Review of Garmin nuvi 2555


  I left my old Garmin in a rental car and never got it back. Then I bought a TomTom, but this stopped working very quickly. Luckily, BestBuy took it back. So I purchased the Garmin mentioned in the title. This is much less bulky than the old Garmin. This works pretty well, but I missed a meeting recently because I accidentally had turned mute on and didn't realize until I was long passed the turn. My old Garmin did more talking, I think and also had the "Speak" button which forced the device to issue some comment. I miss this feature.

update 9/2015 - This Garmin has turned into junk because it now frequently goes into "low battery" mode and turns itself off. When I leave it plugged into the power supply it repeatly shuts itself off and then turns itself back on.

Review of INSIGNIA NS-L32X-10A LCD TV


  I purchased this TV in Jan. 2010 for $578. It has worked great, but I will tell you about one problem. Even whan watching on medium volume steeing, the speakers will vibrate when the sound has a certain frequency. This gets annoying. I hired some people to mount the TV solidly on the wall, so I don't think the vibration is caused by loose mounting. It has several outlets for taking the sound external, so I suppose I should do this. In general there are plenty of hookups in back of the TV.

Review of Aid4Mail


  I purchased Aid4Mail 1.85 Professional version for about $50. I needed to convert a few hundred messages recovered off a crashed computer. These messages come up fine in an emacs rmail buffer, but I wanted to join them back into my Thunderbird folders. At first it looked like Aid4Mail would do this. Unfortunately, it would only transfer about 10% of the messages. The rest it claimed were "deleted" messages, even though I checked the "Recover mail in trash" option. A big disappointment (2006).

Review of Nitro PDF


  I wanted to compress the scan of a technical paper in pdf form After a bunch of free trials of pdf programs found on the web, I tried Nitro pdf 4.91. This did a great job of compression and a few other tasks! Before purchasing, I tried another scanned paper from a different source. Unfortunately, Nitro failed to compress this boated file. I think the problem is that the scanner marked the pdf scan as Optimized=true. If someone tells me how to overcome this problem, perhaps by letting Nitro change the optimized attribute, I will make a purchase of the program.(Dec. 2006)

Review of P4400 Kill A Watt


  I purchased a Kill A Watt made by P3 international. It is terrific! You plug it into the wall and then plug an appliance into it to monitor the power usage. It records running kilowatt hours as well as current watts. It will also tell you volts and amps and power phase information. If you really want to save on your electric bill, you should get one of these. Rumor has it they can be purchased on Amazon.com for less that $30.

I can't avoid giving some possible improvements. It apparently can't record spikes and valleys in voltage, just the voltage at the moment. Also, to reset the kilowatt counter, you must unplug the device. (Dec. 2006)

Review of Panasonic DVD Recorder DMR-ES20


  I have been using this recorder quite a bit for about a year. I generally use the proprietary format removable DVD-RAM disks to record 2 or 4 hours of programming. For removable disks these are very reliable, but they must be cleaned once in a while. I often record directly on DVD-R disks, and have had trouble with DVD+R.

When I have a DVD-RAM recording and use lots of other features, the recorder sometimes freezes up - requiring unplugging from the wall to reboot. Also, whenever I finalize a recorded disk the recorder almost always freeze like this. Still I find the recorder quite useful. (April 2007)

Review of Samsung BD-P2550 Blue-Ray Player


  I admit that I haven't yet purchased a HD TV so I can only evaluate the old resolution quality. It is good and I make heavy use of the Netflix over the internet capability, as well as Pandora music over the internet. It is much faster loading and ejecting than my older DVD player. The one bad thing is that the Samsung does not have a zoom feature. I believe I would want this even if I had HD-TV.