YOU CAN TAKE IT WITH YOU AFTER ALL
In a post yesterday on Yahoo! buying Konfabulator, I commented on how many of the applications and content we use everyday are moving off our PCs and onto the network. What few applications we do need on the desktop, however, are also becoming increasingly mobile.
With the advent of open source software like Microsoft Office compatible OpenOffice software, a Graphical User Interface (GUI) desktop for Linux (several are available), open-source Mozilla based browsers, free Instant Messaging software from several providers, and a variety of "free" software utilities, purveyors of USB memory sticks have come up with the latest marketing idea:
Let's sell them a computer-on-a-stick!
Here's their marketing pitch:
Use the Computer-On-a-Stick when your PC or Laptop’s existing OS slows to a crawl or even fails. Use the Computer-On-a-Stick to continue working on Windows-compatible documents. The Computer-On-a-Stick is compatible with files created in Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Paint, and more… No need to pay for expensive new software releases or upgrades $$$ ! View and create Adobe PDF files Share a pool of office PCs or work from home without changing your own desktop each time you use the device. Reduce your exposure to viruses, worms and spyware by running applications from a read-only partition on the device. Connect to remote servers with secure connectivity tools, including VNC, SSH and RDP.
This vendor (courtesy jkontherun), offers a 256MB stick for $149 and sizes will eventually be available as high as 8 gigabytes. The product can be pretty interesting actually in internet cafes while traveling anywhere in the world.
I've ordered one to try and will report back when I've had a chance to try it out.