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html for boring or complicated stuff that you can then cut and paste into your html. Intergration AS Its a Microsoft product you can include Access, Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents in your web site. Publishing If you've never published a web site before Frontpage offers some help, it will determine the best transfer method and remembers your details, it also tells you what info you need off your ISP. Overall a brilliant program if you're new to web site design, if you're used to html it has its uses but is ok not brilliant.
THE PLOT We are given a vision of the future where the polar ice caps have melted due to global warming and flooded many of the major cities. Child birth is strictly regulated as children use up 'valuable resources'. Robots have been created to fill the void created by a dwindling human population. The robots are mostly servants with some degree of 'intelligence'. A company called MECCA is developing a child robot that will have an 'intelligence' greater than ever before with the ultimate aim being that it will love and be loved. Profesor Hobby has created a prototype child called David and chooses two of his employees a couple whose child is ill and cryogenically frozen until a cure can be found. The couple are unable to grieve for their son as he is not dead nor alive. The robot child helps to fill a void in their lives. The robot child is not without its problems, it doesn't sleep or eat and some humerous scenes can be found in its awkwardness. When Martin their son is cured the dynamics of the family change and there is almost 'sibling rivalry'. After a couple of incidents where the couple fear David is trying to hurt them, although in fact misunderstandings. They abandon David. To make sense of the situation David uses the fairytale of Pinnochio where a toy becomes a real boy and David sets out on a quest to become a real boy. I'll leave it there so I don't give away the whole plot! ATMOSPHERE This film is an eclectic mix of atmospheres, it is sickly sentimental at times, then dark and ominous, sometimes it is quite violent and scary especially for the kids watching. There is a lot of humour, sometimes light sometimes black comedy. Part way through the film it takes on a fairytale element with a magical quest but always alongside it there is a dark cloud. SPECIAL EFFECTS These are brilliant and sometimes almost mesmorising, the scenes un
der the sea where excellent. The robots where believable and sometimes scary when you saw their electrical innards laid bare. CHARACTERS Excellent and well chosen for the chracters they played. Haley Joel Osment as David was superb as he constantly fluctuated between robot and 'human' Teddy deserves a special mention he's a teddy bear that is a sophisticated robot and is a loyal companion to David as a teddy bear should be! Quite ironic though a robot toy for a robot boy. This Teddy tends to steal the show and also winns your heart! THOUGHTS This film follows one vision of the future that may yet have some elements of truth in it. Another film might have focused on the dark side of robots, them taking over the world or getting violent so more of a horror film. One thought that kept bugging me however was that all the robot wanted was to be loved and I guess without giving too much away he got that. But there are so many children, real children that never get this. I couldn't quite get that out of my head are we so concerned about a robot? what about humankind itself? Maybe the darkness of the film rubbed off there! RECOMMENDATION I recommend this film but its not suitable for younger children because of violence, darkness and some adult issues. Not to everyones taste but a good film.
This book was one of the set texts for my Open University course and I must admit it’s not a book I would have chosen for myself. Having been labelled a ‘set text’ I sat down to read it and braced myself for a boring time. I was pleasantly surprised, it is in fact a very readable book and quite funny too. It tells the story of the origins and growth of the computer industry. Instead of being full of awe and respect for the remarkable achievements of the computer industry and its key people it claims it was all done by accident and the key players were in fact amateurs. This makes a refreshing change, however it is based on the perspective of the author and often biased towards his opinion. It is a very personal history of the computer industry focusing in depth on the characters involved many of whom the author knows personally. The writing is chatty in style and very detailed with the author often digressing and telling little anecdotes. It is written like a good story with lots of characters and events, it carries you along with the narrative and sometimes it is hard to remain objective. I found that once I got into this book I found it hard to put down and fairly whizzed through it. The channel 4 series The Triumph of the Nerds was based on this book and if you saw that series it might give you an idea of the style of the book. If you want a good read and a different perspective on the computer industry then I recommend this book to you. If you are studying the computer industry seriously then you would need to read a range of other books to get a more balanced perspective but it’s a good and enjoyable starting place.
