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Customer Reviews: 514
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Mark P. McDonald RSS Feed (Chicago, IL United States)
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Air Purifier P400 with Hepa & Activated Carbon Filter
Air Purifier P400 with Hepa & Activated Carbon Filter
Price: $299.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Well designed, quiet, looks great in a room but hard to tell if it is making a difference, June 21, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you do not have alergies, breathing issues or live with a smoker I have to wonder how much this product will benefit you. This is the first air purifier that we have used so it is hard to tell how much better this works than other air purifiers. With that disclosure, the air filter is very quiet, well designed and with a good foot print to put into a room. Really could not tell if the air was that much clearer as we often open the windows to get fresh air into the house. Will probably know better in the winter when the house is closed up, but for right now its a good product but not one that has produced a clearly recognized differences


Sony H.ear on Wireless NC Headphone, Black (MDR100ABN/B)
Sony H.ear on Wireless NC Headphone, Black (MDR100ABN/B)
Price: $348.00
2 used & new from $260.97

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So good my millenial appropriated them -- solid sound, light weight and easy to wear, June 3, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I usually use earbuds because headphones have tended to be heavy, ill fitting and hurt my ears more than helped them. I was surprised and pleased with the H.ear phones as they are really light, deliver solid sound and are easy to wear. These may not be the flashiest of phones, there is no chrome like other vendors, but I found this to be a plus as people failed to notice that I was wearing a couple of hundred dollars on my head.

Comfort from good fit and light weight are the real strength of these headphones. Often I put them on and went about my work forgetting they were there. The phones pair easily and the voice commands help let you know when you have turned them off etc. Battery life worked well as I could wear them for the whole day without requiring a recharge. The sound is well tuned for mid range rock and roll, good bass and strong fidelity of guitar solos etc.

These phones were so good that when I lent them to my 20 something daughter, they were borrowed for an extended and indeterminate period of time.

The only draw back for me is the size of the control buttons located on the bottom of the head phones. I found them to be small and arranged in a way that was not easily memorized. That meant taking them off to look at the buttons so I knew which one to push. Other than that a great set of low profile, high comfort and great sounding headphones.


The Outward Mindset: Seeing Beyond Ourselves
The Outward Mindset: Seeing Beyond Ourselves
by Arbinger Institute
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.71
50 used & new from $8.46

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Important premise and outlook, presented in a way that is a soft commercial for the authors, May 24, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
An outward mindset is critical for success in this consumer driven world. This book provides a simple framework for changing the way you look and interact with the world. This is the central premise of the book and one that is repeated over and over again which limits the impact of the book over time. Overall this is an ok book, but the authors could have included more tools, support and discussion of what people do to help themselves and their team. In its current format, the book spends most of its time sharing semi-related stories rather than presenting research or tools that people could use. This is what gives the book a sense of extended commercial.

The book's central premise is that people need a new mindset - the way people see and regard the world -- how they see others, circumstances, challenges, opportunities, and obligations. (page 18) The premise is to change people's behaviors from ones that protect and advance themselves (inward) to ones that advance the collective result (outward)

Its a straightforward premise and one that people cover over the following chapters.

Part one: Something New
1. A Different Approach
2. What Shapes Behavior
3. Two Mindsets
4. Seeing Truthfully

Part two: Exploring the outward mindset
5. Getting out of our own way
6. The Lure of Inwardness
7. The Outward-Mindset Solution

Part three: Becoming More-Outward
8. The Outward-Mindset Pattern
9. Applying the Outward-Mindset Pattern
10. Don't Wait on Others

Part four: Multiplying Mindset Change
11; Start with Mindset
12: Mobilize around a collective goal
13: Allow people to to be fully responsible
14: Shrink Distinctions
15: Turn Systems Outward
16; The Road Ahead


Keep Curious and Carry a Banana: Words of Wisdom from the World of Curious George
Keep Curious and Carry a Banana: Words of Wisdom from the World of Curious George
by H. A. Rey
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $7.69
77 used & new from $0.01

3.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars as a novelty present, particularly for fans of le George, but less valuable as a book, April 25, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Curious George meets Stuart Smalley and you get this book. Affirmations from the collection of stories about the curious monkey and the man in the yellow hat. A must for and CG collector and a great pick me up gift, but this book does little to go beyond that. Its self help, affirmation and inspiration from books you loved as a child. If you, your children or others in your family have a CG stuffed animal, T-shirt or other George material, then go ahead and get this as a gift. There is not enough here to be a children's book, per se, but the affirmations are touching and brought back great memories.

Three stars only because the book has limited value beyond being given as a gift. Otherwise a 5 star job


The Big Fear (Hollow City Series)
The Big Fear (Hollow City Series)
Price: $4.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Big Fear attempts to combine a police procedural with a thriller with mixed results., April 4, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The Big Fear seeks to capture the general angst and environment of a post 911 - post Bloomberg New York by combining the pacing of a police procedural with splashes of a Thriller. The combination does not work for me as the overhead of procedural processes suffocate the flashes of thriller. Furthermore the author over indexes on the idea of the "Fear" as if he is trying to brand the idea -- guess one could expect the little fear, the new fear and other titles in the future.

The main character is a overworked, low self esteem detective who is caught up in a police on police incident. He has no friends and does not seem to care, feeling that he can save himself if he just follows a process. At the same time there is financial wronging and stock manipulation in the air, but it never really becomes the central part of the story. The mix proved so uninteresting that I abandoned the book about 1/2 of the way through.

