Laptop ready to go

My machine just got repaired, and this seems like an auspicious occasion for starting to blog.  The details follow:

While traveling abroad, my keyboard and trackpad started to become unresponsive.  It looked like I had picked up some virus or spyware because every once in a while it seemed that things froze.  So I deleted various items I had picked up in the Internet cafes (BoingoTomizone, and other useful services), backed things up, ran Symmantec and AppleJack, but found nothing.

Turns out it was a hardware problem!  See the description here and a Google search (especially the long entry in Apple Discussions).

Things got bad enough for me to put the recommended piece of paper under the battery, but not so bad that I took it in to Apple.  And things were fine, for a little while.

Then disaster struck!  The display started freezing with really scary pixely splotches, evidently a “kernel panic”.  No Googling this time.  Just get those backups up to date.

Take it to the Apple Store.  The display scariness, it turns out, was a separate Nvidia problem.  So here’s the result: A new trackpad “topcase” and a new logic board.  From the Apple paperwork …

PCBA,MLB,2.4GHZ,REV2 (PartNumber:661-4956) $1,187.50
TOPCASEASSY (PartNumber:922-8036) $233.00
HARDWAREREPAIR-LEVEL2 (PartNumber:S1491LL/A) $135.00
Warranty effective through: Dec.21,2009

Would have cost: $1,555.50!!

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