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Customer Reviews: 528
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Helpful Votes: 4717


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Jijnasu Forever RSS Feed (Lynnfield, MA)
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MoJack 47104 Myron Mixon Pitmaster Q3 36-Inch Wood Pellet Grill/Smoker
MoJack 47104 Myron Mixon Pitmaster Q3 36-Inch Wood Pellet Grill/Smoker
Price: $749.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe an acquired taste.... pricepoint and hassles may it an OK value, June 17, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The packaging was very secure and the unit did not suffer from dents/missing parts. The assembly of the unit is relatively easy though you can't rely entirely on the instructions; did take two people about 35-45 min to assemble despite the fact most of the heavy parts come already put together.

But the use of the Pitmaster requires a ton of patience - first, you should be able to remove all the protective coatings, then hope to god(s) that you've not sheered away any of the parts of layers that are actually needed for the grill to last long. Once you are comfortable, you need to hunt for pellets (buy at least your first batch from Amazon and then hunt for local availability; + a grill cover). Then, the seasoning process - a good 1 hr to get this unit up and running - and then it depends on your luck how even you are able to control the heat. Overall, after a few trial-and-error, one can manage the right settings and then it works like a charm.

Just not sure if it is worth all the hassle with finding the right pellets, waiting, slower cooking...at this pricepoint.


New Old World: An Indian Journalist Discovers the Changing Face of Europe
New Old World: An Indian Journalist Discovers the Changing Face of Europe
by Pallavi Aiyar
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $15.48

4.0 out of 5 stars Good read on differing societal dynamics; could've benefited with an addendum, June 6, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The new avatar of a 2013 attempt by Aiyar is a mix of reporting, observations, semi-autobiography and a travelogue of sorts. She leverages her experiences in growing up in India, living in China and then in Europe (sans Britian per her definition). While observations come across as astute and oftentimes insightful, the relatively tedious narration obfuscates the points. Aiyar seems to be content to shining a spotlight on what she perceives to be significant cultural and societal/structural issues that is plaguing Europe than to suggest any solution - and that's fair; the book is not written by or for a policy wonk or a social scientist. A reader would have benefited significantly if there was an afterword or addendum to the 2015 US incarnation of this book that addresses the unfolding Greek crisis, the dramatic surge of ISIS in the past two years, and how ECB's actions are creating newer political and social tensions. Overall, a good read to understand some differing dynamics, but could've benefited by an addendum.


Viva Labs #1 Premium Himalayan Organic Goji Berries, Noticeably Larger and Juicier, 1lb bag
Viva Labs #1 Premium Himalayan Organic Goji Berries, Noticeably Larger and Juicier, 1lb bag
Offered by Premium Vitamins
Price: $25.95
2 used & new from $16.95

5.0 out of 5 stars good value for organic Gojis..., June 6, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
For organic Goji berries, Viva's offering is perhaps the best value; I was introduced to Goji berries mostly through my travels to Asia where this was added to some of the local teas. Since then, I have been using this occasionally for teas and sometimes with yogurt paired with other dried fruits like raisins and cranberries. Overall, these berries are not as sweet as raisins, not as tart as cranberries and depending on your experience, leaves a slightly bitter after-taste if used as a snack by itself. The air-tight packaging leaves the berries a little too clumpy, but easy to separate them out and store in your own jar or use the resealable pack. Good value for organic Goji.


The Ignorant Maestro: How Great Leaders Inspire Unpredictable Brilliance
The Ignorant Maestro: How Great Leaders Inspire Unpredictable Brilliance
by Itay Talgam
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.84
74 used & new from $2.73

4.0 out of 5 stars Good read with some force-fitted narrative arc, June 1, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Despite the use of industry-specific jargon, Talgalm's profile of the leadership styles of seven famous conductors offers some ideas for managers and anyone who is in a position requiring to influence peers/teams; however, the approaches seem a bit forced to fit the narrative arc of conductors - which may not pan very well in traditional organizational structures. Notions of empowerment and agile testing recur throughout the book and that reinforcement is good. Talgam addresses this book directly to those in leadership positions and provides little discussion on how to change their own behaviors or how teams can help create a great conductor. Though no music aficionado myself, I've been curious about the fame struggle of composer v/s conductor... this provides some clarity to that; one wishes Talgam was able to cast these insights more from a team building perspective than purely leadership. Good read.


Linksys AC1200 Amplify Dual Band High-Power Wi-Fi Range Extender with Intelligent Spot Finder Technology and AC Pass Thru (RE6700)
Linksys AC1200 Amplify Dual Band High-Power Wi-Fi Range Extender with Intelligent Spot Finder Technology and AC Pass Thru (RE6700)
Price: $95.20
48 used & new from $79.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great value with one minor concern...., May 31, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This extender has several advantages which a user can appreciate if one understands the purpose of an extender.... it is called an extender because it allows you to get WiFi signals in areas where you didn't before - it is not called an accelerator or magnifier. With that in mind, this unit is excellent value - the dual band connectivity, the spot finder, very easy and intuitive setup along with the availability of the electrical outlet - makes this a great choice. One potential cause for concern - the unit seems to generate more heat than other comparable units - and especially if you use the socket in the unit for anything even as a night lamp, the generated heat is perceptible. To reduce this issue. I take the unit off the wall when I am not going to be at home for extended time or am not planning to connect to a device - the extender picks up the previous settings quickly and havent noticed any need for set-ups each time. Overall, a good value - must pay attention in initial days to see if your set up is generating any perceptible heat.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 2, 2015 9:20 PM PDT


T-fal Zen Ceramic Chef's Knife, 6-Inch
T-fal Zen Ceramic Chef's Knife, 6-Inch
Price: $25.74

4.0 out of 5 stars good value for an entirely ceramic knife, May 22, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
For a ceramic knife, this is a sharp; with the disadvantage of not necessarily being able to resharpen. Compared to stainless steel knifes, I was not impressed with the sharpness, but the cut quality was good. Having said that, the knife is entirely ceramic, unlike cheaper versions that are coated or serve as a house over a metal frame. That makes the knife more fragile. The handle design is excellent and prevents knife touching the surface; but the sheath itself is a tad cheap-looking. Overall a good value.


