ESPlanner tool

Investors can also try ESPlannerBasic (Basic.esplanner.com), from Boston-based financial-software company Economic Security Planning Inc., which offers a free plan developed by Boston University economics professor Laurence Kotlikoff.

You enter your current and projected salary, retirement age and savings, among other things. The site calculates your sustainable living standard and allows you to tinker with how much a job change, housing move or retirement-account contribution can raise or lower your living standard.

Then the program recommends annual amounts of discretionary spending, savings and life-insurance holdings. The program incorporates a lot of the nitty-gritty details other programs tend to leave out, such as federal and state taxes and future Social Security benefits. But the process can be time-consuming it takes up to 30 minutes to fill out all the necessary information. What’s more, the basic version stores your plan for only 24 hours, so every time you want to run the simulation, you must input the numbers.

via The Best Online Tools for Personal Finance – WSJ.com.

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Collapsible trash can

This small pop up garbage can is awesome. It is perfect to keep in your RV, trailer car, truck or boat or even with your camping gear. It will collapse down flat for storage, and then pop up when you are ready to use it.

Collapsible/Portable Garbage Bag Holder or trash container. Perfect for RVs, Boats and Home, saves space. Instant pop up assembly for use indoor/oudoors.

Perfect for RV’s, Trucks, Vans and Boats
Pops Up to Use, Collapses Down Flat to Store
7.5″ Tall x 6.5″ Diameter
Can be attached to carpet with Velcro type micro hooks
Color: Black

MFG Model 38996-1

Strings Attached Co-Author Offers Solutions for Education – WSJ.com

Praise makes you weak…My old teacher Mr. K seldom praised us. His highest compliment was “not bad.” It turns out he was onto something. Stanford psychology professor Carol Dweck has found that 10-year-olds praised for being “smart” became less confident. But kids told that they were “hard workers” became more confident and better performers.”The whole point of intelligence praise is to boost confidence and motivation, but both were gone in a flash,” wrote Prof. Dweck in a 2007 article in the journal Educational Leadership. “If success meant they were smart, then struggling meant they were not.”

via Strings Attached Co-Author Offers Solutions for Education – WSJ.com.

Summary: Adaptive Content

Two Publishers: Two Strategies

Publishers face a lot of content challenges. They feel the pain of mobile more acutely than others and therefore need to address it head on. Fragmenting our content across all these devices just isn’t sustainable.

Conde Nast creates custom iPad apps for their key publications. They make two separate layouts for portrait and landscape, which wastes a lot of time and effort.

They are tightly clinging to outdated mindsets. “If only we could just take pictures of our pages and put them on the iPad, everything will be great!”

On the other side of the spectrum, NPR employs a Create Once, Publish Everywhere approach, which allows them to smartly reach a plethora of platforms

A robust CMS allows NPR’s content to be distributed across mobile sites, apps, desktop websites, Xbox, and more.

Conde Nast’s iPad-only approach is resulting in declining page views, while In comparison NPR saw an 80% increase in page views as a direct result of building an API for their content.

The Need for Adaptivity

Adaptive content is more important than ever now that mobile is exploding

Clean, well-structured content is essential for dealing with a plethora of devices and channels

Start with a clean base of content designed for re-use, then figure out how to deploy that to a multitude of channels

TV Guide in the 80′s had writers create multiple versions of tv reviews which was saved in a database. They were preparing their content to go more places, even places that weren’t around then.

News organizations already have structured content, which is why they are often at the forefront of adaptive content innovation.

News staff are already trained to structure content, so they naturally have a better time dealing with CMSes and writing more modular content.

It’s scary for organizations to separate content from form, but it’s essential to decouple content and presentation.

Create platform-agnostic chunks first, then determining how best to deploy to a multitude of channels

Content authoring != Content Management != Content Publishing

We’re in the content publishing business, not the web publishing business. It’s not about mobile-first, desktop-first or even app-first . It’s about CONTENT FIRST.

Amazon product detail pages have a lot of information. The mobile experience chunks out major sections (reviews, info, etc) into separate screens.

Truncation is not a content strategy for mobile. Don’t remove content for mobile screens.

Demystify Metadata

“I want a tool that works just like Microsoft Word” leads to blobs of content. We need to write chunks of content instead of blobs of content.

Thinking about where content will “live” on a “web page” is pretty 1999. -Lisa Welchman

Take the time to think about how content is stored and how to retrieve it. Metadata allows us to programmatically build pages. You might need to create multiple versions of a piece of content.

Metadata is the new art direction. It gives us control to prioritize content in a way that makes sense for the context

Metadata supports personalized content. It allows content to adapt to the user in ways otherwise not possible.

Better CMSes

Current CMSes are forcing us to recycle content made for a particular platform (namely the desktop web) and translate it to other contexts. Creating content with presentation for one platform in mind first leads to disparate experiences further down the line.

The CMS workflow is typically terrible, therefore making it difficult/unappealing to create robust content. CMS is the enterprise software that UX forgot. Reducing UX friction in CMSes allows content creators to focus on….creating content. (what a concept!)

The quality of the tools used to create content very much influence the quality of content that gets outputted.

Happier CMS users create better content.

Moving Forward

Use mobile as a wedge. It’s a catalyst to think beyond a singular context and create long-term solutions.

Investing in structured content today frees us up to focus on tomorrow’s platforms

Design with and for structured content. Creating adaptive content is freakishly hard, but it’s absolutely necessary. Plan for the future.

via BDConf: Karen McGrane presents Adapting Ourselves to Adaptive Content | Brad Frost Web.