There’s Been an Explosion in the Lab

Lab Explosion

I finally did it…

I figured out a way to create $100 bills out of neon green liquid.

The chemical reaction was more intense than I expected though so there was a big explosion and now there are $100 bills floating everywhere.

What the hell am I talking about?

I redesigned my site!

Check out my homepage to see for yourself.


A friend of mine is a designer so we took some ridiculous pictures (with glassware borrowed from my brother-in-law’s lab) and his design firm helped me restyle my site.

I still have more work to do but the majority of the redesign is complete so I wanted to share it with you.

Besides the fantastic new homepage, here are some other big changes:

No Ads

I’m excited to say that there are no more Adsense ads!

I’ve always hated the ads because they look terrible, there’s no way to control what’s being advertised, and I’m not a fan of advertising in general (since the whole point of it is to entice you to spend money on things you don’t need).

The ads were here to cover the running costs of the site but now that the revenue from my credit card search tool does that, the ads are gone!

No Sidebar

The other thing I’m excited about is the removal of the sidebar from my posts.

When reading other articles on the internet, I noticed that I really enjoyed the experience on some sites but not on others.

I tried to figure out what it was about the sites that I liked and it boiled down to these things:

  • Uncluttered Interface
  • No Ads
  • No Distractions

Not having a sidebar means that there are no longer any other graphics vying for your attention when you’re reading.

You can now focus 100% on the content, which I assume is the whole reason you’re here anyway.


If anything looks weird on your computer or if you have any suggestions for additional improvements, please let me know in the comments below.

If things look really funky or if the site looks the same as it did before, your browser may not have the latest version of some of the files so clear your cache and press the refresh button to get the latest stuff.

T- Shirts

To celebrate the redesign, I’m doing another batch of Mad Fientist t-shirts.

Mad Fientist T-Shirts - Mr. 1500

Mr. 1500 and me after our podcast interview

I originally printed around 35 t-shirts to give as thank-you gifts to my past podcast guests but a lot of other people saw them on Twitter and Facebook and asked if they could buy one. Since I only printed a small number to give away to specific people, that wasn’t possible.

After months of trying to find a good way to offer them for sale online, I gave up because I couldn’t find a company that offered the high-quality shirts I wanted at a reasonable price.

Mad Fientist T-Shirts - MMM and JD Roth

Two of my favorite finance writers of all time (Mr. Money Mustache and J.D. Roth) showed up to a conference wearing MF shirts and I wasn’t even there to see it

I have a trip to the States planned for next month though so here’s what I’m going to do…

I’m just going to order the same shirts I got before but I’ll do the packaging and shipping myself so that I can keep the price down as low as possible.

How to Order

I’ve created a Custom Ink group order form so if you want a MF shirt, order one here by next Friday (4/28/2017).

Once all the orders are in at the end of next week, Custom Ink will print all the shirts and will ship them to my parents’ house.

When I’m there visiting in May, I’ll package up all the individual shirts and will ship them to you.

Mad Fientist T-Shirts - Winnie from Go Curry Cracker

The better half of Go Curry Cracker modeling her Mad Fientist shirt

This obviously isn’t an ideal solution but it’s the only way I could offer the high-quality shirts I got before (American Apparel 50/50 shirts) while keeping the cost-per-shirt below $20.

You may be wondering why I only want to use American Apparel 50/50 shirts. Well, they’re nice and soft, they fit well, and then don’t warp when you wash them.

There’s no point in buying a shirt that looks terrible after washing it a few times so that’s why high-quality shirts are the only option.


I have no idea how many people will order a t-shirt or how much shipping will be so I just set the price to $18.54 (shipping included) because that seemed affordable but high enough to hopefully cover the costs.

The price is a weird number because Custom Ink calculates the price for you based on the number of shirts you expect to sell (you can’t specify an exact sales price, only an estimate of the number of shirts you think you’ll sell).

Since I am paying the shipping costs myself, I’m only going to be able to ship to US addresses this time so apologies to my foreign readers.

Don’t Forget Your Address

When you purchase a shirt, make sure you enter your address on the optional Private Note field so that I know where to send it to!

Secret Feature

As if the t-shirt isn’t cool enough already, Noah from discovered that the logo glows under black lights!

Mad Fientist T-Shirts - Noah from Money Metagame

Radioactive Mad Fientist Logo


There are two versions of the shirt to choose from: Adult and Junior. The Adult is just a normal t-shirt cut but the Junior is a women’s cut with an open neck (not sure why it’s called Junior instead of Woman).

