Scott Steele's Tech Tips: Digital Keychains

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Remember those big old photo albums you'd spend hours organizing? Now, there’s an innovative way to display those pictures. It may be difficult to believe, you can hold more than six dozen photos in the palm of your hand. It's a clever innovation that lets you keep your most important images with you all the time. Once upon a time if you didn't carry pictures of your spouse or your kids in your wallet or purse, well there'd be some raised eye brows. With digital cameras so popular these days, printing out wallet sized snapshots is no longer a given. Many people don’t even carry around photographs anymore, but instead store all of their snapshots on a computer. So what's a proud parent or grandparent to do? This is one amazing new answer and it's likely to be a hot gift idea. It's a digital keychain. There are several on the market. One is from Digital Foe-sigh. They call it the pocket album. It about the same size as any novelty key chain you might have. The one from Digital Foe-sigh comes with its own software: an updated version can be downloaded from the company's Web site. The software installs in seconds and if you have even basic computer knowledge you'll find it really very intuitive. The keychain is connected to the computer with a standard USB cable. Then, the software must be launched. You can then select some pictures. The program lets you do very basic things like rotate and crop images and then click the synchronize button. Everything else is automatic. The photos are effortlessly resized and transferred. The Pocket Album boasts a 1-and-a-half-inch adjustable LCD screen plus enough memory to store about 74 pictures. It even acts as a clock and calendar too. You can set up an automatic slide show function or show off each snapshot individually. The rechargeable battery will run for about 9 hours - but the most appealing thing about these gadgets may be the price. Many of them are less than $20. It's an inexpensive way to carry your precious memories on a key chain.