Remember when we were told not to trust Wikipedia as a reliable source? Well, those were the old days. Now, Wikipedia is the first place we look when searching for useless trivia -- or to write a term paper. If you're ever in the situation where you're arguing with friends about whether it was Bill Paxton or Bill Pullman in that one movie, then why not whip at your WikiReader. The WikiReader, available as of today, is a palm-sized device that puts over 3 million Wikipedia entries at your fingertips.
For those of you with smartphones, you may be chortling at the thought of buying a gadget whose sole purpose is to display Wikipedia pages. The WikiReader can't play your iTunes, it can't tell you where to go if you get lost, and get this, it doesn't even use Internet access.
The WikiReader has a a low-power CPU with a monochrome touchscreen display, and the device will run for months on a set of two AAA batteries. With Wikipedia constantly being updated, you may be worried about the fact that the WikiReader doesn't have online capabilities. Never fear; users can access quarterly updates that can be downloaded for free from the WikiReader Web site. In addition, there's a $29 yearly subscription plan which provides the updates through microSD cards sent via snail mail.
So, who's going to buy this strange contraption? Well, probably those people who don't have smartphones. You may not want to add it to the rest of the gadgets you lug around with you -- cell phone, MP3 player, digital camera --, but it could be a useful little bugger to have at home, or when you're traveling and don't have Internet access. Just think of all the fun you can have on family road trips with this thing!