Random bits

  • My Macbook Pro was one of the ones covered under the Apple battery recall exchange program. I got the replacement last week, and the performance has so far been about the same as the old one. You’re supposed to send the old battery back to Apple, but I didn’t get any return shipping information in the package. When I called up Apple tech support this afternoon, they said that for some reason, I wasn’t required to send my old one back — probably because it was an education store purchase? I’m hoping not to get a bill for $100 some time in the next few weeks, but hey, I’ve got two batteries now.
  • I’m meeting next Monday with the folks from the Big University about the engineering programs. I have this bad feeling I’ll show up, show them my plans, and will have some obvious but devastating error pointed out to me in the first five minutes of the meeting that blows the whole thing up. But no guts, no glory.
  • Because of the engineering thing, and due to a large project that is due Friday that was dumped in my lap on Monday, blogging will be a little light for the rest of the week.
  • And also because we’re heading to the State Fair tomorrow. Giant pork tenderloin sandwich, here I come.
  • The basement on the house is finished, and the framing began today. If it goes at the same pace as a similar house that’s being built just down the street, it’ll be framed and roofed by the end of the month — maybe as soon as the end of next week.
  • Speaking of house stuff, does anybody have an opinion about rangetops — specifically, whether you prefer gas over electric or vice versa? We’ve currently got  plans for an electric range. Our former house had this electric range; I liked the evenness of the heating and the ease of cleanup you get with the radiant glass surface, but the surface began to discolor after cooking with very high heat (as in Asian cooking) and it seemed to take a long time to get up to temperature. It wouldn’t be hard to run a gas line into the kitchen, so I’m wondering which way to go. There’s also pressure coming from the fact that nobody I watch on the Food Network has EVER used an electric range…

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7 responses to “Random bits

  1. Justin

    Ideally, you want to get a gas range and an electric oven. A gas range allows you to control the temperature more quickly and precisely. When you turn down the temperature on an electric range, it takes a while for the element to cool down, while a gas range lets you change the temperature immediately. This is important when you want to sear meat without overcooking it.

    In an oven, though, you want the stability and consistency of electric elements. The same things that make electric bad in a range make it good for an oven.

  2. Oh God, I miss those sandwiches! They’ve never heard of them here.

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  4. It probably really comes down to what you’re used to and comfortable with, but I vote for a gas cooktop. It’s the ability to instantly change the temperature that works for me. Well, that and the fact that I can get the temperature lower with a gas burner than an electric, which I find to be useful for making rice. Congratulations on the house progress.

  5. Rob

    I concur with the gas recommendation for the reasons listed above. I’ve also heard, but never seen any verification that gas ranges typically heat more evenly across the bottom of the pan than electric coils do – so no hotspots and reduced likelihood of burning things to the bottom of your pans. Of course, even heating is much more influenced by the bottom of your cooking vessel, so that’s a minor consideration. If I had the money, I would love to try an induction range, but you have to have cooking vessels that are made for them.

  6. Liz

    STRONG preference for gas over electric or induction (the induction is actually pretty nifty, but): I used to live in a house at the end of the powerline (no joke, rural community). When the electic was off, I was reduced to cooking over (a) barbecue (b) open flame. Now I am a hearty type and as outdoorsy/frontiersy as all bejabbers, but cooking outside in the rain was a 200% pain.

    So my one demand when we remodelled the kitchen was a gas rangetop. And if you like cooking in a wok, you could consider a specialty one with a very-high-btu unit. They weren’t available when I remodelled the kitchen, but when I moved into this house in 2000 they were.

    But it didn’t fit into the cutout in the butcherblock top that the old electric one fit into, so I didn’t get it.

    OH, and as far as ovens, wall or otherwise? Go with the lowest tech you can — the old style knobs are much more reliable than the %^&*(%%!!!! electronic readout.

    And definitely frontloading washer.

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