1. I think it is a new year’s resolution for a lot of people to know
where they stand credit wise or even improve their credit. There is
one AND ONLY ONE free credit report program, overseen by the Federal
Trade Commission. They don’t advertise on TV like those commercial
entities. I know that some of you may be thinking — I’m 75 — I’ll
never be applying for credit again. Wrong answer. People become a
victim of identity theft every day. You could be taken advantage of
by someone as innocent as the person who helps you at the bank
The website is — www.annualcreditreport.com
Through that site, you can obtain the report from all 3 major bureaus
Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. I have noticed on multiple
occasions that Equifax may not be as co-operative as the others.
However, if for some reason you are not able to retrieve your Equifax
report online — they will give you a form to mail in. At no time on
that website will you ever be asked for a credit card number.
2. Macs: This is not meant to dissuade any customers from buying
Macs but is intended as a statement of facts. I have shared how Macs
have become "sealed appliances" over the past few years. While this
may upset a computer enthusiast like me, it has had zero impact on
sales. In fact, Mac sales are on the rise. By one respected industry
survey, Windows based PC sales were down by over 8% last year. Mac
sales were up almost 3%.
Since 2013 and earlier, nearly all new Macs including MacBook Air,
MacBook Pro Retina, iMac, and Mac Book (2015 + model) have used
proprietary hard drives and memory (27 inch iMac is the exception on
memory). With these machines, the RAM is soldered to the motherboard.
While the hard drives are SSD "flash style" — they are not the same
SSD drives that can be purchased from common sources like Amazon and
Best Buy. This really limits the options for repair that the consumer
has. Apple is the only one that sells hard drives for those models
and the cost is sky high. The lack of options is a stark contrast
from the Macs in the 2006-2012 era. The new (late 2014) Mac Mini
systems still offer options for upgrade and easy hard drive
This is why I tell you — please buy the Apple Care warranty with any
new Mac. You know that hardware failures will be covered within those
3 years. The bottom line is that if you need hardware support on the
Mac models I have listed above, you will need to bring it to the Apple
Store or have me bring it for you.
Ultimately, there is still a lot I can offer you as a Mac specialist