I’m 6’0″ and weigh about 170lbs and the Adult Large fits me well (MMM, J.D. Roth, and Noah are all wearing size L in the photos above).

My wife is 5’5″ and weighs 120lbs and she wears the Junior Small (which I think is what Winnie is wearing in her photo).

There’s a sizing guide on the order page so check that out if you’re not sure what size to get.

The Ultimate Guide to Financial Independence and Early Retirement

Now that I’ve completed the majority of the work for my site redesign, I’m going to focus more on writing again.

There’s been one project I’ve been planning for a while but haven’t gotten around to yet. Something Vicki Robin said in our recent podcast interview, however, has motivated me to finally get started.

Vicki mentioned that the exciting thing about this new online resurgence of the FI movement is that we are able to hyperlink to our peers and spread the FI message much more effectively.

To help facilitate this spreading even more, I want to put together an Ultimate Guide to Financial Independence and Early Retirement.

This guide will be nicely designed (similar to this one) and will link to the best articles on FI-related topics from around the web.

I plan to structure it in a way that will allow someone new to FI world to be brought up to speed very quickly. So rather than find one blog, randomly read through some of the posts, find another one, etc., they’ll instead be able to easily read through the core ideas and principles in a logical order.

Since the guide will ultimately be a collection of webpages, it will be free and easily shareable so it will hopefully help spread this idea to the masses.

Crowd-Sourced Research/Writing

I need your help on this though.

I’ve been focusing so much on creating stuff lately that I don’t actually read as many blogs as I used to.

I obviously remember all the great articles from sites like Early Retirement Extreme, Mr. Money Mustache, and JL Collins NH that I want to include in the guide but there’s probably a lot of other articles from newcomers that I’m not aware of.

Google Doc

I’ve created a Google Doc with a very basic outline and I’ve made it possible for you to add your suggestions:

The Ultimate Guide to Financial Independence and Early Retirement

If there’s a topic you think the guide should cover, add it as a heading (or subheading).

If there’s an article that you know needs to be in there, add a link to the appropriate section.

I’ll try my best to stay on top of reviewing the edits so that all the suggestions get integrated into the document.

You don’t even need to sign into Google to add your comments so take a look and add a couple of your favorite links right now!

What do you think?

Do you like the new design? Do you think the Ultimate Guide to FI and ER is a good idea?

Let me know in the comments below.

Want to achieve FI sooner?

  1. Sign up for a free Personal Capital account to start tracking your net worth, monthly spending, etc.
  2. Enter those numbers into the FI Laboratory and begin charting your progress to financial independence
  3. Download the spreadsheet I used on my own journey to financial independence to determine which expenses are delaying your progress the most
  4. Reduce or eliminate those expenses and achieve FI even sooner!

90 comments for “There’s Been an Explosion in the Lab

  1. April 20, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Everything looks great! All the time and effort put into the redesign really paid off.

  2. Dan
    April 20, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Site looks great! Love the idea of an ultimate guide ; just bought a t-shirt!

  3. a_anonymous
    April 20, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    the redesign is clean, sparse, and content-focused. Definitely an improvement

  4. April 20, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    Amazon changes!! Retirement certainly suits you well. ;) Looking forward to checking out the Google Doc…plane wifi doesn’t agree with my interest in doing so at this moment. Loved the podcast with Vicki and am so happy it has lit a flame for you to get this project going!!

  5. April 20, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    Yay another batch of T-Shirts!! No need to mail mine I can wait until Ecuador. The site looks fabulous, too!

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 3:53 am

      Hey, it will probably be easier to just mail it to you since I’ll be flying to Ecuador from Scotland. Shoot me an email with your address and what size you want!

  6. April 20, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    I can’t wait to order mine. I can justify this expense with the hundreds of dollars you saved me by motivating me to do tax loss selling. Thanks to you MadFI, I now have tax losses going into 2019 tax year, and plenty of unrealized gains just waiting to be harvested one day!

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 3:55 am

      Haha, nice!

  7. April 20, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    Excited to finally get a T-shirt! Site redesign looks great. Looking forward to this Ultimate Guide to FI.

  8. April 20, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    Love the new website Brandon! I’m excited about the Ultimate FI Doc as well. I will add some of my own, and others, links to it that I think are valuable.

