Seattle-based Palmtop Publishing, the folks who brought you Pocket Show Guides for handheld computers (TM, September/October 1999), has a new trick in its pocket. While the company's first product, downloadable event guides for PalmPilots and Windows CE-based handheld devices, was geared to show management, this time Palmtop has something for exhibitors: PocketGrams.
Unveiled in January at IDG Expo's MacWorld Expo 2000, PocketGrams are interactive brochureware that exhibitors can beam directly to an attendee's handheld computer.
For a one-time cost of $1,500, you get a ready-to-distribute high-tech calling card that splashes a custom start-up screen each time it's opened. The PocketGram includes one piece of brochureware, such as a datasheet or mini product catalog, as well as standard company information, a logo, booth location, and a show offer or coupon, depending on the exhibitor.
To discourage recipients from trashing their PocketGram once they leave the show floor, exhibitors can supplement the giveaway with useful functions such as a directory of U.S. area codes, a list of National Public Radio member stations around the country, or a primer on NFL referee signals.
No Tacks, No Tape There are those among us who qualify as certifiable sticky note freaks. You know who you are: Sticky notes ring your computer monitor, obscure the buttons on your telephone, and threaten to take over your desktop. If it's gotten this bad, you may already know about a Post-It Notes product aimed at the meetings market.
As its advertising slogan says, "Think of it as a Post-It Note on Steroids." St. Paul, Minn.-based 3M, creator of the Post-It brand, offers Post-It Easel Pads, with 25-by- 30.5-inch sheets. The sheets can be flipped, like conventional easel pads, or removed and stuck to the wall without tacks or tape.
Unlike the little stickies that you've had on your monitor for months at a time, expect the easel sheets to stay on the walls only for about 48 hours.
They're available in white, yellow lined, or with a blue one-inch grid on white. Each pad has 30 sheets, and a package of two costs about $20. For more information, contact 3M at (800) 328-6276, or visit the Post-It Web site, www.mmm.com/post-it.
Talk to Yourself The neat thing about Sony's new ICD-MS1 Memory Stick Voice Recorder, which ships in March, isn't just its size (imagine a Viginia Slims cigarette pack) or its recording capacity (131 minutes). What's really interesting is the flexibility and portability of the data files it creates.
Previous incarnations of Sony's digital recorders could transfer your speech from the device to your PC, but a cable was required (and who needs another cable?). Memory Stick is a removable, ultra-small, high-capacity transfer media. After recording an audio file, the user simply inserts the Memory Stick media into a VAIO personal computer, or any other PC with a Memory Stick adapter, and transfers the files to the PC using Sony's Memory Stick Voice Editor software. Users have the flexibility to store a voice file with other related files, such as digital images or documents. The recordings can also be e-mailed; just use the Memory Stick adapter to convert the recording to a .wav file format, which can be attached to an e-mail.
For those who require transcription, the file can be converted to text by sending it to an
e-service that will transcribe a .wav file, or by using voice-to-print software. Sony offers a product called WAVpedal, which turns your PC into a transcription machine.
The Memory Stick recorder features a playback edit function and an LCD screen that displays the number of messages, date and time of each recording, and remaining battery power. The device sells for $299.95.
For information on the nearest Sony dealer, call 1-800-222-SONY. On the Web, visit www.sony.com.
When everyone in your company can create PowerPoint slides, odds are that everyone is reinventing the wheel at least part of the time, and probably getting some of your marketing details wrong. Accent Graphics, a company based in Melbourne, Fla., is ready to eliminate the chaos of PowerPoint empowerment with a product called Presentation Librarian.
Now marketing directors and event managers can ride herd on PowerPoint slide usage. All that's required is to get all the presentations into one place. The task may be akin to herding cats, but if you can get them all together, Presentation Librarian will put them into categories you create and will plug them into a database of images. With the full-fledged Enterprise version of the product, you can create a Web site where your far-flung sales and marketing staff can have access to as much or as little of the database as you desire. They can pick the slides they want, put them in the order they want, and Presentation Librarian will create a PowerPoint file of their selections, compress it, and automatically download it to their computers.
Your CEO doesn't like to carry a laptop? No problem--as long as he can get to a nearby Kinko's, he can have his presentation downloaded and printed as color overhead slides.
In addition to forcing you to finally get all the PowerPoint presentations floating around your company organized, you'll get benefits that will please the control freak side of your personality, including the ability to maintain quality control over every presentation, from content to template design.
Naturally, such awesome power comes at a price: The Enterprise system, which requires a Windows NT server, comes in at $14,600. If that's too much for your budget, three less powerful versions work on LANs or single computers. There's even a version that will put your entire PowerPoint library onto a CD-ROM. For more information, call (800) 771-6011, or visit www.accent-graphics.net.