A Personal Digital Assistant Puts the World in the Palm of Your Hand

Every year we make the same resolutions: we are going to exercise more, eat better, and above all get organized. Maybe you are like the thousands upon thousands of people who, each year, go out and buy a thick personal organizer. You look forward to a new year of planning appointments and keeping track of friends and business contacts in your new notebook. How soon into the new year, however, is the notebook cast aside, its pages empty? Perhaps this time you should consider something less cumbersome with more usability, like a Personal Digital Assistant.

A Personal Digital Assistant, or PDA, may resemble a communication device from an old science fiction series, but in reality it is fast becoming an important piece of hardware for businesspeople and anyone who wants to get organized. Depending upon the style of PDA, it is capable of doing many things. It is a calendar, an address book, a word processor, and a memory bank for all sorts of data. Some PDAs may be built into cell phones, or double as an MP3 and/or video player.

Other styles allow users to access the Internet and send e-mail or instant messages. For the person who needs to transfer data on the fly, a PDA is an indispensable device. If you need to bring more structure to your life and work, a PDA can help.

Once you have made the decision to purchase one, however, it will be necessary to do some research to determine which style is best suited to your needs. As PDAs vary by price and style, there are many factors one should consider: Cost - Personal Digital Assistants may cost the user anywhere from just under two hundred dollars to nearly five hundred dollars. The low-end PDA, naturally, gives the owner the absolute basic functionality for organization and storage.

Memory size will vary, though extra memory chips can be bought for certain devices. Depending upon your line of work or need for a PDA, it is best to research what each styles does for the price. Determine if you really need the extras like phone access and video storage before you buy.

Compatibility - You want to be sure the PDA you choose will work with your computer's platform and software, as you will use your computer primarily to download data onto the device. Make sure there will be an ease of transition with regards to documents, and that any ports can plug in easily without extra adapters. Usability - Bells and whistles are nice, but when you purchase a PDA you want to be sure it performs the necessary functions without requiring extra modules. If you need a PDA for organization, check for a day planning calendar. If you take notes on the fly, check for good word processing. If you require constant accessibility, look for wireless capability.

Start the new year off right by getting organized with a new Personal Digital Assistant. The more you use one, the better trained you can become, and life and work will go much more smoothly.

Kathryn Lively writes for The Computer Connection computer military financing at affordable rates.

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