  9. April 20, 2017 at 4:20 pm

    Love it! Looking forward to seeing you guys at FinCon.

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 3:56 am

      Yeah, it will be great to hang out again!

  10. FM
    April 20, 2017 at 4:23 pm


    The website looks awesome, dude. Super clean, and glad to hear you’re able to achieve the look you want based off the revenue your *awesome* travel cards section is bringing in. I share Travel Cards with friends who have no idea about FI or churning, and they’re psyched on it all.



    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 3:57 am

      Glad you like the travel cards tool and thanks for sharing!

  11. April 20, 2017 at 4:25 pm

    Love the new look of the site and I am excited about the ultimate guide to FIRE.

  12. April 20, 2017 at 4:25 pm

    Love the new site. Very nice!

  13. April 20, 2017 at 4:26 pm

    Sweet new site! And great idea on the guide, I’ll have to check it out and see if I have anything worthy of adding :)

  14. April 20, 2017 at 4:30 pm

    Found one issue with the header:

    When I shrink my screen down to 900-974px width, the navigation wraps to the next line. If you shrink down to <900px width, expand the navigation, and then expand your window to 900-974px, you get a slightly different treatment, but the issue's still there.

    I have a couple screenshots if that's not enough info to track down the issue.

    Looks great otherwise! Keep up the good work!

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 3:59 am

      Thanks for pointing that out, Luke. Should be all fixed now :)

  15. April 20, 2017 at 4:30 pm

    I’m so excited to have found other FIRE people. I was going it alone before finding MMM and it seems to have exploded from there. I want to go to one of these get-togethers! Seeing as I’m an Ex-Scientist and obsessed with finance I also want one of those shirts!

  16. April 20, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    Site looks great on my android in that new gmail web browser and chrome. Love the new design!

    Wish I could get a tshirt here in Australia! Though I’ll be in London in June for a week and a half… ;)

  17. April 20, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    The site looks great! I’m excited to see more new content now that the design is done!

  18. 45
    April 20, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    the new site looks Freeking Awsome!

  19. G-dog
    April 20, 2017 at 4:49 pm

    Nice to have a clean design with fewer distractions!

    Have you read Dr. Doom’s blog (no longer very active) – Living A FI? It has excellent discussions of some of the emotional and psychological issues FIRE can trigger. As well as some money discussions and analyses.

    Even though he’s been ousted – American Apparel’s (CEO) history of sexual harassment is very troubling to me. And now the company was facing bankruptcy and has been sold. Sadly, I don’t have another company to recommend.

  20. David Hilton
    April 20, 2017 at 4:56 pm

    Can it be true? That I hold here, in my mortal hand, a nugget of purest green?!?!

  21. April 20, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    The redesigned site looks great. It is good for readers to access 100% of the content. Keep up the good work on the podcast!


  22. Robin
    April 20, 2017 at 5:08 pm

    Wow- so cool. You did a great job!

  23. roshan
    April 20, 2017 at 5:14 pm

    “The Ultimate Guide to Financial Independence and Early Retirement”

    This is a GREAT freaking idea, I have been sending emails to all my friends after I found out about this in Feb. 2017 and would have killed for this.

    Great Work, and the site looks amazing!

  24. Josh
    April 20, 2017 at 5:16 pm

    Redesign is looking great! I enjoy the focus on simplicity.

    One area you may want to adjust is the length of each line of text in your articles for large screens. A general guideline for readability is approximately 80 characters (see article here: Medium is a shining example of readability (

    I found the wide format to be a bit cumbersome to read (first world problems). Using Chrome’s inspect tool I changed the “entry-content” class to a max-width of 900px and applied a margin-left and margin-right of “auto” and the results were pleasing.

    Looking forward to what’s to come!

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:02 am

      Thanks a lot for pointing that out, Josh. I do all my testing on a 13″ laptop screen so I didn’t realize the text looked bad on wide monitors.

      Should be all set now though!

  25. April 20, 2017 at 5:27 pm

    The site looks awesome! Super excited to see the ultimate FI guide come together. I’ll see if there are any links I can provide!

    • April 20, 2017 at 7:50 pm

      Don’t you worry, I added your Oregon Trail post!

  26. April 20, 2017 at 5:37 pm

    LOVE the new site design minus ads and distractions! I read it on my phone and it was amazing and on the computer, even better! Wish other big sites would do this too. We are ordering two shirts – need to spread the message and your site!

