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Palmtop better than a notebook

Palmtop better than a notebook

Having owned a 200LX for nearly two weeks now, I already appreciate the beauty of this small gem of a computer! For the longest time I couldn't justify the need for one. As a software engineer in the Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) business, most of my time is devoted to writing Systems software on high end desktop Windows-based PCs.

During the past few years I've traveled with both laptop and notebook PCs. Alas, carrying a notebook PC has made my left arm six inches longer than my right. I've cursed my notebook PC every time I traveled with it, because I could never use it in a public place without being noticed. The last thing you want is to be noticed by strangers, working on an expensive PC in a strange place, especially in a foreign country.

Besides the problems of being noticed, trying to find an AC outlet in an airport when your low battery alarm comes on, is not fun. It is particularly stressful, and changes your notebook PC into a six-pound brick, i.e., not very useful except as a door stop. Carrying a set of batteries for a notebook is out of the question.

While these marvels of engineering with their GUI operating systems and beautiful-looking software are great for certain types of applications, their usefulness for the average traveler is slight.

So what makes the Palmtop any different? The HP 200LX is great because it can capably meet the average users needs in an incredibly small and affordable package. This really hit me while preparing a project paper for a graduate course. I used the 200LX to collect ideas as they came to me and composed the rough draft wherever I was. I could comfortably carry the 200LX in my jacket pocket without bulking it out. Furthermore, if my NiCd batteries gave out, alkaline batteries were readily available.

As a developer, the HP Palmtop is possibly the last stronghold of sanity. You can even write software for this little marvel if you're so inclined. Instead of the "memory bloat" associated with Windows applications, most of the software engineered for the 200LX is designed to take full advantage of limited resources. You're almost guaranteed to get your biggest bang for the byte with a Palmtop. Considering that the DOS found on the 200LX is also multi-programmed, you can create some remarkably powerful solutions right in the palm of your hand.

It's true the display is small and the keyboard is cramped, but the power to weight ratio offsets this disadvantage. We learn how to adapt to what has been provided. Like anything else, it has a personality, and in my opinion, this one is worth knowing!

David Hughes

Middletown, NY, U.S.A.

iPhone Life magazine


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We buy used palmtops, working or broken: HP 200LX, HP 100LX and 1000CX.
 

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