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Re: Bluetooth headset recommendation ?

My wife has asked for one of these for Christmas and she does not like the itty bitty things that stick in your ear. By "itty bitty things that stick in your ear" do you mean ear buds or do you mean the standard one-ear Bluetooth earpiece? There's a wide range of options ranging from ear ...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Nov 26, 2014 4:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bluetooth headset recommendation ?
Replies: 4
Views: 575

Re: California Savings Plus 401k Target Date Funds

Is the issue that you'd prefer to use something simple like a target fund, but you're concerned about whether the fund has some defect that means it should be avoided? I was just surprised at the high international allocation. I prefer more like 20%. This is my spouse's fund and she was previously ...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:19 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: California Savings Plus 401k Target Date Funds
Replies: 8
Views: 719

Re: California Savings Plus 401k Target Date Funds

I've found with the CA SPP options, it's usually better to build your own AA out of the underlying funds rather than use their Target Date funds. Besides the International allocation, they changed the plans a while back to include a slice of the Diversified Real Returns fund, which I am not enthusia...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: California Savings Plus 401k Target Date Funds
Replies: 8
Views: 719

Re: Dog food - how cheap is too cheap?

... and what the, uhm, byproduct is, er, consistency wise. I followed the link above and then poked around some more. One site said that by-products are fine ... ⋅ By-products do NOT include things like "floor sweepings," hair/fur nor many other things. The term is well defined ...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dog food - how cheap is too cheap?
Replies: 64
Views: 4135

Re: Carrying alternatives for phone, credit cards, money

I'm looking for an option to carrying my phone in one pocket with my separate bulky wallet and my keys in another pocket. Ideal would be something thin and reasonably priced that would fit my phone (Samsung Galaxy S3) as well as hold a few credit cards, driver's license and cash, that I could stick...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Nov 24, 2014 4:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Carrying alternatives for phone, credit cards, money
Replies: 25
Views: 1960

Re: Fitbit, Vivofit, or other?

But I use my phone to call the cops whenever I am out walking the dog and get mugged by grannies. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQrI0bM7To0 Can you do that with a fitbit? Most run a larger risk of having one's walking style criticized by someone from the Ministry of Silly Walks while walking with...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Nov 24, 2014 4:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fitbit, Vivofit, or other?
Replies: 55
Views: 2041

Re: Fitbit, Vivofit, or other?

It seems to me that current smartphones have all the functionality of a fitbit and much more, so what's the point besides perhaps size? Don't discount the size issue. My smartphone fills an entire pocket (and doesn't even fit into some of my pants pockets) and I have to take it out every time I sit...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 23, 2014 8:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fitbit, Vivofit, or other?
Replies: 55
Views: 2041

Re: Dog food - how cheap is too cheap?

I think the best advice so far has been from those who have said to observe your dog for signs the food is not sitting well with the dog. Weight changes, vomiting, stool changes, fur changes, etc. are all more important to watch out for than the price tag. Just like there's no one "best" f...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 23, 2014 8:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dog food - how cheap is too cheap?
Replies: 64
Views: 4135

Re: Bogleheads not found easily in Google

My dialup ISP is All2Easy and believe they are in CA lifornia. But don't think that's the problem. It's not the ISP in particular. It's the netblocks used by the ISP. When you are dealing with an ISP that has multiple locations like All2Easy, it simply takes them transferring a netblock that was pr...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Nov 17, 2014 12:48 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Bogleheads not found easily in Google
Replies: 30
Views: 2993

Re: Bogleheads not found easily in Google

For those getting sent to regional search sites, it's probably geolocation from the IP address. This is not a perfect technique, but everyone has to give their IP address (you can't get data delivered without IP addresses), so the IP address is available even when more precise location methods are t...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 16, 2014 4:13 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Bogleheads not found easily in Google
Replies: 30
Views: 2993

Re: Should I claim this damage

I agree with you about getting more than one estimate if OP decides not to file a claim. One should be enough to help decide whether or not to file a claim though. If a claim is filed then the insurance company will dictate what is paid, for the most part, not the body shop. I wouldn't put stock in...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 09, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I claim this damage
Replies: 26
Views: 3362

Re: Should I avoid laptops w/ Intel 7260 wireless AC card ?

My experience with the Centrino 7260 AC cards is that they do not "play well with others". Mine will hum along fantastically until my neighbors turn on their plethora of 802.11g and 802.11n access points. Then the Centrino noticeably stutters (or just plain out stops working) while the tab...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Nov 08, 2014 9:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I avoid laptops w/ Intel 7260 wireless AC card ?
Replies: 15
Views: 1640

Re: Attend new car "launch event" for free meal?

