Search found 3620 matches

by Mudpuppy
Thu Feb 11, 2016 11:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector
Replies: 43
Views: 3626

Re: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector

I looked at the bill I have a little closer, and there were 2 charges for the date of service the collector gave me. Out to the side of these charges there are 3 credits; 2 paid by insurance and 1 paid by Guarantor. If you take the charges and subtract the credits on this one particular date of ser...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector
Replies: 43
Views: 3626

Re: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector

I've had this situation more than once; I have a lot of medical services, my provider's bills don't give cumulative information so I can't tell what's waiting for insurance to kick in and what isn't, and my insurance doesn't pay a flat percentage since it's based on their number for usual and custo...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Math and Computer Science
Replies: 69
Views: 3124

Re: Math and Computer Science

Not only this post, but many I've seen lead me to believe we have a higher percentage of IT people here then in the general population. IT, software engineering, CS, and related fields are rather well-represented here. I'm loathe to lump all of those fields under the IT label though, as it seems to...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Math and Computer Science
Replies: 69
Views: 3124

Re: Math and Computer Science

I must be out of touch; I thought C was still passing for undergrad. It is. "C's get degrees" The joke at the non-impacted California State Universities is "D's mean degrees", as you only have to get a D in any particular class to pass it. You do need an overall 2.0 ("C&quo...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector
Replies: 43
Views: 3626

Re: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector

Well, the amount in question is a whopping $20.89 and it's from a medical bill at a urgent care center with a date of service 0f 07/15/12. Obviously I had no idea we owed this amount. My wife pulled up her old medical bills and we have a date of service that matches what we were given. We even have...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector
Replies: 43
Views: 3626

Re: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector

People on this board often recommend to block the calls and not engage at all. Maybe that works for them, but as long as you haven't been in the habit of skipping out on bills it seems like you can save yourself some trouble by asking why the person is calling and putting the issue to bed at once. ...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 1:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector
Replies: 43
Views: 3626

Re: Wife just got a VM from a debt collector

A few years ago, I kept receiving debt collection calls for a woman who shared my same first name and who owed something to Verizon. They were calling a number that I had owned for nearly two decades, and I have had no dealings with Verizon since the 1990s (and that was actually dealings with GTE, n...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Feb 10, 2016 1:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Math and Computer Science
Replies: 69
Views: 3124

Re: Math and Computer Science

My question is does his difficulty with mathematics predict the same problems with computer science courses? I never understood the emphasis on math for CS. I can only assume it is the result of computers and programming originating with mathematicians. I never thought of myself as particularly goo...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Personal property inventory
Replies: 12
Views: 1408

Re: Personal property inventory

I found this post on reddit by an insurance adjuster fascinating. https://www.reddit.com/r/personalfinance/comments/43iyip/our_family_of_5_lost_everything_in_a_fire/ He goes through and explains how much money you'll get for a toaster based on the description in the claim as an example. I'm not sur...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Feb 07, 2016 11:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Personal property inventory
Replies: 12
Views: 1408

Re: Personal property inventory

The thing to remember is the insurer may use your list.... or they may use an algorithm that is based on similar homes with comparable levels of content. For small, everyday items like books, clothing, etc., my cynical side says they'd be more likely to use an algorithm as that is the easier path an...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Feb 07, 2016 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Raw Honey?
Replies: 34
Views: 2533

Re: Raw Honey?

In my experience unprocessed honey contains bits of bees, or even whole ones. I'm not generally a fussy eater, but I prefer to avoid insects. Same. But the local health food store has honey that's been moderately processed.... spun out of the comb and filtered for bug bits. We have a few local farm...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Feb 07, 2016 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Educational summer camps in technology for teens
Replies: 9
Views: 494

Re: Educational summer camps in technology for teens

If your kid knows some other kids who have a similar tech passion, they should see if their school would let them form a CyberPatriot team next fall. CyberPatriot is a cyber security competition for middle school and high school kids. It teaches them about a wide range of technology, from monitoring...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Feb 07, 2016 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Personal property inventory
Replies: 12
Views: 1408

Re: Personal property inventory

For the large and/or unusual items, adding the serial number and some sort of digital record of the receipt (if you have it) to your inventory database would probably be prudent. The insurance company will be more likely to demand proof of ownership of unusual or expensive items. But most of their c...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Feb 06, 2016 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save
Replies: 44
Views: 4238

