Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

How the heck would a TSA agent know the difference

Is the onus on the owner of the laptop or TSA? I guess both, but if you end up on a plane and something happens could you be prosecuted?

The FAA is an organization I would not like to get on the wrong side of

They'll just scan the serial number when it passes through the x-ray machine, then use some OCR script to process the image and upload it to https://support.apple.com/15-inch-macbook-pro-battery-recall /s

Okay, but does Apple change the serial number when you send it in to get it fixed? How are they supposed to know that I already sent mine in and got a replacement battery from Apple? Guess I have to carry proof around with me?

(To be clear I’m not arguing with the poster I’m directly responding to. Just trying to think through this process like the OP mentioned.)

Good point. I don't really expect TSA to carry out what I proposed above, I should have included a /s. It was more to show how straight forward it is to check any device you have physical access to.

The Apple website has a lookup that will tell you if a seriel number is affected and has not already been fixed. They keep track of the fixed machines.

This database is inaccurate, my machine was repaired early this year prior to the recall (irritatingly at my cost as the batteries were swollen). It is still listed as requiring replacement batteries via this search...

Not to mention it won't include third party repairs

Is model/serial number scanning something that the existing machines do? I've never heard of the TSA having that capability.

No, it probably wouldn't work anyways as there's no guarantee the ink will even appear or be legible superimposed over the underlying components if it does.

More likely they'd require Apple to dump that dataset out to them and use it locally, but otherwise yeah.

As laptops are repaired, this database would need to be continually updated. I would imagine getting an internet connection and just using the Apple site (or a dedicated API endpoint) would be much easier.

Ppl here aren’t so good with sarcasm

They have serial numbers on the outside of the cases.

Not readily readable to the human eye. It requires light from the right angle and reading at the right distance. I could totally see Apple providing designer reading tables to TSA for exactly this purpose rather than changing the readability of the text on the outside of the case.

When people are parting out Macbooks, the bottom case panel with the serial number is the least valuable part.

I had trouble selling them for $10 each.

6 screws (proprietary screwdriver required, $3 AliEbay) and you can swap them out.

Applications are open for YC Winter 2020

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact