Thursday, September 30, 2010

LELO BO Gentleman's Vibrating Penis Ring, Blue

As a female purchaser of this LELO BO Gentleman's Vibrating Penis Ring, I have to say that this is an unbelievable addition to an already amazing sex life. Although BO is called a "gentleman's ring753" I beg to differ and would re-name this product the "lady pleasing ring." I think it is a perfect addition for any couple and will be highly recommending it to all of my friends.

My boyfriend is also a huge fan of BO. Just buy won't regret it!

Code Complete: A Practical Handbook of Software Construction

The focus of Code Complete is software construction, i.e. the coding part of software development. As Steve McConnell notes in the preface, "construction is the only activity that is guaranteed to be done". You can skip almost any step (requirements, testing etc), but if you don't write any code there is not going to be any software.

I bought my copy of the first edition of Code Complete in 1997, and I was immediately fascinated. I had never read anything like it before - a book that concentrated on the actual writing of the code. For example, it had a whole chapter on if- and case-statements, and another chapter on the naming of variables. I had no idea there was so much to learn about these seemingly straight forward activities. It was immediately useful to me, and I started to apply as much as I could of what I learnt from it.

Although it concentrated on coding, it covered a broad spectrum of activities around coding, from requirements and design to testing, debugging and optimization. It also had a great reference section with suggestions of further reading in the area of software engineering. This became my starting point for finding lots of other good books to read, like Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams (Second Edition) and Programming Pearls (2nd Edition).

So this summer I decided to re-read this seminal book, partly to see what's new in the second edition, and partly to see if still think it is such a great book.

To answer my own question - yes, it is still the number one book on writing code. It is near encyclopaedic in its coverage of the nuts and bolts of programming. There are chapters on the naming of variables, on organizing straight-line code, on conditionals, on loops, on lay-out, on good commenting and on how to write good methods.

In it, there are frequent references to scientific studies that support the advice given in the book. For example, how long should variable names be? Instead of just giving us his opinion, McConnell summarized the findings of several scientific studies on the subject.

Each time there is reference to a study, there is a little "hard data" symbol in the margin. There are other symbols in the margin as well, "Coding Horror" for code examples of what not to do, and "Key Point" for, well, key points. The margin is also used for cross references to other chapters, and for quotes related to the subject discussed. For me, this works really well. It is both useful and makes the text easier to read. In general, the book is very well laid out.

Some of my favourite advice from the book (all of which I remember from reading the first edition) are:

Chapter 7.1 Valid Reasons to Create a Routine - for example: Reduce complexity, Introduce an intermediate understandable abstraction, and Avoid duplicate code (there are 6 more valid reasons in this chapter). The second part of the chapter is called Operations That Seem Too Simple to Put Into Routines and contains a great example of why it can be good to put even a one-line calculation in a routine - the code becomes more readable, and small operations tend to turn into larger operations.

Page 172 (and 264 for variables ) Use opposites precisely. When naming "opposite" methods and variables, be careful to use the correct pairs, like add/remove, begin/end, create/destroy etc. This makes the relationship between them clear and obvious.

Page 433 Break complicated tests into partial tests with new boolean variables. This is such a simple thing, but it makes the code a lot more readable.

Page 754 "Make the incompleteness of a statement obvi". For example, when breaking up a logical and over two lines, end the first line with && - that way, it is clear that the statement continues on the next line.

Even though the book truly is great, there are a few things to complain about. In the first edition, the chapters on layout and comments came right after the chapters on the different control structures. But in the second edition, these two chapters have been moved further back. To me, that doesn't make sense, since they too are related to how you actually write your code. Now there are chapters on testing, debugging, optimization and refactoring in between.

And talking about refactoring: while this is an important subject, I don't feel the chapter on refactoring is particularly good. This chapter is new in the second edition. The summary of refactoring is OK, but a good part of the chapter consists of just listing different kinds of refactorings.

Overall though, the second edition is a nice face lift. The code examples are now mostly in Java, C++ or Visual Basic (in the first edition they were in Pascal, C or Ada). But since all the major themes of the book were already present in the first edition, it does not make a big difference if you happen to read the first edition instead of the second edition.

Code Complete is thick - 862 pages (not counting the bibliography and index). If that feels like a lot to read, then I suggest you start by just reading one or two chapters, for example "Using Conditionals" or "Layout and Style". They (and pretty much any chapter in the book) can easily be read without first reading the preceding chapters, and these will give you a sense of what you can expect from the other chapters. Even if these are all you read, you will still get a lot of value from the book.

