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Re: Earthquake Preparedness

I live in Washington and have earthquake insurance. It boggles my mind that so many Californians don't have it, but I guess it is much more expensive there? And I guess they know something I don't, as far as who will ultimately foot the bill for damages and repairs. The CA Earthquake Authority (CEA...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Earthquake Preparedness
Replies: 39
Views: 1974

Re: Earthquake Preparedness

I'm surprised that vineyards seemed unprepared for this, judging by all the broken barrels and bottles. A lot of brick buildings got hammered too. Yes, it's easy to say, You should have done that, but zillions of bottles worth a lot apiece, and no provision for an earthquake - what were they thinki...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Earthquake Preparedness
Replies: 39
Views: 1974

Re: Earthquake Preparedness

People think of the obvious like straping down bookcases or getting food/water supplies handy after a big quake. I like to think of the less obvious, like not locating my bed underneath a massive picture window in the bedroom, not having pictures hanging above the bed, and not having things on the b...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Earthquake Preparedness
Replies: 39
Views: 1974

Re: Garden 2014 - late summer report

Given the drought this year, I didn't plant a vegetable garden. I did have some salvia (used to attract pollentators to the garden) come back from last year's root stock, so I took water out to that once a week to keep it going. Otherwise, the beds lay fallow this year, and maybe next year as well.
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 24, 2014 9:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garden 2014 - late summer report
Replies: 9
Views: 770

Re: Google Chrome vs. Firefox and Internet Explorer

I can't provide you with an answer, but it would seem to be a fairly common problem from Google's search results:

https://www.google.com/search?q=can%27t ... ith+chrome
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 24, 2014 8:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google Chrome vs. Firefox and Internet Explorer
Replies: 24
Views: 1620

Re: Which apartment to chose? (Bay Area)

Heard there was a quake up there. Are you OK in your area? Was the damage localized? I've always considered moving to Northern CA but have always been a little watchful about the quakes! Most quakes are relatively small (e.g. not the "big one") and localized in damage, but they make splas...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 24, 2014 1:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which apartment to chose? (Bay Area)
Replies: 13
Views: 1582

Re: Health Insurance for Military Veteran and Federal Retire

Just as an FYI, if you are eligible for (and plan to) enroll in Tricare for Life as part of your military benefits, you have to be enrolled in Medicare Part B.
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 23, 2014 11:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Health Insurance for Military Veteran and Federal Retiree
Replies: 4
Views: 638

Re: Which apartment to chose? (Bay Area)

Call me cynical, paranoid, etc., but I would really have to wonder what was wrong with the place for it to be that much below market. Maybe the noise from the post office is horrendous. Maybe the roommates are more than just a little odd (consider background checks). Maybe there's some other non-dis...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 23, 2014 11:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which apartment to chose? (Bay Area)
Replies: 13
Views: 1582

Re: Bedbugs and Wood Furniture

A heat treatment can be used to kill bedbugs living in the crevices. The furniture would need to be exposed to about 115F and get thoroughly warmed up to that temperature for several hours in order for the treatment to be effective. You would need to hire professionals that specialize in this sort o...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 23, 2014 10:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bedbugs and Wood Furniture
Replies: 3
Views: 742

Re: Should I fix a "totaled" car

You're asking the wrong questions of yourself and of us. This is less of a financial decision and more of a safety decision. Cars are built with accidents in mind, and are designed essentially to sacrifice themselves in order to protect the occupants. If that structural integrity was compromised, no...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 23, 2014 10:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I fix a "totaled" car
Replies: 26
Views: 1726

Re: Is it me, or are "collectibles" worthless in 2014?

As odd as it might sound, eBay is not a good site for selling collections. It has a wide audience, but not a specialized audience. When you have specialized collectibles, you'll have better luck in specialized environments. See if there is a website/forum for airline memorabilia, books, etc. You mig...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 23, 2014 10:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it me, or are "collectibles" worthless in 2014?
Replies: 79
Views: 5890

Re: College Counselors

This is kind of unusual for me. When I was in high school and looking to apply for college, I did all of the grunt work and research myself. [snip...] After my junior year of high school, I took Physics and Calculus at a university in the summer. I liked it there, and when the summer was drawing to...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College Counselors
Replies: 39
Views: 1945

Re: Help me understand my credit report

The word "reported" usually means a negative action, which can range from a late payment (even one day late can be reported) to a fully delinquent account. Since you had a negative outcome associated with the credit report, you should be able to get a free full report from the agency(ies)...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand my credit report
Replies: 14
Views: 1674

