Judie’s Gear Diary – 2005-11-08

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Wow, time got away from me and I didn’t realize how long it had been since I
had updated my gear diary! 40 lashes, yah!

Several weeks ago I got a K40 CALIBRE
built-in radar & laser detection system installed in my truck, and I have since
been putting it through its paces. But tomorrow is going to be its first real
road trip test – it’s Sarah’s birthday and we are making the 500 mile round trip
drive to San Antonio to see Depeche Mode
and The Bravery in concert. This will
be a whirlwind trip – there and back in one day – since she has school the next
morning. What were we thinking when we decided to do this? Ah well, at least we
should be safe from getting any speeding tickets!

I’ve also been testing out the Datexx
, one of several portable digital products I will be reviewing over the
next couple of months. This one has a few extra features over the others I have
seen, so I will be talking about those in the review. It’s interesting to note
that the ability to watch recorded TV programs and DVDs on portable digital
devices – including PDAs – has been around for a while, but interest seems to
really be amping up lately, probably due in no small part to the opening of the
Apple iPod Video Store. So how
do you feel about paying for content that you may already have paid for
or that can be obtained for free – if you already have the equipment, programs
and / or knowledge to do so? Is the convenience of being able to download a TV
program that can be watched only be watched on the newer iPod or desktop
computer worth the extra money, or do you think it makes more sense to record
your own content which can be played on multiple devices? I’d love to know what
everyone’s opinion is on the matter.

In the

front, I believe that I have finally got my mini computer
configured exactly how I want it. Learning which Today Screen items cause
start-up delays and which have no ill effects has been a trial and error
process. But as a wise man once said, "there is a work-around for everything." I
don’t want to give the impression that the 6700 is persnickety, it’s just little
things that have to do with WM5 and how programs are stored and started or how
memory is accessed. I have read four or five eBooks on it and was pleased to see
that the smaller screen didn’t make that much of a difference in my reading
enjoyment. The battery life has been surprisingly decent, too. Overall, this is
the first convergent device I have used which has made me think I could actually
leave for a couple of days and not need to lug along a laptop. I have even been
using a Bluetooth headset, the NextLink
Bluespoon AX2
, which has made holding the "little brick" up to my face
completely unnecessary…but I still do it because old habits die hard.

I loaded Kingdom of Heaven
on the PPC-6700 the other day, and while the screen was smaller than one from
which I would ordinarily want to watch a movie – playback was surprisingly good.
I believe that the only other currently available PDA phone which I would
consider over mine would be the
JasJar, but only because
it does have a larger VGA screen. Ah well, everything is a tradeoff, right? The
PPC-6700 is pocketable and surprisingly dainty, so I am not going to jump ship
anytime soon… :0)

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