However, if you are a programmer and care about how you write code, you owe it to yourself to read the whole book. It is considered by many (including me) to be the best book available on programming, and it will almost certainly make you a better programmer. Highly recommended.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

HTML5: Up and Running

This is an overall good introductory book to HTML5 for existing web developers. If you are completely new to HTML and want to start with HTML5, then this is not the one you should read. This is not a step-by-step book, but it introduces the background, the rationales, and the new features of HTML5 with appropriate amount of depth to get started.

The book only has around 200 pages, it does not go very deep into any topic it introduces, but the amount of information it gives is enough as a starting point. At the end of each chapter, it also gives a pointer for further readings. A lot of contents are of very high value, not only teaching how to do, but also telling the reasons. And it's very thoughtful to include the matrix for browser support for the features it introduces.

In general, for any existing front-end developer, learning and accepting the concepts of HTML5 shouldn't really be particularly hard with the right information, and this is a book I recommend.

Assholes Finish First

Having read I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell a couple of times, I was stoked when I got an advanced copy of AFF through a friend of a friend. I have to admit that my expectations were kinda low since I didn't think you could really top  I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell. What I realized after reading this book was that the best way to follow up a book like IHTSBIH is to do something a little different.

And it feels like that's what Tucker did. He talked about the same stuff (alcohol, virgins, clowns, midgets) but from a wiser, more mature perspective since after all he's what in his mid-30s now? The best part of AFF for me was that while a lot of the humor came out of the outrageous, ridiculousness of the content (e.g. who drives an RV through Harlem at night???), even more came out of the (slightly) elevated maturity and (slightly) refined writing style Tucker seems to have developed since IHTSBIH.

I'm sure this won't be for everyone since nothing ever is, but if you love to laugh at craziness and the often times self-inflicted misfortunes of others, you are going to love AFF. Especially the Post-Fame Sex Stories, where the unbelievable depravity gets turned up to 11.

Wanna set yourself on fire? Get this book

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Anthropology of an American Girl: A Novel

This is a great coming of age book. It follows the main character, Eveline from high school through college but more of her experiences were out of school with her friends, relatives and lovers. I will try not to disclose too much of the story because I want you to read it. There were some scenes that brought me tears because they had happened in my life too.

I think that this is truly a book immersed in themes for all American women. I appreciated the sensitive way, Hilary Thayer Hamman has Eveline see the world through the sounds, smells, textures and deep inner feelings as the artist that she was in the book. She was more introspective than an extroverted person. Eveline is easy to identify with in so many ways. Her character interprets life sometimes incorrectly, but always deeply. Her friend Jack is at the same time ultra sensitive and intuitive but also a very lost soul. As, you read, I think that you will agree that there are Jacks, Rourkes, Dans and Robs in all our lives.

The author works each character thoroughly. The women in her book, her best friend, Kate, Kate's mother, Maman, her own mother are all fully developed too. And the situations are very memorable like writing a deeply personal letter over and over again and yet not sending it. How many of us have had that situation?

But what I gained the most from this incredible book is the author's insights that she put into the character's words, thought and feelings. I had to stop every once in a while and think about them and how they appeared in my own life. Something I had not thought about in my life now make sense! There are very few books that can make that claim. There is a very painful scene close to the end where it seemed most of the characters grew in their perceptions and understanding of people.

I think that it teaches the true meaning of love. I think this book ranks as a modern classic. I recommend it to all American women and any man who thinks that they understand them. This book is a treasure.

Get a copy here

Monday, September 27, 2010

Hello, Android: Introducing Google's Mobile Development Platform

I have been a developer for nearly 10 years now and I have bought an incredible volume of books over this time period. This book, Hello Android was one of my favorites to actually "read". This book covers the complete creation of a game from start to finish. What I like about the book is that the author explains what we are going to do, shows the coding to make it happen, explains why we are coding it that way and if it is something graphical he shows us what it should look like. What more an you ask for? I also like how he can guess what your question may be and answers it.

For example he talks about colors values( alpha, red,green & blue). My first question was "What the heck is alpha". I turn the page..then there it is he explains it. This book was enjoyable as opposed to so many other books I have bought. I sat down and read half of it while my husbands was getting his hair done. To me it read like a novel.