  27. April 20, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    Looks great! Why not use Merch by Amazon for your shirts?

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:04 am

      I checked Merch but they didn’t offer the high-quality t-shirts I was looking for. I wish they did though because then they could have handled all the packaging and shipping (and for no additional cost for Prime members).

  28. Lance Ulrich
    April 20, 2017 at 5:51 pm

    LOVE the new site! I hit FI about 8 months ago (at age 48) and recommend your site to anyone who asks how I did it. “If you listen to all his podcasts you will know more about money than 99% of the planet!”

    Side note: I just convinced my long distance gf to move in with me and join the FI Movement – we are selling her Lexus next week!

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:04 am

      Congrats on hitting FI (and for converting your girlfriend, haha)!

  29. Jeff Hubbard
    April 20, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    Site looks great for me, nice job! Macbook Air, running Safari. Just checked and it looks good on Chrome too.

  30. April 20, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    I’m actually really grateful the shirt doesn’t ship to Australia! The whole time I was reading it frugal angel and buy-it devil were sitting on my shoulders arguing that it’s so damn cool and we don’t neeeeed another t-shirt but we wants it. Decision made for me! Phew, haha :)

  31. Raina
    April 20, 2017 at 6:31 pm

    It’s so organized and pretty! Good work!

  32. April 20, 2017 at 6:45 pm

    I wish I had a higher resolution picture of the shirt under blacklight, it looks awesome in person. Thanks for the mention and I can confirm that the shirts are super comfortable, so much so that Becky wants to order her own!

    Looking forward to the ultimate guide to FIRE, I like the idea of having the great posts across blogs all located in one place.

  33. April 20, 2017 at 6:54 pm

    Exciting stuff! Can’t wait for the Ultimate Guid.

    Design is looking good, one thing to note with the missing sidebar, you may want to shrink the width of the content – at this width the line length is a bit tiresome. Good article here on web typography and line length:


    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:06 am

      Content has been shrunk so thanks for the suggestion!

  34. Brian
    April 20, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    Site looks fantastic and i can’t wait for the guide. Just ordered a few shirts, now if only everyone in the FI community starts making shirts. I would seriously just rotate my personal finance shirt every day of the week.

  35. Michelle
    April 20, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    Yes–great idea re: ultimate guide!

  36. Sue
    April 20, 2017 at 7:58 pm

    The site looks great, and I think your Ultimate Guide is a great idea.
    Just ordered a shirt. :)

  37. April 20, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    Nice redesign. Though you do look a little borderline “evil mad-Fientist” in that picture. Just might have to get a shirt, too! =)

  38. Cherry Lane
    April 20, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    So the guy who only wears free tshirts is now selling tshirts? Like you, I prefer to stick with free. So now I just have to figure out how to get you to interview me…

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:12 am

      Yeah, the only non-free t-shirts I have are the Mad Fientist ones I got in the last batch. Free is definitely the way to go though so you’re making the right choice :)

  39. JH
    April 20, 2017 at 9:53 pm

    Looks great! Nice and clean.

    The Mad Fientist needs some PPE though. FI wouldn’t be as enjoyable without eyeballs. :)

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:14 am

      I was so bummed out that I forgot to borrow safety goggles for the photo shoot.

      My designer buddy photoshopped a charred look on my face in one of the photos (from the explosion) and he left a safety goggle outline around my eyes so hopefully I’ll find a place for that photo one day.

  40. EricVbiker
    April 20, 2017 at 11:50 pm

    I love the new site, I totally agree getting rid of the ads make the page much easier to read and focus on what is important, your content not the ads! Keep up the great work!

  41. Tony
    April 20, 2017 at 11:50 pm

    The idea of an “ultimate guide” is wonderful. I look forward to sharing it with my college-age kids. Thus far they haven’t shown much interest in my attempts to talk to them about money and the FIRE community. I want them to understand that there are alternatives to the standard work-30+ years-and-then-retire model. Having an ultimate guide to the FIRE community will be a great resource for anyone starting on the path to personal freedom.

  42. Jian
    April 21, 2017 at 12:14 am

    Love the redesigned site! Clean, minimal look, no distractions. Great!!

    Very rare and refreshing to see someone actually practice what they preach, particularly as online ads are concerned in blogsphere. Smart decision too, as I believe most of the people attracted to FI are probably predisposed toward simple, minimalism esthetics, and cringe when confronted with all manners of ads. Appreciate the fact that you’d rather give up on lucrative ad revenue in favor of what you believe in. We definitely support you in this brave move!

