emzierin:

lonely-trashcan:

upperstories:

alantyson:

sweetappletea:

Punk’s not dead. Just exhausted.

Punk needs a blanket. Maybe some chamomile tea.

shhhh. small noises. small baseline solo.

this is the cutest thing ive ever seen im going to cry

ASKLDJHHJSKAL

emzierin:

lonely-trashcan:

upperstories:

alantyson:

sweetappletea:

Punk’s not dead. Just exhausted.

Punk needs a blanket. Maybe some chamomile tea.

shhhh. small noises. small baseline solo.

this is the cutest thing ive ever seen im going to cry

ASKLDJHHJSKAL

(Source: criquets)

a-mended-mind:

Effectively Dealing with anon hate and them getting mad about it

(Source: stripedsweater)

coelasquid:

darkfliercynthia:

darkfliercynthia:

how the hell are some of u guys 13/14

when i was that age i was unironically watching shitty amvs on youtube and roleplaying on gaia

image

BACK IN MY DAY SMUT FICS WERE CALLED LEMONS

BOYXBOY DONT LIKE DONT READ

When I was 13 youtube didn’t exist and you had to download your amvs for eight hours on a dial up modem with a filesharing program and the sound wouldn’t work because the computers would never have the right plugins to read the compression right.

No torrents either, if someone picked up the phone and cut the connection or your uploader signed off you had to start again from scratch.

warrenbuchholz:

Stop Victim Blaming campaign poster series.

(Source: warrenbuchholz)

gothiccharmschool:

sixpenceee:

Bats illuminated by lightning (video)

NOTHING IS MORE GOTH THAN THIS.

gothiccharmschool:

sixpenceee:

Bats illuminated by lightning (video)

NOTHING IS MORE GOTH THAN THIS.

gothiccharmschool:

spookyloop:

Black-as-Night Caramel ApplesRecipe here.

Yes. I want these. Someone make them and deliver them to me.

gothiccharmschool:

spookyloop:

Black-as-Night Caramel Apples
Recipe here.

Yes. I want these. Someone make them and deliver them to me.

How Memorizing “$19.05” Can Help You Outsmart the MTA

iquantny:

We’ve all been there.  The train is coming into the station, and you grab your MetroCard and quickly try and swipe it at a turnstile.  

"Please Swipe Again".  "Please Swipe Again".  "Insufficient Fare".

The last two words are killer.  You think to yourself “I swear I had a balance on this card”.   You go and check the card out and you see you have “$2.45”.  Yes, you need $2.50 to ride the subway, and you have $2.45 on your MetroCard.  Sure enough you miss that train all because of that nickel. 

How did you end up in that situation any way?   It turns out the MTA has designed it that way.  Imagine how many tourists come to NYC and leave with balances that never get used.  Imagine how many people lose metro cards with those balances that never get used.  And even if it gets used on a later refill, the MTA gets to collect the cash earlier this way!  Win win for them, right?  

But now, with some simple math, you can fight back!  

First, let’s see how the MTA tricks you out of your money earlier than you might want to release it to them.

When you are buying a MetroCard, you can get a 5% bonus if your purchase is big enough.  So you get the following screen early on in the purchase process: 

image

If you click the button on the left, they just got you.  Your card will have $9.45 on it, meaning you will get 3 rides and end up with $1.95.  That is a great deal for the MTA.  They get all the money from every rider who does that, and they get the interest on that until you refill again and repeat the cycle.  

Let’s say you don’t take the bait.  You click MetroCard.  Then you get this screen with three new short cuts:

image

Three quick options.  But wait a minute.  One button leaves you with the same $9.45 card, and gives a remainder of $1.95 after just three uses. The next one is even more frustrating: you end up with a $19.95 card, leaving a remainder after 7 uses of $2.45!   That’s right, the nickel we were talking about earlier.  The last option does not leave you much better off.   You’ll get a $40.95 card, which leads to $0.95 on your card after you use 16 rides.  So all three buttons presented leave quite a bit of “insufficient fare” on the card. 

So how do you fight back  Well, click “Other Amounts” and type your own values: 

image

and remember these three magic numbers:   $9.55, $19.05 and $38.10. That’s right. Never use the short cuts.  Just type in one of those numbers.  

