Saturday, November 29, 2003

Cool, cutting edge tech gifts for the geek in everyone

The TAPWAVE ZODIAC is a Palm PDA/mp3 player/personal video player/3D gamer. This sucker is SWEET. It has a 3.8" diagonal hi-res screen, fantastic stereo sound via headphone jack or onboard stereo speakers, built-in joystick and firing buttons, long rechargeable battery life of up to 10 hours. Comes with 2 Secure Digital storage slots for up 1gig of additional storage and up to 128 MB on board. And with compression technology as it is today, you can store an entire film (in divx or mp4) on 256MB SD card! Gaming can be done via electronic software download or by Sd or MMC card purchase.

$399.00 for 128 MB model.

Returning from last year's list, the iPod will soon have more storage capacity than the Library of Congress. Who can listen to 10,000 songs in your pocket anyway? Who cares. The iPod is cool. The iPod is also now available for both MAC and PC, which means it's a gift for everyone.

$299 for 10 GB (2,500 songs), $399 for 20 GB (5,000 songs) and $499 for 40 GB (10,000 songs).

iTunes. The first legit mp3 downloading service. And you can burn to a CD. And now that it's out for Windows users, iTunes controls a hefty 80+% of the mp3 download market. And they offer GIFT CERTIFICATES, so now you can give the gift of music to your favorite music downloader!

Single downloads for .99, $9.95 for an entire album

The Digital Video Recorder is one of those technologies which you can't remember what your life was like before you had it. The ability to pause live TV, skip commercials, one touch recording of programming? What's not to love? And when you can watch a 3 hour football game in 45 minutes, a DVR is E-Rs must have gift for the holidays. How else are you going to catch up on all the Bowl games on New Year's Day?

TIVO as low as $199 (plus monthly or lifetime fee). REPLAYTV $499 with lifetime subscription included.

The Hauppauge MediaMVP (MVP standing for Music, Videos, and Pictures) can stream MP3, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, JPEG, GIF, as well as music playlists from MusicMatch, Winamp, and Windows Media. And can do it to your TV.

A Serious contender for the title of iPod killer. Why? Because it plays movies and mp3s. The ARCHOS VIDEO AV380 combines a modular MPEG-4 video player (80GB hard drive) and recorder(1), MP3 music player and recorder, digital camera and camcorder(2), digital photo wallet, and data storage in a compact device that fits in the palm of your hand.

The DCR-IP1 MicroMV Handycam from Sony is not so remarkable with respect to features as it is to its size. The MicroMV Handycam provides you the basics: digital zoom, MPEG1 compressed audio/video, power/supply & charger, S-Video connection, iLINK interface, Memory Stick Duo/Memory Stick PRO storage format (comes with 8MB Memory Stick DUO media), MovieShaker video editing software, and A/V and USB cables. The camera also takes still images. Nothing ground-breaking here, but for the fact that this camera weighs about 8 oz. and is slightly larger than a deck of cards. You can slip this baby into your pocket and have access to instant video. $1,199.99 at

The DSC-P10 Cyber-shot is a smart little point and shoot camera from Sony. Reminding me of the Canon Elph in size, but slightly lighter in weight, the DSC-P10 boasts a whopping 5.0 megapixel resolution. My soon-to-be mother-in-law has one of these and it is pretty slick. Little sound files alert you to certain functions of the camera, for example, you will hear the sound of a more traditional shutter when the picture is taken. The DSC-P10 also has a stutter flash to help reduce red-eye. All the pictures taken this Thanksgiving were free of "demon eye" images. Downloading is a snap with a USB 2.0 interface, and comes with a 32MB Sony SmartStick. One of the really cool things about this camera is its ability to record short MPEG movies. And if you forget where you were when you took a picture, no worries - the DSC-P10 allows one to make a voice recording for individual images so that you can leave yourself a memo about a particular picture.

$449.95 after $50 rebate at

Become a patriot in the media revolution and get yourself the Plextor PX-708A multi-format burner. It writes 8x DVD+R and 4x DVD-R, rewrites 4x DVD+RW and 2x DVD-RW, and reads 12x DVD-ROM. While you're sticking it to the MPAA, stick it to RIAA as well. The PX-708A also supports 40x CD-R, 24X CD-RW, and reads 40x CD-ROM. The drive creates a 4.7 GB DVD disc in about 8 minutes. While other manufacturers such as Pioneer and TDK offer other formats, including DVD-RAM, the Plextor name is synonymous with quality and reliability. Plextor is a favorite of mine, and it will be a favorite of yours, too. The PX-708A is an internal drive ($249.95 at; the PX-708UF is an external drive with Firewire/USB available in 12 colors but does not appear to be available at the time of writing.

Literally screaming "stocking stuffer," the OFFICIAL James Bond Stealth Camera gives shutterbugs a "license to thrill." Features include High Resolution Digital memory holding up to 150 pictures @ 640 x 480, or 310 pictures @ 320 x 240 resolution. A "Surveillance Mode" for recording images at preset time intervals for up to 19 days, and video Clip Recording with Sound of up to 30 seconds in duration. Zippo-Style metal case. USB Plug-n-Play for easy use
PC & Mac Compatible $99.99

Cue Bond Theme.

Free up some deskspace and gain real-estate on your virtual desktop with ViewSonic's 21.3" LCD display panel. The panel boasts a thin edge, so that when you configure multiple panels together, there is little impedence with your view of the full desktop. Unlike most other manufacturers, ViewSonic offers a display stand which will hold all your monitors in different configurations. I personally like the three-panel configuration. I used to use the 19" panel at work, and I can attest to the quality of the display, its clean simple design, and its reliability. As far as resolution goes, it is top-notch. Controls are easy to use, and installation is a snap. You won't be disappointed with this panel. $1438.29 at

Cut the cord to the technological aspect of your life. No, I'm not talking about your landline. I'm talking about your mouse and keyboard. I have been using a cordless keyboard/mouse combination for almost three years. Aside from the "cool" factor, I love the fact that there are no more wires running off the back of my desk. Logitech's latest entry in the cordless I/O segment is the MX Duo. Sporting a very sleek and sexy design, the ergonomic MX700 mouse is not only rechargeable, but extremely repsonsive with its optical reader. The mouse also features several programmable buttons to quickly dispatch repetitive tasks. The Elite keyboard features several programmable shortcut buttons to provide easy access to frequently used programs, and sports an aerodynamic design for easy throwing when your best friend frags you in the last moment to win the latest match of Unreal Tournament. Although this particular model does not come in a split-keyboard model, the ease of setup, reliability, and quality that comes with the Logitech name more than make up for this oversight. $99.95 for the combo, $69.95 for the MX700 only at's online store.

more to follow.


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