something odd happens after using it for a few days: You begin to realize that it really works ... and it works well. (And have you ever tried actually typing on the iPhone's all-screen keyboard?)

Did someone say "warts"?

The Kindle's screen appears to have slightly lower contrast than Sony's second generation reader, but much more than Sony's first generation offering. Also, the Kindle's fonts are *far* superior to Sony's, extremely legible, in six sizes and with real italics, not just algorithmic slanting. I'm a bit annoyed that the line-spacing is so large on the larger fonts since page changing is an "event", but, again, this is just the first shot.

And speaking of page changing, I am not a big fan of the page navigation on this first Kindle. So much of the device is devoted to making page changing easy that it's difficult to pick up and handle the device without inadvertently changing pages. But once you're settled down and reading, the fact that only a thumb-twitch is required is nice. One way or another I'm sure that Amazon will get plenty of feedback about everything ... and the next one will be even better.

You want to charge me what??!!

There's also been a great deal of confusion about Amazon charging for the conversion and delivery of our own content into our own Kindles. Amazon *only* charges for wireless delivery, the conversion is 100% free. If you eMail your content to YourKindleName@kindle.com it's converted and downloaded into your Kindle for 10 cents. But if, instead, you eMail your content to YourKindleName@free.kindle.com it's converted and a link to the converted file is eMailed to your registered eMail address at NO charge. You can then download it and use your PC's USB connection to transfer the content to the Kindle.

Moreover, the FREE MobiPocket v4.2 Creator will convert many formats -- HTML, MS Word Docs, Text, and Adobe PDF into .PRC files -- nicely compressed and encrypted if you wish -- which, when transferred into the Kindle are directly readable. I have converted two large eBooks which I already had in PDF format into native Kindle format and they work perfectly -- no cost and no Amazon involvement at all. And I'm sure that quite soon there will be all sorts of free Kindle content converters popping up all over the place.

So I'm glad that I purchased this first-generation device, and that I'm participating in the first real wave of eBook industry creation. None of my other eBook readers offer nearly what the Kindle does. Thanks to Amazon and their Kindle, eBooks have finally happened.
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