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Holiday Gift Guide 2008: Last-minute stocking stuffers

OK, so you promised yourself that this year, you'd get your holiday shopping done early. But, like always, you held off your holiday shopping until the Very.

2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

OK, so you promised yourself that this year, you'd get your holiday shopping done early. But, like always, you held off your holiday shopping until the Very. Last. Minute.

As my family often says, "Whaddya gonna do?"

Not all hope is lost. There are several petite gadgets you can buy straight off the racks at your local electronics store, and no one will be the wiser that you left your shopping until the week -- or day -- before. Here are my picks for this year's perfect last-minute stocking stuffers.

Livescribe Pulse smartpen
Livescribe Pulse Smartpen

Surely one of the coolest pocket-sized gadgets I've heard of, the Livescribe Pulse smartpen records sounds (your voice, or a professor lecturing) through integrated stereo microphones and creates audio notes that it "ties" to your written notes. When you tap on written notes in your notebook, the pen can play the audio that was recorded at the exact moment you wrote those notes. Plugged into a PC, you can view a page-by-page archive of your notes.

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2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

Flip Video MinoFlip Video Mino

The original handy miniature video recorder with straight-to-Youtube capability is still a popular choice, and at less than two Ben Franklins, the ultraslim recorder won't hurt your wallet like a real camcorder would. Plus, it's a little cheaper than its HD sibling (see below).

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Related: Flip Video MinoHD [review] [compare] [prices]

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2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

Lexar JumpDrive Lightning
Lexar JumpDrive Lightning

USB flash thumb drives are a dime a dozen these days, so it's notable when one distinguishes itself from the rest of the pack. Despite its chrome-like exterior, Lexar's JumpDrive Lightning is most notable for its 30MB/s read and 21MB/s write speeds. When it comes to transferring data, quickly and securely beats all else. The 4GB Lightning can be had for about $35.

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2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

Microsoft Explorer MouseMicrosoft Explorer Mouse

Remember the "Blue Track" technology we raved about earlier this year? Well it's finally here, under the unassuming name of the Microsoft Explorer Mouse. The technology basically lets you use the mouse where lasers and optical mice have failed -- perfect for users on the go.

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2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

Aliph Jawbone 2Aliph Jawbone 2

CNET called it "the ultimate Bluetooth headset," and for good reason: Call quality is superb and it may possibly be the first Bluetooth headset that upstages you when you walk into a room.

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2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

DLO Portable Speakers for iPhone
DLO Portable Speakers for iPhone

The name may say "iPhone," but these speakers work with any device that has a standard headphone jack -- in other words, nearly every portable audio player on the market. When not in use, the speakers unite into a six-inch "ball," of sorts. When in use, expect excellent sound quality and little to no interference.

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2008 ZDNet Holiday Gift Guide

Sony DPF-D70 Digital Photo Frame
Sony DPF-D70 Digital Photo Frame (7 in.)

There are an awful lot of digital photo frames out there, but I'm a stickler for simplicity -- and frugality. This plain black 7-inch photo frame, with a less-than-enormous bezel, does the job and only sets you back $120.

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Related: Sony DPF-D80 Digital Photo Frame (8 in.) [review] [compare] [prices]

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