The Linux Magazine 2007 Holiday Shopping Guide

The holidays are fast approaching, and that means it's swag time, and this year there's plenty of tech goodies and geekish gifts to put on your list or buy for your friends and family. From inexpensive, but nifty, gadgets to high-dollar top-of-the-line tech, we've got a shopping list that will satisfy the most discriminating shopper.

Go Green for 2008

If one of your resolutions for 2008 is to go green, you might have a look at the Zonbu, a low-power Linux PC in a mini form factor that conserves energy and generates less heat. As an added bonus, it’ll save you time on the phone if you get this little beauty for friends or family who aren’t terribly computer-savvy.

The Zonbu has a low-power CPU, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of flash-based storage, supports a monitor with up to 2048×1536 resolution (we don’t know how they got that either…), six USB ports, and 10/100 Ethernet built-in. How do they get by with such a dinky storage capacity? That’s the other half of the Zonbu’s appeal. Zonbu offers subscriptions with storage and software upgrades, starting with a free 2GB storage package that includes software updates.


Small but snazzy: The Zonbu PC

It’s not the machine for power users, but the Zonbu is a perfect device for someone who’s not a computer whiz. If you have someone on your gift list that needs a basic computer with few frills, this is the one to look at. The Zonbu is priced $99 if you pony up for a two-year subscription, or $249 if you’re going with a month-to-month plan.

That’s Not a Knife. This is a Knife. And Screwdriver, Pliers, Wire Cutters…

The* nix philosophy is that every tool should do one job, and do it well. This is great for software, but not a good guideline for hardware, when it’s much better to carry a small multipurpose tool than a full toolbox. The Skeletool CX from Leatherman is a perfect example of the ideal multipurpose tool.


The Skeletool CX

It sports pliers, wire cutters, bottle opener, screwdriver with several bits, pocket clip, and rumor has it, even a knife. It’s Tungsten coated, 4 inches long when closed, and a mere five ounces. The Skeletool CX is new from Leatherman, which makes it a great stocking stuffer for this holiday season. With a suggested retail of $79.95, it’s not cheap, but Leatherman products will last a long, long time.

Is That A Firewall In Your Pocket, Or…

When you hit the road, it’s hard to take the corporate firewall with you. To stay secure at home, on the road, and everywhere, take a look at the Yoggie Gatekeeper Pro, a “personal security server” that sports a Linux-based security system in a hand-sized package.

The Yoggie requires no installation, no configuration. Plug in and forget it exists. It provides anti-spam, anti-virus, email proxies, intrusion detection, a VPN client, stateful firewall, and it’s automatically updated. This little beauty also has an adaptive security policy and a Layer-8 Security Engine to protect from unknown attacks and new viruses.

The Yoggie isolates your laptop from attacks, and takes the brunt of any intrusion attempt. The Yoggie connects to your computer via USB, and lets you connect to wired and wireless networks without concer. There’s no such thing as perfect security, but the Yoggie is a good start for the road warrior on your gift list. The Yoggie Gatekeeper Pro has an MSRP of $220.

Comments on "The Linux Magazine 2007 Holiday Shopping Guide"

wunderwood

Magnetic closures on the pockets… isn’t that bad for credit cards and other stuff…

Reply
bryanjrichard

I’m kind of digging the Skeletool.

Reply
jzb

The Skeletool is definitely at the top of my wishlist.

Reply
bryanjrichard

I’m sorry, but… a Slanket? What would the card say that you included with this gift to someone?

“Because we respect that you’re too lazy to put on a sweater.”

or

“Being bedridden just got a little bit easier.”

or, truthfully,

“It was cheaper than the Skeletool.”

Reply
jzb

“What would the card say that you included with this gift to someone?”

It would say, ‘put this on and stop cranking the heat up, the electric bill is bad enough as it is.’

Seriously, though, they’re awesome. At least, they are if you live somewhere it actually gets cold. Not so useful in Florida.

Reply
bryanjrichard

Are you saying you own one of these wonders of the modern era? Photos? Convince me.

Reply
jasonperlow

I totally want a Skeletool. AND a Slanket.

Reply
bryanjrichard

Now Perlow? This is quickly becoming a movement.

I’m loathe to do it but I am compelled to quote Seinfeld:

JERRY: (to George) Again with the sweat pants?

GEORGE: What? I’m comfortable.

JERRY: You know the message you’re sending out to the world with these sweat pants? You’re telling the world: “I give up. I can’t compete in normal society. I’m miserable, so I might as well be comfortable.” (George is baffled)

###

And with one slight adjustment,

:1,$s/sweat pants/Slanket/g

You can begin to see where I’m coming from. :-)

Reply
cklammer

Slanket ? That used to be called a poncho ….

Reply
cklammer

> 1,$s/sweat pants/Slanket/g

> You can begin to see where I’m coming from. :-)

Yeah – from vi beginner’s group:

%s/sweat pants/Slanket/g

Reply
jasonperlow

Laugh all you want about the Slanket. They’re all sold out.

Reply
bryanjrichard

@Christian, oddly enough I find it kind of refreshing that I don’t carry all of that vi command line crap in my head any more.

And I do hope that crown doesn’t sit too heavyily on thy brow my (vi) King. :-)

Reply
bryanjrichard

> Laugh all you want about the Slanket. They’re all sold out.

You’re siding with the court of public opinion on this one? That’s a little out of character for you.

I refused to be moved on this one. Perhaps if it came with a Clapper I’d get one.

For my Grandma.

Reply
jasonperlow

It’s really pissing me off that I can’t get a Slanket, at any price point. I’m guessing you cornered the market on them, Bryan.

Reply
grndrush

“…up to 2048×1536 resolution (we don’t know how they got that either…)”

For the mathematically distressed at Yahoo!, 2048 = 2K, and 1536 = 1.5 K (1k = 2^10 = 1024). 2048:1536 = 4:3, i.e., the same aspect ratio as 640×480, 800×600, 1024×768, 1600×1200. Simple enough for the yahoos at Yahoo! NOW???

Reply

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