Saturday, October 01, 2005

Think Outside Bluetooth Keyboard

My previous musings on coffee did have a Palm related point; they were composed using Think Outside's Bluetooth Keyboard. Folded closed, it's a slim attractive package. Fully open, it's a full sized keyboard -- the kind you usually find on a laptop. It is, however, missing the top row of number keys and that fakes me out. My fingers have "memory muscle" and since the keys feel like a full sized keyboard, I find myself off by one row when I type. Reaching for the "Tab" key, I hit "Caps Lock". Reaching for the numeric key "1", I enter "q". It took a little retraining and I still make typos, but it is still far far better than Grafitti 2, Grafitti 1, or a thumb board for writing anything more than a paragraph.

I connect the keyboard to my T3 via bluetooth. I use "secure" mode, which requires a little more fuss to setup, but in today's times of eavesdropping, I see no other alternative. An infrared keyboard would be more secure in this regard, but then you require "line of sight." Using bluetooth and the keyboard's detachable stand, I can place the T3 anywhere convenient, as well as turn it on its side (this is where my Rotate application comes in handy).

The fit and finsh of the keyboard is excellent, but I still smart from paying $149 for it. Actually, I'm kicking myself because I saw it on Amazon for $91. Advertised for Pocket PCs, it works just as well on bluetooth enabled Palm devices. You just need to download the drivers from Think Outside's website.

One other note: the keyboard has special functions keys dedicated to PocketPC operation, but they are reprogrammable.



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