March is Women’s History Month and today is International Women’s Day—so we thought we’d take this opportunity to shine a spotlight on some of the great women who work at iFixit and its sister company, Dozuki. When you go to a website like iFixit and scroll through the guides, it’s easy to forget that real people keep all those bits and bytes running smoothly. We’re an incredibly diverse team, split between two continents—but we’re united by a love of tinkering and repair.
The flathead is unapologetically utilitarian. Which makes sense, because of all the drivers, it’s apparently the oldest—dating back to the Middle Ages. It’s gone by many names over the years: the standard, the common blade, the flat-blade, the slot-head, the straight, the flat-tip, and, of course, the “flat-head.” Learn more about the history of bits on our blog!
The dominos keep tumbling. Last week, two more states—Illinois and Tennessee—introduced Right to Repair legislation, bringing the total number of states considering pro-repair laws this year to eight (up from three last year). But don’t break out the victory dance; it’s gonna be a bumpy ride from bill to law. According to Motherboard, Apple is gearing up to oppose the legislation in at least one state.
2017 could be a very good year for repair. More US states than ever are proposing Right to Repair legislation this year. So far, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Nebraska, Kansas, and Wyoming have all introduced versions of the pro-repair bill in their legislatures—and more states could follow suit. If passed, the laws would make it easier for consumers and independently-owned repair shops to fix far more products.
On a crisp Ohio morning in late November, Michael Oberdick climbed into his car and settled in for a long ride. A very long ride. Over the next 12 days, Michael would cross 13 states and drive 2,000-plus miles through the American Midwest. But this wasn’t your typical road trip. Instead of stopping to see the sights, Michael stopped to see repair shops. His goal: meet as many people in the electronics repair community as possible.
Every year, we disassemble a lot of new phones at iFixit. In 2016, we took apart everything from the iPhone 7 to the (now recalled) Note7. After every teardown, we assign the phones a repairability score based on ease-of-disassembly. Check out how a few of this year’s more notable phones did on our teardown table.
It was just after midnight when the fire alarms at San Luis Obispo High School started going off. The school’s computer lab was engulfed in flames. Firefighters smothered the flames, but everything in the lab was destroyed. Amid the wreckage of melted computers and scorched chairs, a half dozen robots lie cremated. The robotics team had been working on them for months. All of it—up in smoke.
Let’s start off with what Apple’s Touch Bar-equipped 13″ MacBook Pro isn’t: it definitely isn’t a “touched up” version of the function key’d 13″ MBP we tore down last time. Nuh-uh. It’s an entirely different computer, with a totally different design; it probably has more in common with its 15″ big bro. That teardown is still to come.
Fans have waited forever for a MacBook Pro update. And Apple finally released two new MacBook Pros—one with the touted Touch Bar and one with traditional function keys. We got our mitts on the latter, which we’ve dubbed the “Escape Edition” because it still has an escape key. And we uncovered a few features that Phil didn’t mention.
Pumpkin is this season’s most popular device. That shockingly orange outer shell is pretty iconic. But, as always, we’re more concerned with what’s on the inside of Pumpkin than what’s on the outside. So, this Hallow’s Eve—we’ve done a special teardown: we pulled all of Pumpkin’s guts out on our teardown table.
Hoist your wrenches into the air, folks. As of today, October 28, you can now hack, repair, and conduct security research on your own car—or tractor!—without risking jail time for copyright infringement. Exactly one year ago, the Copyright Office granted exemptions for repairing, modifying, and conducting security research on your own vehicle. And those exemptions go into effect today.