I happened to be at the dealership for an oil change during one of these events (their quick lube service is competitively priced, open on the weekends, and nearby). I wandered over to the sales area for the free food and drink. I was approached by a sales person by the food booth, but I made it cle...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Nov 08, 2014 8:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attend new car "launch event" for free meal?
Replies: 10
Views: 856

Re: Should I claim this damage

Don't forget to look up your state laws on reporting vehicular damage to the DMV (or whatever the equivalent is in your state). Most states have a law that you have to report damage caused by your car or damage caused to your car if the damage exceeds a certain dollar amount. Many states require tha...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Nov 08, 2014 8:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I claim this damage
Replies: 26
Views: 3362

Re: Ashley Furniture

I prefer to support local stores than a chain store. We have several local furniture companies that I've supported in the past. Some are specialty stores (e.g. one specializes in pre-finished and in-house finished wood furniture, another specializes in leather furniture). Others are traditional furn...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Nov 04, 2014 4:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ashley Furniture
Replies: 42
Views: 3325

Re: Track your car's fuel use (mileage)

For my needs a manual log in a small Mead notebook(s) has worked well for over 40 years. I always fill-up and log the date, mileage, total cost, and gallons purchased. I note the city if I purchased out-of-town and I'll note things like checked tire pressure and oil changes. I've got 10 years of hi...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Nov 04, 2014 4:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Track your car's fuel use (mileage)
Replies: 31
Views: 1957

Re: Track your car's fuel use (mileage)

One thing that I do, after a new car is broken in, is to drive about 100 miles on a straight interstate highway when there is low traffic, at a constant 55 MPH, and track the mileage during that stretch. Just short of "hypermiling". This gives me a good baseline of what my vehicle is capa...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Nov 03, 2014 11:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Track your car's fuel use (mileage)
Replies: 31
Views: 1957

Re: Very few kids in our neighborhood-Thoughts?

An advantage is that you are close to the school. When I was in elementary school, my closest friends did not live on my block, but they did all live within a few blocks of the school. It made very little difference to my parents if they had to pick me up from school or from my friend's house a few ...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Nov 03, 2014 3:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Very few kids in our neighborhood-Thoughts?
Replies: 29
Views: 3249

Re: Money saved by buying a hybrid or electric car?

I am considering a Prius vs Prius plug in. I don't have a garage. Thank you! You don't have a garage. So do you park in a driveway, carport, on the street, in a parking lot, in a garage, somewhere else? Where you park the car overnight is going to greatly affect the answer. If there's no easy way t...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 02, 2014 7:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Money saved by buying a hybrid or electric car?
Replies: 81
Views: 6263

Re: Homeowners Policy Increased 26% in 2 Years

Your safest bet is to quote with other insurance companies. By my experience, rates can go up through no fault of your own (no claims, no traffic tickets, excellent credit score, etc.). I believe this is related to the fact that many people set auto pay and seldom if ever verify their rate is still...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 02, 2014 2:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners Policy Increased 26% in 2 Years
Replies: 29
Views: 2586

Re: Shoes for the Garden

The pattern on the sole of a shoe is unlikely to make any difference on traction in mud, unless we're talking sports cleats or a deep tread pattern like work boots have. If you do opt for sports cleats, make sure to get ones designed for mud (instead of for grass). Those would provide traction and p...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 02, 2014 2:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Shoes for the Garden
Replies: 23
Views: 1587

Re: Time Zone [Changing the displayed time]

Thanks for the reminder. Now I have to go around resetting all the analog clocks (and the digital clocks that should have reset themselves but didn't).
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 02, 2014 1:56 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Time Zone [Changing the displayed time]
Replies: 44
Views: 8889

Re: Track your car's fuel use (mileage)

Just as an FYI, there are alternatives to Fuelly for those who want to track average MPG for fill-ups. These range from apps that sync the data "to the cloud" (an account on a web farm somewhere) to ones that keep the data local. I personally use GasRecord for Android, simply because it do...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Nov 02, 2014 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Track your car's fuel use (mileage)
Replies: 31
Views: 1957

Re: MS Windows 7 Dead?

I was a bit flabbergasted to read that Windows 8 (with which I have no experience) runs applications "full screen". That is the whole point of "Windows"...each app runs in its own window and you can arrange them to view however is most convenient for you. With smaller monitors I...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MS Windows 7 Dead [in 2020]?
Replies: 26
Views: 2248

Re: Closing a house on Thursday but...

