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Customer Reviews: 58
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Tim E. "madscientist" RSS Feed (Bogota, Colombia)

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Krups 212-42 ProCafe Time Coffeemaker, Black
Krups 212-42 ProCafe Time Coffeemaker, Black

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 3.5 years and still going strong!, September 25, 2000
I received this coffee maker as a wedding present 3.5 years as of November 2000, and it is still functioning perfectly. The timer is a great feature that will allow you to wake up with a hot cup of coffee, or have it waiting for you when dessert time rolls around. The look is sleek and nice. The coffee is...well, coffeeish. But the very best part is that you can start pouring your first cup before it is done brewing...it's got a little valve that stops the coffee from pouring onto the hotplate and making a mess. Now that's worth the price of admission, my friend! I gave it four stars because the construction is a little flimsy, but rest assured because Krups really stands behind their products. And like I said, she's still going strong!


The Annotated Frankenstein
The Annotated Frankenstein
by Mary Shelley
Edition: Hardcover
31 used & new from $1.85

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Story behind the story, September 7, 2000
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein requires a look at the context in order to understand its true value. As Wolf points out, Frankenstein is at time a poorly written work, with overelaborations and wordy dialogue. However, within the context of Mary Shelley's life, the book takes on an entirely new meaning: that of a creator's disenfranchisement from her creation (also, a woman's hatred of her own offspring). Writing from a time when birth control was primitive, and children were born (and died) often, Frankenstein is an unusual look into what it means to be a woman with creative energy that she cannot have control over. This deeper level of understanding is only accessible to me from the annotated version which Leonard Wolf has so nicely prepared.


Quitting the Nairobi Trio
Quitting the Nairobi Trio
by Jim Knipfel
Edition: Hardcover
74 used & new from $0.01

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Keeps you interested with mundane simplicity, September 7, 2000
As I began reading "Nairobi Trio" I thought is was shaping to be an exposé of patients treatment in a mental ward. It is not that. Instead, it gives a fairly neutral glimpse into a world that many of us never get to see: that of a fairly insane man. Knipfel's conversational writing style and comic flair are captivating. The story of his suicide, committment, and experience in a mental institution also keep the pages flipping. The book falters in its conclusion, however. Knipfel finally realizes that his life resembles a skit called the Nairobi Trio (hence the name of the book), a group of people dressed like apes who do the same thing over and over again. His mundane life, therefore, has pushed him to attempt suicide several times and landed him in mental institutions. If it sounds like a simple resolution--it is! But what can you really expect from a half crazy writer anyway? This is a funny and interesting book that is enjoyable to read, but when you finish it you begin wondering why you read it.


Macally iMediaKey USB Multimedia Keyboard
Macally iMediaKey USB Multimedia Keyboard
2 used & new from $35.00

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very nice keyboard with good response., September 7, 2000
I had to have a replacement keyboard for my iMac because my cat spilled water on the original and permanently damaged it. Consequently, I wanted something which fit the asthetics of the original keyboard as well as the function. The Macally keyboard did just that. It has a very nice feel to it, as well as a nice look. In addition it has several function keys which can be programmed as shortcuts. Unlike the original iMac keyboard, this is a full-size keyboard, which makes some of the keys easier to find without looking. The only thing I don't like is that the keys are an opaque grey, rather than the translucent black of the original iMac keyboard. All in all, this is a nice find.


Failure Is Not an Option: Mission Control from Mercury to Apollo 13 and Beyond
Failure Is Not an Option: Mission Control from Mercury to Apollo 13 and Beyond
by Gene Kranz
Edition: Hardcover
73 used & new from $0.27

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A view you don't usually see, July 10, 2000
If you're like me, the everything about the early days of space flight is captivating. I've read other accounts of this time period, including the incredibly in-depth michener novel "Space". What you don't often see is the view from the controller's booth. You don't see that often there was absolutely no data or voice communications between early spacecraft and the ground. You don't see the months of drills that Mission Control would stage, only to encounter problems that they could never have dreamed. Consequently, this account is a good read, and I enjoyed it. You may occasionally get bogged down by Franz's desire to name almost every person he can think of, as well as the endless acronyms. The jacket makes a big connection with Apollo 13. It is misleading because the book is far more comprehensive than that. Despite these shortcomings, I found it hard to put down and eye-opening.


Koss PP257 Water-Resistant Sports Armband Digital Radio (Yellow) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Koss PP257 Water-Resistant Sports Armband Digital Radio (Yellow) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Offered by Thwipp!
Price: $42.00

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good for what it costs., June 28, 2000
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The Koss PP257 was obviously designed to compete with the more expensive Sony Sports Armbands that are popular. It has the same type of yellow plastic casing, and it comes complete with 10 preset buttons and a station autoseek function. This unit also includes a reflector plate to add to safety at dusk. I used to own a Sony Armband, and I experienced very similar performance to the Koss I just bought. The earphones have a unique design that wraps around the ear, giving them more stability when you are using them like you should (to do sports!), and giving them a sleek look. Reception is typical of very small radios, decent outside, hit or miss inside. Some stations sound good while I work out at the gym, while others don't come in at all. Also, the included earphones have difficulty putting out the bass that you can expect in more expensive units. There is a lot of distortion if you use the bass amplification option and turn the volume past halfway. Nevertheless, I like this unit because it was inexpensive, works adequetely, and breaks the stranglehold that Sony has on the portable music market. If you buy a Sony you will only gain a little performance, but you will triple or quadruple your expense. You will also perpetuate a virtual monopoly. You don't have to buy Sony to be cool.


