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2004/03/21 PDA

© March 2004 Tony Lawrence

Personal Digital Assistant. In other words, something very computerlike that can range from just a simple notebook/calendar to pretty near a full-fledged computer. I don't use one myself, for what's probably an odd reason: I find I do better remembering things WITHOUT writing them down. No, my memory probably isn't any better than yours, but I have found that writing notes (on paper or digitally) seems to give my brain permission to forget. So by deliberately not relying on aids like this, my memory gets better.

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More Articles by © Tony Lawrence

I mainly use my PDA for off-line browsing of HOWTO's for when I am waiting in an office, or otherwise "idle". Since I usually carry my PDA with me wherever I go, I always have something to read. Most of the Linux HOWTO's are available in plucker db format, so all you have to do is sync the HOWTO's to your PDA. I also have many of my own notes saved in plucker format.


- Bruce Garlock

My "PDA" is much less technical: a DayRunner planner. Call me old-fashioned or just a dinosaur, but I can't bring myself to entrust certain kinds of information to a gadget whose batteries can quit or whose memory cells can suddently forget what they're supposed to remember.

Funny thing about paper and pen or pencil: it never malfunctions and never forgets what was written down. All of my notes made while at a client are written into that planner, along with the start and stop times, material used, etc. No data ever gets lost. With a PDA, any kind of a malfunction could mean the loss of the detail I need to bill clients.

After I have generated invoices on the office system I file paper copies. If all else fails, I have an immutable backup and I have a way to carry on if the computer system suddenly decides it's time for a vacation. Can you say the same if your PDA goes kaput (or is lost, stolen or chewed on by the dog)? <Smile>


---September 23, 2004
Well, I kind of do both as well. I like paper and pencil to o. I have had 3 PDA's go on me, and other than a day's worth of entries, everything was restored. I am big on backups, be it PDA's or PC's. Backups have always saved me, and as long as you keep things synchronized up with the PDA, I do not see why a PDA cannot be a useful tool. Heck, I even keep my AIT tapes in my car, and rotate them out once a week, in case my home ever went up in flames. All of my data would be just a restore away! All of my papers, would of course, be nothing but ash.

- Bruce Garlock


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