Re: Help me understand my credit report

The word "reported" usually means a negative action, which can range from a late payment (even one day late can be reported) to a fully delinquent account. Since you had a negative outcome associated with the credit report, you should be able to get a free full report from the agency(ies) ...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:54 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand my credit report
Replies: 14
Views: 1674

Re: Weird implications of a credit card trick

People have tried this before, and variations of this (such as a spouse or friend with the merchant account). All involved are quickly detected and dealt with by the credit card companies. Besides violating the terms of merchant agreements, the rewards card companies are very familiar with this &quo...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Weird implications of a credit card trick
Replies: 11
Views: 2706

Re: My first required EMV transaction in the US

I believe the legislation requires the chips to be in place by 2015 (don't know what month). Most banks in the US are in the process of rolling out the new cards now. These have been required in Europe for awhile, which is why I just went on the calling spree of inquiring as to whether the new card...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My first required EMV transaction in the US
Replies: 3
Views: 413

Re: How to value house with unwanted tennis court

You could also turn it into a basketball court, but it doesn't sound like that would be a palatable option for you. Or you could turn it into a huge patio with a big fire pit at one end, but that's probably not you either. Hardscaping options would certainly lower the overall costs. One could even ...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to value house with unwanted tennis court
Replies: 24
Views: 2115

My first required EMV transaction in the US

I'm sure many Bogleheads are familiar with EMV, e.g. chip-and-signature or chip-and-pin, card transactions. In the wake of the Target compromise, I've noticed many vendors have rolled out EMV-capable point-of-sale machines. I also received a new AmEx card over a month ago that had an EMV chip. Since...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My first required EMV transaction in the US
Replies: 3
Views: 413

Re: Getting (more) accurate readings from scale

That said, I don't know if there's a home scale that would really be consistent and accurate (to within, say, half a pound rather than 3 pounds). Any suggestions? The problem with many digital scales is they remember the last reading and have a tendency to display the last reading unless your weigh...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:18 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting (more) accurate readings from scale
Replies: 11
Views: 1088

Re: The (un)freshness of Starbucks bakery products

Perhaps the expiration date meant don't freeze it for longer than that ... and once unfrozen two days ... Could be wrong but won't jump to conclusions based on the evidence presented here... That is most likely the case. Around my workplace, there is a chain store (not Starbucks) where the cookies ...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The (un)freshness of Starbucks bakery products
Replies: 49
Views: 4461

Re: College Counselors

This is kind of unusual for me. When I was in high school and looking to apply for college, I did all of the grunt work and research myself. I spoke to no counselors and just read 1-2 magazines. I wrote the college entrance essays all by myself with no one checking them and I ended up in a decent U...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 16, 2014 11:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College Counselors
Replies: 39
Views: 1945

Re: Receiving Spam Emails Since Joining

I've been receiving similar spam, but not on the email address I have registered with Bogleheads. The timing of my recent spam increase coincides with your observations. I would expect this is just a coincidence, and the two events are not related. As for how they might have obtained the address... ...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 16, 2014 11:21 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Receiving Spam Emails Since Joining
Replies: 14
Views: 1150

Re: Are hospitals allowed to do this? [Costs quoted vs. actu

I would chalk this up to an expensive life lesson in how even routine outpatient procedures can have unexpected costs. Go ahead and insist on seeing the full pathology reports if that will reassure you that 4 samples were actually taken and tested. But if they were, then go ahead and pay the bill. ...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 16, 2014 7:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are hospitals allowed to do this? [Costs quoted vs. actual]
Replies: 85
Views: 5762

Re: Are hospitals allowed to do this? [Costs quoted vs. actu

I'm going to continue to apply for their financial assistance program, and see if that helps at all. They want verification of all assets and all income. I have a small balance in an HSA I'm going to want to get rid of first before applying. It has about $2000 in it, and there's already about $1000...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 16, 2014 2:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are hospitals allowed to do this? [Costs quoted vs. actual]
Replies: 85
Views: 5762

Re: Telephone Calls! Help! [Telemarketing phone calls]

Yesterday our phone # showed up on caller ID along with some initials and our last name. I answered it. It was Citi Bank. They called using our name and #. What next? My skeptical side highly doubts Citibank would have done that. They would risk several fines by spoofing caller ID data while making...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 16, 2014 1:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Telephone Calls! Help! [Stopping telemarketing calls]
Replies: 100
Views: 6229