Imation SuperDisk 120MB Parallel Port External Drive
Imation SuperDisk 120MB Parallel Port External Drive

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good large capacity storage option, May 16, 2000
Imation's Superdisk was designed to directly compete with the Iomega Zip drive. Both carry comparable ~120MB per disk capacities. The Superdisk has one very large advantage: it can also read normal high density disks (at very high speeds). It also has one very large disadvantage: no one uses them. Consequently, Superdisks have become more of a personal backup medium than a universal exchange medium. These days, it is nearly possible to give a Zip disk to someone and assume that they will have a drive. You cannot say the same thing for Superdisks. Nevertheless, Superdisks have their niche. For example, the speed of Superdisks is far greater than traditional floppies. If you have archived substantial numbers of high density disks (as I have), then it is definitely worth it to thumb your nose at both traditional disk drives and the zip drive and just go with the Superdisk. After all, how many times do we really send a colleague a disk as opposed to a hard copy or an electronic message? Today, we need a medium that can hold large amounts of information to fulfill our everyday internet needs. Imation's Superdisk fits these requirements quite nicely!


Minolta Freedom Zoom Supreme EX 35mm Camera
Minolta Freedom Zoom Supreme EX 35mm Camera
3 used & new from $25.00

41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loaded with features!, May 16, 2000
The Minolta Freedom Zoom EX is a well designed camera with a significant number of features. Not only are the features numerous, but they are incorporated intelligently into a liquid crystal display that uses simple pictures that are easy to understand and remember. The instruction manual is concise and written with the not-so-expert photographer in mind. It even has sample photos to illustrate its points. Among the camera's more interesting features are the portrait and night portrait modes. Portrait mode will actually properly frame your subject for a well balanced picture. In night portrait mode, the camera will adjust its aperture and exposure length to capture a dark background while firing its flash to illuminate the foreground. I tried it at Disneyland and it works well. The included remote control is a great bonus that allows one to take those holiday pictures without scurrying around. Finally, the zoom is more than adequate for normal picture taking. In fact, while taking pictures at the Grand Canyon I was able to examine the Colorado River from the South Rim! It's also great if you are one of those freaks who likes to take pictures of people's nostrils. I highly recommend this camera to someone who wants a camera that will do a lot of cool things without having to take a course.


Toshiba W701 6-Head Hi-Fi VCR
Toshiba W701 6-Head Hi-Fi VCR

57 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's amazing what you can get for so little money!, May 6, 2000
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Toshiba developed the V3, 6-head chassis to compete with SVHS (Super VHS) and DVD technology. SVHS machines are quite expensive and they require special tapes which are also costly. DVDs are non-recordable (for the time being), more expensive to rent, and it is still debatable whether they will last very long. The current red laser DVDs will look like dinosaurs when blue lasers hit the market (blue lasers have a shorter wavelength, so they can reflect a smaller spot off the DVD and therefore you can pack in more information).
The idea behind the Toshiba V3 series was to provide essentially the same quality video and audio as SVHS with a much cheaper system. I am happy to say that the W701 provides Dolby sound and clear video that certainly approaches DVD quality--and much cheaper.
Perhaps the most amazing thing about it is that old tapes which look old on a 4 head VCR show significant improvements on this 6 head machine. The digital tracking system quickly adjusts for the optimum clarity. The machine automatically sets your TV stations and your clock. Setup is clear and straightforward. Rewinding happens at breakneck speeds. You can also play tapes at 2x, 1/7x, and 1/15x speeds. To top it all off, the unit looks fantastic and the price is right. If you don't know how (or don't want) to program the VCR, you should go for the W708, which adds VCR+ as well as digital noise reduction.
Even if you have DVD, you'll want to have a VCR to watch movies that aren't on DVD and also record. The W701 would be an excellent complement to a DVD setup.
I highly recommend this VCR!


Owsley
Owsley
Price: $13.98
57 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic CD!, May 1, 2000
This review is from: Owsley (Audio CD)
This is a great CD for driving from place to place. The music is extremely upbeat. Usually on a CD there are at least a couple of songs that you wish weren't there and you skip by them. This one is so well composed and mastered that I never feel the need to pass up any of them. I actually discovered Owsley by accident because he were opening up for Guster and I didn't know who he was. He sounded as good live as he does on the CD, and that alone is quite admirable. There is a certain amount of Beatles-esque quality to the music--and I love that. BUY IT!


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