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fli "thisisfrancis" RSS Feed (San Francisco, CA USA)

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Orgain Creamy Chocolate Fudge, 11-Ounce Container (Pack of 12)(Packaging may vary)
Orgain Creamy Chocolate Fudge, 11-Ounce Container (Pack of 12)(Packaging may vary)
Price: $28.99
37 used & new from $25.39

13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Orgain is still great- just beware of bad batches, October 24, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Yes, Orgain changed their formula recently. Among other things, it no longer contains soy, which I think is a good thing since it can be an allergen and can cause digestive discomfort (gas, bloating, in some cases).

Unfortunately, with this change, apparently some bad batches made it out into the market (mine were dated 8/21 and 8/22). These batches have a weird and very strong "grassy" flavor that is indeed quite disgusting (which I think I've tasted before from some organic milk from grass fed cows).

However, if you receive these batches, please try contacting them with your concerns before jumping to conclusions. I sent them a private message on Facebook ([...]) with the codes on top of my drinks, and they quickly responded, sending me free replacement cases.

The replacements tasted just like the formula before the change (as far as I could tell).

They know there's a problem, and are working to resolve it. Customer service still exists in the Internet age of automation!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 24, 2012 11:00 PM PDT


ASUS Eee Slate EP121-1A010M 12.1-Inch Tablet PC
ASUS Eee Slate EP121-1A010M 12.1-Inch Tablet PC
2 used & new from $600.00

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So close, but not quite there..., October 15, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I purchased this tablet way back in February and got one of the first units, but after the initial gee-whiz factor wore off, it basically sat on a desk untouched for months until I finally sold it. Why? Because it just wasn't a practical productivity device for me...

I've been long watching the progression of Windows tablets, always thinking that eventually one would come that would provide that right combination of hardware and price to hit that sweet spot. And, on those respects, this slate hits the mark. Unlike most Windows tablets from the last year or so, this one has an Intel Core processor, 4GB RAM, and a Wacom pen digitizer rather than the usual underpowered Atom/1-2GB RAM/touchscreen-only combos. And, unlike other powerful Windows tablets that hit the $2000+ niche industry vertical price range, this one comes it at just about $1000.

So, ultimately, what's missing for me? Buttons. I need to work with Adobe Creative Suite applications, and I always think that I'll just be able to lean back and work with my files with just the pen. But beyond simple sketching and painting, you simply can't work efficiently without all the shortcut and modifier keys. If I need to set up the Bluetooth keyboard on a desk to work, I might as well just sit at my desk with my nice giant monitor and even-more-powerful computer.

Just compare this tablet to the entry level Wacom Cintiq 12WX 12-Inch Pen Display and what do you see? Ignoring details like levels of pen pressure, the big difference is that the Cintiq display tablets have numerous programmable shortcut keys and touch strips that let you work a bit more easily without a keyboard. It's frustrating- the EEE Slate is just $100 more than the 12" Cintiq display with comparable display specs, and if only it just had more buttons (which there's plenty of bezel space for), it would be a digital designer's dream! Sadly, I think it just may never come to be...

But, what do you see when ASUS and Microsoft air commercials for the EEE Slate? A guy working on an Excel spreadsheet. A kid watching a video. Who comes up with these product specs? If you expect someone to pay $1000+ to get hardware that can run $2000+ software, why hobble it by trying to make it sleek and appeal to people who will be more satisfied with an easier to use $500 iPad with iWorks and iTunes?


ASUS UX31 13-Inch Laptop [2011 model]
ASUS UX31 13-Inch Laptop [2011 model]

23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Finally, a Macbook Air alternative..., October 15, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
At long last, PC users finally have a strong alternative to the Macbook Air in the ultrathin, ultralight category. The ASUS UX31 meets or exceeds the technical specifications of the base model 13" Macbook Air, while starting many hundreds of dollars less expensive. Kudos to ASUS for throwing in the VGA and ethernet dongles rather than nickel-and-dime-ing you like Apple with extra charges for these standard accessories. The included sleeve will do a fine job protecting the laptop, but it seems like rather cheap synthetic materials to me- can't complain at this price, though.

