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Software // Enterprise Applications
01:35 PM

Personal Tech Guide

Your guide to what's hot, useful, and just plain fun

PlayPoint TechnologyWarm Up
Tired of fumbling with your iPod when you're bundled up on a cold day? Fumble no more. Tavo Products' stylish gloves feature nylon strands coated with silver alloy in the tips of the index finger and thumb that let your fingers electrically interact with your iPod's click wheel. They call the $35 gloves PlayPoint technology. You'll call them warm.

Pleo The DinosaurSit, Stay, Speak
Pleo the dinosaur from Ugobe has nearly 40 sensors for sight, sound, and touch on his head, back, and feet. Sensors inside the joints simulate pain, causing Pleo to yelp and even limp. Each $200 Pleo is capable of developing its own personality. A multimedia memory card stores responses to actions. This cutie is slated to hit stores by the end of the year, in time for the 2006 holiday season.

EZDigiMusic MP300Easy Listening
If using your computer to convert audio CDs to MP3 format is a drag, let the EZDigiMusic MP300 do it for you. EZPnP Technologies has made a $200 standalone drive that transfers the contents of a CD to a flash-based MP3 player or a flash memory card from a mobile phone or PDA. Rock on.

BiM ActiveVery Personal Trainer
BiM Active from Bones In Motion transforms your cell phone into a virtual coach. Whether you're walking, running, or biking, the $10-a-month service lets you wirelessly monitor your activity in real time on GPS-enabled Sprint and Nextel phones. When you're done with your workout, exercise data is uploaded to your personal Web portal at

Wallet FlashThat's Not My Visa
Here's a new one: a hard drive that fits in your wallet. The credit-card-size Wallet Flash from Walletex Microelectronics has a double-sided connector so it fits easily into hard-to-reach USB ports. Available with USB 2.0- and USB 1.1-compatible connectivity in storage capacities from 128 Mbytes ($25) to 2 Gbytes ($170).

Biometric DoorknobOpen, Sesame
Goodbye key rock, hello biometric doorknob. Tychi Systems has designed a door lock that recognizes up to 100 fingerprints. The $700 BioKnob doesn't record pictures of fingerprints; a tiny sensor reads fingerprint patterns and stores them as templates. The battery-powered BioKnob can be programmed to grant guests temporary access.

Art. Lebedev StudioKeyboard Of The Future
Art. Lebedev Studio is serving up a three-key mini auxiliary version of its yet-to-be-released customizable keyboard with an organic LED display, where color images beneath the keys display their function. Order the mini-three (Windows version only) before April 2 for $100.

Sony's PCM-D1Is It Live Or ...
Sony's new handheld audio recorder is only for the most serious sound buffs: 96-kilohertz, 24-bit recording capability, 4-Gbyte internal memory, and highly sensitive electret condenser microphones. The $2,000 PCM-D1, designed with circuits that process stereo sound with virtually no extraneous noise, is ideal for capturing live musical and theatrical performances.

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