I frequently (though not ever formally) assess the role of the Pocket PC and related devices in a similar way, as I do my food choices (as much organic as I can afford, and never any meats), clothing (haven't bought new clothing in many years, except for underwear and socks, as used clothing shops are bountifully supplied with well-made clothes), travel (never have I been a driver; bike and Xootr do quite well, and a bus is always available if it's rainy or inconvenient otherwise to go on two wheels), and whatever else I consume/use. A conscious and conscientious existence is important to me. I'd like not to be any more guilty of destruction in this world than absolutely necessary. The Pocket PC is the smallest practical computing device. As such, printed circuitboard production comes at a small fraction of the environmental costs of producing a full-scale PC. I was saddened when I found that I could not effectively use my original Casio E-115 as a standalone computer, back in the summer of 2000. I tried to make use of my brother's work notebook, setting up Activestink and using it to install software. He was very gracious in allowing me to learn to use a PC on his work computer (largely because he used it more for travel, having 6 desktop PCs to use at his lab), and helped out the odd time when I messed things up hopelessly. Within a couple of months it had become painfully obvious that this was inadequate, so I purchased a notebook myself. Lots less plastic and other junk wasted in the making and shipping, and I bought one which I thought would last a while. It's turned out to be a cranky beast, but it works, running Win98SE. It feeds the PPC captured media, the odd batch of songs, and ever couple of weeks it unpacks an installer package which the PPC cannot get into. Basically, it sits idle most of the time, a part-time accessory for the PPC. So far, even with wonderful resources like CabInstl and Xacrett and Resco Explorer for ZIP archiving and nPOP and all the other great software for PPC-independence, the damned PC is still a necessity, making using a PPC a false economic and ecological choice. Still, getting there, and fairly quickly. The many good uses for a PPC (or Palm, or whatever) are obvious to any user to some degree, and not really possible to list in any one place. Our needs differ so much, though there is of course a lot of overlap. For me, using a CF camera means that I don't own a standalone digital camera, saving that much more in wasted production and resources. Using an external mic attached to the iPAQ means I don't use a minidisc recorder (any more, having passed my old one along to my partner who uses it constantly). With a Stowaway and various text editors (GigaPad, Textmaker, Pocket Word, bSquare Notepad...) and a Socket CF modem I am quite thoroughly enabled for all manner of word processing and communications. Microsoft Portrait allows for VoIP communications, though few are yet using it, so I've not often applied this yet. It'd be nice to save on long distance costs... And now that I've a MemPlug dual CF sleeve it's possible, despite their claims to the contrary, to use the HP camera in Portrait with a CF modem. Takes two or three tries, but works. I don't really game a lot, maybe an hour a month or less these days. I had my little honeymoon with Doom and suchlike, impressed with the exotic and disturbing world of adrenaline to be found in such a small screen, especially with headphones on. But that got old. I've never liked solitaire, not with paper cards and even less on a screen. Can't quite fathom how anyone (my girlfriend included) can play endless hours of 'spider' solitaire. Boring. If I play chess or scrabble, I want the real thing, on a board, with soft wooden pieces visiting which goes along with real-world games. It's getting absurd, the title list of PPC games. I wonder how long before 'ultimate' frisbee will be offered for the PPC. Seems software developers want us all to become pear-shaped, and to die at 38 of heart failure. Small impacts. I guess that's one of my cardinal goals, trying to keep the 'footprint' of my living small. The PPC sort of fits that, and will do so more as developers improve versatility and the devices themselves allow greater connectivity both for communications and recording data. I see a notebook PC as being ridiculously cumbersome, and would like never again to purchase a large electronic device of any sort. I have a hand-me-down 15" TV, made in about 1985. My VCR is a reconditioned one from Mexico, and has behaved well for over 3 years. Oddly, some people perceive me as being state-of-the-tech, and yet my 3835 is now considered two generations out of date around these forums. Pushing what one has to the limits - I think that's what makes a real difference. I see far too many people here purchasing new devices when their older ones work just fine, then most of what they rave about is how well an emulator works or how easily their home networking was set up. Wireless networking? Why? For most people, this kind of technology is not necessary, more a minor convenience which allows for more shiny new toys to be consumed. For some it's important, I acknowlege this of course. But it's a sort of parallel to the way most people drive; 1 per car, along major roads where public transit would be far more efficient if properly used. Cars crowd out buses and trains, not physically, but in terms of lust. Giant screens, giant speakers, cars capable of more than twice the speed limit, people eating 22 ounce steaks when 4 ounces per day is generally considered to be a healthy maximum, the average kid drinking 2 bottles of pop every day.... the list of cultural excesses could go on for the length of any novel. Does this jumble help? Sorry, I'm feeling a bit pressured to get some work done on a double bass, which is coming together, but still needs a lot of attention before it can play again. How about some others add thoughts about the 'ecology' of PPC use?