School supplies go digital

Forget those three-ring binders. They're old school.

The accessories in high schools today are more likely to be cyber than fiber. Try Kool Aid-colored Palm Pilots, Hello Kitty cellphones, and leopard-print pagers. Some other new digital gadgets students are packing in high school hallways this year include:

The C-Pen. This hand-held device scans and saves printed text and transfers it to your computer. The 200 model stores up to 100 pages of text. If that's not enough, the 600 model holds 2,000 pages, a calendar, and an address book. The primary feature of the pen, however, is its dictionary. Roll the pen over a word, and it gives a definition in less than a second. And, depending on the software, it can translate between English and Spanish, Italian, French, German, or Swedish. Price: $149 for the C-Pen 200, and about $270 for the C-Pen 600.

Land's End Cordura wheeled backpack. If the books are too heavy, this backpack's inline-skate wheels let you pull your homework home. Price: $69.50

Mead's Smartbook memo voice recorder. This device records and plays back 20-second messages. It's so small that it fits on key chains and inside backpack pouches. Priced under $10.

KBGear Interactive's digital camera. Called the JamC@m 2.0, it lets users shoot eight high-resolution pictures suitable for printing, or 48 low-quality pictures perfect for Web pages. It's compatible with Macintosh and PCs - and most checkbooks, since it's only $90.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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