Apple Revises AppleCare -- Apple Computer has significantly revised its AppleCare Protection Plan (formerly known as AppleCare Extended Service) since we wrote about it in "Should You Get AppleCare?" in TidBITS-478. Overall, Apple made AppleCare far more coherent, tying the pricing to the four main product families, covering certain peripherals purchased with Macintosh systems, and including MicroMat's TechTool Deluxe for testing your system (TechTool Deluxe is presumably similar to MicroMat's TechTool Pro). AppleCare now runs for a total of 3 years (but cannot be renewed after that), extending the standard 1 year hardware warranty by 2 years and extending the 90 days of telephone support out to 3 years. Due to the length of the new AppleCare policy, pricing is somewhat higher than before, with an iMac at $150, an iBook at $230, a PowerBook at $300, a Power Macintosh or Macintosh Server (with display) at $250, and an Apple display purchased separately at $100. Apple claims it will offer upgrades to existing AppleCare Extended Service customers, but details weren't yet available. AppleCare is available through Apple or Apple authorized resellers and is valid only in the U.S. and Canada. [ACE]
Shorten URLs in TextExpander
If your Twitter client doesn't automatically shorten URLs for you, you can use TextExpander to shrink those long links to tweetable lengths. First, add the Internet Productivity group by choosing File > Add Predefined Group > Internet Productivity Snippets. Then, to shorten a URL using a service like TinyURL, copy the destination URL to the clipboard, and type the abbreviation
/tinyurl to insert the shortened URL at the insertion point.