Site Infrastructure Updates

For those who are interested in such things, I performed major updates on my Biography, which now includes a sketch of my current budget and financial situation.  To facilitate a series of reader case studies (that I am extremely excited about), I've also added a Contact page.

The Post-It note above my computer monitor reads 'CONTENT FIRST', but sometimes...

My Financial Independence-related blog roll has also been added to the right sidebar.  Note the distinct lack of jumping, talking, flashing, or exploding advertisements.

I'm still working on learning the intricacies of Google Custom Search, and it currently only halfway does what I want it to do.  Once I figure it out, I'll post a brief guide to my Blogging Tools page.  In the meantime, here's a nicely-organized Table of Contents which also contains a list of the posts that are still on the old assembly line.

[X1] Open Clip Art: Gear — http://openclipart.org/detail/169903/gear-by-hank0071


Thrift Is Beautiful: Food

While some might claim that they're 'eating for the flavor', at the end of the day... we're all eating for the calories.  It's our never-ending quest for calories that keeps even the most frugal of us coming back to the kitchen and the grocery store.

Our senses of touch and sight allow us to evaluate our food in terms of how much space it takes up and how much it weighs.  We're unable to gauge caloric content so easily.

Take this quarter-cup of extra-virgin olive oil:

How many calories do you think this contains?  One hundred calories?  Two hundred?

500 calories.

(this is easily verified: 1/4 cup = 60 milliliters, vegetable oil has a density of ~0.92 grams per milliliter [1], and lipids have an energy density of around nine food calories per gram)

Extra virgin olive oil is expensive, right?

1/4 Cup of extra-virgin olive oil = 500 calories = $0.35.


High-Efficiency Procurement

This information has gone stale!

Fortunately, alternative means have become available for automating your Craigslist searching.

Check out the Craigslist channel on IFTTT: https://ifttt.com/craigslist

If your Craigslist hunting strategy involves hitting 'refresh' a whole bunch of times, there is a Better Way.

Not everyone knows about List Alert: http://www.list-alert.com/.

This needs to change.

Setting up a Craigslist alert to find me a bread machine in the East Bay is as easy as:

After hitting 'Search', you can type your email into the box and hit 'Create Alert'.  You'll have to confirm your email address to start things up.  Creating an account is optional, but it gives you the ability to quickly and easily create and edit alerts from http://www.list-alert.com/search/my_searches.cfm.

I created this alert at the beginning of the week.  Taken yesterday evening:

Bread-y success!

I haven't turned the alert off yet, so they keep coming in:

If you're an EBay user, you can do something very similar by saving a search and selecting 'sign up for emails'.

Happy robo-baking!

(or happy... whatever it is you do on Craigslist)