Apps for your Palm Handheld by Dave Johnson & Rick
Broida, ISBN 0072254297
Carson, August 2004, send
by: McGraw-Hill/Osborne, go
to the web site
Are you tired of endless searches on all the Palm
OS software sites, looking for a particular program
or application? Do the obviously partisan 'review's
on many of the download sites leave you unsure about
which program to choose for your particular need?
Are the more authoritative reviews too difficult
to find (except on Kickstartnews of course)? Are
the authoritative reviews you do manage to find all
too complicated, long, or otherwise difficult to
understand? If so, you need a book! In this case,
the book contains 101 recommendations for Palm OS
software divided into ten major categories covering
every conceivable, conventional need for the majority
of Palm handheld users. Best of all, the book comes
with a CD containing current or recent versions of
every single program covered.
Apps for your Palm Handheld is a one-stop shop
for most Palm handheld owners. Unless you're
an incorrigible Internet addict, you're unlikely
to find better product selections in each category
than the ones chosen by authors Johnson & Broida.
In fact, although all of the software in the book
certainly has strong competition, it's debatable
that even the geekiest among us is ever going to
find something better than the programs in the book
in the short term. What Johnson & Broida have
done is recognize their readers as those who want
fast, good quality answers to a large list of specific
needs. So the authors' research seems to have been
focused not just on the best of breed in each category,
but also the most popularly useful in each category.
There's a distinction and it rests principally in
the usability of the chosen software. On top of that,
the authors have also chosen software for its compatibility
and stability across Palm OS 3.5 through 5.x. Obviously,
all the software in the book may not work perfectly
on older, slower handhelds running earlier versions
of the operating systems, but for the most part you
should be delighted with almost every program you
choose to install, no matter what Palm OS handheld
what's covered? In a word, everything. Work and productivity
thoroughly covered and get as much attention as
utilities, games, travel tools and replacements for built-in
Palm programs. We found a few surprises too. Keep in mind
that software reviewers, even the writers at Kickstartnews
who tend to spend more time actually using the software
and hardware they review, think that they've already seen
everything. So it was great to find FileZ (freeware from
NoSleep Software), a superb file management utility which
is now a permanent part of my own Palm OS toolkit. We also
found the heretofore unknown PenJammer (shareware from
Ironwheel Works) which is
the finest Graffiti teacher we've ever seen (my wife officially
extends her thanks to Johnson & Broida).
conventional #1 hits abound too: perennial award winners
Agendus, AvantGo, BugMe!,
Cloak (which just underwent a name change to TurboPassword),
DateBk 5, Documents-to-Go, QuickOffice, RepliGo,
SilverScreen and Vindigo among some of the more notable
The book is well designed and will help you find what
you need quite quickly. The table of contents does not
contain program names, opting instead to provide one line
descriptions of each title within the each main category.
However, the index provides a more detailed reference.
There's also a file list starting on page 183 which shows
the programs in order of presentation in the book. These
three breakdowns make it easy for anyone to quickly find
a program for any general or specific need.
There's only one problem (a tribute to Johnson & Broida's
diligence) which is that you should really get the book
now because in a year, almost everything on the CD will
be out of date, superceded by newer versions which you'll
have to find and download.
Pros: Well planned selection of software which provides
in-depth solutions to a wide range of needs for work, play,
utility, productivity, hobby and entertainment. Top quality
selection of programs chosen both for stability and compatibility.
The authors have spent a lot of time tracking down a terrific
selection of freeware. The ultimate choice for people who
need Palm OS software and who are intimidated or confused
or just put off by the effort needed to dig all this stuff
up by themselves. Highly recommended.
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