Re: Two factor identification and your password safe

Aside relevant post on weaknesses of password managers from August 1 - https://www.usenix.org/conference/usenixsecurity14/technical-sessions/presentation/li_zhiwei You missed the other paper in the same session of Usenix Security: https://www.usenix.org/conference/usenixsecurity14/technical-session...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 15, 2014 4:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Two factor identification and your password safe
Replies: 31
Views: 2023

Re: Amazon Gift Card Fraud

spry, did these purchases show up in your account history before you disputed with Amazon and the CC company? If not, it may be that the credit card information was compromised and used on a different Amazon account than your own. All it would take is some restaurant employee (or any person who phys...
by Mudpuppy
Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:25 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Gift Card Fraud
Replies: 30
Views: 2632

Re: More on Computer Security

I heard today VG end of 2014, will offer 2 step auth login , with SMS , my lowly local bank online does it ..... And SMS 2 factor authentication is cheaping out on the process, given that during a targeted attack, text messages can be intercepted. May not be a concern for the average Joe, but any h...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Aug 13, 2014 11:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: More on Computer Security
Replies: 17
Views: 1619

Re: More on Computer Security

If you want to scare yourself into never using a computer to log into a financial site again, look up the Zeus family of malware: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zeus_%28Trojan_horse%29 Among its many abilities currently is the ability to hijack sessions. This means when you log into your account, the ...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Aug 13, 2014 2:47 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: More on Computer Security
Replies: 17
Views: 1619

Re: Are hospitals allowed to do this?

This might seem a little out there, but have you tried calling your insurance company to see how the providers billed the insurance company? When I got a $500 lab bill for blood work associated with a physical, I called the insurance first to see if it had been billed as a routine physical (most sho...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Aug 13, 2014 2:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are hospitals allowed to do this? [Costs quoted vs. actual]
Replies: 85
Views: 5762

Re: Telephone Calls! Help! [Telemarketing phone calls]

In the age of smartphones with many effective call blocking apps which can automatically block a constantly growing list of known spam numbers (truecaller, mr.number, etc), does it really make that much sense to continue paying for a home landline? If you want a phone most likely to work in a power...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Aug 12, 2014 12:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Telephone Calls! Help! [Stopping telemarketing calls]
Replies: 100
Views: 6229

Re: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"

Why wouldn't a given firm use a proprietary hash algorithm? Seems like that would greatly reduce the odds of compromise since the attacker would need more than a bank of fast computers to extract the passwords.They need to know the proprietary hash algorithm. If the firm wants to pay 6-figures each...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Aug 10, 2014 2:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"
Replies: 87
Views: 7434

Re: It won't matter if your password gets stolen

jebmke wrote:My wife has a laptop that has face recognition. I haven't tried any photos to see if it would get me in.

If it doesn't have 3D capabilities, I wouldn't be surprised if a photo of her face at approximately life size would work.
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 4:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: It won't matter if your password gets stolen
Replies: 20
Views: 2380

Re: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"

Just to summarize what BoulderBoy and jchef already described, a password database might look something like this: username userID email address other plaintext information password salt hashed password The attacker would then simplify this down to the password salt and hashed password, and perhaps ...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"
Replies: 87
Views: 7434

Re: Intel Core processors - i3 2014 vs older i3 or other?

I am no expert on silicon chips but clockspeed is basically obsolete, as I understand it, as a measure of computing power. Which is fortunate because computer chips were getting to the point where they would just melt from the heat. Clock speed has always been an approximate measure. The actual thr...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Intel Core processors - i3 2014 vs older i3 or other?
Replies: 16
Views: 1413

Re: How do you address your inlaws and being addressed?

I never had an issue with using a professor's first name, as long as the professor stated that was their preference. Even all these years later, certain professors are "Jane" and "John" in my mind, while other professors are "Dr. Smith" and "Dr. Doe". There w...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you address your inlaws and being addressed?
Replies: 84
Views: 4732

Re: How do you address your inlaws and being addressed?

I never had an issue with using a professor's first name, as long as the professor stated that was their preference. Even all these years later, certain professors are "Jane" and "John" in my mind, while other professors are "Dr. Smith" and "Dr. Doe". There w...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you address your inlaws and being addressed?
Replies: 84
Views: 4732

Re: Non-tabletop fountain in home office = need dehumidifer?