Re: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save

Best thing: Chewy doesn't charge sales tax which is 10% where I live (TN). Just because a company doesn't charge sales tax doesn't mean you personally don't owe the sales tax. Check the laws and regulations for your state. In California, for example, we still owe the sales tax even if the company d...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Feb 06, 2016 5:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save
Replies: 44
Views: 4238

Re: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save

My vet's website has a link to vetsource.com for buying various pet foods. The prices are comparable to elsewhere and stuff arrives in 2-3 days. They don't stock everything, mostly specialty pet foods, often things needing a prescription from the vet. I assume the vet office gets some payment for e...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Feb 06, 2016 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save
Replies: 44
Views: 4238

Re: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save

Isn't it possible, even likely, that Amazon can predict which day of the month the peak of subscription coconut oil orders will occur? And, with that prediction in hand, wouldn't it make sense to consider raising the prices briefly to get a better profit margin on coconut oil? We're talking hundred...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Feb 06, 2016 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save
Replies: 44
Views: 4238

Re: Warning on Amazon Subscribe & Save

This does not change the nature of the practice, which is: Amazon apparently raises prices on some items prior to the subscription window, then lowers them again after the subscription items have shipped. This is a logical fallacy. Every customer sets their own time of the month to have items shipp...
by Mudpuppy
Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Coming Boglehead Zombie Apocalypse (LED bulbs)
Replies: 94
Views: 7091

Re: The Coming Boglehead Zombie Apocalypse (LED bulbs)

We are behind the times, have no LED bulbs, have no problems. I also have no LED bulbs in built-in fixtures (I do have a couple of LED desk lamps). All my built-in fixtures have CFLs and I still have new CFL bulbs in the closet. It seems more prudent to work through all of those first before buying...
by Mudpuppy
Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Coming Boglehead Zombie Apocalypse (LED bulbs)
Replies: 94
Views: 7091

Re: The Coming Boglehead Zombie Apocalypse (LED bulbs)

Possibly more important than bulb color in many applications is the bulb's Color Rendering Index (CRI). An incandescent bulb has a CRI of 100, typical low cost LED is 80 or below CRI, but for a modest upcharge higher quality LED can be found with 92+ CRI. For interior lighting, I've been pleased wi...
by Mudpuppy
Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to stop MS loading Windows 10?
Replies: 32
Views: 2504

Re: How to stop MS loading Windows 10?

My Surface Pro 3 has had the specified update at "Recommended" since December. There have been no attempts to force the installation of Windows 10. The "nag icon" sits down in the tray, but that's about it. I would think if Microsoft was planning to be aggressive anywhere, it wou...
by Mudpuppy
Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recent Vanguard Trouble
Replies: 49
Views: 6085

Re: Recent Vanguard Trouble

My opinion is that Vanguard is slowly breaking due to antiquated technology. There is a great deal of antiquated technology to be found in the financial sector. Without a market survey, it's hard to say if Vanguard is worse, average, or better than its competition in this respects. And I doubt anyo...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Feb 02, 2016 2:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard Direct Deposit Source Changed
Replies: 6
Views: 764

Re: Vanguard Direct Deposit Source Changed

I would contact your payroll office. Google indicates that the named company is in the agricultural / horticultural industry, so it should have no ties to any retirement providers. However, it might have an ACH number similar to Vanguard. Someone may have made a typo and sent the funds to the wrong ...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Feb 01, 2016 2:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing timing belt on 2009 Accord(Do it or sell?)
Replies: 66
Views: 3427

Re: Replacing timing belt on 2009 Accord(Do it or sell?)

You'll still need to replace the serpentine belt and water pump at some point. I bought the water pump but will wait as they show signs of failure before total failure. Some will make noise and others will leak coolant from the weep hole onto your driveway. As a poor college student, I pushed the b...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Zero Interest Rates on I-Bonds
Replies: 28
Views: 4007

Re: Zero Interest Rates on I-Bonds

Perusing #Cruncher's post history can also be enlightening on how to become a number cruncher yourself. And I use his I-Bonds site every month to check the value of my I-Bonds. Much quicker than logging in to Treasury Direct.
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stovetop Tea Kettle Recommendations?
Replies: 22
Views: 1435

Re: Stovetop Tea Kettle Recommendations?

Have you considered a glass kettle?
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Downward trend over?
Replies: 46
Views: 4053

Re: Downward trend over?

If anything, I think we'll see another drop. Valuations aren't unreasonable but they also aren't exactly what I'd call low. Plus, we're over-due for a full-fledged bear market. I would welcome a bear market at this point in my investing career. On the other hand, we've finally seen the unskilled la...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 3:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing timing belt on 2009 Accord(Do it or sell?)
Replies: 66
Views: 3427

Re: Replacing timing belt on 2009 Accord(Do it or sell?)

