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Chapter 1. The 3 × 5-Inch Powerhouse > The Stylus, Screen, and Light

1.2. The Stylus, Screen, and Light

The PalmPilot's screen is pressure-sensitive; in other words, it's a touch screen. There's nothing magical about the stylus included with the device—it's not magnetic, or electrostatic, or otherwise gimmicked. The PalmPilot can't tell whether it's being touched by the stylus, or, say, your fingernail (although unless you've got some kind of rare genetic condition, the stylus is probably more precise than your fingernail). In other words, if you lose your stylus, almost anything will do as a replacement, including any of the fancy gold-plated inkless pens sold by Cross and others just for use with handheld computers. (See Appendix B for some replacement stylus possibilities.) Many experienced Palm addicts use an ordinary ball-point pen—with the tip retracted, of course. Ink from a pen or graphite from a pencil can damage the screen.

Generally speaking, the LCD (liquid-crystal display) screen is black-and-white. (Technically, it's grayscale, like a "black-and-white" TV, capable of creating four or sixteen gradations of gray—but few programs make use of this little-known feature. See Chapter 11, and Chapter 14, for some examples.)


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