    An “Ultimate Guide to FI” is an awesome idea! I think the hardest task of the movement is the initial conversion, as most people just live their middle-class lives as their peers and call it a day. How to get them interested enough and motivated enough to make a first move is the key; once they do that, the rest is all relatively easy. How to make the guide effective in that initial phase? I don’t know, at least not yet. Maybe something more fun and game-like is one way? Maybe, you could even create an award for the most arresting newly converted and have a media blitz?

    Gamers do all sorts of crazy things because they are hooked by gaming features and the rewards embedded within; maybe that’s a lesson we can borrow. Acquiring financial literacy and ultimately achieving FI is not about discipline or sacrifice as so many mainstream personal finance “gurus” would have people think; it’s really about regaining agency and (some) control of our own life and destiny. If we could make this clear and stick, by motivating people naturally using the latest discoveries in brain science, we’d be much more effective in reaching more main-stream people rather than niches of us who are already more analytical than the general public (so it seems to me at least). My own efforts at persuasion (among my friends) are spectacularly unsuccessful in this regard, so I’m really hoping others can come up with better strategies. Anyways, great project and I shall follow its progress with keen interest.

    • The Mad Fientist
      April 21, 2017 at 4:16 am

      Yeah, I’m also thinking about developing some sort of software that gamifies the journey to FI, to hopefully make it more exciting and interactive. Stay tuned :)

    • Lisa
      April 21, 2017 at 1:04 pm

      Interesting that you talk about gamifying FI. I read about someone on MMM forums doing that and I stole the idea. We refer to reaching each goal as “leveling up” and pick a way to celebrate. We try to pick goals that will be reachable within 6 months so we have something to look forward to: some ideas have been “a 6 month supply of money”, “replacing one person’s salary”, “hitting 6 figures net worth”, etc.

      I’ve also calculated how many “forever days” we’ve saved and place us on a 365 day calendar – so 73 days of money saved=March 14 on the forever year. This one has been particularly motivating for my SO, because we gain a forever day every 8 working days, so it’s nearly instant and constant gratification.

      • Jian
        April 21, 2017 at 5:44 pm

        What a great and fun idea for motivation! More immediate and reachable goals are so much more inticing than “achieving FI in ONLY 10 years” :-). I’m gonna steal your idea and try it with my friends!

  43. April 21, 2017 at 2:38 am

    Hi MF,

    Love the new look to your site! I just joined the FI blog world and you and MMM have been huge inspirations to me. Will take a look at that Google Doc this weekend.

  44. Andrew
    April 21, 2017 at 6:56 am

    Damn, I’m enjoying my 30-something early retirement in Thailand so I can’t jump on the T-shirt sale, but they look fantastic!

  45. April 21, 2017 at 7:48 am

    Bring some of the t-shirts back to Scotland with you, when you come back! Then us UK people can get in on the game. (I’m based in Edinburgh!)

    Like the new site.

  46. Jeff
    April 21, 2017 at 11:56 am

    Love the redesign!!! Today’s websites are so cluttered most are unreadable. Your simple design is very much appreciated.

    Using Firefox, the Tax Avoidance page ( text appears to be overlaying graphics.


    3 yrs. and counting to my Fi

  47. Sam
    April 21, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Design looks fresh, man! Keep it up!

  48. Lisa
    April 21, 2017 at 1:08 pm

    Love the new design and the idea for an all-in-one resource!

    You might want to try to find out where ThinkGeek gets their t-shirts from. I have a few (gifts) that have been around for years and still look good. Theirs are 100% cotton.

  49. April 21, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    Loving the new site design and very excited you will be writing again!

  50. Mike
    April 21, 2017 at 2:32 pm

    Glad to see the ads removed! The site looks great. I’ll be going through the Ultimate Guide Google Doc, this should help me immensely! Thanks for all your hard work.

  51. futtetennista
    April 21, 2017 at 3:52 pm

    The new design looks wicked! Looking forward to the “ultimate guide” to FI and ER: are you thinking about taking into consideration also Europe? It’s not always possible to apply a lot of the good stuff about FI and ER in the european reality – i.e. investing – and it’d be awesome to have some tips.