I would not consider the timing belt service to be a compelling reason to sell a car. It's just routine, although slightly more expensive, maintenance if you plan to buy and hold your car. I plan to keep my cars for at least a decade, so this is a normal service item during that time period. On my p...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 3:33 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Maintaining anonymity and privacy [in this forum]
Replies: 22
Views: 3511

Re: Maintaining anonymity and privacy [in this forum]

The fact that I don't use my real name is enough anonymity. With hacks of insurance companies, the IRS, credit card companies, the government, etc, Bogleheads.org is the least of my worries. I agree. I also think that there is about a zero percent chance that anyone I know is reading this forum. I ...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 3:27 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: New Board Index Topic - Retirement Planning
Replies: 31
Views: 1400

Re: New Board Index Topic - Retirement Planning

Problem: What if I was unable to formulate the perfect phrase for the search box that would result in the perfect result for a previously discussed topic? Solution: Be perfect. The search box at the top right corner of every post and the phpBB index page uses Google, which is quite adept at finding...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 3:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Vanguard Online Access Problems]
Replies: 85
Views: 679

Re: [Vanguard Online Access Problems]

I am considering transferring my Roth to Vanguard to avoid paying fees when I invest in their mutual funds, but I keep seeing threads about Vanguard login issues, returns not being reinvested correctly, how their website is terrible, etc. It is somewhat concerning. I've never had issues with the ac...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home budget calculations
Replies: 13
Views: 1735

Re: Home budget calculations

You stated that both of your children are under 2 and you have a large daycare cost for them. Am I correct in assuming part of the allure of the specific areas you are considering is the quality of public schools in those areas? If so, perhaps the best course of action is to keep an eye on the marke...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 31, 2016 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Zero Interest Rates on I-Bonds
Replies: 28
Views: 4007

Re: No I Bond Interest Until May 1, 2016?

This is an August 2015 discussion. I'm trying to make sure that I understand after noticing that my I Bonds have not earned a penny of interest since October 1, 2015. I don't plan to cash out. I understand that I Bonds are probably worth keeping because of their tax advantages and inflation protect...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Jan 30, 2016 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home budget calculations
Replies: 13
Views: 1735

Re: Home budget calculations

If you're feeling uneasy with both options, this is a sign that you're probably stretching yourself too far to purchase the home. What is the motivation for seeking a new home? Is it really a need or is it just a want?
by Mudpuppy
Sat Jan 30, 2016 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Vanguard Online Access Problems]
Replies: 85
Views: 679

Re: VG Security Code not working?

Exeter on this thread https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=183422 determined it was an issue with his plan minutes. Have you checked your cell phone provider's page to make sure that's not the case for you? The 2FA system could have also been down briefly this morning and it was...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Jan 30, 2016 1:40 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: BOGLEHEADS.COM AND BOGLEHEADS.NET
Replies: 51
Views: 4614

Re: BOGLEHEADS.COM AND BOGLEHEADS.NET

Glad to see the dispute was successful.
by Mudpuppy
Fri Jan 29, 2016 12:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Comcast Blast Helpful with WiFi?
Replies: 17
Views: 1428

Re: Is Comcast Blast Helpful with WiFi?

The Gigabit Ethernet standard was introduced over 15 years ago and was found on most new systems more than a decade ago. Unless the OP is using an old machine, I think it's safe to assume the hard-wired ports are Gigabit Ethernet. The computer may be Gigabit Ethernet, but many Wifi routers still fe...
by Mudpuppy
Thu Jan 28, 2016 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Comcast Blast Helpful with WiFi?
Replies: 17
Views: 1428

Re: Is Comcast Blast Helpful with WiFi?

If you're in a region where Blast is supposed to be 150Mbps and you ran speedtest while hard-wired to the cable modem, you're not getting what you paid for. But this does not play into your WiFi issues. You just may be paying more unnecessarily. I am, and I get 170 - 180 Mbps download with Comcast ...
by Mudpuppy
Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: whole life: 1500 cash value after 28 years?
Replies: 20
Views: 3052

Re: whole life: 1500 cash value after 28 years?

When I found out in my early 30s that my parents had such a plan for me, it had less than $2000 cash value when surrendered. I gave the money back to my parents and let them know I had my own term insurance.
by Mudpuppy
Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Comcast Blast Helpful with WiFi?
Replies: 17
Views: 1428

Re: Is Comcast Blast Helpful with WiFi?

