LISTENER

Critic

  • 9
  • reviews
  • 4
  • helpful votes
  • 10
  • ratings
  • The Secret Teachings of Plants

  • The Intelligence of the Heart in the Direct Perception of Nature
  • By: Stephen Harrod Buhner
  • Narrated by: Stephen Bel Davies
  • Length: 11 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 64
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 55
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54

All ancient and indigenous peoples insisted their knowledge of plant medicines came from the plants themselves and not through trial-and-error experimentation. Less well known is that many Western peoples made this same assertion. There are, in fact, two modes of cognition available to all human beings - the brain-based linear and the heart-based holistic. The heart-centered mode of perception can be exceptionally accurate and detailed....

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Nice info, but the reader, well...

  • By Mr_OmiH on 06-17-18

Avoid At All Costs

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-13-18

This is condescending psuedo science composed 90 percent of quotes taken out of context--predominantly Henry David Thoreau. Like any grandiose religious text (or especially any philosophy that entices with the word "secrets") this book works by presenting itself as an inadequate metaphor while confidently repeating the mantras of vaguely identifiable ideals. There is literally one concrete fact in here (about the benefits of skunk cabbage) and the rest is an exercise in verbal oscillation. Readers/listeners are better off going into the woods and/or reading the texts of the various quoted authors.

Not to mention, this book is dangerous on the level of anti vaccination and flat earthers. If you find value in tapering common sense, then sure, you might enjoy this.

1 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • More than Two

  • A Practical Guide to Ethical Polyamory
  • By: Franklin Veaux, Eve Rickert
  • Narrated by: Craig Beck
  • Length: 15 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 937
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 839
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 824

Can you love more than one person? Can you have multiple romantic partners without jealousy or cheating? Absolutely! Polyamorous people have been paving the way through trial and painful error. Now the new book More Than Two can help you find your own way.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great book. Deceptive description.

  • By Brian on 06-23-15

Essential Relationship Reading, Poly OR Mono

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-30-18

Even for someone merely curious about the topic of polyamory, this book does an excellent job at depicting and informing of the various ways to go about leading healthy relationships. Written with extreme care and respect, narrated with excitement and hope, and useful as reference material for how to live a happier life with deeper and more rewarding relationships with the people you love.

  • You Are Not a Gadget

  • Being Human in an Age of Technology
  • By: Jaron Lanier
  • Narrated by: Rob Shapiro
  • Length: 7 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 275
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 166
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 164

Jaron Lanier, a Silicon Valley visionary since the 1980s, was among the first to predict the revolutionary changes the World Wide Web would bring to commerce and culture. Now, in his first book, written more than two decades after the web was created, Lanier offers this provocative and cautionary look at the way it is transforming our lives for better and for worse.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Thought Provoking

  • By Ahmed on 03-17-10

Incoherent, But Often Enlightening

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-06-18

Having gone backwards in the Lanier bibliography, I at first found this book to be much clearer in explicating complicated ideas presented in those books. Toward the end, this book does begin to feel a little incoherent and the last chapter about cephalapods and VR seemed out of place with the overall theme of the first half of the book. Overall, an interesting read/listen though as Lanier consistently seems to offer up an evolving thread of techno philosophical ideas.

  • Who Owns the Future?

  • By: Jaron Lanier
  • Narrated by: Pete Simoneilli
  • Length: 12 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 269
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 231
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 227

Who Owns the Future? is a visionary reckoning with the effects network technologies have had on our economy. Lanier asserts that the rise of digital networks led our economy into recession and decimated the middle class. Now, as technology flattens more and more industries - from media to medicine to manufacturing - we are facing even greater challenges to employment and personal wealth. But there is an alternative to allowing technology to own our future....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • THRESHOLD OF CHANGE

  • By CHET YARBROUGH on 08-04-15

Pure Lanier

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-03-18

An extremely informative book detailing the true inner workings of our current "siren server-centric" internet and postulating an alternate future in which people are the proprieters of their own contributions to the information economy. Written with pure heart and yet cautious optimism, Lanier succeeds at making a technologist's world more accessible to the average curious person.

The musical accompaniment (beginning and end) is also a welcome addition.