  52. April 21, 2017 at 4:59 pm

    Love the redesign! Congrats. No suggestions yet, but I love the user experience and lack of distractions. Definitely the way to go. I may make it back to the states before FinCon, but no guarantee yet. So, I may just have to wait for the next batch:)

  53. Dan
    April 21, 2017 at 7:34 pm

    Looks great, also very fast loading which is awesome. i see one random error in js console you may want to check out,

    q2w3_sidebar_options not found!

  54. Joe
    April 22, 2017 at 2:14 am

    Nice work on the new site, buddy! :D

  55. Daan
    April 22, 2017 at 6:58 am

    Love the document! Can someone do a section on living abroad and the consequences before FI and after? I live abroad now for 4 years in 3 different countries, and on track of achieving FI, and would love to help contribute, but I’m sure there are people who know more about this than me.

  56. Daan
    April 22, 2017 at 7:00 am

    PS I might order a T-shirt, so you’ll see a random guy in Asia wearing it!

  57. Mark
    April 22, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    Loving your site and expecially the podcast! It is my favorite podcast, FI or otherwise. I am so glad you are still pumping out content and I really appreciate the updates, changes, and requests for community feedback! This is one of the highest quality content communities I have ever experienced thanks to your efforts!

    Keep up the great work!

  58. Jennifer Daniele
    April 22, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    Love the new design!

  59. April 22, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    The new design looks really slick. Also, the site loads insanely fast. Nice work.

  60. Adam
    April 22, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    Site looks great, love the shirts, shame they are only for US peeps.

    Here’s a thought for you – how hard would it be to get iron-on Mad FIentist logos made up, easy and cheap to post since the size is vastly reduced, and then we can put them on our own t-shirts!

    Also would have the benefit of being able to choose our own shirt colours :)

  61. Sendug
    April 23, 2017 at 10:02 pm

    Holy crap, that Ultimate Guide is an awesome idea. I love that someone as high profile as you is running it, and that you’re taking suggestions from your entire readership. Can’t wait to see the final product: sounds like it’ll be the new go-to for introducing others to the FI scene!

  62. April 24, 2017 at 5:17 am

    Do you ship to europe? I might want to buy a t-shirt but live in Denmark

  63. Jacky
    April 26, 2017 at 12:53 am

    Hey Brandon, the t-shirts look terrific (and the new design of your site too!)

    Just wondering, do you consider Canada a foreign country? ^^

    (i’m trying i’m trying)

  64. Nick
    May 1, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Ok, I’ll bite. Thought it was a bit funny that you would be selling t-shirts. But when MMM went for it, I knew something was fishy.
    Are you guys running an experiment on how gullible we are? Or how we just blindly follow our favorite bloggers (rather than thinking for ourselves).
    Admittedly, I thought it would be cool to have a t-shirt. But then I realized that’s the EXACT same thinking that drives all the rest of the people who aren’t good at FI. They buy something they don’t need just to identify with a brand.
    Nice one :)

  65. May 2, 2017 at 12:24 am

    I love it. Sure, most blogs need to cover costs so Adsense works, but it is a little ironic that you are trying to get people to spend less but advertise for them to spend more! Although they probably won’t be enticed to purchase something they weren’t already thinking about, it does make the site feel very streamlined… I like it! I haven’t bothered with Adsense yet, I figure if I get enough readers that eventually I will have to incorporate some kind of revenue, I just have no idea what that will be yet.
    I am a little bummed I didn’t read this article earlier, I would have liked one of those shirts! It would have been a nice icebreaker if I ran into Pete… I moved just a few miles away from Longmont a month ago. Now I have to catch up on your podcasts… so if you’ll excuse me!

  66. Jamie V
    May 11, 2017 at 8:03 am

    It’s been a awhile since I’ve been able to visit. I like the re-design and non-clutter view. :)

    I clicked on “Articles” at the top to read the most recent ones I’ve missed, and noticed the blog post titles overlap the image for each post by about one inch. The image starts about 1″ from the left side of the page, so the left area of text overlaps the image by that amount (The comment count and “read more” buttons are in this picture space as well). I hope that is understandable. I am using a 19″ screen, if that helps.

    Maybe this year I will start using the tools you were so kind enough to put together for us. Usually if it’s not fairly simple/straightforward, I can’t do it/figure it out. I’m not a technology or financial person so many of these things go way over my head. :D THANK YOU!!

