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Donald P. Jane

Covington, La USA
  • 27
  • reviews
  • 55
  • helpful votes
  • 27
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  • How to Create a Mind

  • The Secret of Human Thought Revealed
  • By: Ray Kurzweil
  • Narrated by: Christopher Lane
  • Length: 10 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,188
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,032
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,024

Ray Kurzweil, the bold futurist and author of the New York Times best seller The Singularity Is Near, is arguably today’s most influential technological visionary. A pioneering inventor and theorist, he has explored for decades how artificial intelligence can enrich and expand human capabilities. Now, in his much-anticipated How to Create a Mind, he takes this exploration to the next step: reverse-engineering the brain to understand precisely how it works, then applying that knowledge to create vastly intelligent machines.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Read the Wikipedia article, don't bother with the book

  • By Liz on 09-24-15

Strong A.I.

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

Reviewed: 12-09-17

While I do not necessarily agree with Mr. Kurzweil's ideas and views nonetheless I am able to recognize and appreciate excellent work. The book is thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating. He has been called a futurist but that is such a vague term that may bring to mind several definitions. He is a futurist in the sense that he is predicting a particular line of technological development that will achieve A.I. equivalent to that of the biological human brain. His prediction, however, is based upon a thorough examination of how A.I. has developed over the decades that has lead to the current state of achievements of A.I., which is the basis for his projections, rather than prediction. He sees the goal of achieving strong A.I. as not being in the distant future but having achieved strong A.I. by 2029. This is an excellent book regardless of whether or not we like or wish for the future Mr. Kurzweil supports and is actively working towards.

Treasure Island audiobook cover art
  • Treasure Island

  • By: Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Narrated by: Alfred Molina
  • Length: 7 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,701
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,396
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,397

Robert Louis Stevenson's cherished, unforgettable adventure magically captures the thrill of a sea voyage and a treasure hunt through the eyes of its teenage protagonist, Jim Hawkins. Crossing the Atlantic in search of the buried cache, Jim and the ship's crew must brave the elements and a mutinous charge led by the quintessentially ruthless pirate Long John Silver. Brilliantly conceived and splendidly executed, it is a novel that has seized the imagination of generations of adults and children alike.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful!

  • By Jessica Kos on 01-02-08

A Good Fiction Classic

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

Reviewed: 11-30-17

4-stars in the Overall and Story categories, 5-stars for the Performance category. A well-written tale that held my interest. I did not find it to be anything special though, just a good, well-written book but then it should be especially considering the author's high position in the literary ranks. It certainly stands above some of the other classics with which I have had issues. It was worth the read but definitely does not rank, in my opinion, as a must read unless you wish to become a novelist.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Journey to the Center of the Earth

  • By: Jules Verne
  • Narrated by: Jack Sondericker
  • Length: 9 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 99
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 91
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 93

In Jules Verne's classic tale Professor Von Hardwigg and his nephew Harry discover the entrance to an ancient volcanic tunnel in Iceland. They choose to explore it for the mysteries it may hold, the Professor for scientific knowledge, and Harry to prove his bravery to a beautiful girl. It is a dangerous journey that may destroy them both. As they travel deep into the caverns they encounter a subterranean world that pre-existed man. It is an adventure as fascinating and strange as any explorer ever recorded. Finally, with their equipment lost and food running low they must face the consequences of a vital choice.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great book, average narration

  • By Zachary on 05-21-14

Classic Is Not A Synonym For Excellence

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-27-17

Overall I give it 3-stars. Narration gets 5-stars, and story gets 2.5 stars. Boring, uneventful, no intrigue or excitement. Though the author went into great detail in the story I did not find anything in it worth the irreplaceable time I have spent on the book. Save for the narration, I found it uninteresting and would have been better off not having read it at all.

  • 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

  • By: Jules Verne
  • Narrated by: David Case, Frederick Davidson
  • Length: 11 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 645
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 550
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 553

The year 1866 was marked by a unique incident, a mysterious and inexplicable phenomenon, and rumors agitated the maritime population and excited the public mind, especially seafaring men. Merchants, common sailors, captains of vessels, skippers, both of Europe and America, naval officers of all countries, and the governments of several states on the two continents, were deeply interested in the matter.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Lousy translation

  • By Tad Davis on 09-02-08

Classic Is Not A Synonym For Excellence

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

Reviewed: 11-27-17

I give the overall category 3-stars. It was okay but far from great. The narration, which I give 5-stars, was indeed beneficial to my interest level in the story. Without the narration, I don't think I would have found it very interesting. I felt the story was good, but not above a 3-star level. It was very detailed and the author's vocabulary is excellent. I would say, 'Do not read the book because it is a classic. I found nothing within the story to make it worth the irreplaceable time spent on the experience. I could have done just as well had I never read it in my life.

  • The Scarlet Letter

  • By: Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Narrated by: Ian Lynch
  • Length: 7 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 694
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 603
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 602

The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s, magnum opus, tells the story of Hester Prynne, who gives birth two years after separation from her husband and is condemned to wear the scarlet letter A on her breast as punishment for her adultery. She resists all attempts of the 17th century Boston clergy to make her reveal the name of her child’s father while she struggles to create a new life of repentance and dignity.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Trust Me-- Try It!

  • By Savannah on 06-23-14

A Classic Worth Hearing

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

Reviewed: 11-18-17

Again Audible only offered 1-star for all three categories. I give this book 4-stars across the board i.e., Overall, Performance, and story.