You know, the real aim here is to have a physical, or as close to physical as possible, "dimensional" white noise source in my home office to help with focus and concentration. Less need for the visual, although that's also soothing. I don't care for headphones or regular stereo sound--ju...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-tabletop fountain in home office = need dehumidifer?
Replies: 11
Views: 1154

Re: It won't matter if your password gets stolen

I hope this doesn't count as a thread hijack. How will 2 factor authentication work with something like Quicken's update function? Currently, I hit one button for the update, it asks me for the "Password Vault" password, and it's off to the races. I hope in the future my phone won't explo...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: It won't matter if your password gets stolen
Replies: 20
Views: 2380

Re: How do you address your inlaws and being addressed?

When did you become an adult? At 21, I called my professors Professor, not Mike. Actually, that finally broke down on in intramural basketball court when it just would have taken too long to yell out "Professor Ushkowitz!" But off the court, it was still Professor Ushkowitz. I still recog...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you address your inlaws and being addressed?
Replies: 84
Views: 4732

Re: Attitudes toward inheritances.

Why are people so weird about inheritances? I mean I know the answer, but why are so many people so blatantly disrespectful about it? Granted, these comments are made in private so perhaps I just have a thin skin. But, I know all of the money these people worked hard for will be blown right away an...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attitudes toward inheritances.
Replies: 110
Views: 9432

Re: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"

And salting is so easy to do, there is no excuse not to do it, prior to the hashing. Add in SHA2(512) or SHA3 level hashing and breaking the PW is virtually insurmountable at this time. I just led a workshop on this the other week, so I did a little research into the current state of GPU password c...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 9:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"
Replies: 87
Views: 7434

Re: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"

Intelligent websites don't store passwords. They store hashes of passwords. And if the administrators are doing their jobs properly, the hashes are salted and they are using a slow hash function. If they take both of these steps, even if the hash files are stolen, extracting the passwords from the ...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 8:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Russan Gang Amasses Over A Billion Stolen Passwords"
Replies: 87
Views: 7434

Re: Legality of sending personal information via email

One hopes that the proceeds from the property sale more than makes up for the headaches caused by emailing sensitive information in the plain. Let's go on the assumption the lawyer does not have the means to pay for a secured portal. There are still cheap, encrypted alternatives. The lawyer and the ...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 7:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Legality of sending personal information via email
Replies: 38
Views: 2008

Re: Intel Core processors - i3 2014 vs older i3 or other?

You probably have a Sandy Bridge based processor (maybe an early Ivy Bridge). They probably have a Haswell processor. For a laptop, it's primarily a battery life factor, as the others have pointed out. There might be a small performance difference, but that's been rather negligible of late IMHO. The...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 7:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Intel Core processors - i3 2014 vs older i3 or other?
Replies: 16
Views: 1413

Re: It won't matter if your password gets stolen

What's the limitation of 2 factor authentication (password + single use key on phone/device)? Seems plenty safe to me for all practical purposes. Most of the time, it works well enough. But your phone is not a secure device, particularly not with respects to calls or text messages. Even if one igno...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 7:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: It won't matter if your password gets stolen
Replies: 20
Views: 2380

Re: It won't matter if your password gets stolen

Two factor does not have to be fancy, and already is in use in large scale. I use two factor authentication every time I use an ATM. I need my card (physical factor), and I need my PIN (knowledge factor). Just replace PIN with password, and you have it. You just have to have a physical device that ...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 7:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: It won't matter if your password gets stolen
Replies: 20
Views: 2380

Re: It won't matter if your password gets stolen

Hate to say it, but this type of story (replace passwords with biometrics) comes up every few years in computer security. It hasn't happened for a very good reason: good biometric scanners are expensive, cheap biometric scanners are worse than passwords. It doesn't matter what tech giants are behind...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 3:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: It won't matter if your password gets stolen
Replies: 20
Views: 2380

Re: Telephone Calls! Help!

Has anyone tried using a "disconnected number" tone [ http://stuff.gigo.com/phone/ ] as a lead in on your answering machine? If it does what is supposed to it should make the calling machine believe the number is no longer in service. The mp3 file at the above location can be cut down to ...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 3:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Telephone Calls! Help! [Stopping telemarketing calls]
Replies: 100
Views: 6229

Re: Accepting PM overwrites draft forum reply

That sounds like something you need to take over to the phpBB developers, not something the site admins here could handle.
by Mudpuppy
Fri Aug 08, 2014 2:54 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Accepting PM overwrites draft forum reply
Replies: 4
Views: 366
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