  • Our Final Invention

  • Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era
  • By: James Barrat
  • Narrated by: Gary Dana
  • Length: 9 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 587
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 516
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 519

Artificial Intelligence helps choose what books you buy, what movies you see, and even who you date. It puts the "smart" in your smartphone and soon it will drive your car. It makes most of the trades on Wall Street, and controls vital energy, water, and transportation infrastructure. But Artificial Intelligence can also threaten our existence. In as little as a decade, AI could match and then surpass human intelligence. Corporations and government agencies are pouring billions into achieving AI’s Holy Grail - human-level intelligence.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Kind of chilling

  • By Keegan on 04-11-15

Informative Fearmongering

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-01-18

While the book presents interesting and often significant accounts of developments in AI from past to present, its author tends to fill out the source information with an annoyingly unwavering tone of doom. At times his fear of all robots seems to follow from a rational discussion involving inevitable implications. But most of the time, the narrative and interviews seem to have been conducted with a predetermined bias instilled by a misunderstanding of how the tech works. If you can tolerate a doomsday/sensationalist narrative, the nonfiction history alone may carry you through.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Significant Zero

  • Heroes, Villains, and the Fight for Art and Soul in Video Games
  • By: Walt Williams
  • Narrated by: Kevin T. Collins
  • Length: 9 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 105
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 102
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 102

When his satirical musings in a college newspaper got him discharged from the Air Force, it became clear to Walt Williams that his destiny in life was to be a writer - he just never thought he'd end up writing video games, let alone working on some of the most successful franchises in the industry - Bioshock, Civilization, Borderlands, and Mafia, among others. Williams pulls back the curtain on an astonishingly profitable industry that has put its stamp on pop culture and yet is little known to those outside its walls.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Revealing insight into the games industry

  • By Anonymous User on 10-06-17

Mostly Inspiring

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-19-18

Other than an occasional bout of unforgivable narcissistic pessimism (in a retrospective telling), this book finishes strong with an honest assessment of the inner workings of the development of a triple A game. An informative read for any aspiring writer or game developer.

  • Experience on Demand

  • By: Jeremy Bailenson
  • Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer
  • Length: 7 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 37
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 37

Virtual reality is able to effectively blur the line between reality and illusion, pushing the limits of our imagination and granting us access to any experience imaginable. With well-crafted simulations, these experiences, which are so immersive that the brain believes they're real, are already widely available with a VR headset and will only become more accessible and commonplace. But how does this new medium affect its users, and does it have a future beyond fantasy and escapism? In Experience on Demand, Jeremy Bailenson draws on two decades spent researching the psychological effects of VR and other mass media to help listeners understand this powerful new tool.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Very Informative and Mostly Easy To Listen To

  • By Critic on 04-12-18

Very Informative and Mostly Easy To Listen To

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-12-18

This book was extremely informative and simultaneously easy to follow. Each case study in VR is explicated with precision and unbiased enthusiasm for the medium. The second half tends to get a bit dry at moments, not helped by the audiobook narrator's often monotonous reading, but the contents of this rich and varied history of academic research in VR is too important to neglect, for VR enthusiasts, developers and persons with an interest in human psychology especially as it relates to and evolves alongside ever advancing tech.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Dawn of the New Everything

  • Encounters with Reality and Virtual Reality
  • By: Jaron Lanier
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman
  • Length: 14 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 147
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 133
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 133

Bridging the gap between tech mania and the experience of being inside the human body, Dawn of the New Everything is a look at what it means to be human at a moment of unprecedented technological possibility. Through a fascinating look back over his life in technology, Jaron Lanier, an interdisciplinary scientist and father of the term virtual reality, exposes VR's ability to illuminate and amplify our understanding of our species and gives listeners a new perspective on how the brain and body connect to the world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The future and how we will get there

  • By Daniel J. Matyola on 12-05-17

An Eye Opener/New Philosophy for Life

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-10-18

This book is essential for everyone. Lanier's path to VR and beyond touches on almost every concievable cultural, technogical, and political shift in the past century. The anectdotes of bizarre stories from Lanier's life are masterfully written with painstaking deference to pioneers of computer science, programming, business, music, film, and even architecture. The audiobook narration is charming and easy to lose hours at a time listening to. I am excited to read/listen to the rest of Jaron Lanier's books.

  • Amazing Fantastic Incredible

  • A Marvelous Memoir
  • By: Stan Lee, Peter David, Colleen Doran
  • Narrated by: Peter Riegert, Stan Lee
  • Length: 1 hr and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 165
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 151
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 151

Stan Lee - comic book legend and cocreator of Spider-Man, the X-Men, the Avengers, the Incredible Hulk, and a legion of other Marvel superheroes - shares his iconic legacy and the story of how modern comics came to be. Lee is a man who needs no introduction. The most legendary name in the history of comic books, he has been the leading creative force behind Marvel Comics and has brought to life - and into the mainstream - some of the world's best-known heroes and most infamous villains throughout his career.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Stan is 'The MAN!'. Listening with boys is best!

  • By NYC Gurrrl on 11-03-15

Good but Short

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-23-18

For the price, this is not worth it. An interesting life story but way too short. Feels like nothing more than a passage from a wikipedia page on Stan Lee, giving no real depth or insight beyond factoids that most of us already knew. The performance was good, but still not enough for the price.