In particular, I was happy to see ASUS put a high-resolution 1600x900 13" display, unlike the recently announced Acer ultrabook which has a standard 1366x768 resolution. More time with Adobe Creative Suite will be needed for a final verdict, but the display seems high-quality enough for most consumers.

I found the keyboard to require a bit more pressure on keys to type with than the Macbook Air, resulting in some missed keystrokes, but that will probably change over time. Also, the trackpad does not have a high-quality feel to it- the front is split into two "clickable" regions, but the touchpad layer itself feels like a brittle, thin film of plastic that FEELS like it will break after a while- only time will tell.

Thank goodness for the other reviewer who mentioned downloading new drivers for the trackpad- the "Sentelic Finger Sensing Pad" has HORRIBLE response out of the box- often not recognizing taps and gestures, jumpy tracking, and choppy scrolling. I wouldn't have noticed since the Asus LiveUpdate utility did not report any new software. It turns out that the drivers on the support site are labeled as "Beta" and won't be automatically downloaded until they are considered "final". Do yourself a favor, though, and download them anyway. Still not as smooth and accurate as on the Macbook Air, but a big improvement.

To answer a comment on the previous review, this laptop uses WiFi/Bluetooth hardware from Atheros, not Intel, so WiDi is not supported. I've had some flakiness with the WiFi- not sure how good the reception is, as I'm very close (i.e. at the same desk) to the base station and often not getting more than 3/5 bars in the indicator.

Thankfully, the laptop comes without too much additional software. Trend Micro antivirus software is included, but I didn't activate it and simply downloaded the free Microsoft Security Essentials instead so it will be easily updated with Windows Update- oh, and be prepared for the usual many waves of Windows Updates to install, with one batch causing the laptop to freeze and hang after reboot for me, forcing a hard reset. Not a great first experience, but one I'll blame Microsoft for rather than ASUS. Finally, ASUS and Intel have a bunch of annoying gadgets installed to show you various battery and CPU status, but they seem easily uninstalled.

The one thing I'm confused about is the so-called "ASUS Instant On" feature. Honestly, I don't know what turning "Instant On" ON does other than change the default Start menu button from "Shutdown" to "Sleep". Sleep mode with automatic Hibernation when the battery gets low has already been part of Windows 7, so is it really doing something different that requires me to keep yet ANOTHER utility open and running all the time? Seems like just marketing- except if so, this marketing spin adds yet another cr@plet running on the desktop...?
Comment Comments (20) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 10, 2012 4:32 PM PST


Mononoke Hime (Princess Mononoke: Symphonic Suite)
Mononoke Hime (Princess Mononoke: Symphonic Suite)
Offered by EXP-JAPAN (from the U.S.)
Price: $40.95
97 used & new from $11.22

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a must buy..., September 25, 2000
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I actually like the Original Motion Picture soundtrack better than this symphonic re-orchestration. Yes, the soundtrack CD chops the songs into bits, but they flow pretty well together. The symphonic CD pretty much just puts those bits together into longer tracks- they still follow the action of the movie pretty closely, so it doesn't necessarily make for a better listen.
Also, the recording of the U.S. soundtrack CD seems to have a better dynamic range than the symphonic (perhaps due to HDCD tweaking). Finally, the sythesized instruments are lost in the symphonic orchestration, which I liked in the score.


Princess Mononoke: The Art and Making of Japan's Most Popular Film of All Time
Princess Mononoke: The Art and Making of Japan's Most Popular Film of All Time
by Miramax
Edition: Hardcover
38 used & new from $3.75

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, but lacking depth..., October 27, 1999
I was hoping for some anecdotal tidbits from the making of the film to be interspersed throughout the book- it is only artwork with plot descriptions until the end, when the computer graphics are discussed. Still a great coffee-table book, but not that interesting...


Princess Mononoke: Music From The Miramax Motion Picture
Princess Mononoke: Music From The Miramax Motion Picture
26 used & new from $6.99

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great! But incomplete., October 27, 1999
I enjoyed the soundtrack as much, if not more, than the other reviewers, but I was disappointed that this release did not include the original Japanese version of the Princess Mononoke theme performed by Yoshikazu Mera. Hardcore fans may want to seek an import instead.


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