âWhy Iâm Returning My New IPadâ, My new iPad is going back to the store.
I paid $600 for the 32GB Wi-Fi model, and although I like it well enough, I donât think itâs worth the money.
Before the Apple faithful take my head off, allow me to explain â and to note that Iâm keeping my original iPad. Also, I have such mad love for my iPhone 4S, I want to cook it breakfast every morning. You get my meaning; this isnât just wayward iPad-bashing.
When Apple announced the new tablet, I was underwhelmed but intrigued. Iâd skipped the iPad 2, so I figured I âowedâ myself this upgrade. Plus, it would be a business expense; I do write for a blog called iPad Atlas, after all.
Mostly, though, I got caught up in the hype. After reading gushing praise for the new iPadâs Retina Display and blazing processor, I had to see what the fuss was about.
The fuss, it turns out, was more overblown than a Kardashian wedding. The screen? Yep, itâs nice. Does it make my eyes leap from my skull and dance a marimba cha-cha? No. Neither does it cure cancer or introduce me to supermodels, despite what some drooling bloggers intimated.
The new iPad is admirably peppy, though I never found my original iPad to be slow. My kids enjoy messing with the built-in cameras, but thatâs a luxury I certainly donât need. Using an iPad to snap photos or video is like driving a monster truck to the grocery store: uncomfortable and impractical (to say nothing of showy). The only thing that Iâll actually miss is big-screen FaceTime â but for those moments I can always Skype on my laptop.
4G LTE? Again, nice, but I have no need for it. And that leavesâŚwhat? The new iPad is a little slimmer, a little faster, and little easier on the eyes than the original. Not enough, Apple. I want my $600 back.
As fate would have it, a Kindle Fire arrived shortly after the new iPad. (Itâs a loaner, due back to Amazon in about a week.) As youâre no doubt aware, itâs a hair less expensive: $199.
Yes, it has a smaller screen, less storage, no cameras, no 3G/4G, no Bluetooth, and so on. But you know what? I love the little guy, because it better suits my needs.
Funniest Readersâ Mega Millions Comments, The Mega Millions $640 million jackpot produced three winning tickets on Friday night. After the drawing, as the nation began to settle down from its lottery frenzy, thousands of Yahoo! readers commented on not beating the odds in order to strike it rich.
Some of the comments were hilarious, others showed honesty. And, as always, a few were a little too disturbing for general consumption.
Here are the top 10 editorsâ picks:
10) Maggy (Providence, Rhode Island): âI guess 1,2,3,4,5 with a Mega ball of 6 was a bad choice?â
9) Stugots: âOh well I was going to split it with all the Yahoo comment posters maybe next week.â
Brian (Mt. Prospect, Illinois): âGuess i told my boss âto shove itâ a little earlier than i should haveâŚâ
7) Gracie: âI won Ten Dollars, Please no Phone calls.â
6) Queenie: âIs any Lotto money still going to ED-Joo-KAY-shun?â
5) Norman: âWell honey, there is bad news and there is good newsâŚâŚ.the bad news is that we didnât win anything in the MegaLotteryâŚâŚthe good news is that we wonât be hearing from your relatives.â
4) AstroBoy: âI am glad it is over, now I can go back to fantasizing about women again instead of money.â
3) Vik (Miami, Florida): âOnly time I won a lottery was in 1972 when I was drafted into military service at #85. So did I win or did I lose?â
2) John Joe: âNow [the winners] can afford to buy gas.â
1) Justin Kase: âAt least not winning saves a whole lot of deleting of Facebook friends this morning.â
Tax Breaks For The Big Events In Your Life, Taxes have been a part of your life since your parents welcomed you into this world.
From that beginning as a spanking new tax break for mom and dad, taxes have had an important role in all your major life events, from getting a job, saying âI do,â buying and selling homes, having kids of your own, and even retiring.
In some cases, the involvement of the Internal Revenue Service is not such a good thing.
But in many ways, the tax code can be your best friend. You just need to know how it applies to your personal circumstances so you can take advantage of it. Read on to learn more about tax breaks for lifeâs big events.
Uncle Sam gets a portion of your paycheck via payroll taxes. You do, however, have a bit of a say in how much comes out of your pay by adjusting your withholding.
If you have too much withheld, youâll get a refund when you file. Thatâs not necessarily bad, but wouldnât you rather have your own money year-round instead of giving the IRS an interest-free loan?
