Drew Withers

Raspberry Pi, Linux, Personal Finance, Genealogy, Technology, Web

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How I got stuck using Betterment.com for 8 months

TLDR; If you use a 60 day rollover to fund an IRA at Betterment, your funds are stuck there for a year and you will have to continue to make deposits to avoid higher fees.

I really liked Betterment.com. The site is well done and the concept is sound. A year ago I created a Roth IRA account at Betterment only to find out that they only accept inbound IRA transfers using a 60-day rollover through your personal checking account. After a few months, I decided that I would prefer to just stick with Vanguard since the fees are lower and I don’t need Betterment to “actively” manage my funds for a fee. The problem I encountered was that, due to the method Betterment uses for IRA funds transfer, my money was stuck. And worse still, I had to continue contributing to the account to prevent the fees from going up to a much higher amount.

For those unfamiliar, there are a couple of ways to move...

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Changing your svbtle.com password

Since svbtle.com opened their doors to the public today, I created an account just to try it out. I like it so far, but when I went to change my password later on I discovered that there is no direct way to change your password in the settings menu. I could just be missing something but either way I found that you can accomplish the same effect by logging out and then clicking the “Forgot” link on the login page. This will send you a password reset email that will allow you to change your password.

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Limefuel battery backup for Raspberry Pi

I purchased a 15600mAh Limefuel USB External Battery Pack from Amazon for a recent trip we took to Florida. We wanted to be able to keep the kiddos occupied with games and movies on our tablet and phones during the flights. It worked great for that, but after the trip I was trying to think of uses for this enormous battery pack since I generally don’t need one on a daily basis. limefuel.jpg It turns out that this latest version of the Limefuel has pass-through charging which allows it to power a device while charging the battery pack. I wasn’t sure if the mechanism that was used would allow it to serve as an uninterruptible power supply (UPS), but I tested it with my raspberry pi and it worked. When I unplug the Limefuel from the wall, it continues to power the rpi uninterrupted. That adds an additional bit of reliability to my rpi webserver that is running a RAID 1.

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Switching from FreedomPop to Republic Wireless

A few months ago my wife and I both got refurbished HTC Evo Design 4G phones from FreedomPop. The phones were $99 each and the data-based service that offers 200 minutes of voip calling and 500mb of 3G data on Sprint’s network is completely free. I was coming from a $30 per month prepaid plan with Tmobile on a Nexus 4 and she was coming from a feature phone on Verizon. I have written a couple of articles on my experiences with FP and how to make it bearable.

freedomphone.png

Basically the FP got the job done for the two of us since we don’t make a lot of phone calls. The call quality and reliability were not good even after making significant tweaks to improve them. The Design is not a terrible phone, but it is old and can’t handle a lot of today’s modern apps. If I could get a Moto G and put it on FP, it would be a match made in heaven. But so far, from what I have found, the BYOD option for FP...

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