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The Reader

Red

USA | Member Since 2003

40
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 46 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • On Intelligence

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Jeff Hawkins, Sandra Blakeslee
    • Narrated By Jeff Hawkins, Stefan Rudnicki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1425)
    Performance
    (327)
    Story
    (328)

    Jeff Hawkins, the man who created the PalmPilot, Treo smart phone, and other handheld devices, has reshaped our relationship to computers. Now he stands ready to revolutionize both neuroscience and computing in one stroke, with a new understanding of intelligence itself.

    James says: "Epiphany"
    "insulting and pedantic"
    Overall

    This is one of the worst books I have heard.

    Yes, there were some interesting ideas.

    But there were so many errors and faulty assumptions, that it made it hard to accept even his simplistic and obvious claims (and he made many of these).

    I resented his assertions that everyone but him, all scientists and AI (Artificial Intelligence) researchers in particular, just don't get it. I assume that some of this attitude comes from the fact that MIT rejected him. But many of his claims regarding what certain fields think about the brain are just wrong.

    For example, he mentions several times that AI researchers believe that a computer is just like the human brain. While some may talk metaphoricaly of the mind as computer, I have never heard the claim that the human brain works just like the hardware of a computer.

    (disclosure: My PhD is in AI)

    18 of 22 people found this review helpful
  • Thinking, Fast and Slow

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Daniel Kahneman
    • Narrated By Patrick Egan
    Overall
    (2384)
    Performance
    (1858)
    Story
    (1841)

    The guru to the gurus at last shares his knowledge with the rest of us. Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman's seminal studies in behavioral psychology, behavioral economics, and happiness studies have influenced numerous other authors, including Steven Pinker and Malcolm Gladwell. In Thinking, Fast and Slow, Kahneman at last offers his own, first book for the general public. It is a lucid and enlightening summary of his life's work. It will change the way you think about thinking. Two systems drive the way we think and make choices, Kahneman explains....

    Mike says: "Difficult Listen, but Probably a Great Read"
    "unacceptable reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read previous reviews that noted the difficulty of getting through this material in an audio book. But it is much worse than that.

    I encountered passages that were impossible to parse, that led me to wonder if the narrator was correctly reading the text. So I went to the book store to compare. I found instances in which the narrator not only misread the text, but read the opposite of what was in the text.

    This is unacceptable, especially in a scientific text.

    I have put up with mispronounced words and awkwardly paced information in the past. But to change what the author wrote, so that it no longer makes sense, should be corrected. If you are interested in this material, do NOT buy this audio version.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Outlander

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (14805)
    Performance
    (9187)
    Story
    (9062)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: An all-time Audible favorite that mixes historic fiction, adventure, and romance with one of the most fascinating literary devices: time travel. Outlander introduces an exhilarating world of heroism and breathtaking thrills as one woman is torn between past and present, passion and love. In 1945, former combat nurse Claire Randall returns from World War II and joins her husband for a second honeymoon. But their blissful reunion is shattered....

    Lulu says: "The Reason for the Existence of Audio Books"
    "Boring"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the first audible book that I could not finish. It is very dense, descriptive, historical fiction.

    What had attracted me to the title was the time travel aspect. But that turned out to be no more than a superficial gimmick for going into the most mundane historical fiction.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Accidental Time Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Joe Haldeman
    • Narrated By Kevin Free
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (259)
    Performance
    (123)
    Story
    (125)

    Joe Haldeman is the esteemed Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author of The Forever War. Things are going nowhere for lowly MIT research assistant Matt Fuller - especially not after his girlfriend drops him for another man. But then while working late one night, he inadvertently stumbles upon what may be the greatest scientific breakthrough ever. His luck, however, runs out when he finds himself wanted for murder - in the future.

    Brian says: "A fun, light story"
    "satisfying and interesting."
    Overall

    I usually buy longer books. But this offered so much.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Light of Other Days

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Arthur C. Clarke, Stephen Baxter
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (114)
    Performance
    (54)
    Story
    (53)

    The Light of Other Days tells the tale of what happens when a brilliant, driven industrialist harnesses the cutting edge of quantum physics to enable people everywhere, at trivial cost, to see one another at all times: around every corner, through every wall, into everyone's most private, hidden, and even intimate moments. It amounts to the sudden and complete abolition of human privacy - forever.

