Archives for April 23, 2018

Amazon Prime: Buy Sample Box, Get Equal Credit Towards Similar Products

“The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone.”

snackaz

Updated with new Snack and other sample boxes. Amazon Prime members can buy sample boxes that come with a credit towards a future purchase in that specific product category. Right now, you can buy a snack sample box for $9.99 and then you’ll get an equal $9.99 credit towards a future purchase of any eligible items in that category. You’ll still get Amazon Prime free shipping. Here are the currently available sample boxes along with the eligible products:

Due to the way this deal is structured, I choose to view it is a “free box of goodies” if you would already otherwise purchase something on their eligible item lists. That way you’re not buying something you don’t need anyway.

The sample boxes do go out of stock for extended periods of time, so if you see something you like, I would buy it now. A week after your product ships, you will receive an email with instructions on how to use your promotional credit.

Georgia Tech Online Master’s Degree Update: Computer Science $7,000, Data Analytics $10,000

“The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone.”

georgiatech

Maybe I’m foolish, but I remain hopeful about the potential of software leading to more affordable, accessible education. In 2014, Georgia Tech launched an Online Master of Science in Computer Science (OMSCS) with the goal of offering an accredited, top-tier education at a surprising price of $7,000. The program has been regularly ranked in the Top 10 by U.S. News & World Report, and the traditional residential program costs $28,000 two years of tuition (out-of-state, not including housing).

OMSCS offers the same lectures from the same professors, the same homework assignments, and the same exams. A few other top universities have online versions of their masters programs, but they charge the same tuition as in-person ($40,000+). The diploma is exactly the same as those of on-campus graduates, with no special “online” designation.

Would there be enough interest from qualified candidates? Would it remain financially viable? Would the online program cannibalize from the traditional on-campus program? Would employers discriminate if they found out that this was an online degree? Would the careers prospects be different due to the lack of in-person networking opportunities?

EducationNext recently published an article An Elite Grad-School Degree Goes Online addresses some of these questions. InsiderEd has a an article Online, Cheap — and Elite that summarizes the findings.

Analyzing the first six cohorts of the online program, from spring 2014 to fall 2016, the report found that the typical applicant to the online program was a 34-year-old midcareer American, while the typical applicant to the in-person degree was a 24-year-old recent graduate from India.

Of the 18,000 students who applied to the in-person and online degrees, less than 0.2 percent applied to both, the report said.

Students admitted to the online program typically had slightly lower academic credentials than those admitted to the in-person program, but they performed slightly better in their identical and blind-marked final assessments — a finding the study hailed as “the first rigorous evidence that we know of showing that an online degree program can increase educational attainment.”

Overall, the program has been a success in terms of expanding access to high-quality computer science education. Total enrollment is now over 6,000 students. The questions about career effects will be addressed in future studies.

In 2017, Georgia Tech announced a new Online Masters Degree in Analytics for under $10,000. This is also a nationally-ranked Top 10 program where the traditional in-person tuition ranges from $36,000 for in-state students to $49,000 for out of state. The data analytics program is an interdisciplinary collaboration between the College of Engineering, College of Computing and the Scheller College of Business.

1.1.1.1: Free DNS Server for Faster Internet, Better Privacy

“The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone.”

Every time you visit a domain like mymoneyblog.com, you use a DNS server to find its “address”, specifically IP address. However, your internet service provider (ISP) may be logging every single request then selling this data to other advertisers. CloudFlare and APNIC partnered to create 1.1.1.1, an alternative free DNS resolver that doesn’t sell data to advertisers. It also uses CloudFlare’s network of servers to even faster than other DNS servers, even Google’s version.

1111speed

Better privacy and faster internet? Sounds good to me. The main concern is that this is a private effort and you have to trust that they will maintain this unprofitable venture. I’ll try it out while it lasts. Learn more here. Installation directions (you must change a few settings) here.