Palm definition

Contributor(s): Doug Merrill and Victoria Xavier-Freyr

Palm is the trade name for a popular personal digital assistant (PDA), a form of handheld device that is also known as a palmtop computer. The Palm is about the same size as a stenographer's tablet. Data appears on a liquid crystal display (LCD) screen. One of the outstanding features of the Palm is its basic method of data entry: a writing device, called a stylus, can be pointed at icons on the display to select items for entry. The stylus can also be used to enter alphanumeric data (words and numbers) by manually scrawling them across the face of the display. This is known as Graffiti.

More recently, a Palm can be purchased with a built-in mini-keyboard or optionally a collapsible full-size keyboard can be attached.

The Palm can not only be used to originate, store, and process data on its own, but it can download data from a desktop or notebook computer or from the Internet, process it, and then upload the new data back.

This was first published in May 2007

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