Once you do, you’ll see your excess balances nearly vanish once you apply the 5% bonuses: 

image

Buy a $19.00 card?  $2.45 left on card after use.  Buy a $19.05 card?  No balance left after use!  Magic.  But what if you want a $10.00 MetroCard? There is literally no way to buy one because of the 5% bonus and the fact that all payments need to be divisible by a nickel.  Your options are to pay $9.50 to get a $9.98 card after bonus, or pay $9.55 to get a $10.03 card after bonus.   Once again, you literally can’t buy a $10 metro card from a machine. 

If you absolutely don’t want any left over money, you really only have three choices of payments below $40, as seen in the table below: 

image

If the pennies bother you, then maybe memorize these three numbers: $11.90, $19.05, $30.95.

So if the MTA really cares, what can they do to fix this?

Well here at I Quant NY, I’ve been hard at work coming up with a proposed software change.  After much thought, check out this before and after: 

Before:

image

After:

image

Not a big change you say?  Echm.  That’s right.  If they really wanted to fix the issue, they could ask “How much do you want on your MetroCard” instead of “How much do you want to pay”.  But don’t count on those changes coming to a MetroCard Vending Machine near you anytime soon, given how lucrative the current set up is.   

Which means it’s up to you.  Write down the three numbers, $9.55, $19.05 and $38.10 or pick just the one that matches your buying habits best.  You could even write it on the back of your Metrocard if you can figure out how to get ink to stay on it.  (There’s a reason they are so shiny.)

A side note: one reason that the MTA may do this is to make paying with cash easier. It would be a nightmare to dispense change if cash buyers used this technique.  But that does not explain why they can’t update the credit card only machines or all other machines if they first ask if you are using cash or credit.  And of course unlimited card buyers avoid this all together.  Also, this does not include the $1 fee associated with new metro cards. 

So in closing, Math is useful.  And luckily, you don’t have to be Einstein to outsmart the MTA.  Plus, guess what year Einstein handed in his dissertation…  You guessed it.  1905.  

For the latest I Quant NY data analysis of this great city, sign up for my Mailing List (about one post a week), Follow me on Facebook or Follow me on Twitter.  I tell stories with data.

Past posts include finding and fixing the most profitable fire hydrant in NYC, showing that the Health Department is inflating grades or looking at gender and Citibike.

Ben Wellington is a Visiting Assistant Professor in The City & Regional Planning Program at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, where he focuses  on NYC Open Data.  He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from NYU.

Update (9/8/2014):

Some have pointed out that this may not be intentional.  Yes, it could be the case that even though the MTA takes in about $50 million dollars a year in unredeemed excess balances that no one ever noticed this.   I don’t have any idea where these decisions come from, so I am not in a place to point fingers with any proof.  But, intentional or not, the buttons are tricking people out of their money.  If it really is unintentional, I’d be thrilled because it won’t be long until the problem is fixed given all the attention this post has gotten.  So let’s hope all the people who say the MTA did not do this intentionally are correct.  I can think of no better way to be proven wrong. 

Update2 (9/8/2014):

MTA Responds!  Read more here

autumnbound:

powderedbuns:

dialga:

meowling-quim:

sockdreams.com is such a dangerous website omg you can drop so much money within the blink of an eye

I NEED ALL OF THEM

let me tell you about sockdreams okay. everything they have is cute and their “longer” socks which are for taller or curvier people are amazing. i am almost 6 feet tall and not a skinny lady and i bought some thigh highs thinking they’d end up being calf socks on me and just kind of resigning myself to this fate but when they arrived (in like two days, holy shit they mail out fast) not only did they pull all the way up without trouble, they managed to stay up and look cute. as. fuck. OP’s right yo, that website’s a threat to your wallet.

sockdreams is such a legitimate company and I love them a lot.

(Source: mogitha)

sazquatch:

The huge amount of pressure on young girls to let their boyfriends get away with everything and not to stand up for themselves, lest they stop being a ‘chill girlfriend’ and instead become a horrible, controlling harpy is such bullshit.

Stop teaching young girls that demanding to be treated with respect and courtesy makes them shrill, over-emotional, or unworthy of listening to.