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December 30, 2009

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You have captured perfectly what I now realize is my subconscious reasoning for steering clients away from PILOT as a trademark for any number of goods or services - I guess in my mind it's still a famous mark because the appearance of the PDA on the technology scene was so dramatic.

Though you reference The New Yorker, you missed one of my favorite cartoons.

Two airline officers are in the cockpit of a jet that has thousands of dials, instruments, etc. The officer on the left has a small handheld unit. The caption is something like:

"Hey, I'm flying this baby on my Palm Pilot!"

@Michael: Thanks for reminding me about that cartoon! I found it on CartoonBank.com: http://bit.ly/7O7WND

It was published in February 2000, almost two years after the PalmPilot mark supposedly died.

In January 2000, the New Yorker published a cartoon showing a hooker leaning into a car window and saying to a prospective client: "For an extra fifty bucks, I'll let you show me your Palm Pilot."
http://bit.ly/6otKGU

And the "PDA: dead" comment is interesting, not because you still use your m130, but because PDAs are alive and well. The PDA grew a cell phone and became a smartphone. So a smartphone without the phone is a PDA, right?

iPod Touch. Apple suddenly owns the PDA market.

@Zandr: Point well taken. However, the category is now known as "smartphones," not "PDAs"--interesting, because phoning is often the device's least compelling function. If you go to the Wikipedia entry for Palm, you'll see this sentence under "PDAs": "Palm no longer manufactures any PDAs." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palm_%28PDA%29

This fall (2009), my insurance company covered my lost iPhone under my computer endorsement because it was a "PDA". . .

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