Cool Stuff: On the Go

Perhaps it's a sign of a revitalized economy. There are gadgets and gizmos aplenty for geeks of all ages on your gift list.

Lapworks Laptop Desk

Manufacturer: Lapworks Inc., Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

Price: $50

Sometimes, like when you're in an airport terminal, you'd like just a little bit of hard surface to put your laptop on. Here's a portable unit that fits that bill neatly, with an ergonomic "desk" that sets at several angles, an add-on mouse pad and a swivel base. And when your flight is called, you can fold it up quickly and stow it in your briefcase.

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UX50 Personal Entertainment Communicator

Manufacturer: Sony Electronics e-Solution Co., Woodcliff Lake, N.J.

Price: $700

The UX50 Personal Entertainment Communicator is a handheld device with afterburners. It features a 480-by-320-pixel landscape-mode display in a clamshell case, built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, a built-in VGA digital camera and the Palm OS 5 operating system. What else? An MP3 player, a voice recorder, a video recorder and Memory Stick Pro cards for add-on storage. The display swivels and folds down, and you can use it in touch-screen mode. The wide-screen design provides more room for the keyboard.

Cyber Tool 41

Manufacturer: Victorinox

Price: $95

From Victorinox, maker of the Swiss Army Knife, the $95 Cyber Tool 41 is a 41-function pocket knife that includes a DIP switch setter and a set of Torx and PosiDrive bits along with the more traditional scissors, pliers, corkscrew and can opener.

FlashFolio

Manufacturer: RoadWired

Price: $30; $60 in leather

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Removable storage devices used to be a nuisance because they were so big. Now they're a nuisance because they're so small. With new formats proliferating, thumbnail-size cards offering up to 1GB of storage and hard drives hardly bigger than postage stamps, it's all too easy to lose these devices or take the wrong one with you. RoadWired's FlashFolio comes to the rescue. It has 20 pocketed compartments (all with Velcro fasteners), plus an index card. This case uses Lucent Technologies Inc.'s patented polymer Corrosion Intercept technology, which reacts with and neutralizes corrosive gases that can tarnish metals and degrade or damage electronics.

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GME224M32 Wireless Mini Mouse

Manufacturer: IOgear Inc., Irvine, Calif.

Price: $50

You can slim down your travel kit a little with IOgear's new wireless optical minimouse, a peripheral that stores 32MB of data in its built-in flash memory. With 800-dpi resolution, this mouse requires less wrist movement than most, an advantage for travelers working on airline tray tables. A retractable cable, an on/off switch and a carrying case simplify storage and eliminate tangled wires.

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FlyFan

Manufacturer: Kensington Technology Group, San Mateo, Calif.

Price: $20

You know what it's like on those full-to-capacity cross-country flights when the plane's air conditioning isn't up to the job. Now you can do something about it. Kensington's FlyFan will stir up some coolth for you. It's a small personal fan that plugs into your laptop's USB port. List price is $20, but you can often find it under $10.

Palm Tungsten T3

Manufacturer: Palm Inc., Milpitas, Calif.

Price: $400

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The best-ever Palm handheld features a brilliant high-resolution display expandable to 480 by 320 pixels and viewable in landscape or portrait mode. The T3 has a built-in voice recorder and MP3 player, plus a photo and video viewer. And it can work with Microsoft Office documents. Take along Palm's $99 Power To Go device, and you can recharge your Palm on the run without an outlet.

Copyright © 2003 IDG Communications, Inc.

  
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