Travel Light: Pack Music, Photos, and Video on a P/PC

By Todd Ogasawara
Telephony and Windows CE Forums Manager

July 1999 -- A toothbrush, comb, and clothes aren't the only necessities for a summer trip for many of us in this connected, multimedia society. We need radios, tape players, CD players--and perhaps a notebook PC with a digital video disc player to watch a movie while waiting at an airport.

All these devices add bulk and weight. And, as any road warrior will tell you, space and weight are the twin enemies of travel. So, what is today's wired vacationer to do?

Carry your music, photos, and video clips on a palm-size PC (P/PC). One possibility is a Windows CE P/PC with color liquid crystal display. These units bring a new level of processing power and multimedia features to the ultraportable computing world. And you get all this in a compact package that weighs just a bit more than a pound.

The recently released Casio Cassiopeia E-100 and E-105 P/PCs feature a vibrant 65,536-color display, a fast 131MHz processor, stereo output (via headphones), and multimedia software to play video clips and CD-quality music. And, you can, of course, keep you address book, calendar, task list, and voice notes on it too.

You can also add a 56K modem to check your email, using the preinstalled Pocket Outlook Inbox software. You can even surf the Web with such third-party software as Foliage Software's iBrowser or Conduits' PalmBrowser for the P/PC. If you are planning to take along audio or video clips, a CompactFlash random access memory (RAM) card also is recommended--32 or more megabytes of system RAM should serve you well.

You might also want to consider installing the Pocket Streets mapping program on your E-100 or E-105 to keep you on track during your summer travels. Maps for major cities are available on Microsoft's Web site. However, if your destination is not available, you may want to consider buying Microsoft Streets and Trips 2000. This application has an option that lets you create custom maps for use on your P/PC.

The E-100 and E-105 only differ in memory capacity (16 MB versus 32MB RAM) and bundled software (E-100 owners need to buy multimedia software, while the E-105 comes bundled with the software). Either one will serve you well. Happy summer travels!

You can learn more by visiting the links below.

Casio Windows CE Computers
Microsoft Pocket Streets 3.0 Free Download
Conduits PalmBrowser
Foliage Software iBrowser