    Lisa says: "When Seeing All is not Understanding All"
    "boring & self indulgent"
    Overall

    I was looking forward to this book. It sounded like it could be quite thought provoking.
    Unfortunately it was only a little thought provoking with almost no story.
    One of the worst books I have listened to or read.

    3 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Timegate

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By W. L. Hesse
    • Narrated By Kevin Foley
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (10)

    2044 AD. The German Occupation Authority has held the United States in a tyrannical grip for the past 100 years, ever since the Nazis emerged victorious in World War II. Loner rebel Scott Hanover hates the GOA for destroying his family and regularly defies its harsh rule. Awaiting execution in a New Mexico prison, Hanover is given the chance to "escape". He must travel back in time to 1944 to thwart the plans of the Nazis. The task is impossible, and no one expects Hanover to come back alive.

    The Reader says: "ouch, this was bad"
    "ouch, this was bad"
    Overall

    I did listen to this all the way through, so it wasn't totally painful.
    But it was such a disappointment. Some things made no sense. Some things were never tied together. Character motivations were childish and unconvincing.
    And there was too little suspense or drama to compensate for these lacks.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • First Among Sequels: A Thursday Next Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Jasper Fforde
    • Narrated By Emily Gray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (695)
    Performance
    (266)
    Story
    (261)

    It's been 14 years since Thursday pegged out at the 1988 SuperHoop, and Friday is now a difficult 16-year-old. However, Thursday's got bigger problems. Sherlock Holmes is killed, and his series is stopped in its tracks. And before this can be corrected, Miss Marple dies suddenly in a car accident, bringing her series to a close as well. When Thursday receives a death threat clearly intended for her written self, she realizes what's going on: there is a serial killer on the loose in the Bookworld.

    Tzungmay says: "As amazing as the previous ones!"
    "awesome"
    Overall

    It started a little slow, and I thought maybe Thursday had been tapped out. But then it became one of the best books I have listened to. As usual he wraps up all the loose ends, even ones that you hadn't realized were loose. Very satisfying.

    The narrator was wonderful. She nailed every voice (male and female) so well that I never thought about who was reading, just the character.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Earthsearch: The Complete Radio Series I and II (Dramatized)

    • ORIGINAL (9 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By James Follett
    • Narrated By Full Cast
    Overall
    (196)
    Performance
    (60)
    Story
    (62)

    The acclaimed BBC Radio 4 space drama arrives in its entirety for the very first time, with a bonus introduction by creator and writer James Follett. The starship Challenger has been on a 115-year-long mission, exploring other galaxies for suitable Earth-like planets to colonise. The present crew of four were born on the ship and have never left it. But when the Challenger attempts to return to the crew's home planet, it discovers that the Earth has vanished!

    Scott says: "Excellent Radio Play"
    "wow"
    Overall

    This is the best audio I have purchased from audible. I have always avoided dramatizations because they tend to be so much shorter.

    But at this length I felt that it was a bargain that I had to try.

    It is great. Good story. Well acted. Truly absorbing.

    enjoy.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Adventures in Time and Space with Max Merriwell

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Pat Murphy
    • Narrated By Johanna Ward
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (17)

    Award-winning author Pat Murphy takes us aboard a luxury cruise ship and into the strange confluence of time and space known as the Bermuda Triangle, in an engaging science-fiction romp that recalls the work of Kate Wilhelm.

    J. says: "Strap yourself in for the ride of your life!"
    "waste of time"
    Overall

    This was the worst book I have ever read or heard. I kept thinking that it would eventually lead to something interesting, but alas it never did. Reading it might have been a better experience, but the audio version was just annoying.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Callahan Chronicals

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Spider Robinson
    • Narrated By Barrett Whitener
    Overall
    (566)
    Performance
    (214)
    Story
    (223)

    This omnibus edition contains the trio of books that introduced the world to Mike Callahan, Jake Stonebender, Doc Webster, Mickey Finn, Fast Eddie Costigan, Long-Drink McGonnigle, Ralph Von Wau Wau, and the rest of the regulars of Callahan's Place, in the stories that helped Spider Robinson to win both a John W. Campbell Award and a legion of fans.

    Charles says: "Great listen"
    "boring and self indulgent"
    Overall

    the first short story was interesting, but it went down hill from there. This was the first audio book I purchased, that I just could not finish.

    0 of 7 people found this review helpful

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