Geekspeak: July 30, 2001

Gizmo Lets Your PDA Keep on Running ... and Running ...

Sooner or later, your little electronic assistant lets you down. You havent been close to a wall receptacle or an automobile cigarette lighter lately and are suddenly incommunicado, unsure of your next appointment.

For those awkward moments, Electric Fuel offers Instant Power Charger, a zinc-ion battery that, once the seal is broken, draws oxygen through its perforated case to provide instant use and a full charge of your PDA within 2 hours.

Reseal the package, and the charger will provide two more charges within three months. Unopened, it will last three years.

Released at PC Expo at the end of last month, the Instant Power Charger is available for HP, Casio, Palm and Handspring PDAs. The charger and the cord that comes with it weigh less than 3 ounces and cost $19.95; a replacement battery without the cord is $9.95.

If you carry multiple devices, only the cords multiply because one charger fits all PDAs and phones. Disposal is the same as with any AA alkaline cell.

For a trip of a week or so, buying a $10 gizmo just may be easier than packing your plug-in charger. Find out more at