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Cool Yule Tools 2012

ACCESSORIZE: Gadgety gift ideas for the holidays

Stylus, mice and stands for your consumer electronics

By , Network World
November 19, 2012 08:09 AM ET

Network World - OK, so you've got your tablet, you've got a case, you're ready to go. Right? Wrong. Sometimes you need some additional materials, whether it's a nice stylus, a mouse or a keyboard or other fun gadget.

Holiday gift guide 2012

A quick guide to Network World's favorite gifts

This category is compiled with a bunch of gift ideas for items that are cool and that go along with other, bigger items (notebook, tablet, etc.). Many of these would make great stocking stuffers for the holidays.

Note: Products are listed in no particular order or preference. Prices are also rounded-up estimates from either the product's website or Amazon.com. Better deals may be offered online during the holiday season.

Targus Ultralife wireless mouse

$50

Wires are so yesterday. Targus piles on to the wireless trend with its Ultralife wireless mouse. As you unclutter your workspace, the Ultralife wireless mouse is a breeze to get started. Especially since you don't have that Christmas day letdown where a AA battery is actually included. In fact, it took longer to get the two-button mouse out of the packaging then it did to set up.

Targus Ultralife wireless mouse

After installing the battery in the back of the mouse, just put the tiny receiver into your laptop's USB port and you are good to go. The mouse uses laser sensor technology with a 1200 DPI optical sensor. The only issue with the receiver is keeping track of it. If you don't keep it in your laptop at all times, then you'd think it is like finding one of those pump needles to blow up balls - a proverbial needle in a haystack. Targus ingeniously makes the receiver able to attach to the bottom of the mouse via a magnet to quell such fears. The only downfall is at almost $50, it seems a bit pricey than other wireless mice on the market.

- Ryan Francis

GoSmart 200 Series stylus

GoSmart Stylus 200 Series

$25

I've been searching for a stylus that would let me take notes and sketch on my iPad with the same ease I have with pen and paper. I want something that is well balanced, responds well to the tablet surface, maintains contact regardless of my hand position or speed, and allows precision.

The GoSmart stylus is my current favorite, and I've tried many. Initially, I was put off by the delicate, spiraled wire tip that looks quite fragile. The machining on the stylus is very sleek, and I didn't see a way to replace the tip. The packaging needs some more detail! A visit to the site reveals that the Teflon-coated tip is indeed replaceable for $6. And it is fundamentally sturdier and more flexible than it first appears.

Bolstered with that info, I gave it a bit of friendly abuse and was happy to see it held up well. The very thin wire is twisted into a flat disk shape with an open center. This allows you to see EXACTLY where the stylus will touch the iPad and allows for very precise line connections (if you're drawing, you'll know where to connect lines, for example).

When not in use, the magnetized barrel clings to the iPad and is a nice feature. Pricing is reasonable at $25, unlike some I've researched at $40 and up. This would make a great stocking stuffer for your favorite artist-nerd. (Note to Santa: I've already ordered mine).

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