This novel is set on an island that is overlooked by a distant lighthouse. An English family and their guests are staying there for the summer. The family is made up of Mr. Ramsay, a philosopher, Mrs. Ramsay his wife and their eight children. Mrs. Ramsay is beautiful she nutures the whole household and exerts a powerful influence on them. She has a great understanding of human nature and is firmly grounded in reality. Her husband on the other hand is eccentric and demanding, he is concerned with philosophy and is distant with his family, they seem to inhabit different spheres of existance. This book is often described as a stream of consciousness novel as it focuses on the thoughts of the characters. It illustrates the childlike expectation of visiting the lighthouse and the contrasting highs and lows of a childs life. The joy of the moment and the crushing disappointment, the murderous rage against those that have thawted them. It also focuses on the thoughts of the adult characters, their emotions and the turning points in their lives. The characters are strong as they are defined by their thoughts, we couldn't know a character any better than by getting inside their head. The novel can be quite difficult to read as it follows the directionless flight that our thoughts take. The outside world impinges on their internal worlds and shapes their thoughts. They experience the usual human events of marriage, love, war and death and we watch the effects it has on each character. An enjoyable novel once you get used to the unusual method of writing and I recommend it.
In this novel we enter another world, the world of the well-to-do, the fashionable. A world of parties of champagne and jazz. The characters languidly drift through the novel until jolted out of their reverie at the end. We meet the fashionable and mysterious Jay Gatsby, we know little of his background and pick up tantalising titbits as we progress through the novel. Jay Gatsby holds legendary parties, his house throngs with glamourous people, but he only has eyes for one person Daisy Buchanan. His passion for her verges on the obsessive. Daisy Buchana is married and this adds to the tension between them. The characters are deliberately two dimensionsal and shallow they have nothing better to do than gossip, shop and party. An overall atmosphere of futility pervades this novel the lives are shallow and hollow they are purposeless. Fitzgerald raises the question is this the fulfilment of the great American Dream? When Gatsby is in trouble the crowds that thronged to his house quickly disappear, there is no sense of freindship or loyalty in their lives. Only one person stands by him. On the surface this novel might appear as shallow as its characters but dig a little deeper and you will find true spendour in it.
I was persuaded to watch this film yes I have heard some of the hype and know very little about the computer game but thought I'd give it a go. I wasn't disappointed. I saw it in the cinema with the luxury of the big screen and surround sound. The graphics were fantastic the people were very lifelike and a couple of times it was easy to forget they were in fact graphics. The detail was superb. Unlike computer games with similar graphics, the film flowed seamlessly the colours were rich and vibrant. The dream scenes felt like you were inside the dream and had a spooky dreamlike feel to them. The explosion scenes if you'll pardon the expression 'blew you away' The plot was pretty good, a little laboured and stereotypical in some places but it worked well. There was the obligitory love interest and villians and scientists. The plot revolves around the earth in the future where phantoms from another planet have taken over. The traditional reponse to this invasion is finally questioned and things are not as black and white as they seem. Overall the film reminded me very much of Star Wars when it first came out. It was ground breaking for its day, it had good solid characters and a good plot that had the potential to be developed. I feel this film has the potential to do the same as Star Wars. What indicated that this was a special film was the fact that at the end of the film everyone in the cinema stayed in their seats they were so involved they didn't just get up and go.
I saw the trailer for this film and marked it as a must see. It looked funny, smart and clever. Even the trailer made me laugh. So as soon as it was available in the video shop I rushed out to get it. I settled down on the sofa to enjoy it...what a disappointment! Mel Gibson plays a top advertising executive whos top position is threatened by a new female executive who is hired to capture the lucrative womans market because as a woman she knows what women want. The male executives need to be more in touch with their feminine side. Mel Gibson has a freak accident which enables him to read womens minds of course he uses this to his advantage but surprise surprise love gets in the way and things get complicated. The characters are weak even for a comedy they are stereotypical and superficial. The film had a great concept of the men are from mars woman from venus ilk. With opportunities for misunderstandings , different views, learning on both sides and agreeing to disagree but it was completely wasted. It seems that the writers think knowing what women want is to dress up in tights and shave your legs. Also the idea seemed to be to get to know woman better so you can seduce them. But not everyone will think this is a bad idea!! It was full of cliches and the plot just cobbled together lots of traditional plot themes to make this one. For example the mysterious chinese lady, the freak accident, the mysterious special power etc etc. I don't expect what woman want to be taken seriously I don't think women know what they want so how can men be expected to. A film that highlighted the differences in an original way would have been funny.
