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The Unlikely Lavender Queen is just wonderful! I was not initially drawn to it, because I couldn't imagine wanting to read a book about rural Texas (I live in Austin). When I met Jeannie Ralston at a book reading, though, I was captivated by the sections she read. It was apparent she was a very good writer - and I decided to give it a read. She changed her life and the lives of those around her (the entire community) with her vision for something bigger and better. The book inspired me to look at my life and what impact I have made or plan on making in the future. I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to make a change, or anyone looking for a very entertaining read.
Almost every review fails by proclaiming that Windows 8 is only for touch screens and tablets. This is a result of Microsoft creating an OS that DOES work well and flawlessly on touch screen and tablet devices, but it does not mean that desktop or regular notebook users get left behind.
If you are on the fence, here are few reasons to ignore any anti-Windows 8 reviews/arguments for desktop/notebook users:
1) Keyboard Shortcuts - Windows 8 added more keyboard shortcuts and navigation than any previous version of Windows since 1995. Using the new UI portion of the OS, you can literally fully navigate and use 99% of App using only the arrow keys, tab, enter, and the Menu/Windows keys.
2) Search - Microsoft has brought a new set of search tools to all the new Apps. Just start typing and the search opens and Windows returns local results. However, the beauty is that you can click through your installed Apps and every one will do a full search as well. So if you were looking for anything, you could search Netflix, Hulu, or even Wiki, Maps, IE/Bing all in a couple of seconds. (Current no other computer or phone offers anything close to this functionality.)
3) Apps - There are a lot of great Windows 8 App that you simply do not have access to on previous versions of Windows. This alone is reason enough to upgrade, even if you just use your notebook for Netflix, as the App is far faster and more elegant than Netflix via the browser.
4) Performance - There are a lot of low level optimizations and new features like low RAM mode that take even an marginal computer like a P4 with 1Gb of RAM will feel as usable as the latest high end desktop. Microsoft also added in new video rendering technologies, so that even if you don't have a DX9 level GPU, you still get all the visual effects, as it uses a software renderer and composer now. (An Atom based Netbook from 2006 will run faster with Windows 8 than it ever did with Windows XP.)
5) Microsoft knows where the UI heading and have done a brilliant job of making an OS that can be used on a tablet or a desktop and neither system has to give up functionality. Every user will find themselves using the new Start Screen and Apps more than expected, and miss features when working on an non-Windows 8 system.
If you have loved ones/friends that are less technical inclined, Windows 8 will make them fare more proficient as the new UI truly does make things easier. Power users will also enjoy the new UI Apps and features, but will find the performance and other features that are seldom discussed like (File History, Account Sync, etc) to be essential.
This product was exactly what i needed to run an additional monitor on my macbook pro. I wasn't sure if it would work well on it as I have a 27" 1080p monitor and a 24" 1920x1200...I hooked this up to the 1920x1200 with no issues. The response is a little bit slower but nothing worth avoiding it over. Great product!
I've been gathering words of wisdom, guidelines for a mindful life, and tips for traveling a virtuous path, for the last 40 years. I was surprised to find "Bend, Not Break," one of the most inspirational books I've ever read! Unlike self-help or philosophy books, the fact that it's a memoir, steeped in the modern day business world, makes it doubly powerful. Ping Fu offers invaluable life lessons in every chapter about overcoming adversity, empowering others, and believing in yourself.
For me, the biggest gem appeared in Chapter 6 ("Who can say what is good or bad?") when Ping Fu realized that her fears undermined her confidence in pursuing her rightful path. "...during those dark hours, I kept reminding myself: it's all about love. Blaming others, being fearful and angry, acting vengefully, building resentment, destroying trust--these negative responses to trying situations suck us into a downward spiral and sap our energy, like water spinning down a drain. The only way to triumph in business and in life is to love what we do, and love our customers, our colleagues, our investors, and our community. Love even the people who drive us crazy, those who undermine us, and those who fail us, offering them compassion and forgiveness." (p185).
The truth is that Life is too short. Our energy is too limited. Therefore, you must choose carefully how you want to spend your time, energy and resources. As Ping Fu writes: "Our choice is how to interpret what happens to us on our journeys and how to treat the people we meet along the way. Our choice, always, is to love and to understand." (p197)--or not. But what have you gained if you choose to focus on the negative? Would you rather die a bitter person? I'd rather continue hunting for the gems that allow me to enrich my understanding of humanity, and follow a happier path.