I can not find anything bad to say about this book. I read some of the other reviews and I was surprised by what others had wrote. I can only guess that their negative responses are a result of their limited experience.

The point of the book is to get one started in Android programming and that is exactlty what it does. I am hoping I will find other books written by this author.

Get a copy or see other excellent reviews to see what others are saying about this book

Sunday, September 26, 2010

SQL Antipatterns: Avoiding the Pitfalls of Database Programming

I bought SQL Antipatterns in the middle of an increasingly stressful project. Taking two days out to read it thoroughly and correct some of the patterns we were guilty of turned the project around for the better. We were able stop worrying about database design and concentrate on security issues.

For me, the best thing about the book is that it serves as a comprehensive reference of the benefits of doing things properly, and justification of the time this often requires.

It helped a lot, very fast.

My only constructive criticism is that I wish there was more content. Database good practices is a very expansive subject, and as I was reading the book I couldn't help but wish the author was "building up to the good stuff" as some other PragProg books do. This book is reasonably priced so it remains good value, but if it was $30+ I might have given it four stars instead of five for this reason.

Friday, September 24, 2010

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Presents Earth (The Book): A Visitor's Guide to the Human Race

Are you a fan of the Daily Show and Jon Stewart? Are you in the market for a funny, visual coffee table book that takes shots at pretty much every demographic on the planet? If so, then Earth is probably the book for you. Even if you're not a fan of Jon Stewart in particular, I'll bet you get a kick out of this book - assuming you don't take yourself too seriously. Sense of humor is definitely required.

Earth is formatted as a fun hybrid between a middle school textbook and The Old Farmer's Almanac. Pretty much every page is fun to look at, and the whole book is packed with photos, illustrations, factoids, and captions. Earth is relatively light on actual prose, so don't expect the chapter structure of a typical book. Each page has about 100 different things on it, which I personally found a bit overwhelming at times reading this one from cover to cover. This isn't really a huge complaint, especially if you're going to be reading it more casually or using it as a coffee table book - but I thought it was worth mentioning.

If any of this sounds good to you, then I'd be surprised if you didn't get your money's worth with Earth. Have fun with the Daily Show's memoir of our little blue planet.

UML Distilled: A Brief Guide to the Standard Object Modeling Language

I was introduced to programming with Kernighan and Ritchie's C book. I loved reading that book. It's a classic because it's so concise, easy to read, and practical. A lot of my interest in the field came from just this one book.

UML Distilled is the OO design analog of K&R C. I tore through this book in about a week. It's actually a fun read which is an extreme rarity for anything computer science related. The author did a good job of cutting the fat off a very fat-rich specification. And I think the author quickly turns design via UML into a collaborative effort and not an automata (MDA? Really?).

Reviews of reviewers:
"Didn't follow the spec" Fowler dedicated the first chapter explaining his views on UML's role in the design process. It's bleedingly obvious that he sees UML as a "sketching" tool. If you want an MDA book, go buy one, and good luck.

"Condescending attitude" I didn't get that. I saw a neutral tone throughout. A 10-year fad in IT books is to get cutesy with the material (see the Dummies series). This spills out even to the more serious topics and publishers. There is no cutesy in this book, just fast paced information. Maybe that's mistaken for condescending.

"Couldn't keep up" First, Fowler seems to break his examples up between Java and C#. And his programming examples hold some finer nuances of each. Second, I think OOP and OOD jargon is rich and diverse. Students will get overwhelmed quickly. So I don't think this is the right book to learn OOP. But on the other hand, if you still can't approach this book after a year or two of real world OO programming, something is wrong.

For those serious developers out there, here's a link to get a copy for yourself.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Seven Languages in Seven Weeks: A Pragmatic Guide to Learning Programming Languages

Ruby, Io, Prolog, Scala, Erlang, Clojure, Haskell. With Seven Languages in Seven Weeks , by Bruce A. Tate, you'll go beyond the syntax-and beyond the 20-minute tutorial you'll find some place online. This book has an audacious goal: to present a meaningful exploration of seven languages within a single book. Rather than serve as a complete reference or installation guide, Seven Languages hits what's essential and unique about each language. Moreover, this approach will help teach you how to grok new languages.

