E-Scribe : a programmer’s blog

About Me

PBX I'm Paul Bissex. I build web applications using open source software, especially Django. Started my career doing graphic design for newspapers and magazines in the '90s. Then wrote tech commentary and reviews for Wired, Salon, Chicago Tribune, and others you never heard of. Then I built operations software at a photography school. Then I helped big media serve 40 million pages a day. Then I worked on a translation services API doing millions of dollars of business. Now I'm building the core platform of a global startup accelerator. Feel free to email me.


I co-wrote "Python Web Development with Django". It was the first book to cover the long-awaited Django 1.0. Published by Addison-Wesley and still in print!


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Best feature of the new MacBook Pro

In case you missed the news, there's a new laptop in town. It's supposed to be really fast and stuff. But my favorite feature is the new MagSafe power connector.

On Tuesday morning, before the keynote, one of my students happened to stop by my office to show me what had happened to the power adapter on his PowerBook. His roommate tripped over the power cord while he was working on the couch. Here's the damage (not covered under warranty, naturally):

old plug bad

A few hours later, the MacBook Pro was introduced. Here's the new power connector:

new plug good

Apple explains: "...tripping over a power cord won't send MacBook Pro flying ... the cord simply breaks cleanly away, without damage to either the cord or the system."


Thursday, January 12th, 2006
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0 comments pending approval
Comment from xian , later that day

I'd just be happy if it keeps a constant seal over time. My Mac powercords always end up getting "mushy" and loose.

Comment from Paul , later that day

Yeah. I'm guessing this will solve that problem, because the cord no longer depends on friction to stay in. The third-party adapter makers must be freaking out!

Comment from Ian Holsman , 1 week later

I think I have gone through 3-4 power adaptors and at $150 a pop damn pricey as well. I look forward to the new cord design, but wish the whole industry could just come up with a standard interface

Comment from SK , 20 months later

Yeah, but then notebook manufactures couldn't make money selling replacement power adaptors for a fortune. A new one for my dv2000 cost me $70. Anyways, you have to consider the difference in voltages and such, at least some manufactures (Lenovo, HP) use the same adaptors across all their notebook lines, with only a difference in wattage.

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