As others have said, crime happens even in the best of locations, so the robbery in and of itself is not alarming. And you probably could not have switched buyers agents after he had sent over the offer and it was accepted, depending on how commissions work in your area. Buyers agents are leery to e...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Closing a house on Thursday but...
Replies: 21
Views: 2186

Re: Water testing kit?

I don't have a recommendation for a mail-in service, but do avoid the "free water test" offers at big box stores. The test kits they use are not much better than what you can get for an aquarium at a pet store and their primary purpose is to sell you a water softener unit (which is not the...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water testing kit?
Replies: 7
Views: 711

Re: Using your own equipment on Uverse and Comcast

We only have internet with Comcast. ... Getting much better service, can use all the bells and whistles on our new router and didn't even need to ring Comcast to activate it - all done online. How did you activate the new modem online? You did not have the Internet connection until the new modem wa...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using your own equipment on Uverse and Comcast
Replies: 23
Views: 2277

Re: You may be getting charged rent for a router/modem you o

I had been paying rent on the box from Direct. When I cancelled the service I assumed they would want the receiver or at least the cards from them back. When we didn't hear anything about it, my wife called and they said they didn't want them back because they weren't the current model being used. ...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:09 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: You may be getting charged rent for a router/modem you own
Replies: 34
Views: 4021

Re: Mold, mold, mold!!! In Massachusetts..

The landlords came by this evening and now understand the extent of the problem. They have told us if the mold is going to be an issue (which, obviously, it is) then we should just look for a new place to live, so we will certainly be doing that if we can't seem to get this under control. They have...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Oct 29, 2014 1:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mold, mold, mold!!! In Massachusetts..
Replies: 18
Views: 2292

Re: Anybody using dash cameras?

Our cars have vehicle data recorders? Like a blackbox for an airplane? Only newer cars have them right? To answer in order: Yes, Yes, Not necessarily. The recorders have been around since the mid-1990s, although they did not get widely deployed until recently. There is a minimum standard of informa...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Oct 28, 2014 9:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anybody using dash cameras?
Replies: 30
Views: 5558

Re: Anybody using dash cameras?

Is anyone worried about the fact that your own dash-cam footage will be evidence against YOU in the event of an accident, right? And if you were to "accidentally" delete the footage after an accident that was arguably your fault, you'll most definitely be accused of spoliation and likely ...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Oct 28, 2014 11:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anybody using dash cameras?
Replies: 30
Views: 5558

Re: I moved, so my credit score dropped by 50 points

Found out yesterday my wife's credit score is 863 :sharebeer Too bad she's married to me :oops: If the score is over 850, it's one of the newer scores that goes to 950 and not the same as one of the (many) classic FICO scores used for mortgage and other loan applications. Which reminds me, given th...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 8:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I moved, so my credit score dropped by 50 points
Replies: 14
Views: 1904

Re: IRS Announces new 401(k) contribution max for 2015 ($18,

Have the Roth income limits and contribution phase-out region been announced? I couldn't find it in the statement. It's in bullet point #5 in the statement. Quote: The AGI phase-out range for taxpayers making contributions to a Roth IRA is $183,000 to $193,000 for married couples filing jointly, up...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: IRS Announces new 401(k) contribution max for 2015 ($18,000)
Replies: 50
Views: 7495

Re: Adding low cost index funds to 457b? What's involved?

The first thing I would do is research exactly how funds are added to the 457b in your municipality. There might be an additional layer of bureaucracy associated with a governmental 457b that would not exist with a 401k. In other words, find out if just talking with the provider at this meeting is s...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 5:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Adding low cost index funds to 457b? What's involved?
Replies: 8
Views: 758

Re: Portfolio review

I'm unclear on what advice you want here. Do you want advice on an asset allocation? Are you checking to see if your current assets will meet your goals? Is there something else you wanted answered?
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 4:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio review
Replies: 4
Views: 620

Re: Portfolio Help

It would be useful if you post as much information as you are comfortable giving from the Asking Portfolio Questions thread. At the very least, it would be helpful to know your desired asset allocation. What is ratio of stocks to bonds that you are looking for with your request for a more moderate r...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 4:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Help
Replies: 4
Views: 511

Re: Store or cut up un-needed credit cards?