For each language, you'll solve a nontrivial problem, using techniques that show off the language's most important features. As the book proceeds, you'll discover the strengths and weaknesses of the languages, while dissecting the process of learning languages quickly--for example, finding the typing and programming models, decision structures, and how you interact with them.

Among this group of seven, you'll explore the most critical programming models of our time. Learn the dynamic typing that makes Ruby, Python, and Perl so flexible and compelling. Understand the underlying prototype system that's at the heart of JavaScript. See how pattern matching in Prolog shaped the development of Scala and Erlang. Discover how pure functional programming in Haskell is different from the Lisp family of languages, including Clojure.

Explore the concurrency techniques that are quickly becoming the backbone of a new generation of Internet applications. Find out how to use Erlang's let-it-crash philosophy for building fault-tolerant systems. Understand the actor model that drives concurrency design in Io and Scala. Learn how Clojure uses versioning to solve some of the most difficult concurrency problems.

It's all here , all in one place. Use the concepts from one language to find creative solutions in another-or discover a language that may become one of your favourites.

Click here to buy this book now!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sun Stand Still: What Happens When You Dare to Ask God for the Impossible

Pastor Steven Furtick has done an AMAZING job breaking down the elements of audacious faith. It's one thing to write about it...but it's another to live it out. Pastor Steven and Elevation Church have stretched for the impossible and God has delivered in ways in which only He can get the credit.

This book will challenge you, push you, step on your toes and call you out. If you're ok being stagnant in your faith...don't read this...because it is sure to change your way of thinking and will cause you to pray for the impossible and act immediately.

This book is hardcore and will remind you that "If God is for us, who can be against us."-Romans 8:31

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Managing Humans: Biting and Humorous Tales of a Software Engineering Manager

This book is not your atypical text book style or instructional book. It really reads much more like a blog or fictional short story. I found it to be light, easy to read and laugh-out-loud funny at times. It also had a Dilbert-esq feel at times. I caught myself nodding in agreement and wondering when he had been employed at my office.

The catch is, hidden in all the funny stories and apparent wanderings, are actually a lot of valuable tidbits of information. If you are a beginning tester or manager this probably isn't going to help you much, except to entertain you (or scare you as you contemplate your new career).

For those of us with more than a few years under our belts, they are in there if you pay attention. Personally, I have to say it was nice to be learning something without it being done in a lecture or preachy style for a change. It was a breath of fresh air from the usual textbooks available.

You can check out a copy here.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Cracking the Coding Interview, Fourth Edition: 150 Programming Interview Questions and Solutions

I've read several books on interviewing, so I knew some of the stuff in this book. I still learned a bunch though. I got some valuable techniques on approaching problems, as well as for how to prepare. The resume advice is also great.

One thing though - make sure you follow the author's advice to the letter. It's tempting to just read through the interview solutions from start to end - don't! Actually take the time to go through them methodically, using the techniques from the book. You'll learn much more and, really, that's what good interview prep is all about.

I did actually get offers from Traffic, Imation, BT and the BBC (ended up going to BT- woot!). Who knows what would have happened otherwise, but I'm guessing this book had a lot to do with it.

Will definitely re-read before any future interviews as well.Get a copy if you're in search of jobs in software development.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Being Geek: The Software Developer's Career Handbook

I don't even work in the software industry, but, Michael Lopp's writing style and content transcends many different industries and is very interesting.

Many people are rating this book low, or lower, due to spelling mistakes, pronunciation mistakes, etc. Get over it. There are several, but they in no way shape or form detract from the content or message of the book.

If you want to read something that is interesting, true, funny, and fluid, then this book is for you. If you work in a large company, this book is for you. If you work in a small firm, this book is for you. If you are a technical person, this book is for you.

The only warning I will give is if you are an avid reader of his blog, then you'll find you've read some of the "chapters" already. If you read Managing Humans, you'll find you've read some of the "chapters" already. However, there is significant new content for people who have done both.

If discovering this will make you mad, you won't like the book. If you can move past this, you'll enjoy it.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pinheads and Patriots: Where You Stand in the Age of Obama

Regular viewers of "The O'Reilly Factor" on Fox Television will be thrilled with this volume. As with his previous books it is easy reading, fair and balanced (believe it or not), and includes lots of Bill's famous, dry humor.

You can almost see his sly smile as you read some of his statements. This short, 250 page book can easily be finished in only a day or so of reading, depending how much time can be devoted to it. Bill defines what he means by both the terms pinheads and patriots. He then points out that many people are both depending on the circumstances of their various actions.