If you're in a region where Blast is supposed to be 150Mbps and you ran speedtest while hard-wired to the cable modem, you're not getting what you paid for. But this does not play into your WiFi issues. You just may be paying more unnecessarily.
by Mudpuppy
Wed Jan 27, 2016 3:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stick Vacuum recommendations
Replies: 11
Views: 792

Re: Stick Vacuum recommendations

I have a Bissel Featherweight vacuum that I use for hard surfaces. You don't really need something powerful for hard surfaces. A powerful vacuum is more of a concern for carpets and throw rugs. And you have the canister vacuum for those purposes.
by Mudpuppy
Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Modems and Routers
Replies: 29
Views: 2643

Re: Modems and Routers

Is there a version of this for Time Warner too? Because I was technically getting "less than or equal to 150Mbps" when I was using a 2400 bps modem to connect to AOL in the early 90s. Time Warner actually maintains a page on the average rates consumers got for several various plans based ...
by Mudpuppy
Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Modems and Routers
Replies: 29
Views: 2643

Re: Modems and Routers

I'll keep checking but realistically, my internet is fast enough to do whatever I use it for, including Netflix. If I can count my money in 1/100th of a millisecond versus 3/100ths of a millisecond, isn't that good enough? Sometimes perfect is the enemy of good enough. It's more a matter of fiscal ...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Jan 26, 2016 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Modems and Routers
Replies: 29
Views: 2643

Re: Modems and Routers

I found out that I have the 150mbps service and my download speed is actually 138mbps. Comcast says this is fine. So I guess I'll stick with my current 4-5 year old equipment for now. You should be getting 150Mbps, not 138Mbps, with the 150Mbps plan. Yes, Comcast advertises "up to 150Mbps"...
by Mudpuppy
Tue Jan 26, 2016 1:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REGISTRATION FOR THE 2016 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST
Replies: 646
Views: 14517

Re: REGISTRATION FOR THE 2016 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST

So I have to milk this short-lived relative outperformance for everything it's worth. You could always "sell" your position to lock in for the year. I don't let myself take advantage of that particular rule of this game (I let my selections "ride" to the bitter end), but it is a...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Jan 25, 2016 12:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REGISTRATION FOR THE 2016 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST
Replies: 646
Views: 14517

Re: REGISTRATION FOR THE 2016 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST

So I have to milk this short-lived relative outperformance for everything it's worth. You could always "sell" your position to lock in for the year. I don't let myself take advantage of that particular rule of this game (I let my selections "ride" to the bitter end), but it is a...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Jan 25, 2016 2:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Odd Ball Vanguard Mail Message
Replies: 14
Views: 2287

Re: Odd Ball Vanguard Mail Message

The timing could also mean it was related to the widespread issues on January 15th that were documented on this thread: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=182171 As for sending by snail mail, that is not uncommon for Vanguard. They send notifications about other major changes,...
by Mudpuppy
Mon Jan 25, 2016 2:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Modems and Routers
Replies: 29
Views: 2643

Re: Modems and Routers

I just tested my speeds...128mbps download, 12 mbps up. Is that good? That's could be good or it could be bad. It all depends on what you're supposed to get for the plan you're subscribed to. The idea with running speedtest is to make sure you're getting what you're paying for. So, if you're paying...
by Mudpuppy
Sun Jan 24, 2016 3:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: KeePass download issue
Replies: 7
Views: 476

Re: KeePass download issue

This was already covered on this thread: viewtopic.php?f=11&t=181972

Long story short, this happens every time a new version is released for people with Windows 10 (and perhaps 8.1 as well).
by Mudpuppy
Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Computer] Backup Date issues
Replies: 16
Views: 831

Re: [Computer] Backup Date issues

It is highly unlikely that the file contents were altered. Basically, there are two ways to make a copy of a file: (1) copy the bitwise contents into a new file of the same name / type and (2) copy the bitwise contents of the file and the filesystem metadata about the file into a new file of the sam...
by Mudpuppy
Sat Jan 23, 2016 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What was your biggest unexpected home expense?
Replies: 87
Views: 7264

Re: What was your biggest unexpected home expense?

Fortunately, I have a short run from the house cleanout to the city sewer hookup. So when the Orangeburg pipe on that run failed, it was only about $2k to replace. It was unexpected in that the camera run from the year before was clean, but that year's camera run showed a partially collapsed pipe. B...

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