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Picture on the Wall!

Picture on the Wall!
by Gary Woods

I give a lot of PowerPoint talks so I'm always wandering around town with my laptop in one hand and my projector in the other. It would be nice not to have to take them both on the road with me so I'm always looking for a way to lighten my load.

One solution I saw recently looks very intriguing. It requires that you have a SmartPhone or Blackberry and it comes from a company called Impatica ( The solution they offer is called ShowMate which is a small Bluetooth-to-VGA adapter that allows you to connect your SmartPhone directly to a projector.

The hardware comes with desktop-based software that lets you convert a PowerPoint file into a format that can be used by the ShowMate software installed on your Phone. The software turns the PowerPoint presentation into a series of compressed images than can be copied or emailed to your Phone. The compression settings can be modified by the user to balance image quality with file size.

Once you've got the PowerPoint on your phone the software then allows you to connect to the ShowMate Adapter via Bluetooth or a direct USB cable connection. The ShowMate weighs less than three ounces and can fit in your pocket. The only problem is the device is not battery powered so you must also carry its power adapter and cable with you along with the cable to connect to the projector. ShowMate retails for $249.95.

If you have any suggestions or questions for me please drop me a note at or see my column on the Internet at or call me at (805) 729-0910

Gary Woods is the Computer Trainer for the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors. And he is a Broker/Associate at Home Realty & Investments, Inc