He talks about many well known politicians and gives examples of their actions some of which would qualify them as pinheads and others as patriots. Yes, even Mr. O'Reilly admits to occasionally being a pinhead and he also acknowledges that it's too early to know whether some of his opinions will eventually put him in which P&P category. We all act as pinheads sometimes.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

How I save on Amazon's Fall Blowout Sale‏

Start the fall season off right with great deals on thousands of items featured during Amazon’s Fall Blowout Sale. The event will include sale prices on a great selection of items, including electronics, sporting goods, clothing, home furnishings, and more. Give your readers the opportunity save, and earn advertising fees on subsequent qualifying purchases.

To see all of the great products that Amazon has collected for this event, which runs through September 26, 2010, go here.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want, and Change the World

Just as Chris has done with his previous ventures, the The Art of Non-Conformity really resonates on a visceral level. There is no easy way to describe what topic best characterizes this book. It's a business book and a self-help book and a philosophy book and a guide to life book. Chris truly believes that there is enough out there for everyone and relishes in helping people find their way to true happiness.

His examples and stories are incredibly relate-able. So much so that I called my 7 year old son in to sit with me and read some of the parts on fear and pushing through the walls that hold us back from experiencing life. Those lessons made sense to my son and I know that this book will make sense to anyone that gives it a chance.

The Art of Non-Conformity is destined to be a book that people will credit as causing turning points in their life. I know it will for me.

 The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want, and Change the World

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Professional Android 2 Application Development

A great book, very impressed with the introduction. I was struggling with other two books including Hello Android. but the authors of this book care for starters to understand concepts first. for example another book i used went directly to use the static class R, and I couldn't figure what it meant.

As I struggle looking at complex examples, only helped me to get more familiar with Android 2, but now i am having a clearer understanding. I really recommend this book to others like me who are starting. In my case, this book helps me understand by giving small examples rather than looking to an endless sudoku example from Hello Android. :) You will see it when you read it.

More >>

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

The Grand Design

God the Universe I was in the womb. The womb was in my mother. My mother was on the earth. The earth is in the solar system. The solar system is in the Milky Way. The Milky Way is in the universe. Well, now where is the universe? What happens to logic? Some say it fails, some say it ends, some say physics is complete. Stephen Hawkings perhaps persumes that universe created itself from nothing. Nothing? I am sure when Dr Hawkings said god he means the entity in which the god's men have faith based on belief. So says he that the universe is not created by the so called god. If God is not an entity then Hawkings can be right for assuming the universe or the creation itself as god and so he has faith based on physics that universe created itself. First please debate whether god is an entity or a non entity.

One comment on this controversy asks Dr Hawkings what was before the Big Bang. Well, it was the colllapsing universe into the largest singularity, having the total energy, both the energy that manifests and the energy that does not manifest fused together. This singularity further collapses to trigger the Big Bang. The birth of the universe gives out two energies one that manifests into matter and the other which does not manifest remains as energy and expands along with the matter to hold them. Since this expansion and collapse occurs once in 100 years(NOT TERRESTRIAL YEAR)he must have said the universe creates itself from nothing.

Religions live in the past. Scientists live in the future. God's men
think god made man in his own immage for ever. Science tells us about evolution and man is not the final form of evolution. He can take mutation and get higher level of intelligence and find the answers and the Truth one day. It's unfair to expect science to unfold all the secrets in our lifetime. After all we humans even after thousands of years are not sure about god.

More than Dr Hawkings' declaration, I am amused by the reactions from godmen. Why not ask a couple of questions.Where was god the entity before his creation? Did he create the universe around him or outside. Why did he choose that particular time to create? What was he doing before the creation? Why is god addresed as He and not She. When god said let there be light and there was did sound come into being?God created the universe in an order (the order of evolution). Why cant he create in the reverse?

A comment said seeing is not believing. Is hearing believing? For ages now we believe that Mosses came down from the hill top and said that he spoke with god. Fortunately for some and unfortunately for others Erich von Daniken was not there, if he was he would'nt have believed it.
MargoKSam India

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

About Helen

My name is Helen Neely and I’m the creator and maintainer of this blog. I launched it in September 2004 and, just barely a year later, the site receives thousands of page views a month and has lots of  RSS subscribers. Even more, I have spent no money at all on direct advertising for the site – I have never spent a dime to steer readers my way.

