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Lightweight Disaster Recovery Simulation: Dungeons and Dragons style

Disasters happen. When they do, are you ready to handle it with grace? In general people get good at handling events that they experience regularly, but high-risk disasters are managed so they don't happen often. It's not every day that power goes out at the primary data center, but when it does you want to be sure that your auto-fail-over actually works. You want to be sure your backups actually work.However, testing disaster preparedness often takes too much time time and creates little organizational value.

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my schedule

My schedule is pretty flexible: 7 to 5:30 most days.

Monday busy from 10:30 to 11:30.
Tuesday busy from 7 to 9 and 4 to 5:30.
Wednesday busy from 4:00 to 5:30.
Thursday busy from 8 to 9:00, 10:30 to 11:30 and 4:00 to 5:30.
Friday generally free.

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Nexus5 Unlimited talk/text/data for $45 per month (seriously)

You could also call this "Free Nexus5 if you switch from AT&T or Verizon." Here's a comparison of the plans and how I arrived at the idea of "Free" Nexus 5.

Item Verizon StraightTalk
Phone purchase price Subsidized $200 every 2 years No subsidy
Monthly cost for 2 lines $190 $90
Minutes included 1400 Unlimited
Text included 500 Unlimited
Data Unlimited originally, switched to 2GB for the same rate Unlimited (2.5GB cap, after that 3G service)

This chart shows how much money both of these plans cost. I used a MotoX as the subsidized phone since it is similar in specs to the Nexus 5.

Comparison of Verizon and StraightTalk plans for 2 years

For our 2-phone-household, we had been spending $4,658 in a 2 year cycle compared to our annual of $2858. Both of those numbers feel pretty high, but at least with StraightTalk we're saving $1,800 in a 2 year cycle. Source data for that chart is in this spreadsheet

Let me say that again: $1,800 savings in a 2 year cycle! We could actually buy a new Nexus phone (or similar) every year and still save money compared to Verizon.

Enter the Nexus 5 and StraightTalk

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Why I Love working at CARD.com

For the past 1 year, 1 month, 1 week and 1 day I've been working at CARD.com. I love it. I've had a lot of great jobs in my career so far, but this is one that is truly extraordinary.

I'm currently pretty enthusiastic about a set of quotes from Jeff Bezos compiled at fool.com, so I'm sprinkling some of those through this post.

What is CARD.com doing?

Our CEO put it like this in a recent interview he gave:

CARD.com is the world’s first likeable financial company. We make payments fun, fair and fashionable. CARD.com offers Visa cards and MasterCard cards featuring card art and amazing perks from the best brands in the world, like Star Trek, Elvis or The Walking Dead.

And...that's a good description of what we do. But, what do I think we're doing that is exceptional?

  • We're using a ton of open source software and contributing back where we can. That just warms my heart :)
  • We're doing everything with an eye towards scalability. We have a lot of card designs and many more are coming. Some of our designs are big and some are small. We still want to delight the people with a "small" brand because to them that brand is their life.
  • Bezos said "Your margin is my opportunity." and we're following that. We aren't aiming to be the cheapest provider, but we are undercutting a lot of other providers with what we believe is a much better product. That will help us scale and as we scale big we win. It feels great to provide a product that is competitive with other options available to our typical cardholder.
  • Since we're scaling big, we sweat the small stuff. We review contracts to see how we can squeeze pennies or fractions of pennies out of different transactions.
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Lost: The Drinking Game

We started watching the tv-show lost a while ago on netflix streaming. This is great because we can watch episodes back to back which gets rid of the anxiety over what will happen "next week."

We found a few occurrences that were uncommon enough that they could be used as a pretty decent game.

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