There are a few of the classic fiction novels with which I was not impressed. This book is not one in which I am disappointed. It is a wonderful example of the author's masterfully skillful command of the English language and ability in writing a novel that flows effortlessly from idea to idea and from point to point from beginning to the end of the novel. I also cannot go without mentioning wonderful expansive vocabulary. His words were a treat to the ear. He describes a historically inspired story in profound details covering the era and the Puritans with full confidence in his knowledge of both. His explanation of his character's cognitive and emotive forces is wonderfully impeccable and in which I found at no time any cause for a fault on his part. I very much enjoyed the book and I am pleased I have allotted the time in my life for which to give it space to be heard.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

  • By: Washington Irving
  • Narrated by: Curtis Sisco
  • Length: 1 hr and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 554
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 510
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 510

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is the most famous supernatural wild chase in all of literature. One of the best known American short stories, this tale has been produced countless times for television and film. A halloween classic!

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Hard to believe was written almost 200 years ago

  • By Nothing really matters on 06-06-14

What A Disappointment

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

Reviewed: 11-16-17

Though this work is considered a "classic" it must be only due to its age. It certainly should not be considered classic in the sense of being a good story. It is a short story and, I find it to be a disappointment. I could have certainly completed my life without ever having read this book. The language and vocabulary I found impressive. The story I find mediocre.

  • The Invisible Man

  • By: H. G. Wells
  • Narrated by: James Adams
  • Length: 5 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,174
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,040
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 1,046

On a freezing February day, a stranger emerges from out of the gray to request a room at a local provincial inn. Who is this out-of-season traveler? More confounding is the thick mask of bandages obscuring his face. Why does he disguise himself in this manner and keep himself hidden away in his room? Aroused by trepidation and curiosity, the local villagers bring it upon themselves to find the answers.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Way ahead of its time!

  • By Brian on 06-06-13

Shallow Imagination with Short-Sighted Vision

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

Reviewed: 11-15-17

Audible continues to offer only a single star for all three categories. Overall would be 3 stars, Performance would be 5 stars, and Story would be 3 stars.

Narration was excellent. I find the story to be of shallow imagination, narrow, and short-sighted vision of possibilities open to a person of higher education and strong intelligence such as the protagonist of the story. His avenues of possible options were so common and lacked creativity. What could have been done with such an advantage is far greater than the author perceived and pursued in this rather disappointing story. I was not at all impressed with this classic.

  • Philosophy: 100 Essential Thinkers

  • The Ideas That Have Shaped Our World
  • By: Philip Stokes
  • Narrated by: Steven Crossley
  • Length: 8 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 93
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 75
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 75

This engaging and accessible book invites the listener to explore the questions and arguments of philosophy through the work of 100 of the greatest thinkers within the Western intellectual tradition - covering philosophical, scientific, political, and religious thought over a period of 2500 years.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Unpretentious, honest, with a big picture

  • By Mike S. on 05-29-17

An Excellent Overview

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

Reviewed: 11-13-17

For some reason Audible only has a single star for each of the three categories. For this book I would have given it 4 stars for Overall, 4 stars for Performance, and 4 stars for story. I enjoyed this book very much. It maintained a good level of interest from me from beginning to end. I feel it has done an excellent job of touching on so many philosophical views in a single volume.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Island of Dr. Moreau

  • By: H. G. Wells
  • Narrated by: Jim Roberts
  • Length: 4 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 44
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 34
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 34

While on a voyage in a small ship, Edward Prendick makes the mistake of sticking up for a deformed man that the sailors are tormenting. The result is that he is thrown off the ship when the man reaches his destination - an uncharted island. He is reluctantly rescued by the two scientists using the island for experiments.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • So What If It's A Classic

  • By Donald P. Jane on 11-13-17

So What If It's A Classic

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

Reviewed: 11-13-17

For some reason Audible only offered one star for rating this book in all three categories. I enjoyed the book although I can't say that it was the most compelling of stories. It is written well it just did not hold my interest very well. I would call it a mediocre read.

  • The Last of the Mohicans

  • By: James Fenimore Cooper
  • Narrated by: Larry McKeever
  • Length: 15 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 430
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 324
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 323

The Last of the Mohicans has all the elements of a classic frontier adventure: massacres and raids, innocent settlers, hardened soldiers, renegade Indians, and a doomed love affair. It is a memorable portrait of fierce individualism and moral courage. But what draws readers and listeners again and again to this panoramic novel is its deep insight into the symbols of American consciousness.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Poor sound

  • By Margaret on 01-20-15

Quite Simply A Most Wonderful Read

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

Reviewed: 11-06-17

I thoroughly enjoyed this tale and I am very pleased I have it as an experience in my life. My satisfaction is due, in no small part, to the excellent skills of the author and the narrator. In this work, it quickly becomes evident that Mr. Cooper possesses a wonderful command of the English language in grammar, sentence and context structure. This skill is present from begging to end of his novel. His contextual structure is so strong that when the narrator makes a single error in pronunciation the error in no way interferes in the reader's comprehension of the correct word and meaning. Aside from that singular error, the narrator displayed a strong command and a smooth, flowing fluency of an English dialect long since removed from that of our present day English. I would say that the narrator has taken that which would be difficult language for most, if not all but a few, present day English speakers and made it easier that the listener may comfortably comprehend the story. I found the narration beneficial and therefore declare it worth the additional cost. The author's story structure benefitted the reader's imagination in every possible way. This is one classic for which I harbor no regrets for having dedicated my time.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful