So, it’s not really anything to do with my sabbatical, per se, but it is a significant accomplishment. Several months ago my daughter Talia spilled bubble juice onto the keyboard of my wife Jacque’s white MacBook. Since then, the kids would come down and steal my external keyboard whenever they wanted to play Pirates Online or PBS Kids. The local repair store wanted over $250 to fix it (ouch!), so, in the best Do-It-Yourself spirit, I eventually bought a replacement keyboard from China, some tiny screwdrivers from Radio Shack, and watched a few videos on YouTube to figure out how to do this myself. (Delayed tie-in to sabbatical: I’m going to work with Arduinos this semester so it’s time for me to get handy. This was a nice warm up exercise.)
So, my son Quinn and I spent about an hour and a half to do what could be done in 10 minutes by someone who knows what they’re doing and, given the not-quite-perfect replacement parts, the fit’s a little off, but — wonder of wonders — it works again! It resembles Frankenstein’s own Macbook now, but at least I can keep my spiffy external keyboard all to myself.