This is the third novel in the Landry series, following on from 'Ruby' and 'Pearl in the mist'. In 'All that Glitters' we find Ruby back in her beloved Louisiana Bayou. Here she hopes to start afresh, forgetting her troubled past and making a secure and happy future for her baby daughter Pearl. But the past refuses to stay buried and returns to haunt her. The story moves at a fast pace and is eventful. Once I'd got into it I found it hard to put down. However I did find some of the twists of fate that befell Ruby a little hard to believe. The story is well written and evokes the image and atmosphere of the Bayou in your mind. The characters are all strongly drawn but I feel they could have been developed further. The characters in this novel do learn from their experiences, the main lesson seems to be take responsibility for your actions or suffer the consequences. Several of the characters do in fact suffer the consequences of their actions, there is a price to pay. As the title suggests another lesson seems to be that money can't buy you happiness, most of the characters are very wealthy and want for nothing...except happiness? A good read that captures your attention and drives you to read on. A great book for that long journey or that trip to the beach.
One of my favourite games! Although on the surface this seems to be just another racing game the concept behind it was unique. You raced a range of cars on a range of tracks, no surprise there, but the tracks are a breakfast table and a desk for example. It reminds me of when I was a kid and we did just that raced our cars on the kitchen table and anything else we could find. There are a range of cars to race which all have different techniques to driving them, this keeps the interest level up and keeps you on your toes. There are obstacles and hazards such as milk spills and rice crispies. The range isn't the usual racing cars as it includes tanks and even power boats (in the bath tub of course). You can blast opponents out of the way with the tanks and push other drivers off the track but thats not sporting is it? - fun though!! There are several options such as head to head and time trials which add some variety you can play against the machine or multiplayer. This game has kept my interest longer than any other and this is down to its good quality design. It is excellent value for money and will appeal to a wide age range both male and female. A firm favourite.
I started watching this programme while on holiday in America, I haven't seen anything like it before. I fouund it hard to believe she is a real judge as she's so different from an English one. Things in America are very different from England though. I found that she grew on me and I still watch the programme now. I notice that a lot of the cases are almost 'squabbles' really quite minor things which have been blown up out of proportion and often quite childish. Here Judge Judy is in her element as she acts as the mother figure advising them, guiding them and telling them off! She often talks about her own family and as a mother herself must be an expert at dealing with family 'squabbles' In some ways this is what a judge does deals with arguments and makes the final decision or judgement. Some of the cases she has dealt with are more about family and psychological problems rather than criminal. She dealt perfectly with one case between a mother and her daughter recognising that it was a more deep rooted problem than simply money owed. She deals with small claims matters so no murderers here. Judge Judy would be perfect as a talk show host! This is a programme that you love or hate I love it and watch it avidly. I love the insights it gives you into human behaviour and find the American court system fascinating. Can you imagine televising a small claims court in England? not nearly as entertaining.
This is a relatively new series from where else? America. It follows in the footsteps of Quantum Leap and Sliders to name a few. An elite and top secret (aren't they always) military team have discovered the ability to allow one person to go back in time 7 days. The idea is that this special person can be used to undo catastrophic events. It's best if you don't ask too many questions such as why only 7 days, why one person etc. It's a teatime programme that entertains and asks you to suspend your disbelief for its duration. Our hero is Parker considered by some to be mad well you'd have to be to get in that contraption and loose layers of skin and risk your life each time you did it! His obligitory love interest is Olga and theres a simmering and often denied passion there. There are many stereotypes in this programme the all action man hero, the love interest who happens to be Russian and the geeky professor. There's also an ex wife of Parkers and his son to add some extra angst. All in all this is an enjoyable teatime programme, the idea is good its been tried and tested many times before, its a formula that works, the acting is ok its believable and not too corny. There is plenty of action and there are characters that can be developed over time. My only concern is that it could run out of steam quite quickly as how many variations on a going back in time for 7 days theme can you have? We shall wait and see, but I suggest you give it a chance.
