Macbook Pro laptops usually die after three years, but the one I’m currently using had been getting sick sooner than expected. I work my laptops pretty hard, and over the last two or three weeks this particular puppy had been operating at slower and slower speeds. It has 8 gigs of RAM but page loads were agonizingly slow. I tried the usual fixes and flush-outs with Mac tech support, but those guys will never level with you. Two days ago I took the 2012 unit to Stan’s Tech Garage in West Hollywood, and the guy at the counter told me the truth, which was that my Macbook Pro’s old-school hard drive (i.e., the kind that spins around like a 78 rpm record player) was probably dying. For $500 and change they installed a new SSD (i.e., solid state drive) and migrated all my programs and data. The laptop now runs much faster, and is of course part of the current technological realm. It feels so fleet and smooth that I’m actually thinking of taking it back to Stan’s in order to double the memory to 16 gigs.

My other unit is a Macbook Air that I bought last year. The Mac warranty runs out in October 2016.