How did I do it? I spent a month collecting every technique I used to achieve this success. This isn’t “how to start a blog” material – anyone can write about that. What I focused on is how to build an audience and write quality content. These ideas were originally posted as a series of entries at here and other various blogs. But over time, I had to move all my content in one place and work more to make this place the final home for those content.

 Today, I finally gave in and decided to put up a post so about myself, how I started this blog and to answer some of the questions people have been asking over the years. Like most bloggers I know, writing about one self is very hard - you don't want to be seen as beating your own drum, so that has put me off writing this for a very long time. Even as I type this, I'm still asking myself if it is, being the sort of person I am, I will let this pass for now and come back to it later.

Will you link to me? Yes, I mostly link to those who have good quality content on the blog, it does not matter what sort of area your blog covers, as long as it is well written and thought through, I will add it to my blogroll. You don't have to linkback to me. Sometimes it makes sense to link to people and not ask them to return the favour.

Do you accept guest posts? I have never really thought of it, but shoot me an email or leave a comment if you'd like to post here. Keep your post clean, no offensive language, discrimination or anything that would cause offence - think of readers from different cultures and backgrounds.

 What's your day job? I currently work as a senior software engineer, my day is spent writing software with Python, JSON/XML, MySQL and Django, and I make heavy use of MongoDB and Pymongo. I used to be a Java developer for 6 years, but gave it up when I discovered the joy of Python programming. At night and when I have free time, I manage this blog and work on my second book. I also help out on the Python-tutor answering questions that those new to Python post on the mailing list.

What else? Yes, I once had a page here, but rarely update it these days, but do check it out.

Tips - How to Rename the Suffix of a Group Files on Windows

Very simple, use cmd and go to the directory,

rename *.abc *.xyz


Monday, September 06, 2010

Helen on Usability

A nice perk from working in the software development department in my company: we’re allowed to buy books on the company credit card as long as we share the knowledge with the team afterwards.
I decided to try this out by ordering the “Rocket Surgery Made Easy “ by Steve Krug, the sequel to “Don’t Make Me Think“. I haven’t finished the sequel yet, but I thought it would benefit the team to do a 15 minute presentation on the original: [need a thumbs up from manager to post slide here ]

I’m quite pleased with my first ever presentation (not including primary school). I assure you, it makes more sense if I’m standing there talking you through it!
Oh, and I’d highly recommend “Don’t Make Me Think” if you’re thinking of purchasing a web usability book. It really is quite good, although a little out of date.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Blogger Needed to create simple 100 word blog posts

As someone who has been blogging for years, I still get a bit excited when a request like this pops into my inbox once in a while. Woke up this morning and noticed this in my inbox: Blogger Needed to create simple 100 word blog posts    The good part is that it does not cost a penny to post these articles,  instead, you get paid for it ($25-$100).

It is open to anyone with a good enough blog with unique content. The requirements are simple: Write a blog post on a given topic, place the article on your own blog and get paid for it. Now, you tell me, can there be anything simpler?

Pick any topic from the list and post the article within 7 days. Here's the link if you are interested.

Good luck

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Hurry, grab one of these Kindle Wireless Reading Devices

The Kindle 3 is a well designed, well crafted product -- a rarity. I don't typically give 5 star ratings because there are no perfect products and there are almost always significant and unnecessary negatives. But, that's not the case here.

I agree with the many other positive reviews which have gone into detail, so I'll skip and skimp somewhat.

The screen is clear and easy to read. When I first opened the box, the displayed screen saver appeared as a printed film to be removed. The paper-like quality is a pleasure to read. And, of course, the screen is exceptional in bright light such as sunlight.

What could be improved? Better resolution and color.

The new iPhone's retina display shows amazing detail for such a small screen, 3.5". This is due to the large number of pixels, 640 x 960. The Kindle 3 screen has 600 x 800 pixels, but less densely packed in a larger 6" screen. The screen size affects how close you need to be to the screen. But, the pixels affect what can be shown without panning or without loss of detail. So, while the Kindle 3 can display similar detail to an iPhone 4, if it had even higher resolution, with a similar pixel density, it could display even more.

Though the black and white display is most suitable for fonts and even most images are crisp, clear and pleasing, color would be welcome. Color would provide an improvement for graphs, illustrations and images of course.

