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Christmas Cheer

Geek Gift Ideas 2001 1055

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the tis-the-season dept.
Once again its time for Slashdot readers to chime in on what they think would make good gift geek christmas presents. Please put approximate prices in the Subject so Santa can more easily decide your gift ;) I'm still stuck for ideas for a few people yet. Of course I'll have to post my ideas anonymously so people don't know what they're getting ;)
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Geek Gift Ideas 2001

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  • iPod! (Score:5, Informative)

    by BoarderPhreak (234086) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @11:51AM (#2589857)
    I think the Apple iPod will totally kick ass this holiday season...
  • Re:iPod! (Score:2, Informative)

    by jspectre (102549) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @12:02PM (#2589990) Journal

    Considering the "protection" is making the folder "invisible" I don't think this is going to be a hard thing to do. The harder part will be writing drivers for the PC to mount FireWire drives (not common on that platform from what I understand) and read/write HFS+ formatted volumes (no idea if software to do this exists at all).

    Check out iPod Hacks [] for a lot more info.

  • B5 and Farscape DVDs (Score:3, Informative)

    by CheshireCatCO (185193) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @12:13PM (#2590111) Homepage
    Like crack, but digital. But so gooooood.

    You do realize that they released these precisely to eat up my disposable income, right?
  • by Krelnik (69751) <timfarley@minRED ... com minus distro> on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @12:20PM (#2590182) Homepage Journal
    Sure, the iPod is slick, but is it worth $400 just to play music? The TDK Mojo [] (which I've posted about before []) uses CD-R's and CD-RW's as media, can play regular CD's as well, uses normal AA batteries, has 8-minute shock protection, and is far cheaper.

    Best of all, (and unlike the Rio Volt SP250 []), it has a quite usable UI that lets you search your disks for MP3's by Artist, Title, Genre and so on. (On the other hand, the Rio has an FM tuner, and plays WMA files too). The UI is what sold me on this unit, it really is the make-or-break.

    $128 at []

  • by Coward, Anonymous (55185) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @12:23PM (#2590210)
    Speakeasy's [] Terms Of Service [] state that customers are allowed "to run servers (web, mail, etc.) over their Internet connections." They also give out static IP addresses.
  • A telescope (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:05PM (#2590596)
    A nice and simple 8 or 6 inch Dobsonian telescope and the necessary accessories.

    Meade and Celestron make acceptable models, but Stargazer Steve's 6" scope is probably the best value.

    Make sure they have some decent eyepieces (Plossls or better) and then they can be cruising the heavens in short order.
  • by Joe Decker (3806) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:14PM (#2590679) Homepage
    30 discs of the Complete National Geographic from 1888 to 2000.

    Ack! I thought you were kidding that such a thing existed for a moment, but a quick check of Google and it's clear that you aren't. []

    Cool. Now I know what I want for Xmas! Thanks!

  • by zeno_2 (518291) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:15PM (#2590686)
    Panasonic 50" Plasma Display - $7999 at Best Buy (hey only 192 bucks a month!!)
  • by rho (6063) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:31PM (#2590842) Homepage Journal

    A great gift for youngsters and oldsters alike.

    The Harvard Classics []. You can find them on eBay every now and then [].

    Next year, you can give them the Shelf of Fiction [] (scroll to the bottom).

    The huge variation in price depends on how you acquire the lot. You can buy book-by-book in flea markets (making a charming shelf of odd-sized and colored books), or all in a lot, if you by a collection (making an impressive shelf, appropriate for a lawyer's TV commercial).

    This is also a good gift for those who don't get much out of school: if you read through the entire shelf, you've basically acquired a liberal-arts education.

  • by droopus (33472) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:41PM (#2590960)
    "At this time, in order to use an iPod, you need a very overpriced underpowered Mac computer:"

    Um, like a $1000 iBook which will kick the ass of most equivalent Win laptops? Real overpriced.

    "you know, from the company that thinks you should pay hundreds of extra dollars for the lack of removable external storage"

    I have a DVD RAM in one of my G4s, a DVD-R in another and paid not a farthing extra for them. Imagine that!

    "mouse button, etc."

    I use a three button mouse. What, you need seven? Try them funny 'F' keys dude.

    " Too bad you can't use the hundreds of dollars to buy paper clips to eject disks because Apple was too cheap to put eject buttons on its drivers."

    You have buttons on your drivers? Cool! Mine only let my PC access pieces of hardware. How the hell did you code a button?

    "Apple: you pay the price to get less power."

    Only buffoons use one OS for everything. Feel free to run Photoshop or Maya on your little Celeron, and I'll wave as I head out the door six hours ahead with a creative director doing the funky chicken as he looks at my work.
  • by Dr. Zowie (109983) <slashdot AT deforest DOT org> on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:44PM (#2590988)
    I used Speakeasy for a while, but eventually ducked out. They have recently taken steps to segment their market: when we joined, they had a large number of ADSL options, but when we went to upgrade our speed (from 608/128 to 608/384 or even 1.0/608), we found that they no longer offer any uplink speed other than 128k, with ADSL. Switching to SDSL means premium pricing and purchase of a new modem.

    We ended up going with Peak To Peak [] DSL -- their service and prices are good (in the Colorado Front Range area). In the Bay Area, I'd recommend CLIQ [] internet service -- they offer high powered "geek-friendly" DSL.

    Don't get me wrong, Speakeasy are good -- but I think they shot themselves in the foot by getting rid of their intermediate-level uplink speeds.

  • Re:iPod! (Score:3, Informative)

    by ncc74656 (45571) <> on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @01:49PM (#2591027) Homepage Journal
    The harder part will be writing drivers for the PC to mount FireWire drives (not common on that platform from what I understand)
    My converted-from-IDE FireWire HD hot-plugs with Win2K with no problems at additional drivers needed.
    and read/write HFS+ formatted volumes (no idea if software to do this exists at all).
    I don't know about HFS+ (what's the diff between it and HFS?), but Linux supports HFS and there's a Windows app called TransMac that copies between HFS and whatever you're using (FAT/NTFS/network share).
  • Done that... (Score:3, Informative)

    by krugdm (322700) < minus math_god> on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @02:04PM (#2591152) Homepage Journal
    Added a Firewire card to my work PC. One 6-pin to 6-pin cable and a copy of MacDrive 2000 later, and the drive mounts right up with no additional effort on my part. It even charges, too! Go into View options and show all hidden files and you can see where the MP3's are stored. The annoying thing is that your collection gets spread over dozens of folder with no rhyme or reason for the organization, but they're all there.
  • by harakh (304850) <hagnas@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @02:39PM (#2591449)
    Seriously consider the Nokia Communicator []. Its IMO the best of two worlds if you really want a good PDA and a good Phone in the same packages.. Personally I like to be able to just carry my phone so i chose a small phone and a Visor - but that's just me.

    But.. For all-in-one - Nokia should be IT.

  • by richardbowers (143034) on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @04:29PM (#2592299)
    Legos, [] and a really secure place to live. []

    That, and plenty of cat-5, should make my dream home [] a reality.
    Total cost - $3 mill or so.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2001 @05:40PM (#2592836)
    ... but the thinkgeek gift guide is pretty cool:

Take your work seriously but never take yourself seriously; and do not take what happens either to yourself or your work seriously. -- Booth Tarkington