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Is it possible to still look professional while carrying a cell phone and a pager on your belt, and a PDA in your pocket? This is a very important question for today’s mobile legal professional. With that in mind, here are a few fashionable items to help you go from looking “geek” to sleek. THE MEGAMEDIA BAG FROM ROADWIRED The easiest answer for the burning question above is to simply stuff everything into a briefcase or computer bag. In that case (pun intended), it’s important to find the ideal bag for all your tech tools (and toys).

I’ve found an excellent contender with the MegaMedia Bag from Roadwired (www.roadwired.com/store/ Product.cfm?categoryid=1& Productid=6). Where many of the ho-hum computer bags today provide a slot for your laptop and a few other zippered pockets, the MegaMedia Bag offers 36 compartments and pockets in a very efficient layout. The bag I received was manufactured out of waterproof Ballistic Nylon, but RoadWired also offers the bag in Nappa leather for the consummate professional (see www.roadwired.com/ store/ Product.cfm?categoryid= 1&Productid=49). The inner compartment of the MegaMedia Bag is very functional. A center divider and extra pads are all adjustable through the miracle of Velcro. This allows you to create a perfectly snug slot for your laptop. On the finicky side, I really liked the zipper handles on the MegaMedia Bag. They are expertly contoured for the proper thumb and fingers and this allows for nice, smooth, effortless zipping action. One of my favorite parts of MegaMedia Bag is the handle. A nylon strap is wrapped around what feels like a small pipe. The underside of the handle has a sort of “rubbery” material which can help keep the bag from slipping out of a sweaty palm. It’s just an all-around solid, firm, comfortable grip. The MegaMedia Bag has two main pockets in the front. Both can be unzipped to flap down, but small nylon straps help to keep them from flying all the way open. Inside both pockets are sewn some stretchy bands of fabric which provide excellent spaces for a cell phone, PDA, Gameboy, MP3 Player, digital camera, floppy disks, CDs, you name it. The only caution with the MegaMedia Bag is that it weighs 5 pounds on its own, which is an obvious consideration when you’re planning to lug around your 9-pound laptop. On the other hand, I used the MegaMedia Bag on my last trip to New York and I was able to stuff everything I needed for the trip in the bag without feeling weighed down. The clips and squarish design of the bag made it easy to pull out the laptop for the necessary security checks, and the removable ticket/passport organizer in the front pocket came in handy as well. If you need a fully functional and feature-laden computer bag, the MegaMedia Bag from RoadWired is definitely a winner. MegaMedia Bag from RoadWired $179.95 www.roadwired.com Order straight from RoadWired or check for places to purchase at www.roadwired.com/ index.cfm?ip=dealers%2Ecfm. THE POD FROM ROADWIRED If the MegaMedia Bag is a little more than what you need, then consider the Pod from RoadWired (www.roadwired.com/store/ Product.cfm?categoryid= 1&Productid=57). This is a brand-new product and it promises to be a big seller for big (and small) reasons — it’s compact, convenient and very functional.

The Pod is 7 inches tall, 6 inches wide and only 4 inches deep. It’s made of the same Ballistic Nylon as the MegaMedia Bag, which means it’s still water-repellant and built solidly. You can think of the Pod as a sort of tech-friendly camera bag — not only because you can carry your digital camera and all necessary accessories, but because the Pod is perfect to hold your PDA or MP3 player, and all the extra batteries, memory cards and other gadgets that you might need. The Pod can either be looped on to your belt, or carried by the top handle, or slung over your shoulder with the included strap. The top of the Pod flips up, revealing an interior section that includes a “hammock,” which is adjustable, thanks again to Velcro. This helps to keep your camera or PDA from sliding or banging around inside. The Pod’s lid also features a “Hide and Go Home�” secret compartment that will fit a credit card or some extra cash. The most interesting feature of the Pod are the three “winged” pockets on the sides. Each pocket can be zipped open to reveal inner pockets and various elastic bands and straps that can hold batteries, keys, extra memory cards, PC cards, cables or whatever. It’s a compact solution to your everyday need for pockets and places to fit your various pieces of technology. The Pod from RoadWired $49.95 www.roadwired.com Order straight from RoadWired or check for places to purchase at www.roadwired.com/ index.cfm?ip=dealers%2Ecfm. DOCKERS MOBILE PANT

Even though computer bags are a convenient way to carry all your tech toys and necessities, there will be times when you need to actually carry everything on your person. While many cell phones and some PDAs come with belt clips, another solution is the “Mobile Pant” from Dockers (www.dockers.com/ mobilesitelet/ flash/mobilePantFrame.html). Only a handful of clothing companies have considered creating clothes that are convenient for carrying the technological tools of today’s world. The quintessential khaki pants people at Dockers came up with the idea for the Mobile Pant, which effectively brings the worlds of technology and khakis together. The Mobile Pant looks and feels like a regular pair of Dockers khakis with a zippered crotch, two front and two rear pockets. The big difference is in the three extra pockets that the pants conceal. One is behind the right front pocket and the other two are down the outside seams of the pants on both sides, right about mid-thigh. Each hidden pocket has a very smartly designed zipper that cannot be seen by the common observer (the zipper handle is even the same color as the pants). The idea is that you can place your cell phone and PDA into these hidden pockets and they can’t be seen. When I first put my hand into the extra hidden pockets, I had serious doubts that they could actually fit my PDA. Surprisingly, my PDA did fit, although there wasn’t any room to spare. On my other leg, I had my cell phone nicely tucked away. My front and back pockets held my regular collection of keys, money clip and wallet. I was amazed to look in the mirror and only notice a small bulge on my leg from my PDA. Other than that, the Mobile Pant looked good and I looked normal. While walking, I could sometimes feel my cell phone bump my thigh, but for the most part, I had no trouble standing, sitting, walking or even running. Dockers used a hook-and-eye plus a button as attachments on the waist. This works well to support the extra weight when you add a PDA and cell phone to this mix. On top of that, all the pockets are composed of a nice sort of mesh fabric that looks like it would be friendly to an unprotected PDA screen. My only pet peeve with the pants arises when I have to zip up the hidden pockets on my thighs. I have to use both hands — one to do the zipping and the other to hold the material below the zipper. I usually have to contort my body slightly to have a successful zip-up. This is really no fault of Dockers — I don’t see how they could have done this any differently — but the process is just a little clunky at times. Did I mention the pants were also comfortable? I mean, I’ve always enjoyed my Dockers pants and I’m very happy to have a pair of the Mobile Pants. It’s very nice to still look good on casual day at work but know that I have my cell phone and PDA just a quick zip away. I can be a professional and a geek at the same time. Mobile Pant from Dockers, brand name of Levi Strauss & Co. $52.00 www.dockers.com www.levistrauss.com Check JCPenney.com and Macys.com for other prices. Brett Burney is the Legal Practice Support Coordinator at Thompson Hine (www.thompsonhine.com) in Cleveland. He also reviews products for Law Office Computing magazine (www.lawofficecomputing.com) and writes a monthly legal tech column for LLRX.com. He can be reached at [email protected].

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