My spin: PC World gives a peek into Palm’s trade show, held in Califoronia at their developers conference.
Most of the booths were manned by the usual suspects. On the hardware side, Sony showed off three brand-new Clies, which just keep getting slimmer, trimmer, and cheaper. (I wish the company would work on those boring alphanumeric model names.)…..
…With any luck, I’ll soon get some hands-on time with Sony’s newcomers. But meanwhile, around the corner from Sony’s booth, I saw a strange sight: a woman kneeling on the floor, bent over something that looked a lot like a sheep but was covered with clear plastic sheeting dotted with strange markings.
Moving closer, I saw that it was a close-to-life-size sheep doll, and that the markings on the plastic were bar codes. The woman was scanning the bar codes on the sheep with a scanner attached to a blue ruggedized Palm that in turn hooked up with a computer running software that turned the bar-code scanning into sheep shearing: As the woman successfully scanned a bar code, a display showed a sheep (okay, an image of a sheep) being sheared in the corresponding location…..
One of my favorite stops at PalmSource is the booth run by Astraware, a company located in the industrial heartland of Great Britain that happens to be one of the top game developers for handhelds.
I thought the new Sony Clies were small until I noticed a booth touting what has to be the teensy-weensiest Palm-based cell phone I’ve ever seen, Group Sense PDA’s XPlore G18, formerly code-named Zircon.
Finally, every trade show has its duds; this one was no exception. A rep for PalmGear, one of the big online handheld stores, gave me a copy of Power By Hand’s video training disc that’s designed for people who’ve never used a Palm. I stuck it in my PC’s DVD drive and was astonished by how little instruction and how much feel-good babble and blatant promotion of PalmGear the teacher managed to convey in the first 10 minutes.
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