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The Gadgets Of Summer

Looking for some high-tech diversions this season? Check out the latest in gadgets that are more than mere toys -- but fun, too.
Brica Viewart 1000
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Can It Jump Rope?
It's just a toy, but what a great (and pricey) one. The $270 Brica ViewArt 1000 is a video recorder/player with TV input/output, a video camera, a PC Webcam, and a digital camera. Want more? It's an MP3 player, audio recorder, FM radio, and e-book< reader. And it has four games. It records from a TV or DVD player to 320-by-240-pixel ASF files, and its camcorder function uses that format.

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$849 up
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Always Online
Don't leave your PC behind. Install it in your car instead. HIPe PC's Driv-N PCs let you browse the Web, play DVDs, and stay connected. You put the CPU under a seat or in the trunk and install the screen in your dash. It starts at $849 and comes with speech-recognition software for hands-free operation, and the power supply is designed to cope with low voltage and power spikes.

Adapt Away
This is nothing like the power adapter you took on that post-college Europe trip. Hammacher Schlemmer's $40 Autodetecting Travel Adapter automatically converts to 120-volt AC, is compatible in more than 150 countries, and has a USB port that lets you leave other chargers home.

For the Birds
If birding's your thing, take along Celestron's spotting scope with integrated digital camera. The $479 VistaPix IS70 combines a spotting scope's 70-mm multicoated optics and an integrated eyepiece with a built-in 3-megapixel digital camera. The result: magnifications up to 14x on the camera's 2-inch LCD viewing screen. The 3.5-pound IS70 is powered by two AA batteries and comes with a rotatable mount to fit camera tripods and Celestron computerized mounts, and an aluminum hard case.

OtterBox (For The Treo 650/700w/700p)
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(For The Treo 650/700w/700p)
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Sealed Up
You probably should leave your smartphone home when you go up a mountain or down a river, but what if you're just not that type? Better get Otter Products' OtterBox, which seals out water and dirt, and protects smartphones from bumps while providing access to phone, keypad, and function buttons. The $130 cases come in a variety of sizes and work with iPods, GPS units, tablet PCs, and notebooks, too.

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The InformationWeek 2007 Summer Gadget Guide

View the InformationWeek 2007 Summer Gadget Guide image gallery