Sunday, 28 March 2010

Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies

As a birthday present, I was given "A Treasury of New Zealand Baking", a fantastic baking book gathering a stack of traditional and not-so-traditional baking recipes from NZ chefs.

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I made my first recipe from the book today - "Classic Chocolate-Chip Cookie Sandwich", and my chief taste tester seems to like them :) Will have to drop a few over to my other taste-tester out in Petone in the next few days. I followed the recipe (which is by Al Brown), almost exactly, just substituting cream for cream fraiche when making the chocolate sauce for the 'glue'.


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Assembly line in progress.

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The finished product (yum!).

Monday, 22 March 2010

Disappointment...

Strangely, for all the good things I have to say about Apple computer products, I'm giving Apple service a big thumbs down.

I have an old(ish) MacBook, that I'm preparing to sell, so hoped to get a small crack in the corner of the top case repaired. For the first time ever, after owning three MacBook/MacBook Pros, two iPhones, and various accessories over about four years, I've needed support from Apple, and found it rather lacking.

I've read hundreds of threads online about people waltzing into Apple Stores, and the Genius Bar replacing top cases free of charge, no matter the age. I went into the Regent St store in London mid last year, and they also said they'll replace it free of charge, but they had a 3-4 week repair wait time as they were full up. So I thought no probs, I'll get it sorted once we're in NZ.

But.... I've taken my MacBook into an Authorized Repair Centre, where I've had nothing but bad service. They won't repair the crack, and refused to call Apple Care themselves to confirm. After spending an hour on the phone with Apple Care myself, I finally got a case raised, where they confirm they'll fix the crack. But... only if I have a receipt proving it's under 3 years old.

And of all the hundreds of receipts we have archived, this is the only receipt I can't find.

I'm really disappointed with the fact Genius Bars in stores can repair things at their own discretion, but in NZ we don't have Genius Bars, or even Apple Stores, so we're stuck with whatever the repair center say. And we have to pay for them to do nothing also....

Apple, I'm still an avid fan, and own an awful lot of your products, but I'm giving the huge thumbs down on the support options available for us poor cousins out in NZ.

Some threads where people have confirmed they've got this fix done:
http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=7011672
http://babygotmac.com/a/macbook-case-cracks-on-wristpad/

AppleInsider article about this issue: http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/09/04/08/apple_addressing_cracks_on_white_macbooks_casings.html

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Mac and WEP

After a few minutes of frustration, I found out the hard way that Mac devices don't like WEP passwords...

Symptom:
  • Mac and iPhones will refuse to connect to a Wifi network with WEP encryption enabled, says 'invalid password'
Remedies:
  • Use a different security scheme (ie WPA2)
  • Enter the WEP generated key into the password (something long and impossible to remember, usually a random alphanumeric string)
  • Scream a lot
And don't hassle me for using WEP, we didn't find out that Netgear devices using Wireless Repeating functions only support WEP until after we purchased the first router and tried messing about.... something else to gripe about!.