On the other hand, if you donât have enough taken out, you could face a major tax bill, and possible underwithholding penalties, at filing time. Ask your boss for a new Form W-4 so you can run the numbers and adjust your withholding.
Your job likely offers several tax breaks. If your employer provides health care coverage, your medical insurance is a tax-free benefit to you. Youâll find out how much thatâs worth on next yearâs W-2 earnings statement.
A flexible spending account, or FSA, also might be part of your job benefits. Here you can save pretax dollars to pay for medical care not covered by insurance.
You also want to take advantage of your workplaceâs tax-deferred 401(k) retirement plan.
And if you move to take a job, even your first one, you can write off many of your relocation costs.
Red Bud Illinois, There are at least three new multimillionaires Saturday morning thanks to a massive Mega Millions lottery payout. One of three winning tickets sold in the record $640 million jackpot was bought in nearby Red Bud, Illinois.
According to Illinois Lottery officials, the winning ticket was bought using quick pick at the Moto Mart on Main Street in Red Bud.
Another winning ticket was sold at a 7-11 near Baltimore, Maryland and a third in Kansas.
Maga Million Numbers, The $640 million Mega Millions jackpot will be split at least three ways as ticket holders in Kansas, Illinois and Maryland all selected the winning numbers for the world record-breaking lottery, officials said early Saturday.
Illinoisâ winning ticket was sold in the small town of Red Bud, near St. Louis, and the winner used a quick pick to select the numbers, Illinois Lottery spokesman Mike Lang said. The Maryland Lottery said it sold a winning ticket at a retail store in Baltimore County.
A winning ticket also was purchased in northeast Kansas, according to the Kansas Lottery website. A spokeswoman didnât immediately return a message Saturday morning.
Each winning ticket was expected to be worth more than $213 million before taxes, Lang said. The winning numbers in Friday nightâs drawing were 02-04-23-38-46, and the Mega Ball 23.
Maryland Lottery spokeswoman Carole Everett said the last time a ticket from the state won a major national jackpot was in 2008, when a ticket sold for $24 million.
âWeâre thrilled,â she said. âWeâre due and excited.â
The estimated jackpot dwarfs the previous $390 million record, which was split in 2007 by two winners who bought tickets in Georgia and New Jersey.
Americans spent nearly $1.5 billion for a chance to hit the jackpot, which amounts to a $462 million lump sum and around $347 million after federal tax withholding. With the jackpot odds at 1 in 176 million, it would cost $176 million to buy up every combination. Under that scenario, the strategy would win $171 million less if your state also withholds taxes.
From coast to coast, people stood in line at retail stores Friday for one last chance at striking it rich.
Maribeth Ptak, 31, of Milwaukee, said she only buys Mega Millions tickets when the jackpot is really big and she bought one Friday at a Milwaukee grocery store. She said sheâd use the money to pay off bills, including school loans, and then sheâd donate a good portion to charity.
Credit Card Data Theft, Credit card information is being reportedly picked clean from refurbished Xbox 360s, along with other personal information. Microsoft is investigating the claims.
Speaking to Kotaku, researchers from Drexel University â Ashley Podhradsky â said Microsoft needed to do more to protect userâs data.
âMicrosoft does a great job of protecting their proprietary information, but they donât do a great job of protecting the userâs data,â she said.
Three researchers â Podhradsky, Rob DâOvidio, and Cindy Casey, from Drexel and Pat Edgebreston at Dakota State University â purchased a refurbished Xbox 360 last year.
âThey downloaded a basic modding tool and used it to crack open the gaming console, giving them access to its files and folder. After some work, they were able to identify and extract the original ownerâs credit card information,â Kotaku reports. The Web site contacted Microsoft, but didnât receive a response.
Podhradsky says she isnât a regular gamer so, theoretically, the process would be even easier for experienced hackers.
âA lot of them already know how to do all this. Anyone can freely download a lot of this software, essentially pick up a discarded games console, and have someoneâs identity,â she added.
For users wanting to sell their Xbox 360, the recommended advice is removing the hard drive and connecting it to your computer. Download a programme like Darikâs Boot & Nuke program that removes all data.
âI think Microsoft has a longstanding pattern of this. When you go and reformat your computer, like a Windows system, it tells you that all of your data will be erased. In actuality thatâs not accurate â the data is still available âŚ so when Microsoft tells you youâre resetting something, itâs not accurate,â Podhradsky added.