Given how these supporting players can improve your life, we prefer to think of them as new best friends.


Virtual Ink’s Mimio FlipChart ($299)
Attention teachers, trainers, and product managers: Why lose listeners in a fog of note-taking when this portable, digital transcriber can copy notes automatically, from demo easel to computer file? Simply attach the 5.5-ounce capture bar to a flip board and a PC, pop your marker pen into the mimio stylus, and then start writing. The mimio’s infrared and ultrasound sensors track your handwriting and, using mimio’s special software, record the entire show-and-tell as it happens. The end result: a complete program ready to hand out on the spot or store and e-mail later. (877) 696-4646
GyroRemote & RFKeyboard ($359)
A remote control and keyboard that operate wirelessly up to 100 feet from your computer and projector? Yeah, that works. Gyration’s radio frequency technology lets speakers walk, talk, type, and mingle with their audience in almost any setting — a boardroom, meeting hall, or trade show floor — without constantly maneuvering for line-of-sight contact to a PC. Moreover, the remote control’s built-in gyroscope translates the slightest hand movement into on-screen motion. You can move a cursor precisely with, literally, a flick of the wrist. (800) 316-5432
JMTek Flash USBDrive ($40-$600, depending on MB size)
This diminutive dandy — all of 1/2 an ounce — holds from 16MB to 1 gigabyte of files in a container the size of a gum pack, all safe under encrypted password protection. That should prove handy for attorneys, law enforcement officials, and other pros seeking big storage in a secure, portable package. Operation is easy: Just pop the driver into a PC or laptop’s USB port, download the data, and you’re good to go. Indeed, you could bowl over the boardroom with an entire PowerPoint presentation draped fashionably around your neck. www.usbdrive.com