Are these negatives for the K3? No. The current pearl display is no doubt eInk state of the art technology or nearly so. The technology can and will be improved -- that's all. Do I feel disappointed by the display? Absolutely not! I'm wow'ed by the display.

What else... the web browser. I had hoped that web browsing would be decently usable. It is much better than that.

Most web pages display properly. Page load time is about that of dial-up. It could be better, but it's more than usable. One trick is to turn off Javascript -- it's not needed for most sites and this speeds up load times, esp. near the end when the page can seem stuck. Mobile versions of web sites work well. But even regular sites are readily viewable with either zooming, switching to landscape mode or a combination, or using Article mode (which is an excellent feature though it doesn't, and can't, work for all sites). Am I writing this review on my K3? No, I have a laptop. Do I use my K3 for surfing the web when I go out or when I'm lazy sitting on the sofa? Yes.

An easter egg: create a folder named "pictures" on your K3. You can create sub-folders under it and copy over jpg, bmp, gif, or png files. Viewing the pictures is a little glitchy, but it works.

Another area for improvement: allow mp3 files to be individually chosen to be played, and provide some rudimentary playlist means.

So, there is room for improvement, but the negatives are either minor or understandable. And, the many positives are very high.

I'm still just getting used to my K3 as it's one of those "game changer" devices. I was going to hard-copy print some emails the other day that I needed to refer to, but instead printed them to a pdf and copied it to my K3. I carry my K3 with me much of the time. I don't know how useful it may become as the novelty wears off, but it has a lot of unexplored potential.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Sh*t My Dad Says

Okay, so I have a Blackberry 9700 and I have the Kindle application on my phone. I was browsing through the library and found this book. It sounded remarkably like the guy I followed on Twitter so I decided to read the excerpt and realized it was! So I purchased the book and have been reading it in my downtime at work and I have to say that I have been laughing all day! I could not believe that someone's dad was this vulgar but at the same time at least you always knew what he was talking about and did not try to push things under the carpet like a lot of sensitive people tend to do these days. I am enjoying every moment and cannot wait to get home and order a pizza and finish this book.

For the people who are complaining that the book was too vulgar, I refer you to the title. If you have profanity in the title, what made you think it was going to be innocent like "A River Runs through It"? In this day and age it seems that everyone is so uptight. You can't say this; you can't say that, etc. It's nice to see someone who was not afraid of his own shadow in his own house and who was not afraid to stick up for his son's when needed-be. My mother was not as frank as he was but she certainly has had her time or two down at the schools defending me and my siblings. I say that times, work, economy is so hard on everyone right now. Sometimes you need to just sit back and ask yourself "what did he just say??" and have a good long laugh instead of bringing more unhappiness in your life by over-analyzing and complaining all the time. You have enough of that and I certainly do. We call this sort of humor close to what is termed "grave-yard humor", especially with the line about the dog. So stop complaining, sit back, grab a beer and some pizza, and laugh!

I know this is not supposed to be a literary genius book and I am good with that. Again, my life is stressful and I am tired and I just like the fact that I could just laugh because I have not genuinely done so in a very long time! Hope you all enjoy it as much as I did! 5 stars all the way

Amazon Affiliates Did Not Receive Associates Payment

Just like most affiliates, I have been promoting Amazon products for a long time on this and many of my other blogs and sites. This used to be a fun way to make decent revenue stream outside your normal wage but recently, I started seeing post on many forum threads about Amazon not sending out cheques to affiliates. This of course is unlike Amazon - they have been at the forefront of Affiliate marketing and they publishers loved them. 

But with the latest payment issue, it looks like they will be turning their backs and moving on to something else. The reason I'm posting this is because I too did not receive my last month direct payment. Despite a number of emails to their support team, I still haven't seen a single penny. To make the matter worse, this is another month, bringing the total of unreceived payments to two (2).

I did a quick search online and noticed that even more people are posting queries in the line of: Amazon Affiliates Did Not Receive Associates Payment.

So, I thought I would post this in case there are still those wondering if they are the only ones affected. You are not in this alone - there are many others including myself that have not received our payment for the second month running. Like I said above, I have been in contact with them, but have not got any positive updates from the. If you too have contacted them and have any response, please post in the comment to share with others.

Until I get my payments I don't see myself promoting any of their products.

For SE: Amazon Affiliates Did Not Receive Associates Payment & amazon payment associates
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