Overall its easy to read, relatively clear in its imagery and I guess entertaining if I had time on my hand and not much else to do. Sorry to be so negative, but there are better books with a clear Genre to enjoy.


Selling Vision: The X-XY-Y Formula for Driving Results by Selling Change
Selling Vision: The X-XY-Y Formula for Driving Results by Selling Change
by Lou Schachter
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $26.11
48 used & new from $16.64

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended for every company and sales associate whose product line is changing radically, April 4, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The world does not jump from the old world to the new. As markets disrupt, so to does sales situations and challenges that companies face. That is the central premise of this book -- you need people to be able to sell today and tomorrow at the same time. How you do that, how you manage the sales force, how do you guide people are all part of this book.

Clearly written and demonstrating clear, experience based thinking this book is recommended for sales leads and companies facing the need to transition their revenue stream to new products that are different from current offerings.

If you want to read between the lines, Schachter's book is also helpful for business strategists, executives and change agents. Just think about the organization when Schacther talks about XY and how to transition the sales force.


Lee Men's Big-Tall Dungarees Performance Cargo Short, Gun Smoke, 44
Lee Men's Big-Tall Dungarees Performance Cargo Short, Gun Smoke, 44

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quickly becoming my go to shorts, March 20, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
These are quickly becoming my 'go to' shorts as the materials look great, hold their shape and reflect the combination of high performance and style. The fit is well made, particularly for this larger size. Their length is good supporting freedom of movement and enough coverage, if you know what I mean.

The neatest thing is the fabric. It a bit like a high thread count swimming suit. Yet the fabric behaves like its cotton based in the way it fits and moves.

Great combination of sport and style.


Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days
Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days
by Jake Knapp
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.80
81 used & new from $5.85

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars USE THIS BOOK -- it is unique in its ability to put ideas into action, March 20, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Most of the books on innovation and design espouse ideas about what it means. This book is designed for you to put to work, tomorrow if necessary. Sprint is unique in presenting a step by step guide of interactive design sessions without coming across as a cookbook or boring methodology. The authors skip past the 'theory' or design and go right to the action and that is a welcome change. Sprint is a 5 day intensive design process for exploring, defining and prototyping solutions to specific problems.

The book presents a readily understandable and very engaging description of the process that follows three or four companies through the process. The authors even discuss failures and how they learned that obvious things do not work. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for anyone who needs to engage a team to start and solve large and complex problems.

This is a well designed book, engagingly written with the right amount of prescription. The authors create just enough structure to allow the creativity of teams to come out. They also provide very practical advice on building the kinds of prototypes needed to successfully test ideas and solutions.

Strengths:
Actionable advice provided in a highly accessible way.
Clear instructions and guidance on the fundamental things to get right, without being picky about the things that will work themselves out
Simple and understandable illustrations and actions
Example stories of others, including success and failures
Practical discussion of tools you will need from advice about not using sharpie markers to prototyping tools.
Support materials at the end that condense the process into a few pages
Respect for the reader, a real issue in many design books that view the uninitiated as somewhat inferior, not this book.

Challenges
The authors assume that you have some appreciation for the creative or a design process. This is a structure to make that process flourish and therefore it does not try to convince you that design is the way to go.

It is written for people who think before they act, blindly following this recipe will not create great results because the value is in the interactions between people and the creative process that happens within the structure.

Overall -- great book to USE rather than just one to read and think about.


X: The Experience When Business Meets Design
X: The Experience When Business Meets Design
by Brian Solis
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $20.91
77 used & new from $15.79

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This is not a book to read but a book to look at, January 29, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Digital Design, Journey Maps, Experiences, Touch Points and Personas form a new language of experience design. The terminology, examples and connections across these ideas can be confusing, particularly for people used to creating technology and solutions in the prior model. This book provides a highly stylized but still effective overview of the design deliverables and process. However, the book is surprisingly less usable than one that is designed. The Format gets in the way of thus highly stylized coffee table style book on digital design

This book is in a long line of works that try to be graphically stunning -- showing off designer skills. while still conveying important information. The design too often overwhelms the content, making it less accessible and valuable to the reader. This is a paradox that a book about design could be designed in such a way as to make it less usable.

The basic point of the book is that experience increasingly determines who wins and loses in the digital economy. Its a concept that is well established by a number of other books. Solis goes one step further in showing you the elements of designing and developing experiences which is a real plus. But the book is rather unusable as its difficult to annotate -- given the dark pages. Its also difficult to read as the text is in different places on different pages. This is not a book you read -- its a book you look at, which is a shame because that can easily trivialize the content I am sure it will win print design awards, but print designers are not the 'users' or audience of this information -- not designing for the customer means its not designed.

The result is a book that you want to use and share with others, but the format gets in the way -- hence the three star rating.


Trend-Driven Innovation: Beat Accelerating Customer Expectations
Trend-Driven Innovation: Beat Accelerating Customer Expectations
by Henry Mason
Edition: Paperback
Price: $24.42
61 used & new from $16.00

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extending the Business Model Framework into Innovation, January 22, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Fans of Osterwalder's Business Model work will love this book. it follows the same style with Stylized graphics, pithy and pointed chapters and a focus on illustration rather than argument. This is a tool-kit book that is best skimmed and then used as a reference rather and read and absorbed. One way to look at this book is its really an "app" in disguise pointing to tools, situations etc.

The nature of the material and its graphic orientation works better as an actual book rather than as an ebook. Not to knock the Kindle, but the format and content just works better this way as you will want to share and pass it around on a project.


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