The advice to close or cut-up unneeded credit cards is typically aimed at people who cannot resist the temptation to grab a credit card and run it up to its limit. It is not meant to minimize theft issues. It's meant to minimize self-control issues. If you feel absolutely no need to use them, lock t...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 4:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Store or cut up un-needed credit cards?
Replies: 28
Views: 2555

Re: DCA deposits can raise red flags with the IRS

The key thing here is "cash deposits". If you get your paycheck deposited, then transfer $xyz over to a brokerage firm 3 days later when the paycheck clears, that is not a cash deposit. That is a pretty normal and expected activity that people do with their paychecks. But if you hoarded ca...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 4:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DCA deposits can raise red flags with the IRS
Replies: 7
Views: 1504

Re: I moved, so my credit score dropped by 50 points

The reports should distinguish soft pulls from hard pulls, so first verify that these were hard pulls. That said, it is not unusual for utility companies to do a hard pull to start service these days, although some still do soft pulls. Same goes for cellular and telecomm services. The type of pull f...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 4:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I moved, so my credit score dropped by 50 points
Replies: 14
Views: 1904

Re: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?

I'd agree with you, assuming high-humidity is indeed the cause of the problems (I have yet to read a really good explanation for why that would be the case, if you have a source feel free to share it.) As far as I am aware, Honda has only issued recalls for cars originally sold and/or registered in...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 3:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?
Replies: 77
Views: 7440

Re: LASTPASS Password Program

As for the question of proprietary vs. open source...first off, it should be clear by now that open source is not a panacea. The assumption is that because the source is available for anyone to view, someone must be checking it, so there shouldn't be vulnerabilities. In practice, though, you still ...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 2:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LASTPASS Password Program
Replies: 46
Views: 4554

Re: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?

Several people seem to be indicating that their cars are subject to recall but cannot be fixed yet due to parts being unavailable. This seems highly problematic. So basically drivers are being asked to continue to drive cars that may have a serious safety issue? The issue is related to relative hum...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Oct 26, 2014 2:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?
Replies: 77
Views: 7440

Re: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?

For example, my reservations with Hyundai have nothing to do with the corporation and everything to do with the attitudes of the local dealership. As if the reviews weren't bad enough, they basically admitted to a local newspaper that their service department would not provide prompt warranty servi...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?
Replies: 77
Views: 7440

Re: Do you regret buying your home?

I did, for a while. We focused so hard on the house and yards ( the yards more than the house, they are really something special ), and didn't pay enough attention to neighbors ( well one in particular ). The neighbor moved away which solved that problem. Now after putting in a remodel on the house...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 10:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you regret buying your home?
Replies: 82
Views: 6974

Re: Putting Office on Surface Pro

For the Surface Pro 3 I got at work, I used an external DVD drive to install Office 2013 (which work provides to all employees) from a DVD provided by our software folks. But I recall during purchasing the Surface from Microsoft's online store that there was also a download option for those who want...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 5:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Putting Office on Surface Pro
Replies: 9
Views: 796

Re: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?

Not answering your question, but I'm intrigued that your dealership is able to repair this--my understanding that there was a kind of limbo here where they'd identified the likely problem airbags but didn't have repair parts disseminated yet. Maybe that's only a portion? When I checked on my Civic,...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 5:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Done with Honda, not sure what next car should be?
Replies: 77
Views: 7440

Re: Statute of Limitations on Medical Billing?

I had a similar situation in the past. The doctor's office sent the initial bill to the insurance, which then asked for followup documentation from the doctor. The doctor did not send the documentation, even after repeated prompting by both the insurance and the company which handled his billing. I ...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 4:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Statute of Limitations on Medical Billing?
Replies: 12
Views: 1821

Re: Do you regret buying your home?

I don't have regrets about the house. I did have regrets about the timing of buying the house. I bought far too early in my career, before I had adequate savings and investments to make that move (this was in my time before discovering the Boglehead forum). That made me "house poor" for se...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 4:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you regret buying your home?
Replies: 82
Views: 6974

Re: Windows XP

That's a bit of hyperbole. In order to be an effective bot in a botnet, the command and control network has to be able to send commands. If XP is used as a virtual machine, you can tightly lock down what exactly it is allowed to do on the network. .... Now you shouldn't be running it as a raw machi...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 12:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Windows XP
Replies: 62
Views: 3056

Re: What happened to SoCal Chapter?

I can see the dislike with the idea of having to drive hours through traffic just to get to a meeting (return trip wouldn't be as big of an issue except for active construction). It's hard to make it through Los Angeles (even worse with all the construction going on) for a meeting that is centralize...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:55 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: What happened to SoCal Chapter?
Replies: 19
Views: 2662
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