I can remember as a kid the excitement of going to see films like ET and Star Wars (Yes so I'm old!) and even though I'm older now this film brought back memories of those films. It has all the ingredients summer holidays looming, above average acting, bucketloads of special effects, scary monsters (dinosaurs) and moments that make you jump. The plot needs little explanation, there are these dinosaurs on an island... In this case there is a wealthy couple whose son has disappeared on the dinosaur island and they are desperate to find him. They effectively trick Dr. Alan Grant (dinosaur expert) onto the island and then the fun really begins. They really have done a superb job with the special effects and it's best seen at the cinema to get the full effect. The dinosaurs and the island are completely believable and frightening. The film stars Sam Neill, Laura Dern, William. H. Macy and Tea Leoni and they do a fine job no oscars but beleivable, they also inject some humour which is nice. The story is best described as a 'Ripping Yarn' you are on a rollercoaster ride of an adventure in the Indiana Jones style its breathtaking, scary and fun at the same time. A film for all the family maybe not for very little children or very nervous but most kids will love the dinosaurs attacking people and the fact the film makes them jump so much. A must see film for the whole family.
I have been a member of My Points since it started in the uk. It is similar to other reward programmes such as Beenz. You get points for visiting web sites, completing surveys, following up special offers and reading emails. Its a good scheme that seems to be professionally run. The only complaint I do have is that it's been running a long time now and there are still woefully few sites to visit. It has taken me absolutely ages to collect the £5 voucher I got yesterday but at least they do actually pay! The voucher arrived very promptly which I can't complain about. The only way at the moment to get a lot of points is to sign up for a special offer or fill out surveys (I haven't tried this yet). If you're patient and combine it with other schemes then is probably worth while at least they do pay and they've been around a while their quite big in America I believe so (famous last words) not likely to shutdown overnight. The website is easy to navigate and the points are collected accurately and on time. Just give us more web sites to visit!
On the surface the Trisha show is another tired rerun of all those talk shows that have gone before. I have watched a lot of Trisha shows and the thing that makes it stand out from the others for me is that Trisha does in fact make some attempt to geuinely solve her guests problems. I believe she has some kind of counselling qualifications? and this is reflected in her approach. I believe that Trisha is in fact a very talanted person and good with people but maybe a talk show isn't the best use of her talents. I feel this is definately one of the better talk shows solely because of its host. It does however tread a fine line between quality and veering off into sensationalism and playing to the audience. Some of her shows have raised genuine and serious issues but some have to be honest been trite. The problem is I feel that a show that had genuine counselling and therapy would be boring and Trisha has compromised between the two but its too easy to overstep the mark. A show with potential and worth watching but its quality does fluctuate.
When you hear the basic plot of this film that of a man cast away on a dessert island it conjures up images of Robinson Crusoe and 'reality tv' programmes. You think of a sun drenched paradise, sandy beach, cocunut trees and a calm warm sea. To their credit the writers of this film tried to break away from this stereotype. Our hero is Chuck Noland a Fed Ex employee who is obsessed with time. On one of his frequent frantic flights with the company his plane crashes in the ocean and he ends up stranded on an island. Not really breaking any stereotypes so far? Well the island is rocky and inhospitable, the sea is storm tossed and generally rough. There is little in the way of food or vegetation though there are plenty of coconuts. The first thing Chuck checks when he reaches the island is his pager of course it doesn't work. Time on a desserted island is irelevant. New life meets old in the Fed Ex boxes that are washed ashore and their contents use takes on a whole new meaning in the context of the island. Chuck is stranded for a long time and to save himself from going completely mad invents a friend to talk to. Well wouldn't you? Often the futility of the items we take to be essential to modern life are highlighted as he struggles to survive on the island. I don't feel I'm giving too much away (don't read on if you really don't want to know any more plot!!) but he finally gets to return home but although time has stood still for Chuck it hasn't in our world. His stuggle for survival is now turned into a new struggle that of coming to terms with his new sense of identity and his changed circumstances. A good film for the whole family which makes you pause if only briefly to consider our own lives and our modern society.