  67. LizWithLime
    May 13, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    Long-time fan of your site & looking forward to rocking my new t-shirt! I do have a suggestion on the site layout if you’re still open to feedback. One of my favorite things to do on your site is check out the progress of the Guinea Pig. Would you consider adding that homepage to the top bar for easier access? Right now, I typically go into your Archives and scroll down to the guinea pig section if not using my home computer with that page as a Favorite. Or, maybe put a drop-down option when you hover over the Archives section with all of the headers you have it grouped by, including Interviews, Guinea Pig, etc.

    Really enjoy all of your posts and podcasts! Thanks for all that you do. After listening to your first podcast with Jim Collins, I was inspired to start supercharging my savings rate, so thank you!

  68. May 19, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    I totally agree that pulling the sidebars from the blog posts is a good idea. Otherwise, it’s like you are dealing with a “commercial” the entire time you are trying to read the post. In general, best to err on the side of maximizing the reader experience. Good move, and congrats on the new site, Mad FI!

  69. May 27, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    I’m really glad you were able to make the move to no ads here. I just don’t like reading with banners and other ads constantly blinking away. Congrats. Not sure I’m ready to pull the trigger on a T-shirt just yet….;)

  70. June 17, 2017 at 8:07 pm

    It is nice to not have the distraction of all the ads. It is much easier to focus on the content.The new site looks clean. Also, I love the T-shirts.

  71. David Ann Arbor
    June 22, 2017 at 2:18 am

    Can you please go through the process of setting up your own individual 401k plan using the Ascensus prototype that then enables you to do a mega backdoor roth? Then please explain to the rest of us who are self-employed the steps?
    I was reading the blog by Harry Sit, the Finance Buff, and he goes over it, but much of it is unintelligible.

  72. June 26, 2017 at 3:34 am

    I love the (re)design (this is my first visit!), especially as a Chemistry graduate.

    Just dropped by to say we discovered your podcasts recently and they’ve made painting our garden fences go far quicker – I think listening to them has been a turning point for my husband, who was previously dubious of my grand plan to have us retired, mortgage free and living a pretty nice life by age 40. So, thank you!

  73. Zach
    July 23, 2017 at 1:57 am

    Quick question on the “Numbers” part of your Laboratory, where you input your financial data each month. I actively monitor my Personal Capital account since I signed up a few months ago. I think “Expenses” is clear enough, as is “Net Worth.”

    The one I don’t understand is “Savings.” I’m not totally sure what this means. The tooltip says the amount “Invested” during the month. Wouldn’t that simply be the net change in your net worth in one month? Or does this simply mean the amount physically deposited into retirement accounts? I max my 401k, IRA, and HSA in either one big deposit or a few big deposits, which would lead to 1-2 months having “savings” in this case, and saving “0” in all of the other months. To me, if I’m building cash/bankroll in a 1.1% interest checking account, that still seems like “Savings,” doesn’t it? Just very confused by what is meant by this and the purpose of this.

    Since I maxed out my 401k, IRA, and HSA for the year before I signed up for Personal Capital and this website’s Laboratory, the graph indicates that I will never achieve Financial Independence, likely because I have a negative net worth (big education debt), and I have “Invested” zero since I maxed out my 401k/IRA/HSA.

    I also can’t seem to find anything on the front page of Personal Capital that would quickly indicate a “Savings,” as seems to be implied by the Help page, that would be any different than simply subtracting my current Net Worth from the last entry. I also have a negative “Monthly Portfolio Income,” despite the fact that my portfolio is a somewhat reasonable size, and has actually grown significantly most months since I started using these platforms (yay Trump market). Which leads me to be a little unsure what exactly is the meaning of “Savings.”


    In sum: what is meant to be the difference between “Savings” and a simple “‘delta’ Net Worth?”

    P.S. – thank you for turning me onto Personal Capital – EXCELLENT website, coming from me who previously had used Mint.

  74. Blake Hansen
    September 22, 2017 at 4:55 pm

    Wondering about the Google Doc of the The Ultimate Guide to Financial Independence and Early Retirement. Why are most of the links not live? I found this to be a great resource when/as it was being created. Thanks!

  75. Kurt
    November 19, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    “If anything looks weird on your computer or if you have any suggestions for additional improvements, please let me know in the comments below.”

    The line spacing is too wide in comparison to the paragraph spacing. A greater distinction between paragraphs would be easier to read. Options:
    – decrease line spacing, leaving paragraph spacing the same (think single spaced text with one blank line in between)
    – indent first line of each paragraph

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