Who Gets What — and Why: The New Economics of Matchmaking and Market Design
Who Gets What — and Why: The New Economics of Matchmaking and Market Design
by Alvin E. Roth
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $14.67
72 used & new from $8.01

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Informative, but too focused on one type of market.., May 10, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
In a fairly detailed treatment of markets where one not need to choose but also need to be chosen, Roth explains the core principles of markets that are amenable to "clearing houses". The book is organized in four parts; The first part introduced the key dynamics of markets where pricing alone cannot determine the mechanics of who gets what... Roth uses the example of kidney exchanges as the motivating example to illustrate that there is at least one other market than one where demand/supply equilibrium can be attained purely by pricing. In Part 2, the main challenges of marketplaces are defined using a very limited set of examples - kidney exchange, public school assignments in Boston and NYC, medical residency matching, and some interesting historical events. These chapters outline four challenges in market design - being too soon, or too fast or too risky or too congested. In the third part, Roth returns to the same examples to explain how he and his collaborators have addressed these issues; the irony of the narration is that in its effort to explain this to everyone - it comes across either has too superficial or very difficult to relate to; such the state of economics! Roth does take his approach to simplify too far, at times (for example, he confuses Visa and Mastercard as credit card companies and clubs them with banks that issue the cards- they are not; they are credit card transaction processing companies) .

Despite the narrow focus and some oversimplification, the use of the same limited set of examples to highlight key aspects of market design, is an informative read and a great introduction to a Nobel Prize winner's research. An average reader will be able to understand how some markets function, while an experienced student expecting to find new insights from Roth will be disappointed.

(A recent book by Richard Thaler - Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics may offer another perspective on markets - focusing more on the decision making biases of the market participants).


Classic Brands Shredded Memory Foam Pillow with Bamboo Rayon Cover, Queen
Classic Brands Shredded Memory Foam Pillow with Bamboo Rayon Cover, Queen
Price: $20.80
2 used & new from $20.80

4.0 out of 5 stars Very thick, but conforms well.., May 7, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Though the shredded foam concept seems to be hold up to its promise on conformity, the rather heavy feel (and size) may not be for everyone. I currently use a traditional memory foam pillow - enjoy it very well (or at least have gotten used to it). This one feels much more denser, despite the shredded foam. There is no doubt that the ability for the pieces to move around leaves more air spaces that can aid in circulation - most likely to see impact in warmer days. The pillow can use a day or two in partial sunlight/airy areas to reduce the smell.. Overall, a very comfortable, comforming pillow that just may be too thick for some. I have started using this primarily for lying down poses for pranayama (breath yoga) meditation due to its heft and relative comfort.

It is hard to compare the price/value for the product - a pair of traditional memory foam pillows can be obtained from an omnipresent warehouse for almost the price of this one. Durability and comfort level over time will determine if the price premium is worth it.


Amped Wireless High Power Plug-In AC1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender (REC22A)
Amped Wireless High Power Plug-In AC1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender (REC22A)
Price: $119.99
34 used & new from $101.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy set-up, works extremely well..consistently., May 1, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Among the wireless extenders, I have used, this model from Amped has been the easiest to set up, and it works as good as advertised. Using an iPad, it took less than 5 minutes to set up. Very intuitive and well-thought through interface for setting up with very clear information on each screen (an accurate countdown warns you exactly when to expect next steps, etc.). Overall, this has been the most pleasant experience in setting up any electronics gadget that is device-agnostic.

The performance is excellent; in a far away sunroom, the extender easily resulted in a "full" indicator for WiFi devices, and the ethernet port enabled to connect a gaming device (for very infrequent use, this will work very well; I already have an extended port to connect to the TV). The extender has performed consistently as well, no pauses in video streaming, for example.

There is one minor disadvantage, other than what seems to be a tad pricey - the bulk of the unit. It is difficult to place this in plug points with tight corners or abutting walls. I have had mixed experience in trying to print from a device connected to the extended network to a printer on the original network (need to verify settings and will update the review). Overall, an excellent choice for an extender+port option that is extremely easy to set up and works consistently.


Moen 6900 Rizon One-Handle Low Arc Bathroom Faucet, Chrome
Moen 6900 Rizon One-Handle Low Arc Bathroom Faucet, Chrome
Price: $178.50
4 used & new from $159.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Aerated flow, sturdy low profile design..., April 29, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The sturdiness of the unit will be immediately noticed upon holding the faucet - the sheer weight alone can justify the price premium of this product. In addition, the aerated flow performs well to reduce splashes and maintain an even flow (hence, the Watersense label). The low profile provides a cleaner look, but if you are used to the traditional faucets in a larger size bathroom, this simple change can make a dramatic difference in look - much cleaner and elegant; you will be tempted to change to all coordinating Rizon fixtures for the shower/tub (and I yielded to it and ordered them). There is only a tiny red/blue dot in the faucet to indicate the water temperature, but the handle moves so flawlessly (at least for now).

The installation took about an hour or so; all parts are very clearly marked. The quality of the water hoses itself is excellent. (plenty of DIY videos available to aid with installation). Overall, the elegant chrome finish, the quality of the accessories (hoses, etc) and the faucet itself makes this a top choice. You will most certainly find less expensive options, but this experiment removed the cynic in me;


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